Location of Estepona
|• Mayor||José María García Urbano|
|• Total||137 km2 (53 sq mi)|
|• Land||137 km2 (53 sq mi)|
|• Water||0.00 km2 (0.00 sq mi)|
|• Density||399/km2 (1,030/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
Estepona is a town and municipality in the comarca of the Costa del Sol, southern Spain. It is located in the province of Málaga, part of the autonomous community of Andalusia. Its district covers an area of 137 square kilometers in a fertile valley crossed by small streams and a mountainous areas dominated by the Sierra Bermeja, which reaches an elevation of 1,449 m at the peak of Los Reales.
Estepona is renowned for its beaches, which stretch along some 21 km of coastline. It is a popular resort and holiday destination.
Due to its natural environment, surrounded by the sea and the mountains, Estepona has a micro-climate with over 325 days of sunshine per year.
Estepona is a popular year-round holiday destination; it has two EC Blue Flag beaches, a modern sports marina with many tapas bars and restaurants and a white-walled town centre with shops and picturesque squares. Estepona was chosen by the Walt Disney organisation in the early 1990s as the original site for the Eurodisney project before Paris, France, which was later awarded the installation.
Some foundations and ceramics found in the town show the area was occupied at the time of the Romans. In 1342, the Battle of Estepona took place in the Bay of Estepona between the fleet of the Kingdom of Aragon and that of the Marinid Dynasty. The name 'Estepona' probably comes from the Moorish Astabbuna. Henry IV of Castile captured the town from the Moors in 1457, and a church was built on the site of the previous mosque. In 1729 Estepona was granted its own charter by Philip V of Spain.
Gibraltar Airport is the nearest international airport serving Estepona. It is 45 km away and has direct flights to Manchester, London Gatwick and London Luton. Málaga Airport is the next nearest international airport serving Estepona and is located approximately 80 km away. Estepona is served by the A7 Autovía which runs along the Costa del Sol. There is also a toll road, referred to as the AP7 Autopista, which provides faster travel along the route between Málaga and Estepona by-passing many of the urban areas along the route, such as Marbella. There are two toll stations en route and toll charges vary throughout the year. Normally you can travel from Málaga to Estepona for less than 10 euros in toll charges for a normal size car.
Estepona Port and Marina is a working fishing port offering restaurants and bars. The port features daily auctions for a wide variety of seafood. The port is also the location of the Estepona street market - a collection of stalls selling numerous textile and leather goods mostly. The market is usually in Estepona on Sundays but it travels around the Málaga municipality to areas like Puerto Banús, Marbella, Casares, Torremolinos, Fuengirola and more.
Places of interest
Puerto Banús is an upscale community about 30 minutes drive away from Estepona Port with a large number of designer stores.
Selwo Safari Park is styled after African safari parks and houses 2000 animals in semi-wild conditions. It is a 20 minute drive from Estepona Port on the public transport route.
Palacio de Exposiciones y Congresos de Estepona is the exhibition and congress centre of Estepona, located opposite the supermarket on the eastern edge of Estepona - closest to Marbella. This centre is home to nearly all of Estepona's organised events including product presentations, fairs, commercial exhibitions, concerts and more.
"Playa del Cristo", or Christ Beach, is five minutes west of Estepona Port. It is a small cove with lifeguards on station and also two "chiringuitos" or beach front bar/restaurants. La Rada Beach is 2 minutes east of Estepona Marina and at over 1.5 km in length runs from the marina past Estepona's old town. There is also a popular naturist/nudist beach of Costa Natura to the west of Estepona, which was the first official naturist site in Spain.
Restaurants & eating out
Estepona is not known for the "night club" culture found in some areas on the Costa del Sol, but does have a wide variety of bar and restaurants. Dining choices emphasise locally-caught seafood, and range from local Spanish cuisine to other Mediterranean cuisines, including Italian and French. Many restaurants have terraces allowing diners to eat al fresco (outside) during the late evening.
Most restaurants are located near the seafront, either along the main promenade fronting the sea or along Calle Real. There are a number of small plazas or squares next to Calle Real, on which numerous restaurants can be found.
Estepona's small local shops offer locally made produce and goods. In the main town centre there are a number of boutiques offering contemporary international clothing brands and other goods. There is also a busy Wednesday market featuring clothing as well as food and vegetables. Estepona port holds a Sunday market for more of the "touristy" type of goods.
The main food stores in Estepona are the hipermercado complex at the edge of the town, a smaller express store in the middle of the town and a number of supermarkets.
Estepona port has two supermarkets providing fresh produce, meat and seafood as well as a selection of convenience style foods. Fresh meat, fish and vegetables may also be purchased at the old, but recently renewed, indoor market in the centre of town.
There are no large shopping complexes in Estepona. The nearest large department stores are the complex just off the north ringroad of Marbella and the department stores in Puerto Banús, just before Marbella. Both can be accessed by traveling east from Estepona towards Málaga on the A7.
In the old town there are a range of small-to-medium-sized shops, typical of a Spanish town of this size.
There are many golf courses around Estepona including:
- Estepona Golf
- Valle Romano Golf Club
- La Duquesa Golf & Country Club
- La Resina Golf & Country Club
- El Paraíso Golf Club
- Finca Cortesin - Home of the VOLVO World Match Play Championship 2009, 2010 & 2012
- Dona Julia Resort
- The Town Clock Tower.
- The San Luis Castle.
- The Church of Los Remedios.
- The Original Bullring.
- San Isidro Labrador, agricultural religious celebrations on the 15th of May.
- Ferias y Fiestas mayores, annual town festival at the beginning/start of July.
- Quema de los bigotes de San Juan, traditional night celebration of the 23 June.
- Virgen del Carmen, fishermen religious celebrations on the 16th of July.
- Virgen de los Remedios, religious celebrations on the 15th of August.
- "Estepona - History". andalucia.com. Retrieved 2009-11-15.