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Benalmadena is a beautiful seaside city found along Spain’s stunning Costa del Sol (sun coast), which spans from the Mediterranean coast to the Sierra de Mijas. The city is divided into three parts, with the Benalmádena Costa being the most popular, as this is the strip that lies along the sea. The interior Arroyo de la Miel is known for its Tivoli World amusement park and cable car (teleferico) that runs up to the summit of the Calamorro Mountain, while the original Benalmádena Pueblo village is home to the impressive Colomares Castle. Benalmadena is right in the heart Costa del Sol, making it easy to visit any destination along this 93-mile stretch of coastline with a rental car.
Who to Book With
Global car hire suppliers, such as Budget, Avis and Europcar, have offices along Avenida Antonio Machado, while local companies, such as Alba Cars and White Car Hire, are also close by. There are also a few local car rental companies in Benalmádena Pueblo. It is recommended to book a vehicle online in advance to guarantee the model of your choice, especially in the peak seasons.
Best time to go
Benalmadena has a Mediterranean climate, making it a viable option for a holiday all year round. The average annual temperature is 19°C, although in July and August the mercury usually sits around 30°C. The winter months are cooler and wet but still very pleasant compared to the rest of Europe.
Need to Know Essentials
You will need the following documents when picking up your vehicle:
- A valid UK driving license or an International Driving Permit (non-UK residents)
- Proof of identification, such as a passport
- The credit card that was used upon booking
- Booking confirmation
A car is a great way to zip around the city and visit all three of its neighbourhoods, with most hotels offering parking to their guests. Some hotels charge for parking, however, which can be expensive, but on-street parking is also available, albeit hard to find during peak seasons. Buses run along the coast as well as between Benalmádena Costa, Benalmádena Pueblo and Arroyo de la Miel, but for more obscure destinations, a car is needed.
Each different area of Benalmadena is quite small and easy enough to explore on foot, although it is a bit more difficult to get from one end to the other. Public buses run this route but only stop along major roads, making the rest of the city inaccessible unless you travel by taxi or by car hire.
Benalmadena is on line C1 of the Cercanías Málaga commuter train system, runs along the coast from Malaga to Fuengirola. This line, operated by Malaga Metropolitan Transport Consortium, runs every 20 minutes in each direction and stops at the Malaga Airport. The journey from Benalmadena to Malaga costs €1.60, and the station is located in Arroyo de la Miel.
There are plenty of taxis in Benalmadena, but most of the time they need to be booked in advance. Reputable companies such as Radio Taxi Benalmadena can take visitors on a sightseeing tour of Costa del Sol, around the city or to Malaga Airport. Taxis here work on a fixed rate system, with a trip within the town costing around €6, while an airport transfer costs around €20.
Buses in Benalmadena are run by the Malaga Metropolitan Transport Consortium, with bus M-103 linking Benalmádena Pueblo and Arroyo de la Miel, bus M-110 running along the coast from Malaga to Torrequebrada and bus M-112 cutting through the town on route from Malaga to Mijas. Tariffs vary according to how many zones are travelled through, but range from €1.50 to €3.15.
Benalmadena’s great location makes it easy to visit any destination in the Costa del Sol region, as well as in the rest of the Malaga province. The large city of Malaga is less than 30 minutes to the north, while the stunning mountain-side village of Mijas is just 10 miles to the southwest. There are miles and miles of stunning beaches nearby, while the beautiful hills of the Valle del Guadalhorce region in the foothills of the Sierra de Mijas are filled with a wealth of picturesque natural scenery, towns and villages.
Zoo Bioparc - Located in Fuengirola. This is a great place to view animals from Africa and Southeast Asia, such as gorillas, leopards, crocodiles and geckos living in their natural habitat. There are also other things to see in the city, such as the Moorish castle and Roman ruins.
Mijas - Has over seven miles of stunning beaches, while Mijas Pueblo in the foothills of the Sierra de Mijas boasts picturesque white houses and spectacular views of the North African Coast, Gibraltar and the Atlas Mountains. The drive here is also quite spectacular.
Autopista AP-7 - Also known as the Autopista del Mediterráneo, Autopista AP-7 runs along the coast of Costa del Sol from Malaga to Guadiaro, making for a stunning drive with magnificent scenery. There are beaches, towns, villages and cities along the way with various attractions.