On the Costa del Sol we are so lucky with the weather with plenty of bright sunshine and high temperatures throughout the year. However, visitors can be surprised by how cool it can feel in the shade, or when night falls. Don’t be caught unprepared, read on for our insider’s advice for having a wonderful time in Marbella during the winter.
It’s all about the layers
When you’re packing, think of layers that can make sure you are comfortable morning, noon and night. What catches you out here is it can be cool in the morning, but by midday it is usually warm and if you’re in the sunshine you’ll probably want to have something with short sleeves. Watch out again later on, as it quickly cools down again in the evening, so light shirts, tops or cardigans and light jackets layered up over a short-sleeved top or t-shirt is the best way to be prepared.
Choose your restaurants with care
We have the most amazing restaurants here on the Costa del Sol and lunchtime even in the winter is no problem, as you can usually be outside enjoying the sunshine. However in the evening it can be more tricky, as the temperatures drop you really want to be inside, somewhere which is warm and has a nice atmosphere out of season. These restaurants are not as common, so choose carefully, and don’t be afraid to walk into and out of a few before you find the right place – it’s horrid to feel cold and uncomfortable when you should be enjoying your meal. We’ve compiled a Marbella restaurant guide with some of our top picks, which you can browse on our website. Out of these, our favourites for the winter would be –
- Mosh Fun Kitchen if you’re looking for a really lively night out, with music and great food, as this is always buzzing
- Ta-Kumi for great Japanese food in central Marbella, it has a really nice interior dining space and is very comfortable during the winter
- Paco Jimenez in Marbella’s Old Town for traditional Spanish food and a cozy dining area complete with an open fire and objects from the family’s history. The team always give you a warm welcome and it’s a lovely home from home feel.
- Messina for Michelin star fine dining and a comfortable dining area
- Hacienda Patagonica for amazing steak and casual dining with an excellent buzz. It’s always busy in this popular restaurant and the bistro feel is great in the winter.
Enjoy sports and active pursuits
Sunny winter days are perfect to enjoy some of Marbella’s excellent sports facilities. It is a great time to enjoy one of the 70 golf courses on the Costa del Sol, or to head out into the countryside to hike, mountain bike or horse ride. One of the most popular activities in the area is hiking the Caminito del Rey near to Malaga, a spectacular route which takes you alongside and over the El Chorro gorge, more than 100 meters up. This is a winter activity that you won’t forget, but it is very popular and availability is limited, so book your tickets and time slot before you arrive on the website.
Take in some art and culture
If you get a rare rainy day, then head to one of the excellent art galleries on the Costa del Sol. Malaga is the hub for art on the coast, but Mijas and Marbella also have some good galleries and Estepona has some really interesting small museums to explore.
Take a day trip
When the temperatures are cooler, the crowds are fewer and the traffic is light it’s a great time to hit the road and visit some of the nearby towns to Marbella. Just a few hours’ drive can take you to some of the most celebrated cities, like Granada, which brims with Andalusian culture, history and charm and of course has the legendary Alhambra Palace and Gardens. Just an hour away you can visit Ronda with its incredible gorge and excellent wines, or the picturesque village of Mijas, which has excellent hiking, an art gallery featuring some of the world’s great painters and even a chocolate factory! You can even take a day trip to the slopes for a day’s skiing in the Sierra Nevada mountain range near Granada. We love waking up by the beach and skiing before lunch, it’s an amazing experience.
As you can see, Marbella is an excellent winter destination, as well as a wonderful place for a summer beach holiday. Choosing a holiday rental property gives you the flexibility to chill out at “home” if there’s a rainy day, shop in the excellent local markets and enjoy cooking and dining on the cooler evenings. Some have lovely open fires and others have underfloor heating so you’re warm and comfortable whatever the weather. Please check with us if you’d like advice on the best properties, or locations for the winter months, depending on your plans and requirements. We have excellent properties right by some of the best golf courses, and others more central if you prefer a city break and our local experts are here to help you make the best decision. Browse our Marbella vacation rentals or contact our team for advice.