Are you on Costa del Sol and have already seen all popular destinations like Ronda, Malaga, Caminito del Rey, or Frigiliana? Or are you just planning your next trip and looking for some less popular places? Yes? So today we’ve got for you another hidden gem! Well, not that hidden, but so far definitely less popular and overcrowded than other places on the coast. Got you interested? So let’s go and discover the old town, places near marina and other things to see during one day in Estepona in Spain.
Estepona is a charming city located in the western part of the Costa del Sol in the province of Malaga, Spain. It’s often overlooked in favor of nearby Marbella, or even Gibraltar. Not that long ago, in the 60s, it was a little fishing village and since then it developed into one of the biggest cities on Costa del Sol. But nonetheless, the old part of town kept its charm, and strolling along it feels like stepping back several dozens of years back. We recommend going to Estepona first thing in the morning so you could discover its charms in peace and quiet.
Enough introduction, let’s get down to business and discover what to see during one day in Estepona.
One Day in Estepona, Spain. What to see?
Estepona Old Town
An old town is a place you can’t miss during your one day in Estepona. In our opinion, it’s one of the prettiest old towns along the entire Costa del Sol. While walking through the old town streets, between white houses generously decorated with various flowers in colorful pots, you can feel the typical Andalusian town vibe. Just get lost in the labyrinth of streets and discover what each of them has to offer. Fun fact: each street is decorated with different colors of flower pots! Estepona’s old town streets are mostly traffic-free which is also a huge advantage. Ideal for snapping that perfect “old” photo!
In the old town, you’ll find places like Plaza de las Flores, Castillo de San Luis, and Plaza del Reloj with Reloj Tower.
Plaza de las Flores
It feels like all town streets eventually lead to the charming Plaza de las Flores. It’s Estepona’s main square, surrounded by white buildings and many orange trees. Early in the morning, you’ll have it almost to yourself, and later on, you’ll be able to grab a seat on one of the many terraces and enjoy delicious coffee and tapas. In Plaza de las Flores you’ll also find a fountain with brightly colored floral adornments, and Casa de las Tejerinas which once was a House of Culture (es. Casa de la Cultura). Currently it houses the Tourist Office and an art gallery – Museo de Arte de la Diputación de Estepona.
Torre del Reloj & Plaza del Reloj
Torre del Reloj (eng. Clock Tower) is one of the most important Moorish monuments in Estepona, and one of the most recognizable town landmarks. Torre del Reloj is the only survivor of the former church which was built in 1473 and then destroyed in 1755 by the earthquake. Plaza del Reloj is a place where many events are celebrated.
The Church of Our Lady of the Remedies
The Church of Our Lady of the Remedies (es. Parroquia Nuestra Señora De Los Remedios) is located only a few minutes walk from Plaza de las Flores and Torre del Reloj. It’s the oldest catholic church in Estepona. It was built in the 18th century and it was used as a convent by the Franciscan Friars until 1835 when the monks abandoned the building due to the Disentailment Law.
Ruins of Castillo de San Luis
The ruins of Castillo de San Luis are located about 150m from Plaza de las Flores. Castle was built in 1457 by Spaniards on the ruins of the Moorish castle. Currently, little left to see, but you can walk around the remaining sections of the castle walls. Right next to the ruins you’ll find Plaza Casa Cañada, where you can take a short break before discovering other beautiful places in Estepona.
Estepona Archeological Museum
The Archeological Museum can be found in the old part of the town, on the Plaza Blas Infantes. The building once served as a Town Hall, and still is known as “The old town hall”. Currently, the museum holds more than 400 pieces of Estepona’s past. The most peculiar is one called “Venus of Estepona” – it’s a little clay figurine, estimated to be over 5,000 years old. Entry is free.
Ruta de los Murales Artísticos
While the old town is popular for its old white houses and plants in colorful pots, the newest part of Estepona is known for its murals adorning many buildings. Murals are painted by local artists (like Dadi Dreucol), but also by internationally renowned artists such as Vyacheslav Gunin. Currently, there are about 60 murals, and you can see them all by following the Ruta de los Murales Artísticos. Murals cover quite a large area so it’s a good idea to pick up a map at the tourist office if you want to see it all during your one day in Estepona.
Parque de la Constitución
Parque de la Constitución is located in the north of Estepona, very close to some murals from Ruta de los Murales Artísticos. It’s a perfect place to enjoy a quick break in the shades of the trees, watching the large fountain playing with the water in changing patterns. There’s also an iron sculpture with figures adding/removing words from the pages of the book. Important words like truth, education, freedom, happiness, or justice are being added, while “ignorance” is being removed.
Costa del Sol in Spain is world-famous for its beautiful beaches, and you can also find them in Estepona. Some were even rewarded with Blue Flag (like Playa del Cristo and Playa Arroyo Vaquero).
Playa de la Rada is Estepona’s main beach, located closest to the old town, and stretching for about 2.5km. Playa del Cristo is a dark-sand beach located close to the marina, it’s very popular among families. If you’re interested in nudist beaches, take a look at Playa Costa Natura, which is located only a 10-minute drive from Estepona.
Paseo Marítimo Promenade
Paseo Marítimo runs all along Playa de la Rada. If you start walking from the Estepona center, you’ll end your walk at the marina. There are many beach bars and restaurants along the promenade, offering a wide variety of fresh fish and seafood dishes, as well as international cuisine. Paseo Marítimo is also a great place for jogging and cycling.
Estepona Marina is located between Playa de la Rada and Playa del Cristo, at the end of Paseo Marítimo Promenade. There you can admire yachts while eating delicious fresh meals. Also, you can rent a boat or take a sailing trip, as they are available from the marina on a daily basis. Marina is also a place where the Sunday craft market in Estepona is taking place.
Estepona bullring is located above the marina, at the western end of the Paseo Maritimo. It was built in 1972 by architect Juan Moro Urbano. Bullring has a very unique construction – its asymmetrical design ensures that even the very top row of seats can be accessed without steps. There is no other such bullring in the whole of Spain.
Bullfights aren’t popular these days, but the site is used for its original purpose once or twice a year. The rest of the time, Estepona Bullring serves as a concert venue.
The Orchidarium, eng. Estepona Orchid House, has been around only since 2015, and it’s already one of the most popular attractions in Estepona. The new mixes with the old, as the orchidarium building is quite a surprising piece of modern architecture, more suited for Benidorm than Estepona. Inside you’ll find one of the largest collections of orchids in Europe, with 1300 different species.
Price: 3€ normal; Children between 4-11: 1€ (April 2022)
Parque del Calvario
Close to Estepona Orchidarium, only a 5-minute walk, Parque del Calvario is located. Many called it a hidden gem or a secret garden. It’s home to lush vegetation, a pond, a fountain, and even a children’s playground. There you can sit and relax and appreciate a slice of nature in the town center.
Parque del Calvario is also home to Ermita del Calvario, a hermitage building that dates back to 1829, destroyed during the Civil War, and restored to its former glory in 1936.
Iglesia de la Ascensión – Orthodox Christian Church
Iglesia de la Ascensión is a place that we noticed while driving the car to Estepona and as we found out later it’s the first Orthodox Christian Church in Andalusia, and the third in Spain. It was supposed to be open in the second quarter of 2020, but when we arrived there it looked abandoned and was locked uptight. In the area, a temple, a nine-meter-high bell tower, and a cultural center can be found.
How to get to Estepona, Spain?
Estepona is located about 30km from Marbella, 90km from Malaga, and 50km from Gibraltar. The easiest way to get there is by car. Estepona offers many paid parking lots in the city, but if you want to save some money we recommend this parking lot, it’s very close to the city center.
Estepona is also easily reached by bus. From Marbella, the journey takes about 30min and costs €3-5. From Malaga, the journey takes about 90min and costs about €10. You can also take a bus from La Línea de la Concepción right next to the border with Gibraltar, and you’ll reach Estepona in about 90minutes, paying about €4-11.
Where to eat in Estepona?
Here are your best, high-rated options in Estepona:
Where to sleep in Estepona?
Estepona - Map of places
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