Alhaurín El Grande: a traditional Costa del Sol town at its best

If you’re currently looking round for a holiday and are considering renting a holiday villa, then there’s every likelihood that you’ve considered the possibility of a sunshine break on the Costa del Sol. It’s a lovely place to go to, with great food, great beaches, welcoming locals and a fabulous climate. But what if a beach holiday is not the thing for you? What if you prefer to take your summer break somewhere more secluded, away from the madding crowd and other tourists? Well, you might like to consider the lovely traditional Andalusian town of Alhaurín El Grande. If tradition is something you appreciate, then you’ll find it in abundance in Alhaurín El Grande.

Forming an imposing natural fortress, the town of Alhaurín El Grande is steeped in history. The town summons up pictures of Spain as it used to be, with its classical Andalusian architecture and atmosphere, and beautiful views across the undulating interior of the Costa del Sol. We suppose the town’s setting could be described as dramatic, rather than imposing. Nestled in the fertile Guadalhorce Valley, the lush green hills that give way to bare rock face create a historic Spanish backdrop. Alhaurín is wedged into the hillside. Alhaurín has a rich history here that stretches back to Roman times. It was also shaped by the Moorish occupation in the 7th century. Remnants of Roman columns and Arabic arches sit nicely with the classically Andalusian architecture amongst the charming plazas, whitewashed houses and narrow alleys and streets.

Cafés, pizza parlours, bodegas, tapas bars and traditional Spanish restaurants can be found throughout the town. Alhaurín’s authenticity has never been questioned. Unlike Mijas and Benahavís, Alhaurín El Grande doesn’t stand on ceremony for anyone. What you see is what you get… and what you get is typically laid-back Spain. Beyond the confines of the market town itself, much of Alhaurín’s charm lies in its rural surroundings: numerous hiking trails exist which will lead you through stunning olive and citrus groves, challenging scrubland and fragrant pine forests. Whether by foot, cycle or horseback, the leafy countryside of Alhaurín El Grande is there to be explored, an especially rewarding experience during the blistering summer months.

Alhaurín has something for everyone, and will appeal to all ages. The Los Candiles and El Postillón plazas boast pretty fountains and charming cafés; the municipal sports hall has an open-air swimming pool and multi-use sports pitches, and the dusky tapas bars delight with their tempting menus and cool, air-conditioned interiors. In June, the Flamenco Festival shakes up the entire town and is a must-see, while August brings the El Portón Jazz Festival, which is an internationally-recognised celebration of all things jazz. Golf-lovers will enjoy the challenges posed by the excellent courses at Lauro Golf Club and Alhaurín Golf Club, and the intriguing open archaeological excavation sites will interest historians too.

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