There´s so much more to Marbella than the glamour, celebrity status and party lifestyle it´s so known for. Marbella´s Old Quarter has a rich historical story to tell…
Explore the whimsical magic of the ´Casco Antiguo´ of Marbella and get lost in the labyrinth of quirky cobbled streets. Here you can experience a true Andalucian atmosphere with white washed buildings, orange blossom adorned walls, bars and boutiques. A treasure to be found at every turn.
Marbella Old Town is made up of two historical quarters, ´Barrio Alto´ and ´Barrio Nuevo´, which both still retain their original Moorish architecture dating back to the 16th century when Spain was under Arab rule. This historical authenticity makes this part of Marbella so enchanting.
´Plaza de los Naranjos´ coined because of all the beautiful orange trees that grow there, is a stunning square which is the heart of the old town, located just north of the main road Ricardo Soriano and Alameda Park. Built at the end of the 15th century, it holds great historic symbolism as the transition from Arab to Christian culture. Here you can soak up the fragrant smells and ambience radiating from the open-air bars, and admire the wonderful Renaissance stone fountain. At night, especially, this square comes alive with lights and hypnotising melodic flamenco chants.
There are a few tourist attractions you shouldn´t miss when visiting Marbella´s old town. If you´re an art lover, The Spanish Contemporary Engraving Museum is the only one of its kind in Spain which exhibits and preserves graphic Spanish art dating back to the XX and XXI centuries. Here you can see over four thousand works of art from prolific artists such as Picasso, Dalí, Goya and Miró.
Another must see is the church of Saint Mary of the Incarnation, the biggest church in Marbella, ´Ermita de Santiago´. This baroque-style church constructed in 1505 was modified later on in 1712 and then again in 1756. This magnificent building has an immediate impact upon approach and is regularly compared to a cathedral.
Last but most definitely not the least, is the leafy Parque de la Alameda, located at the end of Avenida del Mar, a beautiful park which holds an array of events such as the Christmas Nativity and regular flea markets. Best known for its botanical gardens and Virgen del Rocio fountain, this park is the perfect oasis to relax the mind, away from the spirited streets of Marbella´s old town.