Hotels in Nerja, Spain
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Nerja is a prominent attraction in southern Spain
At the very eastern end of the Costa del Sol and with Marbella on the far western tip, is the buzzing resort of Nerja. It is best known for Balcón de Europa; the promenade promontory which extends into the Mediterranean. It was and is favoured by the rich and famous. It’s the not so rich and famous, though, who now flock here in increasing numbers. They ensure the resort’s own prominence as a favourite, year-round, Spanish sunshine resort. Bonuses include easy access to the airport in Malaga and to the mountains and magic of Granada.
Caving in to demand
There were hardly any hotels in Nerja until the 1950s, but then, life changed forever. Other resorts in Spain, such as Benidorm, woke up earlier to the immense impact that tourism could have on their economy, but not here in sleepy Nerja. Thankfully, in 1959, the caves, Las Cuevas de Nerja, were discovered and things really began to change. They’re five million years old - Happy Birthday! – and at approximately 35 yards, the main chamber is the tallest in the world. These caves became an instant hit with tourists and even the die-hard locals began to accept that Nerja was maybe much more than just a fishing village. With some reticence, it began the journey that, today, results in the town’s role as a buzzing resort with more than a little unique Spanish charm and appeal. The thrill of visiting the caves can’t be replicated, but there’s a halfway house on Nerja’s Plaza de Espana, at the History Museum. Here, Nerja’s history is traced, starting with the cave dwellers of Palaeolithic days.
Life’s a beach in Nerja
It’s easy to access Spain’s shimmering Med and Nerja’s magnificent beaches. You can stroll there with ease from accommodating apartments, hostels, villa rentals, apartments and of course, those many Nerja hotels. The beaches around Nerja are known for their fine, powdery quality and with approximately 10 miles of the stuff; there’ll always be space for your beach towel. Locals and tourists particularly love Burriana Beach, whilst La Torrecilla has plenty of cafes and bars on the doorstep. Or, go to El! … and those beaches of El Salon, El Playazo and El Chucho. Short sightseeing trips take you to a number of nearby resorts including Almunecar to the east and Torrox to the west. The proximity to Malaga’s International Airport, 40 miles along the N-340 Highway, ensures a year-round demand for late deals to Nerja. Winter visitors in particular, can luxuriate in mornings of winter sun on Nerja’s beaches, followed by an afternoon drive to Granada where residents are dressed warmly as protection from the driving snow blizzards. There’s much more to Nerja than sun bathing and the beach.
Spain’s high-rise building scourge has side-stepped this resort’s hotels. In fact, all buildings in Nerja are low-rise and complement the region’s impressive landscapes. The situation is typified in the Old Town district. Here, the narrow streets and whitewashed properties are untouched by tourism development programmes. Peace and quiet reigns, cats sleep in the warm sunshine and an abundance of flowers overflows from many a balcony. The result is that tourists flock here to see this truly authentic slice of Old Spain. Time has been kind to Nerja and so have the geographic features of the immediate area. Surrounded on one side by mountains, including Sierra Almijara, the town is protected from some of the less favourable climatic variables. Instead, the weather is typical Costa del Sol, southern Spain-style and is one of the finest on mainland Europe. Fishing is still a staple of the town’s economy, but now it runs alongside busy hotels, water skiers, scuba divers, sailors and increasing numbers of shopping and sunbathing visitors.
Scintillate in Nerja
Everyone is invited to the party on 23rd June. That evening, crowds flock from their Nerja hotels to the beach. Ladened with drink, sardines and other food, they await La Noche de San Juan. On the stroke of midnight, those who have sins - and that’s everyone - leap in to the sea to wash them away for another year. So, you can join in and sin till eight, but not much later than that! After midnight, bonfires of dubious vanities involve the brave, foolhardy, or those with no vino left, jumping over those perilous fires. It’s one of a number of popular events and it certainly marks a busy time for hotels in Nerja. Festivals are almost a national hobby in Spain and Cuevas de Nerja, just outside the town, hosts a festival of classical dance and opera in July. Those sins return enthusiastically during October with the wild flamenco parties, dancing and music of Feria de Nerja. Throughout the year, there are many Nerja high notes for the visitor to enjoy.