Fuengirola, a city renowned for its cosmopolitan charm and status as a premier tourist destination, offers a tranquil retreat for leisure enthusiasts. Blessed with a welcoming climate, it becomes a magnet for visitors, especially during the summer months. The city’s allure lies in its diverse attractions, from the modern ‘Fuengirola Zoo’ to its aquatic and riverside parks. The extensive maritime promenade, one of the longest in Spain, is a treasure trove of attractions. It houses the maritime yachting harbour, yacht club, fishing port, the Centre of Oceanographic Investigations, and The History Museum. Here, visitors can delve into over 260 years of rich history. With such captivating offerings, Fuengirola stands as an idyllic destination for any traveller.
History of Fuengirola
Fuengirola has a rich history. It started with the Phoenicians. They settled here first. They built a community on a hill. This is where the Sohail castle now stands. They named this place ‘Suel.’
The Romans came next. They made Suel a federated city. This meant it could govern itself. It also developed its own legal systems. There are archaeological remains from this time. These include the “Termas” of Torreblanca. There’s also the Roman “Villa” of the “Finca del Secretario.”
The Arabs ruled next. They renamed the city ‘Sohail.’ Sohail was a well-cultivated district. It had many haciendas and villarejos. Fishing was common on this coast. The district was also a pasture for royal camels.
The name ‘Fuengirola’ came about in the 18th century. It comes from ‘girola,’ a term for Genoese fishing vessels. These vessels were important for ships heading to the Strait of Gibraltar.
Fuengirola has changed over the centuries. It went from a small fishing village to a vibrant city. Its history shows the impact of diverse cultures
Places to visit
Fuengirola boasts a plethora of attractions to suit every taste. Dominating the city’s skyline is the Castle of Sohail, an Arabic fortress built during Abderramán III’s reign, offering a captivating glimpse into Fuengirola’s storied past.
Additionally, the archaeological remains at ‘El Secretario’ serve as a testament to the city’s Roman heritage, adding another layer to its historical tapestry.
Since the 1960s, Fuengirola has undergone a remarkable transformation, evolving from a quaint fishing village into a vibrant Costa del Sol gem. This transformation is evident in the city’s modern ambiance, coexisting harmoniously with its historical sites.
For those interested on local craftsmanship, Fuengirola stands as a provincial hub. Artisan workshops specialize in pottery, precious metals, jewelry, leather goods, wooden furniture, and upholstery, offering distinctive souvenirs and gifts.
Activities in Fuengirola
Beyond the attractions above, Fuengirola offers a wealth of experiences. The acclaimed Bioparc, a modern zoo renowned for its commitment to animal welfare, beckons visitors. The pristine beaches and relaxed ambiance of neighborhoods like Los Boliches provide a serene escape. You can also savor leisurely moments at Plaza Constitucion and La Plaza de los Chinorros.
Shopping enthusiasts will find their haven at the Fuengirola Street Market and Centro Comercial Miramar, offering a diverse array of goods. Lastly, the Paseo Maritimo Promenade, with its breathtaking vistas and a plethora of water activities, is a must-visit.
With its diverse range of attractions, Fuengirola ensures there’s something for everyone, making it an indispensable destination on the Costa del Sol.
Fuengirola is renowned for its magnificent coastline along the Costa del Sol. Its beaches offer golden sands, crystal-clear waters, and a laid-back atmosphere. Below, we present some of Fuengirola’s most notable beaches.
- Los Boliches Beach:
Los Boliches Beach is one of the liveliest and most popular in Fuengirola. Its expansive promenade is lined with numerous bars and restaurants. It’s ideal for families and water sports enthusiasts.
- Carvajal Beach:
Carvajal Beach is tranquil and serene, perfect for those seeking a peaceful haven to relax. It offers beautiful views of the surrounding cliffs.
- San Francisco Beach:
This small beach is a peaceful oasis, ideal for those looking to escape the crowds. Its calm ambiance makes it a lovely spot for sunbathing.
- Santa Amalia Beach:
Santa Amalia Beach is known for its family-friendly and safe atmosphere. Shallow waters make it perfect for children, and its promenade is dotted with restaurants serving local cuisine.
- Torreblanca Beach:
Torreblanca Beach is extensive and offers a wide range of services. It’s perfect for leisurely seaside strolls and water sports. The crystal-clear waters are ideal for swimming.
- Las Gaviotas Beach:
This small beach is a hidden gem, perfect for those seeking tranquility. Its natural and rocky surroundings make it unique and picturesque.
- Castillo Sohail Beach:
Located next to the iconic Castillo Sohail, this beach combines history with natural beauty. It’s perfect for exploring local history and enjoying a day of sun and sea.
Fairs and festivals
Fuengirola is a city that revels in the art of celebration, and it does so with a vibrant tapestry of fairs and festivals sprinkled throughout the year.
The city’s grandest festivities unfold in October, paying homage to its Patron Saint, ‘La Virgen del Rosario.’ This jubilant celebration bathes the streets in a riot of colors and infectious joy.
On the 16th of July, the district of Los Boliches orchestrates a dazzling maritime procession in honor of ‘La Virgen del Carmen.’ This event serves as a captivating showcase of local tradition and unwavering faith.
The Night of San Juan is another hallmark occasion in Fuengirola. On this magical night, effigies known as ‘Juas’ are set ablaze in a lively ritual that heralds the arrival of summer.
For those seeking a cultural feast during the balmy summer months, the ‘Ciudad de Fuengirola’ music and dance festival takes center stage in July and August at the historic Castle of Sohail. This festival brings together a diverse array of performances, ensuring there’s something to delight every taste.
In April, The International People’s Fair ‘La Feria Internacional de los Pueblos,’ a grand celebration of folklore, culture and gastronomy. This exceptional event welcomes participants from 50 countries across four continents, creating a truly global fiesta.
These splendid festivities, among numerous others, paint Fuengirola as a city that knows how to revel. Here, tradition and modernity entwine in a kaleidoscope of culture and unbridled joy.
Shopping and services
Fuengirola boasts a wealth of exceptional services catering to virtually every need. When it comes to shopping, the options are as diverse as they are abundant, making the town centre a shopaholic’s paradise. Here, you’ll find an extensive range of stores, spanning from well-known chain retailers to exclusive boutiques.
For an even more extensive shopping experience, the grand Parque Miramar shopping centre (Map), conveniently situated opposite the castle, opened its doors in March 2004, offering an array of additional shopping opportunities. When it comes to dining and entertainment, Fuengirola doesn’t disappoint. Restaurants and bars abound, with a significant focus on serving the international community, and English is widely spoken.
The cultural scene in Fuengirola is vibrant, featuring regular concerts, theatrical performances, and annual events like the Festival of Musicals. Not to be missed is the prestigious Festival of Fuengirola, primarily centered around music and dance, held within the historic castle’s walls.
For those inclined towards sports and fitness, Fuengirola provides excellent facilities, including two sports centres and an indoor pool.
Regarding healthcare, Fuengirola is well-equipped with two public health centres, and there’s a new hospital currently under construction adjacent to the mosque, west of the town centre. Additionally, the town offers an excellent selection of private clinics and medical practices.
This comprehensive array of services makes Fuengirola a town where your every need is not only met but exceeded.
How to get to Fuengirola
If you go by car, the journey is approximately 24.13 kilometers and takes around 23 minutes.
- Start at Málaga Airport.
- Get on the MA-20 from Av. de Velázquez/N-340.
- Follow MA-20 and AP-7 to Avenida de Mijas in Fuengirola.
- Take exit 214 from AP-7.
Fuengirola, a dynamic town on the Costa del Sol, not only offers a diverse range of residential options but is also exceptionally well-connected through its efficient train stations. Whether you’re seeking beachfront apartments, villas, or other accommodations, Fuengirola has something to suit your needs.
- Carvajal Train Station: Nestled at the easternmost edge of Fuengirola, Carvajal boasts a unique charm, wedged between the seafront and dramatic coastal cliffs. While this quaint area primarily offers apartments and has limited services, it compensates with superb connectivity. Local buses link Carvajal to Fuengirola, and the town has its very own train station, making travel a breeze.
- Torremuelle Train Station: For those seeking a tranquil urbanisation with a mix of villas and apartments, Torremuelle fits the bill. It also features convenient amenities such as small shops and a supermarket. What sets Torremuelle apart is its strategic location along the train line, ensuring effortless access to surrounding areas.
- Torreblanca del Sol Train Station: Located to the east of Fuengirola, Torreblanca del Sol is a sprawling urbanisation offering a variety of housing options, including apartment blocks, townhouse developments, and villas. While the northern section offers elevated views, access roads are serpentine in nature. Here, you’ll find supermarkets, small shops, restaurants, and bars to cater to your daily needs.
- Los Boliches Train Station: Renowned for its sandy beaches and vibrant promenade, Los Boliches is a popular district within Fuengirola. It provides a wide spectrum of accommodation choices and enjoys excellent connectivity via public transport, including a well-situated train station.
- Fuengirola Train Station: As the heart of the town, Fuengirola itself thrives with bustling energy, offering a plethora of services and amenities. Whether you’re a resident or a visitor, you’ll find an array of activities and conveniences to enjoy in this vibrant hub.
Local Holidays 16th July and 8th October celebrating the Virgen del Rosario, the patron saint of the town, when the main fair lasts a week.
Distance from Malaga Airport 24km
Town Hall : 952-589-300
Local Police: 952-589-324
Foreign Residents Department: 952-589-357