La Cala de Mijas translates into ‘The Cove of Mijas’ was once an old fishing village known as one of the few parts of the coast relatively untainted by mass tourism. La Cala has now grown enough to offer all the necessary amenities for a good quality of life.
These include the town’s numerous supermarkets, bars, restaurants, a post office, hotels, schools, etc.
La Cala de Mijas is located a few minutes from the AP-7 motorway and the national free A7 motorway and is only 25 minutes from Málaga international airport. Just around the corner, the other major urbanisation is Riviera del Sol situated on the coast of Mijas municipality, midway between Marbella and Fuengirola.
Its mixed residential and holiday area has all the amenities required for living comfortably under the sun, has its own tennis club, golf courses, golf school, banks, health centre and supermarkets.
This area is full of British-run businesses, international restaurants, and residential communities that attract many foreign people.
Riviera’s main bus stops are on either side of the A7 (N340) main road, travelling in both the Marbella or Fuengirola directions. The bus usually comes every half an hour and despite being a little adventurous, they are perfectly safe. The main taxi rank is situated at the entrance to Riviera del Sol.
The public Portillo bus stops at several points in La Cala, the main one being next to the Mijas Town Hall. A taxi from Málaga’s international airport will cost roughly €35, but you should always ask the exact price before riding in the cab as they may vary!
WHAT TO DO
La Cala’s most cherished historical monument is the watchtower. It is two stories high and has a roof terrace. Used in the 12th century as a watchtower to defend the Spanish coast, it is now a museum and tourist information centre. After a long day on the beach, nights out in this area usually consist of long dinners at one of La Cala’s or Riviera’s restaurants. There is a wide range of dining in this area including Chinese, Thai, Italian and of course typical Spanish cuisine. Many tourists and residents then proceed to a local bar or pub to have an after dinner drink or two. For a more lively nightlife experience, head for Benalmádena Port, Torremolinos or to glitzy Puerto Banús.
AT THE BEACH
The beaches in this area are spectacular. So much so that La Cala’s 2,000 meters of gold sand and warm water won the Blue Flag Award in 2002. Stalls offering jet skis or banana boat rides, as well as other water activities, can be found all along the beach. Public showers and toilet facilities are also installed and in good condition. Parasols and sun beds are available for rent at a decent price. This coastal town has a lovely promenade in which bars and restaurants can be found in abundance from elegant dining at MIjas Playa Restaurant to chiringuitos.
Riviera has its own beach which is usually calm and not too crowded. There is also the popular venue of Max Beach, offering an extensive range of beachfront cuisine and the classy El Oceano Beach Hotel and Spa on the beach in front of Miraflores, offering romantic seafront dining and elegant board walk lunches.
La Cala is full of little boutiques, and the street market can be found on a designated plot of wasteland every Wednesday and Saturday. However, to access large shopping centers, a little driving is necessary.
Riviera Plaza is a commercial centre visited by both residents and tourists. The centre opened in 2005, has been expanding and is now open 6 days a week. This small complex offers a bureau of change, banks, a hairdresser, ironmongers, souvenir shops, cafés, as well as clothing stores.
Miraflores Golf Club is one of the most popular in the area. Located just inland from Mijas Costa, this breathtaking course coils between hills and valleys. Golfers can enjoy views of nearby mountains and the Mediterranean Sea. If you fancy just practicing your swing then head to Miraflores’ driving range.
The Aztec Sports Complex is located in the heart of Riviera del Sol. This centre has a swimming pool, 7 tennis courts, badminton courts, mini golf, a gymnasium, and is a Wi-Fi hotspot. The Aztec Complex is open to both residents and visitors.
The Miraflores Lawn Bowls Club is also very close to the Riviera area and is popular with residents and tourists. It provides two all weather greens and a club house. After a game of bowls don’t forget to stop by the bar for a snack or chilled beer.
There are plenty of good quality sports facilities in and around La Cala de Mijas too. It has its own golf courses such as La Cala Golf Resort, Spain’s largest golf complex with three 18-hole courses and El Chaparral Golf. These courses allow non-members to come and enjoy a round of golf, with tuition and equipment rental available. This town also has a bowls club, tennis facilities, fitness centres and horse riding. The Hipodromo del Costa del Sol is on the outskirts of La Cala. This recently constructed Hippodrome (race course) is a great place to enjoy something different. Naturally, being a coastal town La Cala also offers facilities to practice any water sport you can think of!