Many of the most beautiful beaches in Spain are found in Andalusia. Along the almost 1.000 kilometers of coastline overlooking the Mediterranean and the Atlantic Ocean, there are in fact incredible beaches, dunes and hidden bays. The Andalusian coast is divided into four areas: the noble Costa del Sol is very famous all over the world and has now become a symbol of seaside tourism in Europe, while the Costa de la Luz, the only one bathed by the ocean rather than the Mediterranean, it is perfect for surfers and for those who want remote and pristine beaches. Less touristy are the Costa Tropical and the Costa de Almería which are recommended for those who love more solitary beaches immersed in the wildest nature.
To help you find your ideal beach, here are the 10 most beautiful beaches in Andalusia.
1 - Playa de Bolonia, Tarifa
Without a doubt it is everyone's favorite beach, Spaniards and more. An immaculate stretch of white sand overlooking turquoise waters and surrounded by dunes. Ideal if you want to escape from the most crowded and touristy beaches. There are 3 main areas: the dune area, the main beach area and the area facing Tarifa where there are smaller, more solitary beaches.
Being a virgin, this beach is little served: there are no deck chairs, umbrellas to rent, or showers. There are only a couple of bars and a few rather high-priced shops. Destination top for those who practice kitesurfing or windsurfing. In Bolonia, in fact, you can surf both in the sea and on the beach, with the sandboard; in the latter case, just climb to the top of a dune and then slide with the board!
- Where it is: exactly in front of Tangier, it can be reached by taking the N340 towards Tarifa, take the direction of the village "El Lentiscali", reachable only through a panoramic road that overlooks the bay of the Costa de La Luz. There is bus service from Seville (€ 18,95), Jerez de la Frontera (€ 10,00), Cadiz (€ 9,40), Malaga (€ 16,45) - Get directions
- Ideal for: relaxation, nature, surfing
- Type: White sand
2 - La Herradura, Almuñécar
Herradura, a few kilometers from the more famous Almuñécar, is one horseshoe-shaped bay, at the bottom of which is the village of Moorish origin and above all its splendid and kilometer-long beach.
More than 2 km long and about forty wide, the beach of La Herradura is bordered to the east by a small promontory called Punta de la Mona, while the western end is dominated by the imposing Cerro Gordo, a rock formation of about 250 m. height that plunges into the sea forming spectacular beaches and coves that form the Natural Reserve of Los Acantillados de Maro y Cerro Gordo.
Despite its fame, La Herradura is generally a beach uncrowded and suitable for all audiences. It is very well served and equipped: the promenade is dotted with numerous chiringuitos and restaurants that often also offer the rental of sunbeds and umbrellas.
- Where it is: on the Costa Tropical, accessible by car via the A-7 and A-44. Bus lines 11 and B have routes that pass near La Herradura Beach. The closest stations to Playa La Herradura are Avenida El Sauce, 51 which is 635m away, 9 min walk. Cost starting from € 1,80. - Get directions
- Ideal for: relaxation, nature, water sports
- Type: golden sand
3 - Playa de los Muertos, Cabo de Gata, Almeria
Located inside the Cabo de Gata Natural Park, one of the most beautiful and important natural parks in Spain, owes its name to the dead who came from the sea following shipwrecks in the past.
It is a beach about 2 km long and made up of small white stones and crystal clear waters; ideal for making snorkeling and scuba diving. Protected on both sides by spectacular black rocks, the Playa de Los Muertos still stands uncontaminated and, therefore, devoid of any type of service. Remember to bring food and umbrella with you.
- Where it is: on the coast of Almeria, in the natural park of Cabo de Gata. From the town of Carboneras it is a 12 min drive (8,8 km), there is no public service. There are 2 car parks: one free (1 km away from the other) and one for a fee (€ 4,00). The beach is accessed on foot via a trek of about 15 min that crosses wonderful dunes - Get directions
- Ideal for: relaxation, snorkeling and diving
- Type: sand and small stones
4 - Playa La Rijana, Gualchos
A short distance from the coastal village of Castell de Ferro, this is the considered beach one of the most beautiful on the Costa del Sol, despite being in the middle of the Costa Tropical! La Rijana is a beach lover's paradise. The beach is made up of sand and dark pebbles; it offers particularly crystal clear waters, perfect for practicing snorkeling and diving.
Located at the bottom of a small cove, it can only be reached on foot or by boat. Its isolation and the ease with which one can miss the exit from the main road and pass beyond, guarantee low crowding and an even more suggestive atmosphere. In high season it is mainly frequented by local visitors; however, it is always possible to find some space to enjoy a few hours of realx in complete tranquility.
- Where it is: near Castell de Ferro, take the exit for Playa Rijana, go through the village of Calahonda and continue along the N-340 coastal road. The road, characterized by several ups and downs and various tunnels, passes behind some spectacular coves. Playa de la Rijana is one of them - Get Directions
- Ideal for: relaxation, nature, snorkeling and diving
- Type: sand and dark pebbles
5 - Playa de Zahara de los Atunes, Cadiz
One of the most famous beaches in the province of Cadiz, on the Atlantic coast. Turquoise and transparent waters, fine golden sand, fantastic temperatures even in winter. Playa de Azahara de los Atunes is a paradise for snorkelers, divers, windsurfers and kitesurfers. Saved from building speculation, this coast is practically untouched. The beach, 5 km long, is almost deserted and offers silence and dense vegetation.
Despite the virgin appearance, it has complete services, thanks above all to the proximity of the town: rescue service, bathrooms, parking, easy access for wheelchairs, and in some points renting beds, kiosks and beach bars. Not surprisingly, it is the ideal beach for families even with very little children even small ones. Remember, however, that it is one semi nudist beach.
- Where it is: 6 km north of the Zahara de los Atunes village. There is a bus service offering connections to Cadiz, Barbate and Bolonia (ticket from € 6,00) - Get directions
- Ideal for: relaxation, water sports, suitable for families, semi-nudism
- Type: golden sand
6 - Playa de los Genoveses, Cabo de Gata, Almeria
Located within the Cabo de Gata Natural Park, it is an excellent beach of singular beauty. Virgin, unspoiled and isolated, it is an expanse of white sand, surrounded by undulating dunes and eucalyptus trees. Hidden among the rocks, it is ideal for diving in its crystal clear waters. The fact that it is so secluded makes it a favorite destination nudist.
Playa de los Genoveses is still unspoiled and, for this reason, devoid of any type of service. Remember to bring everything you need with you. The cliffs in the tip known as Morrón de los Genoveses are worth mentioning. Visit recommended.
- Where it is: from the town of Carboneras it is 12 minutes by car (8,8 km), there is no public service. There are 2 car parks: one free (1 km away from the other) and one for a fee (€ 4,00). The beach is accessed on foot via a path surrounded by thick vegetation and small sand dunes - Get directions
- Ideal for: relaxation, nature, diving, nudism
- Type: White sand
7 - Playa de la Calahonda, Nerja, Malaga
In the heart of Nerjia, Calahonda beach is the most emblematic of the area and also the most photographed; it appears in practically all postcards, calendars and guides dedicated to the town. Calahonda is a small beach of dark sand and gravel and transparent waters and very quiet. Surrounded by rock faces and featuring a picturesque fisherman's hut, it boasts a truly stunning location.
Being an urban beach it has available all kinds of services, including the rescue service, the rental of umbrellas and sunbeds, showers and toilets. Nerja, twinned with Pescia in Tuscany, has always been a fishing village and in fact, even today, they can be seen at work repairing fishing nets before venturing into the sea. The fish restaurants around the beach are great, you can enjoy the best pescaito frito in the area.
- Where it is: Coming from the center of Nerja, right at the entrance to the Balcón, just behind the fountain and next to the Tourist Office, there is a staircase that leads directly to the beach. The village of Nerja can be reached by car via the A-7; it is also connected to Malaga (Paseo de los Tilos) by numerous daily buses, more or less one every hour (1 h 30 min, € 5,00) - Get directions
- Ideal for: relaxation
- Type: dark sand and gravel
8 - Playa de Los Lances, Tarifa
A real one legend for windsurfing and kitesurfing enthusiasts and for those who want to feel on the edge of the world, Playa de los Lances is the beach that has made the quiet town of Tarifa famous all over the world and one of the most beautiful in southern Spain.
It is a very wide beach, 10 kilometers long and wide, of fine white sand and incredibly soft to the touch. The beach is constantly beaten by twenty, which create ideal conditions for surfing but make it almost impossible to lie down and sunbathe. Despite this, the most famous beach in Tarifa is one of the busiest in Andalusia.
- Where it is: near Tarifa, it can be reached in 5 minutes by car (5,8 km) or by bus M-150 or M-160 departing every hour from Centro de Salud (€ 1,00) - Get directions
- Ideal for: surfing and kitesurfing, nature
- Type: White sand
9 - Cala de Roche, Conil de la Frontera
One of the most famous small coves in golden sand and turquoise waters located between the territory of Conil de la Frontera and the town of Roche. Sheltered among the rocks, it cannot be seen from the main road along the coast that goes from Chiclana de la Frontera to Conil; the rocks stop the typical Levante wind.
The beach has a practically virgin aspect for this does not offer services basic such as showers, deck chairs, bars etc. Bring an umbrella, water and food. Precisely because of its characteristics, in Cala de Roche nudism and semi-nudism are practiced. Accessible only on foot through a small wood of shrubs and junipers unique in Europe, via a ladder.
- Where it is: on the Costa della Luz, between Conil de la Frontera and Roche. For those arriving by car, the reference road is the A-48 (whether traveling towards Cadiz or Malaga), continue along the CA-213 to arrive at your destination. There is a bus service from Cadiz (55 min, € 5,00) and from Seville (1 hour and 45 min, € 18,00). The beach is accessed on foot via ladders in the vegetation - Get directions
- Ideal for: relaxation, nudism
- Type: golden sand
10 - Playa de la Carihuela, Torremolinos
Urban beach located in the tourist stronghold of Torremolinos. As is typical of city beaches, it is very well equipped and leaves nothing to be desired: there are showers, toilets, lifeguards, playgrounds for children and a wide range of chiringuitos and restaurants to spend the evening.
There are also numerous suppliers of watersports where, for example, it is possible to rent jet skis and jet skis. Surrounded by all kinds of services, and with a long seafront that goes from Torremolinos to the sporting port of Benalmadena (the two cities are so close that they seem like one city), it is the most popular beach with families.
- Where it is: located just west of the center of Torremolinos, easily reachable on foot from the historic center of Torremolinos by descending the staircase that leads to the Bajondillo seafront and continuing westwards passing the small rocky promontory. From Malaga you can reach the town in 15 minutes by car, bus M-110 (21 min, € 1,50) or train C1 (26 min, approx. € 4,00) - Get directions
- Ideal for: relaxation, water sports, nightlife
- Type: dark sand
Haven't booked yet? Plan your trip to Andalusia: info on flights, hotels and tours
Andalusia is a low-cost destination. Starting from the flights, which are around € 70,00. For accommodation there are accommodations of all types. Everything varies based on multiple factors and, first of all, the location you choose as a base. Obviously, a resort on the Costa del Sol will be far more expensive than a small family hotel or a campsite.
If you are planning to alternate a beach holiday with some cultural visits, the best way to discover the region is turn it independently. If you do not reach the destination with your own vehicle, you can choose to rent one directly on site. The prices are very good, a week in July starting from € 136,00. For visits of artistic interest, the tickets are really cheap, especially if considered in relation to the value of the monuments themselves (the entrance to the Alhambra in Granada for only € 14,00!).
- starting from € 55,00 -
- Hotel and b & b starting from € 35,00 per room -
- Granada: Alhambra and Nasrid Palaces with Skip-the-Line Access Jerez de la Frontera: The Dance of the Andalusian Horses Pueblos Blancos and Ronda: Day Tour from Seville