Estepona’s cobbled narrow streets, fishing port, Spanish cafes and bars spilling out higgledy piggledy on the pavements, and the quaint shops and bodegas, all combine with the modern Puerto Deportivo (leisure port) and marina, the tourist facilities and golden sandy beaches, to make this a comfortable and interesting place to live all year round or to visit on holidays.
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Estepona is one of the most popular destinations for both tourists and foreign residents alike on the Costa del Sol, yet even today it still manages to retain it’s old Andalusian charm. Located at the western end of the Costa del Sol at the foot of the Sierra Bermeja mountains.
For many years Estepona’s main economic industries were fishing, agriculture and cattle, and even today, remain an important income for many in the area. Nevertheless for over a decade now tourism has become an important economic factor, due to the town’s redevelopment, wonderful climate, well kept sandy beaches, such as La Rada and Cristo Beach, and an extraordinary touristic offer, which incorporates golf, a pleasure craft harbour, excellent dining options, and of course the development of urbanisations, apartments and villa complexes, which all in all makes Estepona the chosen city for thousands of tourists every year.
Estepona is located closer to Gibraltar airport, whose destinations are starting to open up now. There are a several flights from the UK and EasyJet fly into Gibraltar. However, Malaga is just 50 minutes to one hour’s drive away.
There are conflicting records that pinpoint the roman fishing and agricultural settlements of Salduba and Silniana to this area west of Marbella, however, it seems more likely that at least Silniana was positioned where today we have San Pedro de Alcántara. As it was destroyed by a seakquake in the 4 century AD and despite its obvious age, there are no real records that prove either way.
The name Estepona more likely derives from its Moorish occupation, when it was named Astabbuna. Like most of the Iberian Penisula, Estepona was fought over by the Moors and Christians and reoccupied by Enrique IV Castile in 1457 who ordered a church to be built over the old Mosque, and it’s this church that became the centre of the community that we would finally know as Estepona.
In 1729 the king gave Estepona its own charter and from there it began to grow its own identity, away from Marbella and develop its industrious nature.
Ten minutes from Estepona, direction San Roque, you find La Duquesa Yacht Harbour, which has many restaurants, bars and boutiques and the fantastic La Duquesa golf course is situated on mountain-side of the Carreterra (Coastal Road).
From Estepona you can go and visit some spectacular inland scenery and the typical towns of Casares, Jubrique, Genaguacil and Manilva, with its famous Roman bath of “La Hedionda”. Gibraltar is about 25 minutes drive away and the Bohemian beach paradise of Tarifa, around 45 minutes drive. If you are feeling adventurous in nearby Algeciras you can hop on a ferry to Morocco for a few days shopping and sightseeing.
If you are interested in monuments and archeological finds then you won’t be disappointed, as the area has many interesting historical points of interest, including the ruins of Castillo de Nicio, which can be found just past the urbanization Forest Hills, La Torre del Reloj (the watchtower), said to be one of the oldest ecclesiastical buildings on the Costa del Sol, Las Ruinas del Castillo de San Luis, an interesting visit to the ruins of a once great castle and Estepona town’s own Plaza de las Flores, the central square in itself is a historical focal point. Monuments and ruins can also be found in the neighbouring town of San Pedro. There are many other historical sites in and around Estepona. In the surrounding areas of Estepona you will also find plenty things to do for children and adults including cable ski in Guadalmina, aquaparks, wildlife parks, zoos, aquariums, horse racing in Mijas Costa, theme parks indoor play centres all along the coastline, several horse riding and trekking centres, lakes, tree climbing Forest in Elviria, East Marbella and of course, miles and miles of beautiful child friendly beaches!
The old town has many quaint shops hidden down its narrow alleyways. The most modern shops are in the centre of town in the Calle Real and the Calle Terraza. The Sunday market in Estepona is the place to go for gifts and holiday mementoes. For serious shoppers Marbella with its Golden Mile is only twenty minutes ride away.
(Sunday Mornings)Located in Estepona Port/ Marina – Gifts, leather work, watches, costume jewellery, arts and crafts, presents, novelties, music CD’s and tapes. The market is generally busy with locals and holiday makers, it can get a little crowded during the holiday seasons.
(Wednesday Mornings) “El Rastro” Located in the open ground on Avenida Juan Carlos. Good for fresh fruit and vegetables, clothes and house wares. This market can be very busy during the summer months.
(Mercado de Abastos). Daily mornings only. This market is predominantly for locals. Worth a visit for the atmoshere. It is located near the castle and the Plaza del Reloj, and is good for fresh fish, meat, fruit and vegetables.
Many of Estepona’s beaches have been awarded the blue flag status for their high standards of cleanliness and hygiene. Most have good facilities, including children’s facilities, showers, beach restaurants and watersports.
In front of Estepona town is La Rada Beach, a long beach of golden sands, where you can enjoy activities such as Kayaking and windsurfing. The wonderful El Cristo beach is located to the west of the town and is an excellent beach for families and it is sheltered within a cove.
Other beaches located close by including Playa Costa Natura, Sabinillas, Puerto Duquesa and Sotogrande, plus just 50 minutes drive are the wonderful beaches of Tarifa and the Costa de la Luz.
Estepona is one of the most popular destinations for golf holidays in Spain; the area is packed with golf courses, for all levels and all budgets.
Estepona Golf Course is a popular, yet challenging course. One of the most established courses on the Costa del Sol is the Paraiso Golf Club, which is located between Estepona and Marbella; it’s a peaceful course with a stunning backdrop of mountains.
The famous Valderrama Golf Club, which plays host to the Volvo Masters each year, is located in nearby Sotogrande. Other courses in and around Estepona include: El Campanario Golf, La Duquesa Golf and Atalaya Golf & Country Club.
Estepona is not short of a restaurant and whatever your taste, you will be satisfied with the choice. There are some excellent traditional tapas bars, Spanish restaurants and bodegas, if you want to enjoy typical Spanish and Mediterranean cuisine. Plus there are some excellent fish restaurants, both in the port and in the town, plus the beautiful beaches are home to a number of excellent Chiringuitos and beach bars.
As with most of the Costa del Sol, the importance of tourism, means that you will find a first class choice of restaurants and if you are not feeling like Spanish cuisine or seafood, well choose from Indian, Mexican, Italian, Chinese and much, much more.
Estepona has an interesting night scene which, like Marbella, gets its reputation not through what you see when you enter the town, but from the surprises which await the visitor to its back streets. The town is essentially divided into the port and its immediate vicinity and the main town, the port being the first area to which tourists will instinctively flock. On the seafront a large selection of bars and restaurants specialise in serving fresh local fish, as well as the usual international range of dishes.
The back streets of Estepona see most of the action though. There seems no end to the number of small bars hidden around the many narrow corners. The most popular place is Plaza de los Flores (Flower Square) and here you will find a large concentration of bars built around the fountain and garden. This is the equivalent of Orange Square in Marbella and during the summer is definitely the place to socialise and make new friends. If you want a more glitzy night out, there are many exclusive wine bars and nightclubs in Marbella, Nueva Andalucia and Puerto Banus which can be reached by a 10 minutes drive. Many taxi’s are available.
Estepona enjoys a sub-tropical Mediterranean climate, with hot summers and warm winters. This warm climate makes Estepona an ideal place to buy your dream property. Cooling breezes from the sea make the summer heat manageable; temperatures average 32 ºC during the summer.
If you are considering buying a property on The Costa Del Sol, Homes On The Costa Estate Agents have a vast selection of properties for sale in Estepona and along the entire coast. Take a look at what Spanish Properties for sale are currently available. We have every imaginable property for sale, Estepona luxury villas, Penthouses, Townhouses, Apartments and building land and plots for the more adventuruous.
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