The 9 Benalmadenas – all about the neighborhoods of Benalmadena

March 30, 2024

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena – If you are just starting to fall in love with Benalmadena, knowing each of its neighborhoods is convenient, particularly if you are thinking about moving to the town in the next months or years. If you are already in love, but far, I hope this post will help you feel a bit closer. I am writing this because when I was first choosing where to live in the Costa del Sol, there was only so much I could learn from Google, and so much more I wanted to know – such as what each neighborhood of Benalmadena was like. So come closer and let’s see each one while we travel around the town!

Benalmadena is such a diverse place that it takes a while to know it all! Benalmadena is full of surprises, with so much to do and to see, and so many different faces. For administrative purposes, the city is subdivided in 3 districts, as shown below in the artistic map from the Town Hall, (on the left). The 1st district is Benalmadena Pueblo, the second is Arroyo de la Miel, and the third, Benalmadena Costa. These correspond to the 3 areas Turismo Benalmadena refers to when they write about “the 3 Benalmadenas“.

But that division is not enough to explain Benalmadena. I’d prefer to have an official map with more subdivisions, but I didn’t find one. Therefore, besides the Town Hall map, I’m using Idealista’s map (the one on the right) as a reference, just like I did for the Neighborhoods of Torremolinos. Despite it being a bit schematic, it has the advantage that, for those who are using Idealista to find a place to live in Benalmadena, the areas described here match the ones there.

I used the city’s map, Idealista’s and Google maps as references to make my own map, the one you see below. I also used rivers as borders between the cities and between Distrito 1 (Benalmadena Pueblo) and the other 2. In any case, some divisions between areas may not be 100% precise; one (or a few!) roads above or below, let’s say. If you can improve the map, please let me know!

Benalmadena is safe and pretty everywhere, and also a mix – you can find fabulous penthouses and small studios in every area. Still, the different parts of the city do have their special flavor. Let’s take a closer look to each location! 😉

1 Benalmadena Pueblo

The three areas that make up District 1 – Benalmadena Pueblo – are very different from each other. Apart from their borders, they barely share anything in common, particularly Benalmadena Pueblo itself and the other two. Let’s see them:

1a – Benalmadena Pueblo

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena Benalmadena Pueblo - calle real
Calle Real, the most photographed street in Benalmadena Pueblo.

‘Just’ a cute, white-washed village with plant pots on the walls and jaw dropping views. One of the top places to visit in Benalmadena, a fantastic place to walk around, relax, recharge, take pictures, get lost and get found. Luxurious in its simplicity, gorgeous pride and joy of Benalmadena, yet missed by many a tourist that is staying in Puerto Marina and doesn’t know how to get here.

On this matter, there are 4 bus lines that connect both areas (and all of them also stop in Arroyo de la Miel): 112, 116, 121 and 126. Combined, they do 35 trips a day (on weekdays; on weekends, less), and each trip takes a bit less than half an hour. You can check the timetables for those lines here to plan a great trip; check also tips to improve your travel game and the discount bus card. 😉 If you prefer to go by taxi, which is a great idea and won’t cost much (some 10 to 15 euros, I think) check our taxi post! Wow, now you are a pro. Let’s get back to the Pueblo.

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena
Tiles representing Benalmadena in the 1960’s. In 1970, the town was awarded 1st prize in urban embellishment.
Note the Church on top of the hill; it is Benalmadena Pueblo’s Church.

Parts of today’s Benalmadena have been occupied since the neolithic; then came the Romans, the Muslims and finally, the Spanish Catholic Kings as controllers of the area. While the Romans did build production-oriented villas in Benalmadena, the Muslims were the first to build a settlement in the area, around the XI century, with a walled village situated on a strategic point from where they could watch approaches from the sea. This little village was later transformed into what today is Benalmadena Pueblo. Remnants of that wall (muro in Spanish) can still be seen (below, right next to the sea)!

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena
Benalmadena Pueblo has a dreamy / fairy tale atmosphere.
On the left, a bit of the wall; uphill, part of the jardines del Muro and of the Church of Santo Domingo. On the right, the typical white houses with colorful ceramic flowers. Photo by Mama Malaga.

The most famous stretch of Benalmadena Pueblo goes from Calle Real to Plaza de España – where you find the Niña de Benalmadena sculpture, symbol of the town – then up the Calle de Santo Domingo until the Church (Iglesia de Santo Domingo de Guzmán) and its surroundings, known as Jardines del Muro, with ample views of the coast. In this area of the Pueblo there are always events during the municipal celebrations, such as the Carnival, Holy Week, Corpus Christi or the Feria de Benalmadena Pueblo, Arabian Bazar, Halloween and Christmas. A few pictures of this region:

But there is so much more to see in Benalmadena pueblo! Walking around the beautiful narrow streets, you can find little squares, arches, cozy restaurants, and shops in a pulsating but preserved Andalusian white village full of flowers and greens.

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena Benalmadena Pueblo
Plaza del Rocio, Benalmadena Pueblo

Further ahead, Benalmadena Pueblo houses three must-see attractions: Butterfly Park, the Enlightenment Stupa and the Castillo de Colomares (shown below).

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena

I find Benalmadena Pueblo so interesting that I wrote a post only about it – here. And then I wrote one more, just for the Butterfly Park and Stupa area! You will find plenty more about Benalmadena Pueblo’s enchantments in those two. Now let’s go to our next neighborhood of Benalmadena!

1b – Torremuelle

Torremuelle is a nice and surprisingly quiet neighborhood of Benalmadena. It has beautiful houses and a hilly profile; I imagine those houses have amazing views. It is home to Benalmadena’s British College, a private, British school which, despite the name, offers education from pre-nursery to the end of high school (A level).

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena
Above and below, two bits of Torremuelle.
Neighborhoods of Benalmadena

It also has Torremuelle, the tower that names this area, and rocky beaches through most of its extension. Closer to the shore there are apartments, and there is plenty of commerce throughout the area. I’ve written about this region in the post about Train Stations of Benalmadena, as Torremuelle is home to one of the only two train station in the town. If you are interested in the area, it is very much worth checking there!

Below: ‘the’ Torremuelle, a rocky beach and the border between Fuengirola and Benalmadena.

Torremuelle seems to me like a cozy and very nice residential area, but not much of a touristic spot. It offers beautiful views and tranquility, but it doesn’t have as many attractions nor hosts events like other parts of the city, such as Benalmadena Pueblo and Arroyo. If you are looking to move to Benalmadena but prefer to be away from the tourist areas, Torremuelle may well be it.

In terms of public transportation, it is a bit limited: Torremuelle has one train station and one main bus line – 120 -, that runs through the N-340 (the large avenue by the sea, that goes changing name along the coast. Here, it is called Avenida del Sol; In Torrequebrada, it gets renamed to Avenida Antonio Machado, and in Torremolinos, Avenida Carlota Alessandri.) Having a car is probably a good idea while living in this area.

Besides its namesake tower, Torremuelle has two other notable spots: the mirador de Columpio (viewpoint swing) and the Rotonda de los Elefantes (Elephant’s roundabout). Both names are self-explanatory, and both places are near line 120 stops (phew, yes!)

The swing is attached to the floor, so it’s safe. 🙂 The Elephant’s roundabout marks the entrance to the Holiday World Beach Club (which sells day passes and, therefore, can be used as an aquapark) and to the Holiday World hotels.

1c – El Higuerón /La Capellania

Urbanización. If you have been looking for houses, you probably have come across this word in your research, as I often did when I was looking. But what is it? Well, it translates as vaguely as ‘urbanization’, but it actually means something akin to an USA suburb; a residential area away from the center, destined for isolated homes. Isolated meaning independent, detached houses, not-townhouses; but in El Higuerón / La Capellania area, I think it means isolated indeed…

Don’t get me wrong, I’d love nothing more than a villa in the area. And there are some amazing villas!! Imagine, large indoor spaces (which is very rare in Spain), incredible Mediterranean Sea views and a garden!! It’s all there in El Higuerón / La Capellania, at a price. Much of that price is monetary, but the consequences of opting to live in an isolated home in a hilly area such as Benalmadena are also considerable.

First of all, there is only one (small) commercial area in El Higuerón / La Capellania, very close to the A7, between the (one) gas station and the (one) bus stop. There is also no train available, and very little sidewalks. Car is, therefore, mandatory, but a helicopter would not be a bad idea, as the streets are curvy, steep and narrow. Parking a helicopter would be difficult, but perhaps not as difficult as finding a parking spot anywhere in Benalmadena (other than in the supermarkets!)…

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena
Oh, well, on second thoughts, leaving home is totally overrated and so 2019; plus, Mercadona delivers…
House in El Higuerón / La Capellania for sale on Idealista for € 6.4 M.

Though independent houses are the norm in El Higuerón / La Capellania, there are some townhomes and even apartment buildings as well, as shown below. As the city grows, large areas tend to be subdivided and we already see that happening in this region – as of this writing, there are several construction cranes in this area, probably building new apartments. Despite that, given the area is both hilly and cut by creeks, much of the region will, most likely, remain untamed and preserved (and hard to reach by bus).

2 Arroyo de la Miel

The second District of Benalmadena is Arroyo de la Miel. It is, of course, part of Benalmadena, but some people seem a bit confused about it, probably because the two other districts have “Benalmadena” in their names, but Arroyo doesn’t. With that point clarified, let’s get to it:

2a – Arroyo de la Miel

Arroyo de la Miel is the town’s center. Well, kinda. Some people refer to Benalmadena Pueblo as the center, because it probably was so in the past; others refer to Arroyo, which, in my opinion, is the de facto center – it is the place with more commerce, with the main avenue, with the main train stop… but if you read Benalmadena centro / center somewhere, it is worth clarifying what center they mean.

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena
Plaza de la Iglesia (Church Square), Arroyo de la Miel. Benalmadena-Arroyo train station is in the back; the church is in the picture below!
Neighborhoods of Benalmadena

Arroyo is a residential and commercial neighborhood, quite Spanish and traditional looking. It is the part of the city with better public transport connections, due to both the train station and the bus stop Arroyo de la Miel, where most buses going to Benalmadena Pueblo, Benalmadena Costa and Mijas Pueblo, stop. This area is vibrant and hosts several of the events in town, all year long. You can check a few around the blog: a night of Flamenco and food trucks, the fun Romeria de San Juan and Christmas, to name a few.

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena
And the Carnival 2024, as well!

It is where you can find both Tivoli (closed since the pandemic; but we still have hope it will make a triumphal come back) and the cable car departure point are, as well as where the steet market happens every Friday.

Above: Tivoli to the right and the entrance to the cable car to the left.

I have shown a bit of Arroyo – the train station, the Arroyo de la Miel bus stop, Plaza de la Mesquita, Avenida de la Constitución, Avenida Blas Infante, Plaza de la Tribuna and Paseo de Generalife – in the Train stations of Benalmadena, which is a good read if you are interested in the area; to avoid being repetitive, I’ll show here a few interesting parts of Arroyo that didn’t make it into that post, starting with some inner streets beyond the main ones.

The most traditional part of Arroyo has businesses and houses or small buildings side by side, forming large blocks. I find this part of the town a very interesting area for walks, as I constantly discover new things to see; the variety of tiles alone would already be enough to keep me entertained but turns out that there is much more. A few of my finds below:

In terms of foodie places, let me single out these two in the area: Marcelina & Garcia, a new Italian restaurant with great atmosphere, food and service (Calle San Juan, 1) and Silva Cordero Minimarket (Avenida Vicente Aleixandre, 11), with Spanish specialties – cute and famous for their cheese plates; great place to get some Spanish flavors to take back home. 😉 Enjoy!

But that is far from all Arroyo has. There are large residential buildings in the area too, mostly – but not only – below Avenida de la Costitución (towards the sea). Here are some:

There is also a small oasis of green in Arroyo. It is called Parque Benalmadena, and borders Avenida Mare Nostrum. It is a thin, long, park, quite pleasant; worth checking if you are nearby (you can get there on the 103 line, Béjar stop). You can often see ducks and sometimes even turtles there. On that note: please don’t feed bread to the ducks. Bread gives them no nutrition, just makes them fat; favor rice (even raw!), birdseed, chopped lettuce or sliced grapes. (I learnt this from Kiddo, which asked me to include the info in the blog. And then I checked online; he is right.) We go there sometimes, with rice!

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena
Benalmadena Park along Avenida Mare Nostrum.

2b – Montealto

Montealto is a beautiful residential area with houses (mostly) and apartment buildings. It has commerce, notably along the Avenida del Tivoli, and schools, too, besides the main hospitals of Benalmadena – the public Hospital Benalmadena (good doctors, good equipment, super long waiting times) and the private Vithas – Xanit complex (I never used; probably the same doctors as the public hospital; I’ve heard they also have good equipment and short-to-no waiting times). Around the hospital area, there are several residential communities oriented to the elderly.

Montealto is also home to the only Brazilian restaurant (as far as I know) in Benalmadena, the cozy Miss Kroquetas. The owner, Antonia, is super nice, and so is her staff, which is a mix of Brazilian and Spanish people. Kiddo likes going there because of Guaraná (a Brazilian soda); Hubby loves it because of the picanha (a Brazilian cut of meat), and I love everything that goes around the picanha – black beans, farofa (toasted and powdered cassava), kale, Brazilian vinaigrette, rice, all super well made. If you ever wondered what Brazilian food is, this is the place to discover it.

2c – Santangelo

Santangelo is the newest part of Benalmadena. It is the only part of Benalmadena built beyond the A7 and remains, to some extent, still a construction site, even though plenty of buildings are already completed, housing hundreds of families. It is the area you see on your right when coming to Benalmadena from Malaga via the A7.

My thoughts about the area are a bit mixed; when I started looking for places to live in Benalmadena – years ago, when moving was a distant dream – Santangelo seemed to be a promising place, with newly built and affordable housing, which was understandable due to the considerable distance from it to anywhere else in Benalmadena, and to the ongoing construction of the area.

Nowadays, though, I think the prices in Santangelo are close to the prices in Arroyo, even though the construction stage is far from over and the much smaller offer of anything – commerce, entertainment schools or transport. This far far away land is still served by only one bus line (124, that runs once every 90 minutes)! I think the price increase doesn’t make much sense. The views from Santangelo, though, are as impressive as the distance to the beach. Keep in mind, though, that a new building can still come up and block the spectacular views.

3 Benalmadena Costa

The third district of Benalmadena – Benalmadena Costa – is a tourist’s paradise. It is the area of Benalmadena with more hotels, the best beaches, the marina, the main golf club of the town, the casino and, of course, the beautiful la Paloma Park. It is certainly the summer destination of the town. For many visitors, Benalmadena Costa is synonym with Benalmadena; they simply don’t get to know the previous two districts, or at least not very well. That is not their fault, though; the public transportation offer between parts of Benalmadena Costa and the other two areas is, in my opinion, limited.

3a – Puerto Marina

Puerto Marina, also known as Solymar, revolves around the Puerto de Benalmadena, a beautiful harbor full of entertainment. The area of the harbor has a shopping center, a small amusement park, several restaurants and cafes, many places to walk around, a little train that stays in the harbor area and even a Ferris wheel. Not surprisingly, Benalmadena’s marina has won the prize for best marina in the world twice.

There are also some apartments in the harbor area – mostly vacation rentals, I suspect – and life. Most days there are people walking around the marina and having fun.

The marina has been hosting events frequently – March and April 2024 have plenty! – bringing even more action to this already lively area. I just wish the 103 line would arrive near here…

The marina sits right by the border with Torremolinos, and connects to the promenades of both towns. Below, the border between Torremolinos and Benalmadena: on the left side of the image, the pavement from Torremolinos promenade; on the right side, buildings in Benalmadena’s marina. Between them, Calle La Fragata! The next picture shows the other extreme of the harbor area, where the promenade of Benalmadena starts, and the third shows a bit of the Playa de Malapesquera, viewed from the Marina.

Beyond the Marina area, there are several hotels and then residential buildings and houses. Between the Marina and Torremolinos there is the Hotel MAC Puerto Marina; between Malapesquera beach and the main road of the area – Av. Antonio Machado, there are the hotels Triton (whose renovation ended in June 2024), Riviera and Benalmadena Beach, besides many vacation rentals.

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena
And among the hotels, Plaza Olé, near the promenade of Benalmadena.

The promenade along Playa de Malapesquera is beautiful, large, with decorations on the floor and chiringuitos on the side as the marina approaches. The whole promenade of Benalmadena, with the beach views and palm trees, is a favorite attraction in the town.

Other notable places in the area are the (in)famous plaza Solymar, also known as plaza 24 horas – loved and hated, depends on who you ask – with pubs and nightclubs (see below) and the Avenida de la Telefonica, also known as Cardiac Hill, leading to hotel Bali. By the nickname of this street, you can tell it is steep; the fact that it is in English tells you that it is a name given by tourists. It climbs 18 meters in about 200m of horizontal distance, so close to a 10% inclination. Quite tough! Both places below:

Beyond Avenida Antonio Machado, the area has mostly houses, with commerce along the main roads.

3b – Parque de la Paloma

This area has a lot of interesting things for us to show. Let’s start with the Park that gives its name to the area: La Paloma, a beautiful, large and green leisure area. It is so beautiful. As one walks around, new areas become visible; there are places with a lot of shade from the trees and wide sunny areas, two playgrounds, a pond and even a beautiful succulent’s garden. There are bunnies jumping around, areas where to exercise and places to eat. It is a must-visit place, with or without kids; but if you are coming with Kids, check this post too, Benalmadena for kids! – with more pictures of the park. 😉

Out of La Paloma, on one side we have the Recinto Ferial, where many of the events of the Feria de Benalmadena happen every year, in the end of June; on the other end, towards the sea, you’ll find one of Benalmadena’s iconic roundabouts: Los Molinillos. The most special thing about this roundabout is that, when there is sun and a bit of wind, all the colorful wind vanes spin and shine. It sits in a lower part of the Avenida Antonio Machado, so those coming from the upper part (from the Puerto Marina area) can see it shinning from a distance. Special, right?

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena

See the wooden slat building to the left of los Molinillos? It is the Centro de la Historia de Benalmadena (Benalmadena’s History Center), which has artefacts dating back to the Roman times. The Center is located where Benalroma (one of the two Roman villages that existed in the area which today is Benalmadena) used to be. I wrote a post about this and other cultural places in Benalmadena which you may find interesting. 😉

Right after the roundabout we reach the Paseo Marítimo (promenade), which in this area has two levels. One visible from the road and another one lower, right by the sand. This lower one continues all the way to the marina.

In the lower part of the Paseo, you’ll find lots of places to eat, snack or have a good drink. My favorite is the Dizzy Donkey, which has great cocktails, food and view in Las Gaviotas (shown below, both at day and at night). Palm 5, also in Las Gaviotas, is super famous too; going there is on my bucket list.

And since we are talking about popular places that I’ve not been to (yet), let me include here Bonaza and Ibenza squares, which are also in the Parque de La Paloma area and are quite popular places among tourists looking for nightlife and pubs. (Why I have not been yet, you may ask; it’s because I have a 9 years-old kid, so my nightlife is quite limited!!)

See the Church? well, cross Av. de Bonanza and you get to Ibensa Square; cross Calle San Silvestre and you get to Bonaza square.

Back in the Paseo, you’ll find another postcard of Benalmadena: Bil-Bil Castle. Originally built to be a house, Bil-Bil is, nowadays, a tourist information center and a venue that hosts cultural events such as painting exhibitions or traditional dance shows. It is also adorable.

The hotels in this area are spread along Avenida Antonio Machado, very close to the promenade. Some of them are Benalbeach, Las arenas, Sahara Sunset and MedPlaya.

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena
And we have quite a good beach here!

Closing the area, there is the beautiful Avenida de la Palmeras, true to its name – full of palm trees – with a strong beach vibe, easy going atmosphere and lots of restaurants (if you like Indian food, Harry’s Restro, in this street, is very good!)

3c – Torrequebrada

Our last stop in our town-trip is Torrequebrada, home to Torrequebrada Golf, the biggest golf course in Benalmadena, as well as to the International School of Torrequebrada and the only concertado school in town, Colegio Maravillas (entrance shown below). Despite the golf course and the proximity to the beach, this area is mostly residential.

Compared to its neighbor Torremuelle, which we have seen before (in the 1b), Torrequebrada has the advantage of being linked by the 103 bus line, which connects Torrequebrada, Parque de La Paloma, Arroyo and Benalmadena Pueblo; this line is the one that goes around more times per day (approximately once each 25 minutes) and also the one that is free for residents; therefore, being able to access it is a big bonus.

Torrequebrada also has more sandy beaches than Torremuelle, particularly in the stretch between the hotel Sunset Beach and the Avenida de las Palmeras. The name of this beach is Playa Arroyo de la Miel (confusing? Arroyo de la Miel has no beach, but Torrequebrada’s beach is called after the city center!!!)

Neighborhoods of Benalmadena
Arroyo de la Miel Beach, in Torrequebrada!

There are a few big hotels in the area – Sunset Beach, Best Benalmadena, Flatotel and Estival Torrequebrada, this last one with a casino – but not so much outside of the hotels in terms of entertainment or restaurants, especially when compared to the previous two areas of Benalmadena Costa. The hotels generally offer some in-house entertainment, such as shows or parties; they are all near beaches – but some are rocky beaches – and, of course, there is the big green on their doorsteps…

… or not exactly. The clubhouse is quite distant from the beach and the hotels. I imagine that the hotels may provide some transportation, but if you are coming to golf, it is worth clarifying that before booking.

My favorite restaurant in the area is the Yucas Café & Bar (visible on the image below; the hut-like structure on the right of the image), because they have a very yummy vegetarian brunch! They have much more than that, and many non-veggie options, too.

That being said, before picking a hotel in Benalmadena, it’s worth doing some self-reflection in terms of what are the expectations for these vacations; If your goal is to relax by the beach and enjoy the nightlife, Puerto Marina is great; if you also intend to explore the city beyond its coastline, Parque la Paloma is more central and closer to Arroyo; if you are coming to golf, Torrequebrada is your place.


Benalmadena is a beautiful town which offers a great variety of activities and interesting places to visit, each area offering its own unique charm and appeal. From the quaint and picturesque streets of Benalmadena Pueblo to the tranquil residential enclave of Torremuelle, and from the bustling commercial hub of Arroyo de la Miel to the vibrant tourist haven of Benalmadena Costa, there’s something for everyone in this multifaceted town. It has vibrant areas alongside calm paradises; it has amazing sea views but also plenty of nature and a delightful promenade. It even has its own fairytale village!

Benalmadena is more than just a destination; it’s a mosaic of history, culture, and natural beauty, and delving into its various districts brings you closer to understanding its essence. Each neighborhood tells a story, weaving together the threads of past and present, tradition and modernity. Whether you’re strolling along the cobblestone streets of the old town or basking in the sun-drenched beaches of Benalmadena Costa, the town offers a wide range of experiences. It has grown its touristic reputation around families with children but attracts and entertains people of all ages. In my opinion, there is no way to be wrong when choosing Benalmadena either to travel or to live.

Next: Benalmadena Hotels in Puerto Marina