Arena Beach district of Estepona

Arena Beach district of Estepona

by Sinéad Mangan-Mc Hale

Arena Beach District, 5km west of Estepona town is a location with access to one of the quietest playas (beaches) in the area. Although a narrow and part pebble beach, it is a short walk to the wider beaches of  Playa Arroyo Vaquero. The district offers breath-taking views from all sides.

Looking out over the Mediterranean Sea, visitors can enjoy views of the Rock of Gibraltar and on a clear day, the silhouette of North Africa.    Looking inwards, Arena Beach District enjoys views of the Los Reales de Sierra Bermeja. The Sierra Bermeja is beautiful at the best of times, but at sunset, the view of the red-hued mountain is worth seeing.  

Prior to the construction of Arena Beach, the area was known as Garcela Hills.  Arena Beach urbanizacion (housing complex) is built on both sea-front and mountain side and connected by a pedestrian overbridge. The urbanizacion was constructed in a series of phases in the mid-80s.

Phase one comprises 16 compact 200m2 seafront chalets with gardens – with access to the beaches and to the Malaga Senda Litoral (coastal path) which leads from Arena Beach into Estepona Town and beyond and in the other direction towards Sabinillas. There is also a four-storey apartment block, Edificio Cala Real, where most of the 80-100m2 apartments have sea views. Phase two of the seafront development, completed in 2002, also has easy access to the beaches and the coastal path.

The mountain side was mainly reserved for independent villas and plots for development by individual owners. In 2001, low-level apartment blocks were built behind the small commercial centre that faces the road.

This small commercial centre is at street level with car parking facilities, and a few of the original businesses that started there in 1987 are still operating. One of the well-known businesses is that of Galeria 151, an art gallery and picture framing shop. There is also a restaurant and a real estate office.

While Arena Beach urbanizaciones are residential areas, there are properties available for short and long rent through local Agentes Inmobiliarios (real estate agents) and Airbnb, enabling visitors to enjoy the beauty of the area within a settled community.

The area also boasts a beachfront five-star hotel, the Elba Estepona Gran Hotel & Thalasso Spa.

Estepona Beaches to the west are Playa Arroyo Vaquero, Playa Bahia Dorada, Playa del Cristo, and the Costa Natura Beach. Most of these beaches are accessible by pedestrians or cyclists along the Malaga Senda Litoral (coastal path), or if travelling by car, there are parking facilities, though these fill up quickly during the summer.

One of the significant advantages of the Arena Beach District is that it is on the outskirts of Estepona Town, away from the hustle and bustle of a busy town. Still, its proximity to the centre makes it very convenient to the many restaurants, shops, and bars in the town. Being close to the A-7 coast road the town is easily accessible by car, taxi, and public transport. However, with many European and Spanish supermarkets offering an international and local array of foods close by, as well as small restaurants and bars, visitors to Arena Beach District can be comfortable in knowing they are in a well-provided area.

For those who want to enjoy more of the sights of Andalucía, the district is built alongside the main coastal road, the A-7, so visitors can easily access destinations on either side of Estepona, such as Sotogrande, Marbella, and Malaga and well as traveling towards Ronda and Seville or exploring the White Villages in the mountains.

For golf enthusiasts there are several golf courses set amongst the natural landscape just kilometres away from Arena Beach, such as Estepona Golf, Valle Romano, and Azata Golf. These courses are both challenging and enjoyable for all levels of golf players and offer without question, some of the most spectacular views across the Mediterranean and mountains from almost every tee.

In addition to Estepona taxis, there are several firms offering car or limousine private transfers to and from the airport and the surrounding areas. The Bolt and Uber Apps also work within the area. The Estepona - La Linea (for Gibraltar) and Local L3 microbus serves Arena Beach. The bus stop is conveniently located to allow for users to walk home from the stop, an advantage over other areas.