Marbella Old Town: A Charming And Historic Destination

If you’re looking for a charming and historic area to explore in Marbella, look no further than Marbella Old Town. This picturesque neighborhood is a stark contrast to the glitz and glamour of the city’s beach resorts, offering visitors a glimpse into the town’s colorful and diverse past. With its quaint cobblestone streets and traditional Spanish architecture, Marbella Old Town is a must-visit destination for history buffs and culture vultures alike.

Marbella Old Town
Marbella Old Town

As you wander through the narrow streets of Marbella Old Town, you’ll feel transported back in time. The area is home to many historic landmarks, including the Church of Our Lady of the Incarnation, which dates back to the 16th century. You can also explore the remains of the Castillo de Marbella, a Moorish fortress that was built in the 10th century and played an important role in the town’s history. And don’t miss the Plaza de los Naranjos, a charming square lined with orange trees and outdoor cafes where you can relax and soak up the atmosphere.

Castillo de Marbella, Spain
Castillo de Marbella, Spain

But Marbella Old Town isn’t just about history and culture. The area is also home to a thriving culinary scene, with a variety of restaurants and cafes serving up traditional Andalusian cuisine. Whether you’re in the mood for tapas, fresh seafood, or hearty stews, you’ll find plenty of options to satisfy your appetite. And if you’re looking for a unique souvenir to take home, be sure to check out the local shops and boutiques, which offer everything from handmade ceramics to one-of-a-kind jewelry.

History of Marbella Old Town

If you’re wandering around Marbella Old Town, you’re walking on streets that have a rich history dating back to the 15th century. During the Muslim period, the town was known as Marbil-la, which means “the strong city.” After the Catholic Monarchs conquered the town in 1485, they renamed it Marbella.

The Old Town has a unique layout, with narrow streets and white-washed buildings that are typical of Andalusian architecture. The center of the town is Plaza de los Naranjos, a charming square with orange trees, fountains, and outdoor cafes. The square was built in the 16th century by the Catholic Monarchs and was once the site of the town’s market.

One of the most interesting historical sites in Marbella Old Town is the Castle Walls, which date back to the 9th century. The walls were built by the Moors and were later reinforced by the Catholic Monarchs. Today, you can see three Ionic capitals embedded in the walls, which are believed to be from the Roman period.

During the 16th century, Marbella Old Town underwent significant changes. The center of the Muslim “medina” (the present-day Old Quarter) was demolished to open up a town square (Plaza Mayor or Plaza Real, now known as Los Naranjos) and a new street, Nueva, to link the plaza with the Puerta del Mar.

Marbella Old Town is a fascinating contrast to the town’s luxurious beach resorts. Its quaint cobblestone streets and diverse history are a must-see for anyone visiting Marbella.

Architectural Highlights

When exploring Marbella Old Town, you’ll be struck by the variety of architectural styles that have influenced the buildings in this area. From the Mudejar and Baroque styles to the more modern restorations, there is plenty to admire and appreciate.

Marbella Old Town's cobblestone streets and diverse history are a must-see for anyone visiting Marbella
Marbella Old Town’s cobblestone streets and diverse history are a must-see for anyone visiting Marbella

Churches and Chapels

Marbella Old Town is home to several beautiful churches and chapels that are well worth a visit. The Chapel of Santiago, located in the heart of the Old Town, is a stunning example of Mudejar architecture. Its tower is particularly impressive, with intricate brickwork and a distinctive bell tower.

Another must-visit church is the Nuestra Señora de la Encarnación Church, which dates back to the 16th century. This Baroque-style church is known for its ornate façade and beautiful interior, with stunning frescoes and sculptures.

Marbella Old Town is a popular tourist destination
Marbella Old Town is a popular tourist destination

The Town Hall

The Town Hall, located in the Plaza de los Naranjos, is a beautiful example of Andalusian architecture. The building dates back to the 16th century and has undergone several renovations over the years. The façade is particularly striking, with intricate stonework and a beautiful balcony.

Marbella Old Town has many cozy boutiques
Marbella Old Town has many cozy boutiques

Castle of Marbella

El Castillo, or the Castle of Marbella, is a must-visit attraction in the Old Town. The castle dates back to the 10th century and has been restored several times over the years. Today, visitors can explore the castle’s ruins and enjoy stunning views of the surrounding area.

Old churches and chapels also dot the Old Town, each with its own unique features and history. Whether you’re interested in architecture, and history, or simply want to soak up the atmosphere of this charming area, Marbella Old Town is a must-visit destination.

Plaza De Los Naranjos

When you’re exploring Marbella’s old town, one place you absolutely can’t miss is Plaza De Los Naranjos, also known as Orange Square. This lively and bustling plaza is situated right in the heart of the old town and is the perfect place to soak up the atmosphere and enjoy a drink or a bite to eat.

Plaza de los Naranjos
Plaza de los Naranjos

As you might expect from the name, the square is surrounded by orange trees, which not only add to the charm of the area but also provide some much-needed shade on hot summer days. In the center of the square, you’ll find a beautiful sundial that dates back to the 17th century.

The plaza itself dates back even further, to 1485, when it was created after the Christian conquest of the city from the Moors. It was designed to be the urban hub of the city, and it certainly lives up to that reputation today.

When you’re in Plaza De Los Naranjos, there’s no shortage of things to see and do. You can take a stroll around the square and admire the historic buildings that line its edges, or you can sit down at one of the many cafes or restaurants and enjoy a drink or a meal.

Whether you’re looking for a quick coffee, a leisurely lunch, or a romantic dinner, you’re sure to find something to suit your tastes in this vibrant and colorful square. So why not take a break from your sightseeing and spend some time soaking up the atmosphere in Plaza De Los Naranjos?

Shopping in Marbella Old Town

If you’re looking for some retail therapy, Marbella Old Town is the place to be. The area is home to a variety of shops, from high-end designer boutiques to small, local stores.

One of the highlights of shopping in Marbella Old Town is the abundance of designer shops. You’ll find everything from luxury clothing and accessories to high-end home decor. Some of the top designer shops in the area include Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Prada.

Marbella Old Town | TheMediterra.com

If you’re looking for something a bit more unique, there are also plenty of boutique shops in Marbella Old Town. These smaller stores offer a more personalized shopping experience, with one-of-a-kind items that you won’t find anywhere else. Some of the top boutique shops in the area include La Condesa, Maria Jesus, and La Milla de Oro.

No matter what your shopping preferences are, Marbella Old Town has something for everyone. So grab your wallet and head out for a day of retail therapy in this charming and historic area.

Food and Drink

Marbella’s Old Town is a culinary paradise, with a wide range of restaurants and tapas bars to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite to eat or a leisurely meal, you’ll find plenty of options to satisfy your appetite.

One of the most popular types of food in Marbella is tapas. These small dishes are perfect for sharing with friends or sampling a variety of flavors. You can find tapas bars throughout the Old Town, each with its own unique atmosphere and menu. Some of the best options include El Estrecho, where you can enjoy traditional Spanish dishes like patatas bravas and croquetas, and Casa Del Corregidor, which offers a more modern take on tapas.

Marbella's Old Town is a culinary paradise, with a wide range of restaurants and tapas bars to choose from
Marbella’s Old Town is a culinary paradise, with a wide range of restaurants and tapas bars to choose from

If you’re in the mood for something more substantial, there are plenty of restaurants in the Old Town that offer full meals. For seafood lovers, La Taberna del Pintxo is a must-visit. This restaurant specializes in fresh seafood dishes, including grilled octopus and paella. Another great option is Altamirano, which is known for its seafood and tapas.

For those who prefer international cuisine, there are also plenty of options to choose from. If you’re in the mood for Italian food, head to Da Bruno. This restaurant offers a wide range of pasta dishes, as well as pizzas and salads. If you’re craving something spicy, check out the Indian restaurant Maharaja. Here you can enjoy a variety of curries, biryanis, and tandoori dishes.

No matter what type of food you’re in the mood for, you’re sure to find something delicious in Marbella’s Old Town. So grab a table, order a drink, and enjoy the casual atmosphere and delicious food.

Hotels and Accommodation

When it comes to finding a place to stay in Marbella Old Town, you have plenty of options to choose from. Whether you’re looking for a luxurious hotel or a cozy apartment, you’ll find something that suits your needs and budget.

Hotels in Marbella Old Town range from boutique hotels to large, well-known chains. Many of these hotels offer stunning views of the Mediterranean Sea and the surrounding mountains. You can find hotels with a variety of amenities, including pools, spas, and restaurants. Some of the most popular hotels in the area include Hotel Claude Marbella, Senator Marbella Spa Hotel, and Hard Rock Hotel Marbella.

Senator Marbella Spa Hotel
Senator Marbella Spa Hotel

If you’re looking for something more private, you might consider renting an apartment. There are plenty of apartments in Marbella Old Town that offer all the comforts of home.

No matter where you choose to stay in Marbella Old Town, you’ll find plenty of options to suit your needs. Whether you’re traveling alone or with a group, you can find a hotel or apartment that fits your budget and preferences. So go ahead and book your stay in Marbella Old Town today!

Beaches and Beach Clubs

Marbella is known for its beautiful beaches, and there are plenty of beach clubs where you can relax and enjoy the sun, sand, and sea. Here are a few of the best beaches and beach clubs in Marbella that you should definitely check out:

Nikki Beach Club Marbella

Nikki Beach is one of the most famous beach clubs in Marbella, and for good reason. With its luxurious white sunbeds, palm trees, and crystal-clear water, Nikki Beach is the epitome of glamour and relaxation. You can enjoy delicious food, refreshing drinks, and great music while basking in the sun. Don’t forget to try their signature mojitos!

Ocean Club Marbella

If you’re looking for a more lively beach club, Ocean Club is the place to go. With its pool parties, live DJs, and fun atmosphere, Ocean Club is perfect for those who want to party in style. You can also enjoy a delicious meal at their restaurant, or sip on a cocktail while lounging on one of their many sunbeds.

Ocean Club Marbella
Ocean Club Marbella

Bono Beach Club

Bono Beach Club is a great option for families with children. With its playground, beach volleyball court, and kids’ menu, there’s something for everyone. You can also rent a paddleboard or kayak and explore the beautiful coastline. Bono Beach Club is known for its delicious seafood, so make sure to try some of its fresh catches.

Bono Beach Marbella
Bono Beach Marbella

Marbella Beaches

Of course, there are also plenty of beautiful public beaches in Marbella that you can enjoy for free. Some of the most popular beaches include Playa de la Fontanilla, Playa de Nagüeles, and Playa del Cable. These beaches are perfect for a day of swimming, sunbathing, and relaxing.

No matter which beach or beach club you choose, you’re sure to have a great time in Marbella. So grab your sunscreen and your favorite book, and get ready to soak up the sun!

Adventure Activities

If you’re looking for adventure, Marbella has plenty to offer. From hiking in the nearby mountains to zip-lining through the trees, there’s no shortage of exciting activities to try. You can also go horseback riding, take a hot air balloon ride, or go on a jeep safari to explore the countryside.

Art and Culture

Marbella Old Town is a hub of art and culture. As you stroll through the narrow streets, you’ll come across a plethora of sculptures and murals that add to the charm of the town. One of the most notable sculptures is the “La Victoria” statue, which stands tall in the Plaza de los Naranjos. This statue is a symbol of the town’s coat of arms and represents the triumph of the Christian reconquest of Spain.

Plaza de los Naranjos in Marbella
Plaza de los Naranjos in Marbella

If you’re interested in learning more about the history and culture of Marbella, you can visit the Museo del Grabado Español Contemporáneo. This museum showcases contemporary Spanish prints and engravings and features works by famous artists such as Picasso, Miró, and Dalí.

In addition to the museum, Marbella Old Town is home to several art galleries that showcase works by local artists. You can also attend art exhibitions and cultural events that are held throughout the year.

Whether you’re an art enthusiast or simply appreciate the beauty of the town, Marbella Old Town is the perfect place to immerse yourself in the art and culture of Andalusia.

Getting Around

Getting around Marbella Old Town is easy and convenient. The best way to explore the area is on foot. The Old Town is small and compact, and walking is the best way to experience its charming cobblestone streets and colorful history.

If you prefer to have a more structured tour, there are several walking tours available. These tours are led by knowledgeable guides who will take you through the Old Town’s most significant landmarks and attractions. You can find information about these tours at the local tourist information center or by doing a quick search online.

If you prefer to explore on your own, you can download a map of Marbella Old Town. This map will help you navigate the area and find all the major landmarks and attractions. You can also use a navigation app on your smartphone to help you find your way around.

If you need to get around quickly or have limited mobility, you can hire a taxi or rent a car. Taxis are readily available, and most drivers speak English. Car rental services are also available, and you can find several rental agencies in the area. However, keep in mind that parking in the Old Town can be challenging, and it’s best to park outside the area and walk in.

Getting around Marbella Old Town is easy and convenient. Whether you choose to explore on foot, take a guided tour, or hire a taxi, you’ll be able to experience all the charm and history that this area has to offer.

Day Trips from Marbella

If you’re looking for a change of pace from Marbella’s beaches and nightlife, there are plenty of interesting day trip options available. Here are a few suggestions to get you started:

Granada

Granada is a beautiful city with a rich history and culture. One of the most famous attractions in Granada is the Alhambra, a stunning palace and fortress complex that dates back to the 13th century. You can easily spend a full day exploring the Alhambra and the surrounding area.

Granada is a historic city that offers a mix of modern and traditional architecture | TheMediterra.com
Granada is a beautiful city with a rich history and culture

Other highlights of Granada include the Albayzin neighborhood, the Cathedral, and the Royal Chapel.

Málaga

Málaga is a bustling city with a vibrant cultural scene. It’s known for its museums, art galleries, and historic landmarks. One of the most popular attractions in Málaga is the Picasso Museum, which houses a large collection of the artist’s work.

Playa La Malagueta is one of the most popular beaches in Malaga | TheMediterra.com
Málaga is a bustling city with a vibrant cultural scene

Other must-see sights in Málaga include the Alcazaba fortress, the Roman Theatre, and the Cathedral.

Gibraltar

Gibraltar is a British Overseas Territory that’s located on the southern tip of Spain. It’s known for its stunning views, unique culture, and interesting history. Some of the top attractions in Gibraltar include the Rock of Gibraltar, St. Michael’s Cave, and the Great Siege Tunnels.

Gibraltar is known for its stunning views, unique culture, and interesting history
Gibraltar is known for its stunning views, unique culture, and interesting history

You can also take a cable car to the top of the rock for panoramic views of the surrounding area.

Marbella Old Town - A Charming And Historic Destination
Marbella Old Town – A Charming And Historic Destination

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