Positioned on the idyllic Costa del Sol overlooking the Alboran Sea, Benalmadena is an atmospheric Spanish town with a rich history, family-friendly amusement attractions, gorgeous coastline and offers a range of wildlife experiences. Along with its own bustling harbour shopping and dining district, Benalmadena places you close to the cultural spoils of Malaga.
Things to do
If you’re visiting Benalmadena with your family, treat the kids to the Selwo Marina, where they can see feedings at the penguinarium, observe snakes, watch caimans and see vibrant-coloured flamingos. The kids will also love the carnival games and Ferris wheel at Tivoli World, an amusement park that also features a giant drop ride, roller coaster, bumper cars and go-karts.
Those who love nature should head to Mariposario de Benalmádena-Butterfly Park, where you can see over 1,500 butterflies, along with displays of local artwork. Across the road is the iconic Benalmádena Stupa, which is the largest stupa in Europe at 33 metres tall and showcases a rich Buddhist religious culture.
Immerse yourself in Benalmadena’s modern culture by exploring the town’s harbour district, where you’ll find a wealth of shops, restaurants and bars. Retail therapy comes naturally at Puerto Marina Shopping, an outlet mall with local fashion stores and fine dining restaurants overlooking the water. Grab a drink under the neon lights at Kaleido Puerto Marina or enjoy a lively dining atmosphere at Terra Sana Puerto Marina.
You can see amazing sand sculptures at Escultura de Arena, which showcases a variety of fascinating creations by locals. Head north to Playamar beach for a swim in the Alboran Sea or keep driving north to reach Malaga, which boasts a historic fort, bullfighting ring and numerous beachfront restaurants.
Benalmadena is on the C1 line of the Cercanías Málaga railway line, which runs through Arroyo de la Miel station. You can catch local buses and taxis around town, but it’s quite easy to explore on foot.