One of the calmer holiday resorts Costa del Sol has to offer, Frigiliana provides a retreat in favour of idyllic natural charm. This Andalucian 'white village' is perched on the mountain overlooking the coastal town of Nerja, which is just a short journey away. Little known by the hoards of tourists that flock to southern Spain each year, Frigiliana is a gem in the Costa del Sol crown waiting to welcome you on your next holiday.
Beaches and coastlines
Frigiliana is set back from the coast so you'll have to make a short trip down to Nerja to find a beach. Once there, you actually have 10 beaches to choose from, each as beautiful as the next. The largest and most popular with tourists is Playa Burriana, where there are enough facilities in the area to keep you satisfied all day, including toilets, showers and cafes.
People also do watersports along the coast here, with windsurfing proving particularly popular. Water has always played a role in the town's history, with Nerja getting its name from the Arabic word 'narixa,' meaning 'bountiful spring'. Frigiliana's location makes it the ideal spot for holidays to Costa del Sol and just further afield, Playa de Maro has been voted one of Spain's best beaches. Picture hidden waterfalls, underwater caves and some of the best snorkelling around – all just a short taxi ride from Nerja town.
GMT + 1hr
For a small place, Frigiliana is well stocked with restaurants. The problem is finding them – with many tucked away down alleys and side streets. Traditional Spanish food is king here so you'll notice plenty of paella, seafood, meats and locally grown vegetables on offer.
If you fancy a coffee during the day head to La Tienda, and for something a little stronger after dark, try Bajamar and Mi Cortijo. Tapas are generally included in the price of drinks so if you head out for the evening, so don't be surprised if you're presented with some complimentary nibbles. And from nibbles to tipples, the local Frigiliana wine is made from the Moscatel grape.
Frigiliana isn't known for its nightlife but many of the bars will stay open late if they have customers. If you're looking for something livelier return to Nerja, which has a wide range of restaurants, late-night bars and the odd karaoke club. The action is focused on the happily named Plaza Tutti Frutti with music streaming out of the nearby bars – Rockefeller, Tutty Bajamar, Pub Seven and Agora to name just a few.
What Frigiliana lacks in nightlife it makes up for in culture. Take the old tourist train from El Ingenio to get a great view over the town (and avoid climbing the steep hills). You'll see the La Fuente Vieja, a water fountain constructed in the 17th century by Iñigo Manrique de Lara, the fifth Lord of Frigiliana. There are two pretty churches to search out and it's also worth visiting the old granary, which dates back to a time similar to the fountain. The old Moorish quarter has lots of history and is a great place to take a stroll and explore the independent craft shops.
Talking of shopping, Frigiliana is a great place to pick up authentic Spanish souvenirs you just won't find in the busy resort towns. Craft shops are scattered along quaint streets selling a variety of wares including ceramics and textiles. These Aladdin's cave type shops are sure to see you parting with your cash, as is the weekly market. Held every Thursday, it sells everything from fruit to flip-flops. If you're in search of a supermarket or some recognisable brands then shop at the El Ingenio shopping centre.
The main additional draw to Frigiliana is its proximity to the mountains, making it the ideal choice for an All Inclusive holiday to the Costa del Sol. The town sits below the Sierras of Tejeda Almijara y Alhama Natural Park – a vast nature reserve suitable for hiking or rock climbing. The sierras contain an impressive variety of plant species, many of which are only found here. One of the reasons for this is the difference in altitude to the rest of Spain and its southeast-northwest orientation. Hire a car to reach the park or stay a night in one of the nearby campsites.