Nerja is a coastal town located along Costa del Sol (Coast of the Sun) not very far from Málaga. Though it is rich in history and cultural heritage nowadays the main attractions are its mesmerizing beaches and thriving resorts.
Nerja was once a small fishing village under Muslim rule called “Narixa”, which means “Abundant source” (of water). The town is famous for the caves which home to the world’s most unique stalactites and stalagmites. Besides this, the town has an unmatched combination of both beaches and cliffs and shores. The coast near Nerja has many breathtaking sights and offers a lot of scenic walks.
Why should people stay in Nerja during the winter?
If you are looking for a warmer place to spend your winter, Nerja could be a good choice. During the winter it is much quieter and tranquil than during the summer, but due to the ex-pat community in the area, there are enough open restaurants and shops. The winter period in Nerja is generally mild and pleasant and has fantastic opportunities for sightseeing and outdoor activities. You will have many nice, sunny days where you can enjoy the sun. But you will also have some rainy and colder days. Nerja and the area surrounding it has enough things to do and see.
Winter is the coldest season in Nerja, but it will still see a lot of nice days where a T-shirt will do (bear in mind that the evenings and nights are colder). The winter sees more rain, and it is possible to have several days with a storm, no sun and a lot of rain. But this is often followed by some really nice days. Nerja has a sort of microclimate shielded by the Sierra Nevada from some of the cold winds from the north.
For more climate information visit Meteoblue
Things to see in Nerja
Some places that are really worth paying a visit:
- The Beaches: Nerja has a number of beaches each with distinct characteristics and amusement to offer.
- Museo de Nerja (Museum of Nerja), the museum is a good place to see the history of Nerja. The entrance fee of €4 (approx. $4, £3, $6 CAD, $6 AUD) is reasonable. You can also purchase a combined ticket with access to the nearby caves. https://entradas.cuevadenerja.es/en
- Balcón de Europa (Balcony of Europe), an astonishing piece of art present at the top of a cliff and the view from the cliff is enough to mitigate all your sorrows and make you feel a little more alive.
- Cueva de Nerja, According to some sources the 3rd. most visited tourist destinations in Spain. The cave is home to the largest stalagmite rock in the world. The caves are almost an art gallery that exhibits some of the oldest pieces of art known to man. Some caves are said to be more than 3000 years old. There is a free visit, from Monday to Friday at 9:30 hours for 60 people, but only for members of the European Union. https://entradas.cuevadenerja.es/en
- Acueducto Del Aguila, a marvelous piece of civil work built in the 19th century to serve the purpose of transporting water to sugar mills.
Things to see not far from Nerja
Andalucía has many things to offer, from beautiful white towns to a city like Malaga:
- Salobreña, it takes almost half an hour to get to this village. It has some ancient towers which provide an impressive view of the streets as well as the houses.
- Montefrio, although this village is further away, 146 meter (479 feet) from Nerja, it is still worth the trip. It has some unique places such as the Iglesia de la Encarnación.
- Frigiliana a small yet beautiful town located a few miles away from Nerja. It also has some really good restaurants such as Las Chinas, Gloria Bendita Frigiliana. And not to forget Los Caracoles that looks very special https://www.hotelruralloscaracoles.com/en/photo-tour.html
- Day trip to Malaga. The biggest town in Andalusia offers a lot of things to see and do. You can take the bus from Nerja, and there are also enough things to do for a rainy day.
- Day trip to Granada. Definitely a place you have to see could be combined with the Alhambra.
- Alhambra, a fortress built in the late 8th century which is located in Granada, Andalusia. This place only sells a limited number of tickets to prevent overcrowding, we advise you to purchase the tickets well in advance to avoid inconvenience. The price of tickets depends on the type of visit and guide hired.
- Sierras of Tejeda, a natural park not far from Nerja.
- Sierra Nevada, the big natural park near Granada which has some beautiful mountains and snow in the winter. It even hosts a ski resort.
Activities in Nerja in the winter
Nerja has a lot of activities for winter visitors. Here is a small selection:
- Pilates and Air Yoga in Nerja: http://www.mytradereview.es/pilates-air-yoga-nerja.html
- Golf: If you want to play golf during your vacations, Nerja has got some impressive courses like Club Internacional de Nerja and Lessaggro cars & golf.
- Tennis: There are quite a few tennis courts in the town such as the Nerja Padel.
- Learn Spanish, with special classes and activities for 50+ https://www.idnerja.com/
- Theatre: English movies are usually played on Tuesdays at Cinesur.
Shopping + Restaurants. Are they open in the winter?
Due to the large ex-pat community near Nerja there a lot of open shops and restaurants. Some more tourist places will be closed.
There are also several modern shopping malls such as Muelle Uno and Centro Comercial El Ingenio.
Some of the restaurant options include:
- La Fuente, beautiful view with very limited good dishes, you should try their pie.
- Posada de Iberica, a heaven for meat lovers.
- Bakus, you can have some great seafood here.
- Taste of India Restaurant, as the name, suggests you can have some unmatched desi Indian dishes for a reasonable price.
- RAW lounge & tapas, if you are short of time simply get to this restaurant they have a very quick and great service.
Nerja can be easily accessed by car from the A-7 motorway. It runs both in the direction of Malaga in the west and to Almeria in the east.
Malaga airport is 72 meter (236 feet) from Nerja and has flights to numerous locations. There is an airport bus to Nerja that cost from €5 (approx. $5, £4, $7 CAD, $8 AUD) to €9 (approx. $10, £8, $13 CAD, $14 AUD). A cap will be much more expensive with a price of around €81 (approx. $91, £72, $124 CAD, $131 AUD).
Nerja is served by both local and intercity buses. There are buses that go to Malaga, Frigilina and other places (https://getbybus.com/en/bus-from-nerja). You can find the bus station at Calle Antonio Jiménez, 4. You can find a cabin that sells bus tickets, but you can also purchase them online (https://www.alsa.com/en/web/bus/alsa-experience/plan-your-journey/purchase-channels/internet).
Nerja does not have a train station.
There is an Ambulatorio (Health Centre) in Nerja. Here you can have an x-ray if needed. The nearest hospital is Comarcal in Velez-Malaga. Getting there will cost around €20 (approx. $22, £17, $30 CAD, $32 AUD) in a taxi, or you can take the bus.
There is also a private clinic/hospital in Nerja, Clinica Rincon.
In all places, English will not be a problem. In Ambulatorio they also have volunteer interpreters.
Also normal doctors and dentists are not difficult to find. A lot of them will speak and understand English.
Finding a long term rental is not difficult, but take care that you book in advance as the best locations will fill up quickly.
You can expect prices from €500 (approx. $566, £449, $768 CAD, $812 AUD) for a simple apartment, depending on the location, the size, and the facilities.
A house will start at around €1000 (approx. $1132, £899, $1536 CAD, $1624 AUD), also depending on the size and location. You can use websites like Airbnb or use a more local site like http://mynerja.com/rentals/nerja-long-term-rentals/ or https://www.nerjapropertyservices.com/xtndd/?lang=eng&all=YES
Near Nerja you have several options for a winter camping:
- Camping El Pino is a camping site located 800 meters from the sea and 13 min from Nerja. Prices start from €15 (approx. $16, £13, $23 CAD, $24 AUD). https://www.campingelpino.com/en
- Campsite Laguna Playa: 143 campsites, 30 min from Nerja and located at the beach. The Bus Station is 750 m away with busses going to Nerja and Málaga. Prices start from €300 (approx. $339, £269, $460 CAD, $487 AUD) per month for a stay of 90 days. https://www.lagunaplaya.com/en/
If you have a Camper or Motorhome you can find several locations near Nerja. Some options:
- Camper Area Milucar, Almost at the sea (there is a road in between) and 10 min from Nerja. 28 plots with electricity. From €9,50 (approx. $10, £8, $13 CAD, $14 AUD) for more than 15 nights. https://milucar.es/en
- Aula de Naturaleza, Cortijo San Miguel, A family run campsite, 2 km from Nerja. Price around €25 (approx. $28, £22, $38 CAD, $40 AUD) per night. Check https://www.campercontact.com/en/spain/andalucia-04-11-14-18-21-23-29-41/nerja/62174/aula-de-la-naturaleza-cortijo-san-miguel