Spain Guide


Nerja Beaches

The name Nerja comes from the Arabic Narija which can be translated as "rich in water" or "abundant fountain". With an average year round temperature of 19C, a coastline stretching for 16 kilometres and seven beaches within walking distance of the town it's easy to see why so much of life here is centred on the seafront.

The hub of activity in Nerja is the impressive palm fringed Balcon de Europa which juts out over rocky coves and gives magnificent views along the coastline in both directions. On a clear day you can see the coast of North Africa from here.

This was once the site of a 9th century Moorish fortress but these days you can just relax over a jug of sangria without worrying yourself over potential seaborne invaders! The Balcon is the most popular meeting place in town and you'll find plenty of bars and restaurants to choose from. A great place to dine al fresco, enjoy the sea views and people watch.

Immediately below the Balcon, in front of Hotel Europa, you'll find Playa Caletilla, a small beach with softer sand than some of the other beaches in the area which tend to be more shingly.

To the left of the Balcon is the small and picturesque fishermen's beach, Playa Calahonda. The beach, reached by a steep path down from the Balcon, is a mixture of sand and small pebbles and is sheltered from the wind with rocks on either side. A restaurant opens here in the summer months and you can hire sun beds and shades.

Playa Torrecilla is a popular beach at the bottom of the town. It has been artificially widened to create a perfect beach for young children with shallow and generally calm water and soft sand.

Follow the cobbled walkway which leads off to the right of the Balcon, between Hotel Europa and the church, and you'll find Playa el Salon, a small and secluded beach which many visitors never stumble across. There's a beach bar here, good sand and sun beds for hire.

Just around the corner from Playa Torrecilla, to the right of the town is Nerja's longest and most rugged beach, Playazo. The beach stretches for two kilometres but it tends to be less crowded than its neighbours because it's primarily stony and there are less bars and facilities here.

Playazo is also Nerja's most rugged beach. Flat and almost straight, it's about 2 kilometres, stretching from the eastern edge of town along to the Marinas de Nerja hotel complex, passing several beach bars along the way.

While Playazo is a great place for a stroll, the sand is a coarse mixture of small to large pebbles with the fine sandy areas being close to the sea.

Playazo beach is generally less crowded than the other beaches primarily because of the fewer bars and facilities. Facilities on Playzo include beach showers and toilets in the form of portable wooden chalets located more or less at each end. These facilities are only open during summer months.

The most popular and well equipped beach is Playa Burriana to the far east of the town. You can either take your car to the beach (there's a fee paying car park alongside it) or take the scenic rocky coastal path which leads from the town centre all the way to Burriana (about a 20 minute walk).

The 800 metre beach is a mixture of fine sand and pebbles and has all the facilities you could wish for. There are numerous beach bars and seafront cafes here, you can hire sun beds and shades and there's a full range of watersports including scuba diving and boat cruises along the coast.