The LVC Insider’s Guide to Mijas
For well over half a century, Mijas has been one of the most popular destinations on the Costa del Sol. And there’s good reason for this popularity: it’s quintessentially Andalucian – a…
The Alhambra: crowning the city of Granada, this stunningly decorative fortress-palace complex is one of Spain’s most instantly recognisable sights.
But it’s also the country’s most visited tourist attraction – and as such probably needs little in the way of introduction (and promotion).
So let’s concentrate instead on some of the lesser-known wonders that this fabulous city has to offer. Here then is our pick of the top things to see and do in Granada – that aren’t the Alhambra…
For centuries, Moorish and Christian traditions coexisted harmoniously in Granada, and the Albayzin neighbourhood is a beautiful and atmospheric relic of this enlightened past.
The Alhambra and the Albayzin look across at one another, with each view being just as magnificent as the other. Meander through the narrow cobbled streets, pause in squares to admire the view or stop for a tapas and a cool drink.
Revel in the Moorish and Andalucian style that can be discovered around every narrow corner or small square. Take in the view and drink champagne overlooking the Alhambra Palace – El Huerto de Juan Ranas has a great terrace. (Calle Atarazana Vieja, 6.)
Taberna El Beso. Moroccan food in the surroundings of a beautiful little palace. The owner also has a small collection of antiques and objets from Morocco for sale. (Cuesta de San Gregorio, s/n, 18010 Granada.)
Higher in the Albayzin is Casa de los Mascarones. It’s a little rough and ready, but offers great tapas with a very local Albayzin feel. (Calle Pagés, 20, 18010 Granada.)
Bar Kiki and Cafe Gabriel are two other favourites – see our guide to restaurants in Granada if you’re looking for further recommendations.
Deep in the Albayzin, this mini palace often gets overlooked. Once the home of Aixa, mother of Boabdil, the last Moorish king of Granada, it has magnificent views of the Albayzin and only takes a short time to visit.
The best way to visit Palacio Dar al-Horra is to buy a ticket to the Andalucian Monuments: Tickets.alhambra-patronato.es. This includes Palacio Dar al-Horra, Corral del Carbón, Bañuelo and Casa Morisca (Calle Horno de Oro). You can also buy tickets at the entrance of Palacio Dar al-Horra – it closes between 14.30-17-00hrs. (Callejón de las Monjas Albayzin, s/n, 18008 Granada.)
If you’ve got more than a passing interest in Spanish history a visit to the Capilla Real, where the Catholic Kings Isabel and Ferdinand are buried, is a must.
The first Renaissance church in Spain, the mighty Granada Cathedral also forms part of the sample complex and can be visited alongside the Royal Chapel. (Calle Mariana Pineda, 21, 18009 Granada.)
To the rear of the Cathedral is the fresh food market, San Agustín. Here La Picatería is a great bet for a spot of tapas. (Plaza de San Agustín, S/N, 18001 Granada.)
Granada doesn’t have a plaza mayor (a main square) per se, but Plaza Bib Rambla more than ably fills the role.
As the first square of Granada, Plaza Bib Rambla has survived a long and varied history… from markets, jousting, bull fighting, religious processions and even executions, this square has seen it all. Now there are flower stalls, restaurants and street entertainers. Much more civilised.
La Telefonica, just off the square. (Calle Arco de las Orejas, 1, 18001 Granada.)
A memento or two from your travels is always a must. But what should you buy in Granada?
Taberna 22 is a sunny little spot with a great atmosphere at the end of Caldereria Nueva. The tapas is, well… basic. But it’s on one of the main thoroughfares from the centre of Granada to the Albayzin. (Plaza San Gregorio, 29, 18010 Granada.)
After choosing your winter boots at 5V Valverde, stop at Casa de Vinos La Brujidera. (Calle Monjas del Carmen, 2, 18009 Granada.)
Near Platonica, for tapas try La Tabernilla del Darro. (Puente de Espinosa, 15, 18010 Granada.) For a drink (after 20.00hrs) go to Huerto del Loro. (Cuesta de la Churra, 4, 18009 Granada.)
Water is a constant in the architecture of Granada, from shallow channels that cool houses to elaborate, babbling fountains. A tour is the best way to travel deeper and understand the inventive and intellectual complexity of Moorish water traditions in southern Spain.
On this tour you’ll take in sights such as the Aljibe del Rey (a well) and the Bañuelo (Arabic bath house). Contact our concierge for bespoke tours.
While you’re up on the Alhambra hill, if you love architecture this carmen (a house with garden in Granada) is definitely worth a visit.
Owned by artist Rodriquez Acosta and built between 1916 and 1930, the building itself is an eclectic mix of styles, but the gardens and tunnels are absolutely fascinating.
It’s worth bearing in mind that some tickets for the Alhambra include entrance to this lesser-known museum. During summer 2022 the museum has been closed for works; a new open date is to be confirmed. (Callejón Niño del Royo, 8, 18009 Granada.)
Back in the city centre, head to the Corral del Carbon. This building dates back to the 14th century, when it was used as an inn for merchants of the silk trade, but over the years it’s had many uses.
There would have been hundreds of these buildings in Spain but, sadly, very few still stand today. For this reason it has great historic significance and is an excellent example of a Moorish construction in superb condition.
Entrance is free and it’s open from Monday to Sunday from 9:00 to 20:00. (Calle Mariana Pineda, 21, 18009 Granada.)
Asador Corrala del Carbon – a characterful bar and restaurant; stop for tapas, not a meal. (Calle Mariana Pineda, 8, 18009 Granada.)
The Jardin Botanico de la Universidad de Granada is a small botanical garden in the centre of the city under five minutes’ walk from the Cathedral.
As botanical gardens go it’s perfectly pleasant enough, but it’s in a lovely corner of town and you can stroll through the university building, too. The area has a student feel, with a great selection of vintage clothes shops and fun tapas stops. (Calle Escuelas, n, 18001 Granada.)
Humo El Origen (Calle Escuelas, 2, 18001 Granada) or Lemon Rock, for a buzzy live music vibe (Calle Montalbán, 6, 18002 Granada).
A great stop for kids is Granada’s Parque de las Ciencias. It easily keeps little minds busy for a day with indoor/outdoor attractions, interactive play for all ages, and a biodome with animals. Closed Mondays. (Avenida de la Ciencia, s/n, 18006 Granada.)
Cut Granada and it bleeds flamenco. And at the heart of that flamenco heritage is Sacromonte, a neighbourhood of cave houses just on the outskirts of the Albayzin.
Sacromonte is famed for the ‘Zambra’ style of flamenco. This raw form of dance is often performed barefoot and is thought to have its origins in Morisco dance.
Although Granada has this deep flamenco heritage, catching some of the real deal first hand can be a little harder.
Our three picks to see flamenco are: Jardinesdezoraya.com, Laplateria.org.es and Casadelarteflamenco.com.
With its skyline spectacularly crowned by the Alhambra Palace, Granada was always going to be a city that’s about the views.
Mirador San Nicolas and Placeta Cristo Azucenas are two large squares in the Albayzin neighbourhood with uninterrupted views of the Alhambra. Hang around as the moon rises from behind the Alhambra and watch as it changes colour from ochra to terracotta.
This church is one for Baroque fans. With its intricate frescoes, it’s one of the finest examples of the architectural style to be found anywhere in Andalucia. (Calle San Juan de Dios, 19, 17, 18001 Granada.)
This impressive abbey is right at the end of the Sacromonte neighbourhood, an interesting (if slightly tiring) walk from the Paseo de los Tristes.
The cloisters of the abbey are often the venue for live music events, and we’d definitely recommend a visit if you can get your hands on tickets. For events: email@example.com. (Camino del Sacromonte, s/n, 18010 Granada.)
Another outstanding example of Spanish Baroque architecture, the Cartuja monastery is just a short drive outside Granada city. (Paseo de Cartuja, s/n, 18011 Granada.)
About an hour’s drive to the south of the city, Rio Verde is an exceptional canyoning spot. A guide is necessary as wetsuits, ropes and protective equipment are needed.
Recommended guide: Localexperiences.es.
Hidden away along incredible winding roads, this collection of 25 white mountain villages was once pretty much cut off from the outside world.
Trevelez, the highest municipality in Spain, is 1476m above sea level and located at the foot of Mulhacen, the highest mountain in mainland Spain. Other Albujarras villages of note are Soportújar, Lanajaron and Pampaneira.
At the height of a sultry Granada summer it can be hard to believe that the winter might bring snow. But you can ski in the nearby Sierra Nevada mountains from December to April. See our full guide here.
While it may be less well-known than the nearby Alpujarras, in our opinion this collection of 17 villages is more beautiful. They may not have any obvious gimmicks or the fame and visitors that come with it, but they also go about their rural business relatively untouched by tourism.
National Geographic named this pretty town as having one of the best views in the world – and who are we to argue?
It’s got an atmospherically ruined Moorish castle and an impressive church, while just outside the town is Las Peñas de los Gitanos, which is home to some excellent examples of Megalithic constructions.
This strikingly handsome old town is perched precariously on the edge of a gorge. It’s famed for its natural spa baths just outside the town (rather more medical than luxury) and has a great walking route through the gorge if you like to stretch your legs.
And while we’re talking about walking… there are an awful lot of great hiking routes in and around Granada. One of particular note, La Vereda de la Estrella, is from the village of Güejar Sierra: a 10km linear hike, with a gentle slope, which climbs over the Genil River to the Sierra Nevada.
For more information about where to eat in Granada, see our guide here. For villas in Granada province, see our collection.
Array (  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 242878 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2023-02-08 12:47:10 [post_date_gmt] => 2023-02-08 12:47:10 [post_content] => For well over half a century, Mijas has been one of the most popular destinations on the Costa del Sol. And there’s good reason for this popularity: it’s quintessentially Andalucian – a pretty white village of plant pot-filled streets, with a bull ring, Mudejar church and hermitage, all just a stone's throw from the coast. It really does tick a lot of boxes for the first-time visitor. Here's our pick of a few of the best things to do in Mijas…
Mijas PuebloLet's get a taste of rural Andalucian life and start with the village in the mountains; Mijas Pueblo.
1. Parque La MurallaThis park easily leads on to a leisurely circular walking route from Plaza Constitucion to Parque La Muralla and then to the Torre Muralla. We recommend starting with this, as you pass most of the sights in the village. The park itself has a 15-metre-high waterfall and some of the best views of the coast. Our top tip: Andalucians traditionally go for a walk around 18.00hrs (add a couple of hours on to that for the summer). The views from the lookout spots down to the coast in the evening when the lights are twinkling is rather magical.
2. Ermita de la Virgen de la PeñaThis rocky, almost cave-like, hermitage is in Mijas Pueblo. A virgin carved out of wood dating from 850 was found there by a shepherd and his children after, as story has it, they followed a dove to it. This virgin is now the patron saint of Mijas. Address: Paseo El Compás; open every day and free entry.
3.Mirador del CompasThis square/look out spot has the most spectacular views down to the coast and across the Mediterranean Sea.
4. Plaza de TorosAn oval-shaped bullring and small museum showing posters, bull fighter clothing and past fights. The seats are at either end of the oval rather than all the way round. Whether you love or loath bull fighting it’s an interesting place to visit. Address: Cta. de la Villa, 0, 29650 Mijas, Málaga. Hours: Everyday 11 – 21.00hrs.
5. Museo Historico-EtnologicoA charming ethnological museum depicting mountain village life. Address: Pl. de la Libertad, 1, 29650 Mijas, Málaga Hours: Everyday 10 - 15.00hrs and 17 - 19.00hrs
6. Plaza de ConstituciónA small square with shops and restaurants in the historic centre of Mijas Pueblo. Our top tip: Stop for a traditional breakfast of pan con tomate (toasted bread with fresh tomato and olive oil) at La Boveda del Flamenco.
7. Iglesia Inmaculada ConcepcionQuite typically of churches in the region the site was once a castle and then a mosque. This 16th-century church we see today has Mudejar features - a bell tower and wooden ceiling - and it’s thought that the square tower was once that of the fort/castle. Address: P.º de la Muralla, 29650 Mijas, Málaga
8. Donkey TaxiThe donkeys of Mijas go back to the 60s when tourists would see them being used to carry things up the narrow streets or returning from farming. It’s said that the tourists would tip for a photo or ride, and it became so popular it quickly outstripped agricultural wages. These days, all manner of donkey taxis are available, riding or in a carriage drawn by donkeys around the village. The welfare of the donkeys is a priority, so there are strict stipulations that must be adhered to by the owners. Address: Av, Pl. Virgen de la Peña, 29650 Mijas, Málaga
9. Hiking – Mijas Mountain Range and the Pico de MijasThe Sierra de Mijas is a beautiful place to walk with rewarding views from the various routes. The highest peak (Pico de Mijas) is 1150 metres - putting that into perspective, the highest peak in the UK is 1345 metres. One of our favourites is Puerta de Malaga ('Doorway to Malaga'). It takes about 3 hours, is well signposted and is medium difficulty due to the steep inclination.
La Cala de MijasMeanwhile on the coast there's plenty to do on the beach from diving to jet skiing and even kite surfing weather permitting. Some highlights are:
10. La Cala BeachWhere Mija Pueblo is village life in the mountains, its counterpart is La Cala de Mijas, a stretch of coast near Calahonda. The beach named La Cala beach is small, but with crystal waters and kayak hire it’s popular with locals and visitors. This part of the coast has good facilities from watersports to restaurants. Do check out Max Beach with a pool, El Olivo for a traditional feel and El Océano part of a hotel by the same name. Our top tip: Our favourite beach in the area is Cabopino, with its sand dunes and golden sand.
11. Coastal WalkLa Cala de Mijas coastal walk is 6kms along the coast that leads to Cabopino. Take this walk at sunset and take your time with coffee stops and beach playtime along the way. Alternatively, it’s a lovely run in the morning. Our top tip: During the summer, look out for concerts being held next to the 16th-century Torre Vieja watchtower.
12. A round of GolfThere are so many golf courses to choose from in and around Mijas, it really is a golfer's paradise. Most locally, La Cala Resort Golf, with three 18-hole courses, makes the most of the area’s steep topography. As an alternative - and much more forgiving - La Noria Golf Resort is a totally flat, 9 hole par 33 golf course near the coast with putting greens.
13. Cala de Mijas FestivalNot a year round option but this music festival held the first weekend of September attracts international bands and DJs. It's first year was 2022 where The Blossoms, Arctic Monkeys and Bonobo among others played to 100000 festival goers. It's held in Sonora Mijas and is very well organised with four stages. More information in our festivals blog.
Where is Mijas?Mijas is in Malaga province and sits between Benalmadena and Fuengirola. It’s divided into Mijas Pueblo (village) which backs onto Mijas Sierra (mountain range) and Cala de Mijas (Mijas cove) on the Mediterranean Sea.
How to get to Mijas?Mijas is very well connected. Mijas Pueblo is 26.7km (that’s under 30 minutes’ drive) from Malaga airport and 32.3km from Malaga Maria Zambrano train station. Have we tempted you to this beautiful part of southern Spain? Coming soon are our villas in the area. [post_title] => The LVC Insider's Guide to Mijas [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => mijas-guide [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2023-02-13 08:38:28 [post_modified_gmt] => 2023-02-13 08:38:28 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theluxuryvillacollection.com/?p=242878 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 242219 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2022-09-12 09:36:51 [post_date_gmt] => 2022-09-12 09:36:51 [post_content] => Cadiz is a fascinating city where the term travelling deeper is taken to a whole new level. It encourages you to look underground, out to the horizon and be amongst the rooftops. Succumb to the easy going way of life of the gaditanos – relax, eat well and be inspired by this ancient city.
1. Torre TaviraClimb this eighteenth-century watchtower, learn about the watchtowers of Cadiz (some pictured above) and see Cadiz through its camera obscura at the top. C. Marqués del Real Tesoro, 10, 11001 Cádiz. Torretavira.com
2. Playa La CaletaA day on the beach or hit it at 6pm for cake – street food to beach food. Sellers usually roam the beaches from about 5pm to 6pm. Then grab a drink and watch the sunset over the bay.
3. CathedralTaking over 100 years to complete and with its unique golden dome and silver collection it’s worth a visit. Pl. de la Catedral, s/n, 11005 Cádiz. Catedraldecadiz.com
4. Iglesia de Santa CruzThe original cathedral of Cadiz it was build in its form today in 1602. Pl. Fray Félix, 6, 11005 Cádiz
5. Mercado CentralFresh food and casual eateries make the market the heart of the city. Hit the gastromarket side of the market for tapas. Pl. de la Libertad, S/N, 11005 Cádiz
6. Pause in a PlazaMeander and stop for coffees or something strong in one of the pretty squares. Plaza de las Flores and Plaza de la Candelaria are two favourites.
7. Yacimiento Arqueológico GadirThis archaeological museum with a focus on Phoenician culture helps you travel under the city to ancient Cadiz. Address: C. San Miguel, 15, 11001 Cádiz. Open: Tues - Sat 11.00 - 15.00hrs and 17.00 - 21.00hrs. Sun 11.00 - 15.00hrs. Entrance free.
8. Park GenovesBeside the sea this city park has a playground, fountains and it’s a great place to run off little legs or meander after a long lunch. Parque Genovés, Av. Dr. Gómez Ulla, s/n, 11003 Cádiz
9. Museum of CadizFrom archaeological artifacts to art and puppets, the museum of Cadiz is an interesting way to spend a couple of hours if not only to find out the importance of puppeteering in the city. Address: Pl. de Mina, s/n, 11004 Cádiz. Museosdeandalucia.es
10. Castillo de Santa CatalinaA curious shape castle, originally built in 1598 gives great views and an insight into its military past. C. Campo de las Balas, s/n, 11002 Cádiz. Open during summer, Mon - Sun 11.00 - 20.30hrs.
11. Plaza de San Juan de DiosThe old main square of the city is a great place to start discovering Cadiz.
12. Teatro RomanoThis 1st century B.C. Roman theatre in the centre of the old town is the oldest and second largest on the Iberian Peninsula. Address: C. Mesón, 11, 13, 11005 Cádiz. Summer opening times (1st April - 30th Sept) Mon - Sat 11.00 - 17.00hrs and Sun 10.00 - 17.00hrs. Winter opening times (1st oct - 31st Mar) Mon - Sat 10.00 - 16.30hrs and Sun 10.00 - 14.00hrs. Closed the first Monday of every month. Entrance is free.
13. Puppet Museum (Museo del Titere)A good family option, it's somewhat interactive and home to puppets from all over the world. Puertas de Tierra, Bóvedas de Santa Elena, s/n, 11006 Cádiz. Open Tues - Sun 10.00 - 21.00hrs. Entrance is free.
14. See the Sunset at San Sebastian CastleThis castle and lighthouse is on a small island with a walkway linking it (even at high tide) to the end of the pier at La Caleta beach. It's said that the father of Zeus, Tronos, had his temple on the island. The lighthouse that you can see today has Moorish foundations and that is just the beginning of this little island's history. P.º Fernando Quiñones, s/n, Cádiz
15. Oratory of San Felipe Neri ChurchHome to one of Murillo’s finest works and one of the few Andalucian Baroque architectural examples of elliptical arches. C. San José, 36, 11003 Cádiz
16. Gran Teatro FallaFor an evening surrounded by 18th century grandeur, check out this Neo-Mudejar theatre in the old town. (See its program here). Pl. Fragela, s/n, 11003 Cádiz
17. CUEVA CATACUMBAS DEL BEATERIOThese catacombs are much less morbid than you’d imagine with an incredible story. Access is six metres under the city through a courtyard in a residential building. C. Valverde, n3, 11004 Cádiz. Catacumbasdelbeaterio.com
18. CarnivalCelebrated just before the beginning of Lent this very lively week-long festival sees everyone take to the streets in fancy dress. There’s traditional music in the form of satire singing groups that you can hear around the streets and at the theatre. Usually during February, 40 days before Easter.
19. Walk Around the Old TownTake in the feel of the city by wandering around two distinct areas: El Populo and La Viña, the latter of which is the old fisherman’s area. Don’t miss Plaza Tío de la Tiza and Restaurant El Faro.
20. Casa-Palacio Moreno de MoraA fine example of an Elizabethan-style palace from the 1800s. C. Ancha, 28, 30, 11001 Cádiz. Only open on Wednesdays at 10.00hrs via prior arrangement through this email firstname.lastname@example.org
21. Hospital de MujeresA quick visit of this old hospital and chapel offers a magnificent El Greco painting of St Francis and a rather special central courtyard. C. Hospital de Mujeres, 26, 11001 Cádiz
22. Visit El Puerto DE Santa Maria by BoatCadiz is at the end of a peninsula so there are regular boats going across to the mainland. Take a day trip to El Puerto de Santa Maria – see the sights like the Castle of San Marcos and do some sherry tasting. Port: Av. del Puerto, 2B, 11006 Cádiz Castle of San Marcos, Pl. Alfonso X el Sabio, 3, 11500 El Puerto de Sta María, Cádiz
23. Casa de IberoamericaThis Neoclassic building, once a former prison, is now an event and exhibition space. C. Concepción Arenal, s/n, 11006 Cádiz
Useful InformationHow to get to Cadiz by car From Seville airport 129km 1hr 14min From Malaga airport 225km 2hr 20min From Jerez 34.9km 28min From Gibraltar 118km 1hr 24min From Marbella 177km 1hr 49min Tempted you to discover Cadiz city? Have a look at our selection of villas on the Costa de la Luz. [post_title] => Best Things to Do in Cadiz [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => things-to-do-in-cadiz [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2023-02-26 18:37:39 [post_modified_gmt] => 2023-02-26 18:37:39 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://theluxuryvillacollection.com/?p=242219 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) ) 1
For well over half a century, Mijas has been one of the most popular destinations on the Costa del Sol. And there’s good reason for this popularity: it’s quintessentially Andalucian – a…
Cadiz is a fascinating city where the term travelling deeper is taken to a whole new level. It encourages you to look underground, out to the horizon and be amongst the rooftops. Succumb to the easy…