Our Balcón de Andaluz in Algarrobo and in Torrox is situated in La Axarquía, the region east of Malaga. Most travel guides that cover this region, never seem to get further than a few remarks about Malaga and Nerja. And this now is the charm of this area. No mass tourism, like the areas west of Malaga. In La Axarquía you can find the authentic Spanish way of life.
La Axarquía is a mountainous area that ends at the mouth of the Mediterranean Sea. A big part of the area is taken up by the Sierra de Tejeda, mountain range and National Park with the Maroma (2065 m) as highest peak. During our search for a location close to the Spanish coast for living and working, this area made the biggest impression on us both. The nature in the inland areas is magnificent. It is an ideal place for hiking. There are numerous authentic white villages, like the breathtaking eagles nest Comares, the lovely Cómpeta and the charming Frigiliana. Torrox Pueblo
Other authentic white villages are Algarrobo Pueblo, Torrox Pueblo, Canillas and Alcaucin. All have their regular farmers markets where they sell local products. Sometimes road delays occur as a goat herder and his goats make their daily journey from the fields to the farm and v.v. In the spring the landscape changes colours because of the almond trees and mimosa blossom .
La Axarquía and its central location offer strong benefits to culture lovers. This area has a rich history of both Venetian and Arabic influences. Malaga is a beautiful city with a compact interesting historical center perfect for those who like to explore a city on foot. Granada with the Alhambra is a day excursion about 1, 5 hours by car from our Balcón de Andaluz. Velez Malaga is an authentic Spanish small town with many monuments. A beautiful day trip is easily made on good mountain roads to Alhama de Granada featuring many archaeological ruins out of Moorish times.
Alhama de Granada
Salobreña is a Moorish city dominated by its castle. This is a must see for visitors.
The area is also known for its celebrations, like the “Fiesta de tres Culturas” in Frigiliana which celebrates the peaceful coexistence through the ages of three communities in this area: Jewish, Muslim and Christianity. This fiesta remains popular today and includes performances of traditional music and dances as well as outdoor markets offering traditional crafts and products from each culture.
For beach lovers, sandy beaches can be found along the coast in towns like Torre del Mar, Algarrobo, El Morche, Torrox en Nerja. Each beach has good facilities including many ‘chirinquitos’ (beachside cafes) offering local specialities like Espetos de Sardines: sardines roasted on wood fire. Of course, there are many restaurants and we are more than happy to give you our recommendations on which culinary locations should not be missed.
A visit to Nerja is a definite must. It’s a little bit touristic but it has beautiful beaches, little crooked lanes, charming shops and great tapas bars and restaurants. The highest point in town, Balcón de Europa, offers you an amazing view on the sea. A visit to one of the Flamenco bars is highly recommended. And don’t forget to visit the famous Caves (stalactite and stalagmite) of Nerja while you are there.
Torrox and Nerja are locally known for their bars with live music, especially for their jam sessions. Do you play an instrument or can you sing? If so, you can join a jam. Various local musicians like to play long with vacationers and expats and make each evening a surprise. Repertoire is mostly music from the 60’s and 70’s, but the young musicians are playing modern music as well. Sometimes there are musicians playing the local Spanish music. We are happy to give you tips on when and where to find the best jam sessions.
After a short car ride of less than 10 minutes from our Balcón de Andaluz in Algarrobo (from Torrox it will take you 15 minutes), you can find in Velez Malaga an extensive shopping mall called El Ingenio: more than 100 retailers and the large supermarket Eroski. In addition to this Algarrobo-Costa has two large supermarkets as well: Lidl en Mercadona. In Torrox there is a small Eroski, a Mercadona and Lidl.
The weekly (farmers) market of Torrox, Algarrobo en Torre del Mar is also worth visiting.
For winter visitors, we have an added attraction. The Sierra Nevada ski resort is a 2 hour drive from here. Make no mistake: this is a serious ski area with more than 100 kms of prepared ski trails and 18 lifts. At 3481 meter this area is guaranteed to have snow from mid-December to mid-April.
Other sports activities here are (mountain) biking, hiking, cycling, surfing, kiting and golf at one of the many golf resorts, for example at Torre del Mar.
An excursion to Gibraltar is recommended. Gibraltar is easily accessible from here and will bring you an enjoyable day. A visit to the beautiful nature reserve Torcal with its impressive rock formations is a beautiful trip too. Don’t forget the Alpurjarras.
This summary is only a selection of what you can do in this area. Of course, we are happy to give you more information about these trips. We also have numerous other ideas on day trips or longer excursions during your stay.
As you can read La Axarquía region has much to offer and in our opinion it is one of the most interesting and diverse areas of Spain and with ….. ‘Le mejor clima de Europa’: it offers the best climate of Europe!