The Mediterranean Sea is not only made up of 970,000 square miles of crystal blue waters but it’s also home to some of the world’s most beautiful seaside destinations. There’s Corsica, Dubrovnik, Sardinia, the French Riviera, and even Tel Aviv.
But if there’s one destination that’s beloved by thousands all over the world, it’s Marbella. Located on the far east end of the Mediterranean, Marbella, Spain is more than a major seaport.
With tons of beaches, places to eat, and things to do, you’ll never want to leave. If you’re wondering what to do in Marbella, here are the top 10 attractions!
1. Marbella Old Town
Of all the places to go in Marbella, Old Town is by far the most enchanting.
Known as Casco Antiguo in Spanish, Old Town is the quintessential Mediterranean setting. It has small, winding pathways wedged between colorful, Moorish architecture.
You’ll find an abundance of greenery, flowers, and lush orange trees. You’ll also come to adore the tiny balconies overlooking the streets.
Visiting Old Town is perfect in the morning or afternoon. You can enjoy a delicious lunch at one of the cafes, followed by shopping at the boutiques. Or, you can enjoy an espresso or Spanish coffee while watching a street performance.
2. Ermita de Santiago
If you’re looking for top Marbella attractions in Old Town, Ermita de Santiago is a must-see.
Ermita de Santiago is the oldest church in the entire city. Built in the 15th century, the church is a true testament to the city’s Moorish history.
After the Muslim Conquest in the 700’s, the entire Iberian peninsula was under Muslim rule. The Moors (Andalusians) dominated the Marbella region from the 700’s until the 1490’s. That’s why Moorish architecture still permeates the city to this day.
Be sure to check out the inside where you’ll see Islamic tiles covering the entire nave!
3. Museum of Contemporary Spanish Engravings
What are some other top Marbella attractions to check out in Old Town?
The Museum of Contemporary Spanish Engravings is a lesser-known gem in the city. The museum houses artwork by some of the most famous Spanish artists of all time. You’ll find work by Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali, and Antoni Tapies (to name some).
The building is a former hospital. It’s comprised of architecture from the Renaissance, Gothic, and Mudejar time periods.
When the hospital turned into a museum, it first housed the work of a famous Spanish printmaker. You’ll still find thousands of prints there to this day.
4. Avenue del Mar
Fans of Salvador Dali or surreal artwork will rejoice when they arrive in Old Town.
Avenue del Mar is a promenade that features sculptures made by Dali. It’s a quaint setting with lots of greenery, sculptures, sunshine, and people watching.
5. Puerto Banas
Spending time in Old Town is just the beginning of your Marbella adventure. There’s still plenty of places to go to in Marbella. And Puerto Banus is where you’ll want to go for a truly lavish Costa del Sol experience.
Puerto Banus is a marina that lies a few kilometers south of the city center. This is where the rich and famous come to dock their yachts. So, you’ll not only get to eat at world-class restaurants but shop at high-end fashion boutiques, as well.
The marina is also perfect for taking a stroll with a gelato during the sunset. And if you decide to stay into the night, there’s no shortage of nightclubs and bars to choose from.
6. Club de Golf Los Naranjos
What are some of the top things to do in Marbella?
For starters, golfing is a pastime favored among locals and tourists alike. But with tons of golf courses covering the area, you may not know which one to tee off at.
Club de Golf Los Naranjos may be Marbella’s premier golf course. The course itself spans over 70 hectares of lush, green grounds. Its hosted a series of prominent golf tournaments, including the Spanish PGA Tournament.
And there’s more to enjoy at Los Naranjos than just golf. You can enjoy a massage and a facial at the course’s clubhouse, followed by a nice meal at the on-site restaurant.
7. Playa Nagueles
If you’re wondering what to do in Marbella, be sure to pack your swimsuit and beach towel because spending time at the beach is another beloved pastime.
Playa Nagueles is among the best beaches in Marbella for its exceptional cleanliness. It’s situated right along Marbella’s Golden Mile, not far from the city center.
Not only will you get plenty of tanning and swimming in at Playa Nagueles but you can also rent a bike, a parasol, or enjoy a fine meal at one of the beach’s restaurants.
8. Artola Dunes
Playa Nagueles may be one of the best beaches in Marbella. However, it’s known to be bustling in the summertime. So, if you’re looking for a quieter beach experience, check out the Artola Dunes.
This nature reserve is one of the most beautiful along the Costa del Sol. It’s situated near the Cabopino Marina and is home to a special set of sand dunes that the city protects.
Visiting the Artola Dunes is perfect if you’re looking to go for a long, tranquil walk along the beach. Know what kind of weather you can expect in Marbella each month. Even when it’s chilly in the wintertime, you can still enjoy the sights at the Artola Dunes.
9. Funny Beach
If you’re looking for things to do in Marbella with the family, look no further than Funny Beach.
The kids can enjoy go-karting, jet skis, wave surfing, and floating bounce houses. There’s also peddle boating, paddle boarding, and even water hoverboarding.
Even if you don’t have children, Funny Beach is perfect if you love extreme water sports!
10. Alcazaba Citadel
Near Puerto Banus, you’ll find the Alcazaba of Malaga, an old Muslim palace built in the 11th century.
The architecture is exemplary of the Moorish style and visiting it makes for a great day trip. During the summer, you can also attend concerts and festivals on the palace grounds.
Make the Most of Your Mediterranean Experience by Knowing What to Do in Marbella
Marbella possesses one of the richest experiences you’ll ever find along the Mediterranean.
With tons of art, food, beaches, and museums, you’ll never have a dull moment. And by knowing what to do in Marbella beforehand, you can get the most out of your time there.
You may find that you never want to leave–and you wouldn’t be the first! Many visitors to Marbella decide later on to settle in this world-class city. And if you’re thinking of doing the same, check out these amazing Marbella properties!