Visiting the Costa del Sol this Easter
Your bags are packed. You've printed out your boarding passes for your flight to Málaga airport. You’re mega-excited about visiting the Costa del Sol this Easter. The only thing you’re missing is... a plan.
Well, do not fear! Today I’ll be sharing my top five plans for the rest of Easter week, which cater for all types of traveller, tourist, pilgrim, sightseer… or even a homeowner who’s returning to stay at his/her Costa del Sol property for a quick break.
1. Go and see a procession
This may seem like a very standard thing to suggest for a country with such a strong Catholic background and atheists may scoff at the mention of a religious procession being a breath-taking and awe-inspiring experience.
But believe me, they are. As a non-believer, upon moving to Spain I struggled to grasp the importance of processioning religious idols like the Virgin Mary through the streets. I thought it was somewhat parochial: a bit “village” – something only celebrated out in the backwoods.
How wrong I was! Down here in southern Spain, Easter – or Semana Santa – is hugely important to many communities; both in remote white villages in inland Málaga province and in the large towns and cities that line its coast.
Religious reverence is felt at this special time of the year as dark, sombre processions characterise Holy Week. The smell of incense and fresh flowers and the sound of saeta religious song announce the arrival of the ornate sculptures – tronos – which can take up to 200 people to carry!
These huge idol sculptures are accompanied by vast swathes of religious brotherhood members – Nazarenes – dressed in coloured robes and long conical hoods, while the parades often last more than an hour.
On Easter Sunday, however, the processions are a substantially more joyous affair and are a great spectacle for families. I would genuinely recommend Málaga as the best place to take in the sights and sounds of the parades, although there are also important cavalcades in Marbella, Alhaurín el Grande, Álora, Vélez-Málaga and Ronda, amongst others.
2. Go skiing
Yes, you read this correctly! The ski season at Sierra Nevada - just under two hours from Málaga and in the next province over - has been extended until 5th May, so you have more than enough time to “carve it up” over the Easter holidays.
Even better news: all 124 runs and 21 ski lifts are open and there’s between one and three metres of decent packed powder, so conditions will be perfect for the Granada resort’s much-famed “bluebird days” on the slopes, while either skiing or snowboarding.
The not-so-good news: it will be busy. Very busy. With schools off in Andalucía until next Monday 22nd April and families eager to get in their last runs of the season, you can bet there will be a bit of a wait at the bottom.
However, if you’re a big winter sports fan, this shouldn’t deter you, as you can still have a great day out and be back on the Costa del Sol by early evening!
3. Play golf
As we’ve mentioned in previous posts, the high season for golfing here on the Costa del Golf is right around now.
Days are longer, thanks to daylight saving time kicking in a few weekends ago, and spring temperatures are extremely pleasant, typically ranging from 16°C to 20°C during the month of April.
Golf enthusiasts love this time of the year because there is enough precipitation (usually overnight) to keep the courses lush, while temperatures are moderate enough for playing a full 18-hole round without overheating and getting either sunburnt or utterly exhausted.
For this reason, courses tend to reduce their prices in the summer months and there is much more demand over Easter and springtime.
My advice: get on the phone now to book a tee-time if you want to get anywhere near a golf course while visiting the Costa del Sol this Easter!
4. Go somewhere off the beaten track
If your idea of the perfect holiday is to lounge about by the beach and drink cocktails from dawn to dusk, that's absolutely fair enough, but this may not be your cup of tea. But for those with an adventurous spirit, I want to make it clear that the Costa del Sol offers more than just chiringuitos, gastro-bars and pub quizzes.
You don’t have to go far to find a beautiful picnic spot, go on a walk in the countryside or sample the aesthetic delights of a picturesque Andalucian white village.
And there is no excuse. As I mentioned before, the days are long, the weather is perfect for taking part in outdoor pursuits and, by visiting somewhere off the beaten track, you will feel like you’ve scratched the surface of the “authentic” Andalucía.
Whether it’s hiking up La Concha mountain inland from Marbella, going to visit the stunning Casares, Istán, Ojén or Mijas Pueblo, or simply taking a ride on the cable car in Benalmádena, you won’t be disappointed with your decision to mix it up a little.
5. View properties
If you don’t already own a property on the Costa del Sol, many of our clients find that Easter is the perfect opportunity for viewing with VIVA.
Having Good Friday and Easter Monday off work presents an ideal opportunity to combine a relaxed holiday in southern Spain with a few days of property viewings, as the weather is great and our brilliant sales team show properties 7 days a week.
Are you visiting the Costa del Sol this Easter? If so, did you find these suggestions helpful? Have a great few days off wherever you are in the world and don’t forget to leave me a comment below!