Just a few miles west of the glamorous Marbella on the Costa del Sol lies the charming town of Estepona. Often overshadowed by its more renowned neighbor, Estepona is a captivating blend of traditional Spanish charm and modern seaside resort vibes that promises to steal your heart.

When we would like to go for dinner but a little bit more relaxed and enjoy the Spanish lifestyle we go to Estepona for a day for shopping, lunch or having dinner. This place has everything and it is a little bit less expensive, you will find more Spanish prices.

Estepona's beauty lies in its ability to seamlessly blend old and new. The heart of the town, with its well-preserved and colorful old buildings, narrow winding streets, and blooming flower pots hanging from the balconies, gives a distinctively Andalusian atmosphere. This historic quarter of Estepona is a labyrinth of quaint streets, where each turn greets you with whitewashed houses draped in vibrant bougainvillea, cascading geraniums, and charming Spanish cafes.

On the other hand, Estepona's marina offers a more contemporary side. The modern port area is a vibrant hub for boating enthusiasts and seafood lovers. Here, you'll find a range of chic restaurants and bustling bars offering some of the finest Mediterranean dishes, including an array of fresh seafood caught daily from the glistening waters of the Mediterranean Sea.

However, Estepona isn't just about the town and the marina; its allure also extends to the beautiful beaches that span over 21 kilometers. The two most popular beaches, La Rada and El Cristo, are wide expanses of golden sand and crystal-clear waters, offering a perfect place to relax under the Spanish sun.

For nature lovers, Estepona presents the beautiful Sierra Bermeja mountain range. The mountain's highest point, Pico de los Reales, stands at over 1400 meters and offers fantastic panoramic views over the Costa del Sol, the Strait of Gibraltar, and even as far as the African coast. The area is also home to an array of wildlife, making it an excellent spot for birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts.

Estepona is not just a feast for the eyes but also a hub for cultural enthusiasts. The town's cultural calendar is dotted with traditional festivals like the San Isidro Fair, Semana Santa (Easter week), and the Summer Feria, providing visitors with an authentic taste of Andalusian traditions. The city also hosts a number of museums and art galleries, including the unique 'Museo de Arte Urbano', an open-air museum showcasing more than 50 murals by different artists around the town.

For foodies, Estepona offers a delightful culinary journey. From traditional tapas bars serving up local favorites like gazpacho and paella, to upscale restaurants providing sophisticated Mediterranean cuisines, there's something to suit every palate. Over here you will find some restaurants that we recommend in Estepona.

In a nutshell, Estepona is a delightful contradiction - it's a place where tradition and modernity coexist, where the hustle and bustle of a resort town meets the peace and quiet of a small Andalusian village. It's a place where you can enjoy a morning hike in the mountains, an afternoon on a sun-kissed beach, and an evening of exquisite dining and vibrant nightlife.

So, next time you're planning a trip to the Costa del Sol, consider Estepona. It's less crowded, equally beautiful, and undoubtedly offers a more authentic Spanish experience. A hidden gem near Marbella, Estepona is waiting to be explored.

Simone Loeff
Author: Simone Loeff

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