La Cala de Mijas is a small beach town on the Costa del Sol. Accessible via the coastal highway, the town lies between the popular resorts of Marbella and Fuengirola. However, this is a smaller, quieter and more charming place – a traditional Spanish vacation destination with much to offer.

La Cala, as it is known for short, was originally a fishing village, but has grown over the last few years. While the original village still exists, the town has spread inland, adding the usual luxury hotels, golf courses and vacation apartments, so typical of the modern Costa del Sol.

However, for the purpose of this article, we will stay in the village itself, nestled alongside the clean, almost endless beaches.

Typical Andalusian fishing village

La Cala was first named La Cala del Moral (known as the Bay of Mulberries in English) and there are still a number of old mulberry trees dotted around the town. However in the 1970s it became La Cala de Mijas, and is associated with the quaint Andalusian white village of Mijas Pueblo located further inland.

While these days it is a popular tourist destination, La Cala remains a quieter option.

The narrow, one-way streets are lined with beautiful plants, maintained by the town hall on a regular basis. Visitors marvel at the orange trees, heavy with fruit and lining some of the streets. There is a limited range of stores, including a bakery, fish shop, clothing outlets and hairdressing salons.

However, there is a good range of all the top Spanish and foreign supermarkets in town, including Mercadona, Supersol, Aldi and Lidl.

Smokers will appreciate the one and only “estanco” in town, which is the only shop licensed to sell tobacco products. There are a couple of stores selling the latest European newspapers, a souvenir store and various banks offer 24-hour ATMs. There are also a couple of Internet cafes in La Cala, for those who want to relax with a coffee, while catching up on their browsing.

Diners are spoiled for choice, with a range of typical Spanish cuisine on offer at the local restaurants, while those with more international tastes can enjoy Thai, Indian, Chinese, Italian and other dishes. There are also a couple of English and Irish pubs in town, along with the ubiquitous English breakfasts.

Endless beaches and the blue Mediterranean Sea

One of the highlights of La Cala is its beaches. A Blue Flag beach is just a few steps from the center of town and is beautifully maintained all year around. In spring, summer and autumn, rent a sun bed and thatched parasol to spend a day relaxing on the sand, or enjoy a meal or cooling drink at a typical Spanishchiringuito.”

While the winter months are quieter and the chiringuitos close, beaches become even more accessible, offering long strolls in the warm sunshine along the famous boardwalk, which runs from the town center all the way to Marbella.

Another attraction is El Torreon, or “Torre Batería de La Cala del Moral,” a defensive tower built to protect the coast from enemy ships in the past. Now restored, it serves as a museum where visitors can learn more about the town’s Moorish past, or simply take in the view across the Mediterranean to Morocco from the very top.

Make a plan to visit the town on your next Spanish vacation, or enjoy a tour of La Cala by watching the video slideshow included below.