Nerja highlights and Info.
Cant believe we’ve been back a few weeks already, we have been extremely lucky this year in that we managed to get away twice. Cornwall was our first Family holiday and then Nerja was our second trip, forever grateful to Daniel for being so bloody hardworking and an understanding partner thats support helps to keep me spinning all the plates. Its always after a trip like this that I realise just how much we needed it, a break from the everyday and a little ease of tension that home life/ mum life/ wife life/ working life can bring.
Holidays are a chance to say ‘sod it’ to all elements of life really, all 4 of us relax as best we can and we just continue to be a difunctional (joke) family but in another country where we can eat ice cream for breakfast and drink beer before 1pm with no judgement. We do as we do at home except its fun because we don’t have to worry about alarms being set or deadlines to meet, I am so glad that we can try and show Oakley & Olive a week or 2 of fun each year and make those memories together.
This blog post is mostly for me to look back on and remember, the images are all mine and I coudnt’t let them go to waste, any opportunity to aid you falling in love with my favourite place in Spain then I will share.
Nerja is around 45-50 minutes away from Malaga airport, its a resort town along southern Spains Costa Del Sol. One reason I love it is the fact its not too commercialised, it feels like a Spanish town which some areas we have visited in Spain do not feel that way, they can feel like a home from home but with a higher temperature. That is not something we look for in a holiday, we want culture, authentic food and a little history too. That said of course its all about the fun too, a water park day is a must and beach & pool days too but we want to take in the local life and not be surrounded by English bars and restaurants. Nerja seems to have the perfect balance, last Month when we visited it was a Spanish holiday and the beach was so busy with Spanish people enjoying themselves and I always think that speaks volumes of a location if the locals are flocking to it.
We booked our holiday with Spain-Holidays.com (I say ‘we’ but it was my mum that did it) My Mum has been visiting Nerja a few times a year for the past 3 years plus now and it was her that got us falling in love with it. Both times we have visited we have booked an apartment/villa, there are pros and cons to doing this but we feel with the age both little ones are at that its the safer & easier option. No kids club so its full on but we enjoy that!
The villa we booked was made up of three different parts, so we could separate into 3 groups/families and have our own space, sleeping 12 in total. I am going to Link it HERE for those that have asked (this is in no way sponsored) I would recommend the location of this apartment as its only minutes away from Burriana Beach and just a street away from the hill that takes you into Nerja town.
A few things I LOVE about holidaying this way is that its private and personal, an empty pool with no distractions and I am able to feel somewhat at ease because there are no crowds of people around making it harder to let the kids play alone. I enjoy that on the evenings we stay in to eat we are able to safely have the children in bed whilst we sit on the patio and enjoy adult time, all the above reasons are why we have chosen to not book hotels recently.
We ordered an online food shop to be delivered to the Villa upon arrival which meant there was no messing around shopping, we had food & drink in the fridge within the first hour so everyone was happy. No great distant to get from all your belongings to the pool, everything is so close and handy in a villa so the second we arrived it was stress free and fun.
Burriana beach is a lovely beach thats just a short walking distance, so we visited the beach a few times during the day and also the evening as there is a nice amount of places to eat, especially in the day! Every so often the sunbeds end and you will find a little play area for children which is a fab way of breaking up trips into the sea or building sandcastles. This summer there was a huge inflatable obstacle course out to sea which you could swim too and pay to have a play on too!
Burriana although lovely doesn’t have hundreds of options, for more options to eat and shop we head into Nerja town, that is where you will find the culture and authentic places to visit. The seafront promenade called Balcón de Europa, tops a promontory with views of the Mediterranean and surrounding mountains. We visited that most evenings with an ice cream or sat close by at a bar to take in the views.
Most evenings we would eat in Nerja town, do a little shopping and let the little ones walk around. We ate in a variety of places but 2 places we love in Nerja the most are The Barrel Bar & Bar Cibeles.
The Barrel bar is famous for its amazing Tapas and every time you order a drink you also order one tapas from the selection thats all freshly displayed in front of you. The bar is a circle right in the middle and the fridges go right the way around the circular bar and are filled with amazing Spanish options. You can of course order tapas without a drink too but what a unique gimmick.
Now Ive saved the best until last, Cibeles are famous for there hot plates. They don’t openly advertise these plates and even on the menu they don’t jump out at you but they are the most incredible eating experience. The plates are heated to the hottest temperature a hot plate can be, I think its around 200 degrees (I could be so wrong) but your steak comes out raw and you cook it ourself. I have never tasted anything like it!
Besides the pool & beach days we planned a few trips out so we could maximise the holiday and time off together. Water parks are always fun, albeit hard work they are guaranteed to make happy memories for the little ones.
We visited Aquatropic Water Park, which we had heard from local workers was the best option out of the 2 available. It was a fab day out, we got set up right by the toddler area which so big and had lots of options for the Youngers children. The park then had 2 other big slide areas which of course Oakley and Olive were too young for, but there was also a splash pad, a wave pool and a heated spa area too. The food was average but they were more than happy for you to take your own which was good. Worth a visit if your in Nerja.
Our other days out included half a day in the beautiful Frigiliana, which I have done a little blog post about which I will link HERE. A stunning area up into the mountains which was well worth the adventure out of Nerja for, I have included all our day in photographs on the blog post.
Secondly we visited Nerja Caves, which is not the most child friendly of places but in true gray family style we don’t let that stop us. Such a cool story, the caves were discovered by a group of friends that were avoiding school in January 1959, they literally stumbled across them! Madness! They were incredible, but let it be said there are LOTS of steps and LOTS of times that I had a small panic attacks about a toddler going overboard (not good) but each adult gets a device and headphones to listen to an audio tour so we were able to get Oakley involved in this to distract him from the extreme drops.
Some evenings there would be different street artists around, of course when Oakley saw bubbles he was like a bolt of lightening straight over there. The lady was amazing, she let all the kids try it out and this entertained them no end, we created some incredible memories on this holiday. I was so happy with how well the kids addapted to being in the heat and in a new environment, we had a fabulous week of just being relaxed about routine and rules. I love holidays for that, no pressure at all. I am not saying they aren’t stressful but Im a fan of letting the kids lead the way the majority of time and holidays are an amazing opportunity to let them grow and learn on their own.
Thank you so much for reading this, I did this post mostly for personal reasons because I have such amazing pictures that I don’t want to just sit on my phone. Also for the few that wanted more information about Nerja and how we booked our holiday. As always any questions about anything please send them my way.