Christmas on Costa del Sol
Celebrating Christmas on the Costa del Sol might not look the same to you if you are used to snow and frost. But in addition to lots of sun and pleasant temperatures, the Costa del Sol offers you fantastic lights and festive events during Christmas.
If you’re looking to do some present shopping in the run-up to Christmas there are several great markets to visit in Costa del Sol:
Marbella – the lovely enclave of La Virginia in Marbella celebrates its Christmas market in December.
La Virginia Christmas Fair is a charming and bohemian urbanization located up the hill from the Pirelli copper tower in the center. Here you will find a mixture of artisan jewellery, accessories and many other products that will get you in the right Christmas mood.
In the main square in Puerto Banús you will find arts and crafts stalls, food and a skating rink during the Christmas period.
Malaga – There are several markets to be found in the area but one of the biggest markets there is in Muelle Uno, selling handicrafts, gifts, clothes and accessories.
If you prefer to shop at big department stores, you’ll find two of the most popular places here:
El Corte Inglés – department store in Puerto Banús and
La Cañada shopping mall – on the outskirts of Marbella town.
Here you can combine Christmas shopping for the whole family with doing all your grocery shopping in one place.
If you’re on the hunt for a real Christmas tree, the garden centre Agrojardin in Estepona is your top spot, where you can embrace that authentic pine scent. On the other hand, if you’d rather go the artificial route, you’ll find options at Leroy Merlin, Al Campo, Carrefour, and Corte Ingles.
When it comes to Christmas decorations and lights, you can’t go wrong with Casa Shops, Corte Ingles, Leroy Merlin and Al Campo as your go-to spots. They’ve got all the festive decor you need to make your space merry and bright.
The city of Malaga will provide you with one of the best Christmas light displays in Europe.
Earlier than in previous years, the official switch on of the Christmas lights will take place on Friday the 24th November.
Three times every evening, from 24th of November to 6th of January (except the 24th and 31st of December), Calle Larios gets a design that runs the length of the entire street and offers a light and sound show. But it’s not just Calle Larios that is filled with light and Christmas spirit, throughout the city of Malaga you will discover illuminated streets spreading warmth and joy.
Marbella’s Christmas lights may not compare to those in Malaga, but they certainly add to the festive atmosphere along the streets.
The ones in the Old Town are particularly beautiful.
Don’t miss the giant Christmas tree on Avenida del Mar.
Every year Santa arrives at the Marbella Port by boat and parades around the town on the evening of the 25th.
Every Saturday in December leading up to Christmas the kids can visit Santa and give their wish lists at the events Breakfast with Santa at La Sala, in Nueva Andalucia. Get more information and tickets here.
Three Kings Parade
The most exciting night of the year for the children (and adults!) falls the same day in Marbella and the rest of the cities in Spain and takes place on the evening of 5 January. It’s when the Three Kings parade go through all Costa del Sol resorts. The largest take place in Malaga and Marbella, but even the smallest villages celebrate their arrival.
It is a popular family event worth attending as the Kings cross town on big chariots and throw candies to all children near-by.
The holiday celebrates the visit of the Three Kings to worship and bring gifts to the new-born Jesus Christ. In Spain, it has traditionally become the most important day that culminates the Christmas holidays.
The Three Kings are celebrated pretty much like Christmas Santa Claus. Children write a letter to the Kings asking for their desired toys. Many cities set up locations where the kids can deposit their letter to the “Royal Mailman”.
On the night of January 5th to 6th, the children clean their shoes and leave them out with a little snack for the Kings and their camels. During the night, the Kings bring them presents if they have been good during the year or a piece of coal.
On January 6th, people eat “el Róscon de Reyes“, a sweet bread with a small surprise (Jesus or other figurine) in its dough. The person who “eats” the surprise becomes King for the day.
Depending on the calendar, January 7th often marks the day back to school. Because the children have had little time to enjoy their toys, many Spanish families have started also celebrating the December 25th holiday, splitting presents between the two days. Perks of living in Marbella.
Read more about it here.