During our recent trip to Spain, we stayed in a town called Fuengirola on the Costa del Sol, which literally means Coast of Sunshine. It’s aptly named, because even though we visited at the end of November, the skies were blue and the temperature was mild. Sure, we had rain almost every second day, but it showered down and was finished, leaving the rest of the day warm enough to walk around in T-shirts and shorts.
Before we arrived in Andalucía, I kept telling people we’d be staying in a little village on the coast. Turns out it’s actually quite a big town with an interesting history (it was even the site of a battle in the early 19th century). Apart from the beach, some of its main attractions include a castle, a harbour and a zoo. Because I’d thought it was small with nothing more than hotels and a nice beach to recommend it, it didn’t feature very prominently on our itinerary. After all, who’s interested in a beach town in the middle of winter, right? Wrong. That will teach me to do better research next time.
So our experience of Fuengirola is mostly limited to a bus trip into town to look for bargains at the weekly flea market (on Tuesdays at the fairground, come early). But on the Saturday morning after we’d made the long trip to Seville and back the previous day, Gareth’s parents took the car into town while the two of us decided to go for a walk along the world-famous coastline.
I can see why the Costa del Sol is popular in summer, but I think we were lucky to come during the winter. White, soft sand stretched as far as the eye could see, while the waters of the Mediterranean Sea lapped gently on the shore. Here and there a sand-filled dinghy, just ready for a beach barbeque, or a dust-covered pedal boat gave us a glimpse of what it must be like when the crowds descend en masse to enjoy their summer holiday in the row upon row of package deal hotels lining the promenade. But we were content to have it all to ourselves for now.
For more posts in the Spain 2010 series, click here.