Beaches and coastlines
One of the key attractions of Fuengirola is the seven-kilometre stretch of sandy beaches running from the Sohail Castle in the west to Torreblanca in the east. The promenade is called Paseo Maritimo Rey de España and has been widened and improved in recent years to reflect the growing popularity of the area. Here you'll find a range of cafes, bars and seafood restaurants, as well as toilet and shower facilities.
Watersports fans are catered for with plenty of opportunities to windsurf and jet ski. The beach near the castle is a favourite for locals so if you're looking for a taste of Spanish life, this is the place to head. Santa Amalia is the most central beach and is backed by late-night bars and clubs, while Los Boliches is a good option for families as it has a kids' play area and the European Blue Flag status for cleanliness.
Fuengirola attracts tourists from all over Europe, and the food on offer reflects this. Most of the restaurants can be found in the town centre, although some overlook the coast and have stunning views of the sea. For a taste of Spain, try the seafood paella, which the majority of restaurants have on the menu. Jamon serrano - ham from the sierra, or mountains - is ideal for an Andalucian breakfast. Churros are popular too, and taste best when dipped in hot chocolate.
If you don't feel so hungry in the heat then you'll also find plenty of tapas restaurants and fresh salads on the menu. Restaurants get busy in the summer and it can be difficult to find a seat outside, so make sure to book in advance to avoid disappointment. Across the town you'll notice every type of cuisine from Japanese sushi to Mexican fajitas as well as obligatory fast food chains.
Attracting thousands of tourists during the summer season, Fuengirola is a mecca for partygoers. Not only does it boast some of the best bars and clubs on the Costa del Sol, but lots of top nightspots can be found fairly close together, making it ideal for bar hoppers.
The town attracts its fair share of party groups because of the reasonably priced bars and raucous clubs, such as Karbon Klub, but it also has a laid-back side with the likes of Speakeasy Jazz Club and Bar Belga. Plus there are Irish bars, sports pubs and cocktails bars, depending on whether you prefer your drink in a pint or martini glass.
Around the main Plaza de la Constitucion there are many designer clothing shops and interesting small boutiques, while scattered around town you'll find recognisable high street brands and Spanish favourites. Miramar shopping centre is situated opposite the castle and has three floors of fashion, home and electronics as well as a cinema and Eroski supermarket.
A twice-weekly market at Recinto Ferial – Fuengirola Fair Ground – is a great place to pick up a bargain. Open on Tuesdays and Saturdays it's one of the biggest markets in Spain and sells second-hand and new clothes, furniture, collectibles, antiques and toys.
Fuengirola is a great base to explore the Costa del Sol and the wider Andalusia region. Hiring a car is your best bet if you want to get out of the town, as public transport is limited. Or, you could opt for four legs by taking a ride on one of Andalusia's famous beautiful horses at Rancho El Rengo who offer riding lessons and organised treks around the local countryside.
Bioparc Fuengirola is the local zoo and although it's not the biggest zoo you'll ever see it has plenty to delight both children and adults. The traditional white village of Mijas is also well worth a visit. Settled into the mountainside it has the old-fashioned Spanish charm and is a lovely spot for lunch before browsing the pottery shops.