Mijas is located in the Spanish province of Malaga on the Costa del Sol. This charming resort is divided into two distinct areas – Mijas Costa which is a bustling beachfront resort and Mijas Pueblo which must rate as one of the prettiest villages in Spain.
The pueblo is a typical Andaluz village of whitewashed buildings perched high on the mountainside with spectacular views to the Mediterranean below and a scenic backdrop of endless pine forests. Foreign tourists discovered Mijas, 30 kilometres west of Malaga, in the 1960s and it’s now the expatriate home of some 60 nationalities.
Tourism and the expat resident population have made their mark on Mijas Costa which has a distinctly cosmopolitan flavour with international restaurants, clubs and bars. Yet the municipality has managed to retain its old world charm and has a reputation as a holiday spot for the more discerning tourist. You won’t find any major boulevards and main thoroughfares here – Mijas is a delightful maze of narrow cobbled streets and archways with picture postcard houses, red tile roofs and balconies ablaze with brightly coloured geraniums.
At the entrance to the village you’ll see the ancient spring which still provides natural mineral water from a tap in the wall. A major attraction for visitors is the surviving tradition of donkey taxis which trek around the pueblo for the benefit of foreign sightseers.
Local arts and crafts thrive here, notably hand made linen and wicker items. The pueblo is also noted for its delicious local bread, honey and almond cakes. A popular local dish you’ll find served in most of the Spanish restaurants here is “gazpachuelo” (an egg soup variant of the famous Andalucian cold tomato soup).
For out of season visitors, a wonderful local spectacle is the celebration of the feast of San Anton in January. The locals throw a “romeria” (open air party) at the holy hermitage of El Puerto, traipsing up the mountain in carriages and carts piled high with flowers and food.
Down at the coast, about 15 minutes by car from the village, you’ll find Mijas Costa which seems like a world away from the pueblo. Also known as La Cala, this area was once a small, charming fishing village but has now been transformed into a popular beach resort with watersports, bars, restaurants and all the trappings of modern day tourism.
This entire area is a golfer’s paradise with year-round sun and numerous championship golf courses within easy reach. Just inland from Mijas Costa you’ll find La Cala North and South golf courses and the David Leadbetter Golf Academy.
Also within easy driving distance are the famous courses of Valderrama, Torrequebrada, Alhaurin La Grande and Monte Mayor. No wonder they call the Costa del Sol the Golfing Mecca of Europe!