susan on the beach
Coastal hike from Marbella to Mijas
Updated: Mar 16
Spend a morning walking on the Senda Litoral boardwalk from Marbella to Mijas Cala with a stop for lunch, and ride the bus back.
Winter is a great time to go for a hike on the Costa del Sol. Why not discover the Senda Littoral, a beautiful boardwalk and hiking path all along the beach stretching from Estepona to Mijas.
This is a self-guided, easy half-day or full day activity. The path is very easy to find and follow, for the most part on beautiful boardwalks right on the beach.
Every year, a little bit is added to the path - making it easier and easier to enjoy further and hikes. The objective is to have a beautiful uninterrupted coastal path stretching 200km from Estepona to Nerja. Have a look at the official website to see the different places this coastal walk has been implemented.
Hike From Elviria to Mijas Cala
The walk starts next to the Papillon beach restaurant, next to the Heritage Club Hotel, Playa Real You can reach it by walking 10 minutes along the beach from Honeymoon Suites and Penthouse towards Malaga. If you are coming from Sunny Corner apartment (in the center of Marbella), if you don't have a car, take the 220 bus from this bus stop. Attention, the 220 does not stop at every stop in center city. Use the Avanza bus app to find your nearest stop for the 220 line. Get off at the "Camping Marbella Playa" bus stop, just after the Don Carlos hotel tower (before Cabopino). Here is the google maps itinerary for the first part of the walk (which also makes a nice morning jog of about an hour, out and back), which takes you through local neighborhoods parallel to the beach, until you reach the start of the boardwalk.
The first part of this walk takes you through some local neighborhoods, and incorporates a promenade along the beautiful Dunas de Artola natural reserve boardwalk, with views over the port, dunes and beach. You will see kite and wind surfers on windy days. If you want to drive closer to the start of the boardwalk, head to the Papillon beach restaurant and the Heritage hotel Playa Real, and then keep walking parallel to the beach along the beautiful palm-tree lined Avenide Andalucia in Marbesa. This neighbourhood is full of second homes for Sevillanas and Madrilenos. This is an up-and-coming millionaires area, you can admire gorgeous multi-million euro homes that are being renovated to highest modern standards by prestigious architects! Don’t forget to turn around occasionally to admire the mountain view behind you.
Along the Avenida Andalucia you will pass the following great beach restaurants: Sugar Bay Bar 200, Simbad, Triana.
Arriving at the end of this long and straight avenue, you reach the Triana beach restaurant and there are 2 options: (1) head to the beach for a few hundred meters through the sand to join the Artola Dunes boardwalk which you will see in the dunes just after a private wall, or (2) to avoid the sand, turn left on Calle Pavo Real, keep straight and bear right at the fork in the road, to continue downhill along Calle Faisan around through the neighbourhood. You will see a tall 2 building apartment complex; you will see a house called "Casa Hermosa" and then go across a small bridge, and across from that there is until a service gate along a (dry) stream-bed. Take the path through a mature Eucalyptus grove to reach the Artola Dunes boardwalk from behind.
You will walk through a stand of mature Eucalyptus trees, and cross the sandy area to reach the boardwalk path.
Enjoy the promenade in the dunes and natural reserve, with beautiful views over the sea - maybe you'll be able to watch some kite surfers if it is a windy day!
Walk along this boardwalk until you come to the fort and Andy's beach restaurant. From there, head uphill past the parking lot. It's a nice change of scenery to go and see the port, the restaurants, the jetty and lighthouse, and the boats, follow the signs to the port. Maybe you will find a place you want to have breakfast or dinner, another day! The eggs benedict at Albert's are great!. There are 5 or 6 restaurants to choose from with waterfront port views, and an Irish bar and Indian restaurant in the lovely courtyard behind the port.
After visiting the port, the next landmark is Luna Playa chiringuito. You can either walk on the sand, or up through the neighborhood on Calle de la Playa, where you will see some lovely villas and 2nd homes of lucky people who invested in this area years ago.
The official "Senda Litoral" from Calahonda to Mijas starts shortly before the Luna chiringuito - no more walking on the sand the path will go all the way to Mijas Cala. The google maps link to the beginning of the pathway is here.
The boardwalk hugs the beach and provides smooth and pleasant passage to Mijas.
A side-trip for Churros?
If you have worked up an appetite by this time, a great place to stop for a coffee, fresh squeezed fruit juice and .... Churros (!) is the Ana Bella Churreria - which is on the other side of the highway, in a plain-looking shopping center. Don't be fooled, this place is an absolute favorite with the locals and on weekend mornings you will have to take a place in line and be patient!
From the Luna Beach restaurant, find the tunnel under the highway. This passageway emerges right in the parking lot in front of the Churreria.
This popular local place is open all winter, of course it's best to call ahead and check so as not to be disappointed.
If you are arriving at the Senda Litoral by car, this is a great place to park in order to join the beginning of the official path from Calahonda to Mijas - for those who want a shorter hike.
Like many coastal towns Mijas has a historic center (white village in the hills) and a beach resort center (more recently built). Here you are at the beach part of Mijas. Mijas Cala is a great place to have lunch, either at a beach chiringuito or one of the local family-owned tapas bars in the little resort town. El Pikoteo is the most traditional Spanish tapas place we've found there - we love to "eat local" and in these places the food and prices tend to be Spanish! There are also many English restaurants as well in this town that is highly appreciated by British visitors. On the main street you'll find chain restaurants and on the beach, typical chiringuitos. Olivia's is the chic beach club where you can just stop by to have lunch, or rent a sunbed around the pool and sip on champagne all day. Olivia's has live music at lunch every weekend. The family run Deseo pastry and ice cream shop has a lovely sunny terrace on the main beach square in front of the port, perfect for some tea and cake or ice cream before heading back to Elviria!
After lunch, take the bus back to Elviria or Marbella
To head back to Elviria, you can just retrace your steps, or otherwise take the bus. They pass every 30 minutes at the bus stop just off the highway - head into town on the main square and the main roundabout at the Mijas Cala highway exit. Go to the corner with the New China restaurant and the Sabadell agency. From there you can see under the highway underpass, that is where the bus stop is. Take the 220 bus in direction of Marbella (cost 1,20 per person, try to have change), and get off at the Pinogolf or the Elviria stop, where you can walk over the highway overpass and head straight home for a nice siesta on the terrace, if you are staying with us!
Enjoy this hike as part of your fabulous weekend in one of our sensational Marbella beach apartments - click here to instant book!