It's worth timing your visit to coincide with one of the Costa del Sol's many traditional festivals. The annual ferias (more general and usually lengthier celebrations than fiestas) in Málaga (early August) and Fuengirola (early October) are among the best for sheer exuberance.

Feast of San Juan. Midnight bonfires light up beaches all along the coast on June 23, and the celebrations continue the next day.

San Isidro. This celebration on May 15 is marked by typically Andalusian ferias, with plenty of flamenco and fino (sherry), in Nerja and Estepona.

Semana Santa. Holy Week processions are widespread, and are particularly dramatic in Málaga.

Virgen del Carmen. The patron saint of fishermen is honored in coastal communities, particularly in Los Boliches (Fuengirola) and Velez-Málaga, on her feast day, July 16.

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Fodor's Essential Spain 2022

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