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Home » Exploring the Charm and History of Marbella Old Town

Exploring the Charm and History of Marbella Old Town

Among the coastline resorts of Spain’s famed Costa del Sol, the Andalusian gem of Marbella stands out for its historic old town brimming with culture, charm and lively Spanish vibes. Located in Marbella’s picturesque casco antiguo (old quarter), a visit to Marbella old town transports you to the city’s origins filled with narrow lanes, colorful plazas, and architectural landmarks.

Overview of Marbella Old Town

Situated below the ruins of medieval Castillo de Bil-Bil, Marbella old town centers around the grand 16th century La Plaza de los Naranjos. This iconic square’s tropical orange trees and fountains surround Marbella’s historic city hall. From the plaza, a labyrinth of pedestrian cobblestone lanes branch off revealing hidden corners and architectural treasures.

Signature Historical Sights

Part of the appeal of Marbella old town comes from immersing in its rich history through sights like:

  • The 10th century Moorish Walls enclosing the casco antiguo in cypress-dotted ramparts.
  • La Plaza de la Iglesia and its ornate 16th century church, the Ermita del Santo Cristo de la Vera Cruz.
  • Casa del Corregidor, an 18th century mansion housing Marbella’s cultural center.
  • Paseo de la Alameda, an elegant palm tree-lined boulevard flanked by buildings bearing Marbella’s heritage.
  • Museo del Grabado Español Contemporáneo, featuring works by Spain’s top contemporary artists.
  • El Beso de Marbella, a sculpture memorializing a famous 1945 photo of a couple kissing.

Traditional Architecture

Whitewashed facades, wrought iron balconies, decorated grilles, and terracotta roofs characterize Marbella old town’s architecture. Narrow brick and stone lanes open onto hidden courtyards and picturesque plazas dotted with flowers and fountains.

Local Cuisine and Dining

For refreshment between exploring, visitors flock to Marbella old town’s bustling tapas bars and restaurants tucked away on side streets and alleyways. Savoring traditional Andalusian dishes and seafood while patio or plaza dining makes for an authentic local experience.

Shopping and Boutiques

The old town offers a refreshing change from Marbella’s resort shopping scene with its narrow, pedestrianized streets lined by independent boutiques, craft stores and artisan workshops. Browsing for clothes, gifts, and accessories with old world charm is part of the district’s appeal.

Tapas Tours and Walking Routes

Joining tapas tours and following suggested walking routes like Calle Camino de Altos to Calle Apretorias make navigating the beautiful maze of Marbella old town rewarding. Exploring the mix of lively and romantic alleys reveals this destination’s rich layers.

With its picturesque lanes, charming plazas, historic sites and classic architecture framed by the Mediterranean, losing yourself in Marbella old town’s ambience and heritage provides the essence of Andalusian culture.