Is Marbella Worth Visiting? 2023 Guide By a Local

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Are you thinking about visiting Marbella?

Do you wonder if it’s worth it as a one-day trip destination, or perhaps for your whole holiday?

This post has all the answers you need before booking your trip!

Where is Marbella?

Marbella is located in the south of Spain, in the autonomous region of Andalusia. It belongs to the regional district of Malaga, and the closest airport to Marbella is the one in Malaga.

What Region is Marbella in?

Marbella belongs to the autonomous region of Andalusia.

puerto banus marbella andalusia spain
Puerto Banus district of Marbella

Is Marbella Worth Visiting?

It certainly is!

Marbella is very different from most of the destinations on Costa del Sol – you will notice the difference immediately. It’s much more classy, the crowd tends to be younger, it’s full of hip beach bars, and cool restaurants, and has a gorgeous coastal promenade.

That’s not all though – if you fancy something a bit more cozy and authentic, you can visit the old town and get lost in narrow cobbled streets filled with tapas bars, boutique shops and cute houses.

Another district of Marbella that’s worth a visit is Puerto Banus – an affluent part of Marbella, where wealthy yacht owners hop off to do their luxury shopping, and luxury cars are an everyday sight.

Marbella has many faces and it’s certainly a great destination, whether you’re visiting as a solo traveler, as a family or a couple.

plaza de naranjas marbella spain 33
Old town Marbella

Most Popular Experiences in Marbella

How Many Days Do I Need to Explore Marbella?

I think you can comfortably see most of what Marbella has to offer in one full day.

Anything beyond that is good for a beach holiday too, and to explore areas around Marbella.

What To Do in Marbella?

There are no tourist sights or attractions to speak of, but a few options for things to do and places to see include:

  • wander through the streets of the old town
  • visit the district of Puerto Banus
  • check the Salvador Dali artwork at Avenida del Mar
  • visit the city park Alameda
  • visit the Marina in Marbella
  • try tapas at a local restaurant
  • take a walk on the coastal promenade

READ MORE: How to Spend One Day in Marbella

Puerto Banus, Marbella - Spain
Marina in Puerto Banus

Which Airport for Marbella?

The closest airport to Marbella is Malaga. The journey from Malaga airport to Marbella takes just under an hour, around 45 minutes depending on the traffic.

How Far is Marbella from Malaga Airport?

The distance between Malaga airport and Marbella is approximately 50 kilometers.

What is Marbella Like?

Marbella has a few distinct parts, each of which feels like a different city.

There is the old town where you get to experience traditional village life, although now much more glamorous with cool boutiques, trendy bars, local restaurants, and pretty decorated streets at every corner.

Downtown Marbella is very much a tourist destination, with beach clubs and beach bars, restaurants by the promenade and lots of tourist services (including boat trips from the marina). In

Further down the Golden Mile (an affluent part of the coastline with multi-million dollar villas), you will find Puerto Banus. Home to the wealthy, and a place to spot huge yachts and luxury cars.

Marbella gets very busy and super crowded in the summer months, you can see it most at the coastal parts and in the old town.

If you want to enjoy the city in peace, try to visit in the shoulder seasons (April, May and September to November).

Plaza de los Naranjos, Marbella
Plaza de los Naranjos in Marbella

Is One Day Enough to Explore Marbella?

One day is plenty of time to explore Marbella. In one day you can see the old town, the coastal area and even wander to Puerto Banus.

Where to Eat in Marbella?

I have a few local places that I tend to return to when visiting Marbella. Check them out in the blog post linked below.

READ MORE: Foodie’s Guide: Best Restaurants in Marbella

How to Get from Malaga Airport to Marbella?

You have a few transport options: a taxi, a car, or a bus. A train connection is only available up to Fuengirola, and from there you would have to take a connecting bus which takes considerably longer.

By car: Drive via the AP-7 highway towards Marbella, the journey should take between 45 – 50 minutes depending on the traffic.

By taxi: If you need to get to Marbella from Malaga airport by taxi, it will cost around 60 euros for one way trip, for up to 4 people sharing a standard car. It’s also worth checking Uber, as they sometimes work out much cheaper even for long-distance trips.

By bus: there is a regular bus connection directly to Marbella, with the journey taking approximately 40 minutes. There are a number of buses leaving each hour. There are a number of bus connections you can use to get to Marbella: Avanza L-607 towards Marbella, Avanza L-614 towards Estepona, Avanza L-613 towards Estepona and Avanza L-606 towards La Linea. Bus tickets can be bought directly from the bus driver.

marbella spain winter costa del sol 8
Avenida del Mar, Marbella

How Hot is Marbella?

  • How hot is Marbella in January? Between 17C – 8C on average, with some rainy days and more clouds.
  • How hot is Marbella in February? Between 18C and 8C on average, also rainy with clouds around.
  • How hot is Marbella in March? Usually, temperatures don’t go as low as the previous two months and are in the range of 15C – 19C, with nights being still very cold. Less rain and more sunny days.
  • How hot is Marbella in April? April weather is a bit unpredictable and you can have a random cold spells, but temperatures are warmer around the low twenties.
  • How hot is Marbella in May? 15C to 25C with lots of sunny days, rain is rarely seen this time of year.
  • How hot is Marbella in June? Temperatures hitting 30s for the first time, average between 18C and 28C.
  • How hot is Marbella in July? One of the hottest months of the year, temperatures between 20C and 33C.
  • How hot is Marbella in August? The hottest month of the year, with temperatures between 25C and 35C.
  • How hot is Marbella in September? Cooling off with temperatures between 25C and 30C.
  • How hot is Marbella in October? Pleasant temperatures between 20C and 25C.
  • How hot is Marbella in NovemberStill relatively warm with temperatures between 18C and 25C.
  • How hot is Marbella in December? Cooling off with temperatures between 15C and 20C.

Common Misspellings For Marbella

  • Marbellaa
  • Marbells
  • Marbrlla
  • Matbella
  • Marbwlla

Popular Day Trips From Marbella

Marbella To Ronda Day Trip: Local Expert Tips [2023]

Marbella To Gibraltar Day Trip: Expert Travel Tips [2023]

Day Trip From Marbella to Alhambra (With Local Tips)

Explore More in Marbella

Your Complete Guide to Marbella Old Town

Jungle in the City: Alameda Park

Malaga Airport to Puerto Banus, Marbella: Your Complete Transport Guide

Your Guide to Plaza de los Naranjos

My First Weekend in Marbella

Local Transport Guides For Marbella

Malaga to Marbella: 2023 Best Travel Options (Guide by a Local)

Cheap Taxi From Malaga Airport To Marbella [2023]

How to Get from Fuengirola to Marbella: Detailed Transport Guide

How to get from Malaga Airport to Marbella

Malaga to Marbella Bus Connections: Detailed Guide by a Local

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Lucia is a founder and travel writer at Viva La Vita. She has been living on Costa del Sol in Southern Spain (Fuengirola) since 2020. She helps travellers plan the perfect trip to Spain thanks to her local insights, practical tips and unique insider perspective complemented by original photography.

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