Planning a trip to Benahavis Spain?
This quaint mountain town is found 500 meters above sea level, not far from the coast of Spain. The city of Marbella is just a 10-minute drive away. On the way to Benahavis, you might take a winding route through the Rio Guadalmina gorge until you reach the hills. However, you can best reach the village itself by foot – you might have to leave your car just outside.
When you reach Benahavis, you’ll see historic white buildings and narrow cobblestone streets to traverse. Walk through the shade of the orange trees in the town that means “son of Havis” – an ancient ruler whose castle still stands atop the area’s tallest mountain.
Ready to experience this place of preserved Spanish history for yourself? Then it’s time to start planning. In this guide, we’ll show you what you need to know to make Benahavis one of your most memorable vacations yet. Keep reading to learn more!
Where is Benahavis Spain?
This town of fewer than 6,000 people is the western Costa del Sol’s most mountainous village. You’ll find it about halfway between Estepona and Marbella, two bigger towns. The rivers Guadalmina, Guadaiza, and Guadalmanza traverse the nearby terrain.
The rugged area makes Benahavis a truly stunning, remote location that’s kept away from the hustle of city life.
Can You Fly Into Benahavis?
Although you can’t fly directly into this small town, it’s easy to get to from a number of local airports close by.
The closest airport is Gibraltar’s North Front Airport, located only 31 miles away. Thirty-two miles away you’ll find the Malaga International Airport, and the Jerez Airport is a little farther: 58 miles away.
Malaga is the most popular airport for people destined for Benahavis. From there, it takes about 50 minutes to reach your final destination.
Transportation in Benahavis
If you don’t want to rent a car, you still have a few options for getting around.
You can take a shuttle bus from one of the airports, which gets you close to Benahavis, but won’t take you all the way. Once the shuttle stops in San Pedro de Alcantara or Marbella, just take a taxi the rest of the way.
You can also find companies for hire that will take you directly to Benahavis Spain in less than an hour. Choose from shared shuttle rides or private transport.
To make the trip faster, you can also take a taxi straight from the airport, although this isn’t the most cost-effective option. You’ll want to ask what the fare will be before you leave, so you’ll be prepared to pay.
No train goes from the Malaga airport to Benahavis, but you can catch a train to Fuengirola, then take a bus and taxi the rest of the way.
What To Do in Benahavis Spain
This forested village is small, but there’s still plenty for a vacationer to do.
The Castle of Montemayor is one popular tourist site. Although it’s located high on a mountain, you can reach it on foot to see the spectacular ruins and gorgeous views of the surrounding country.
Aside from the historic architecture, another of the main appeals of this town is the food and drink. Even though Benahavis is small and remote, it sports more than 22 bars and 35 restaurants. The Andalusian-style and international fare keeps people coming back to visit.
Benahavis is sometimes called “the dining room of the Costa del Sol.” Foodies love checking out the restaurants, and people come from miles around just to dine here.
In addition to Spanish food, look for French, Indian, Italian, and more. These restaurants serve famously large portions and offer great service.
Let’s take a look at some of the top restaurants and bars to visit while you’re in town.
The Top Bars in Benahavis
The town’s bars are cozy, intimate, and often include food, as well.
The Legends Bar & Grill is one top choice, offering an English-style experience in Spain. Order the fish and chips and don’t miss the football games.
For a more Spanish experience, check out the Bodeguita El Chico. This bar isn’t big, but its gin and tonics are: they’re typically served in an oversized bowl-like glass.
The Top Restaurants in Benahavis
It’s impossible to list all our favorite bars and restaurants in this town, but here’s a sampling to get you started.
Los Abanicos offers delicious seafood, including sea bass, as well as other dishes. For a place that’s popular among the locals, though, head over to Amanhavis Hotel & Restaurant. Its unique menu makes it stand out even among the local residents. Before you dine, enjoy a drink on the terrace, for a beautiful view of the village below.
Another beloved local favorite is Rufino. If you go on a Sunday, prepare for a crowd, since people often dine there following the local market.
Places to Stay in Benahavis
This town offers just two hotels, but both come recommended as high-quality places to stay.
The Villa Padierna Palace Hotel near the beach offers spa treatments and nearby golfing, making it a luxurious choice. But the Gran Hotel Benahavis offers countryside views and a short walk to the village for the many restaurants and bars. This is a great hotel if you intend to spend lots of time exploring the country and the village.
Ready to Plan Your Trip?
Many people visit Benahavis Spain each year – and not everyone leaves. This town is becoming an increasingly popular place to stay or to invest in real estate, as its appeal continues to grow.
Although quaint, Benahavis is easily accessible and offers plenty to do, so its appeal seems to grow continually. Ready to learn about making your visit a bit more permanent? Check out our top Benahavis locations here.