Holidays to Fuengirola are fast-paced and full-on, but it's still easy to find pockets of calm and family-friendly fun.

Beachside beauty

Fuengirola's halfway between party-loving Marbella and history-soaked Malaga on Spain's southern coast. There's a lively nightlife scene, plus golden sand that stretches along the Costa del Sol. The place has its cultural side, too – think quaint squares and Moorish architecture.

Going out-out

Lounge all evening with tapas and a glass of wine in the laidback square. If a homespun beat's what you fancy, make a beeline for either the main promenade or Calle del Capitan behind the beach – the street's got a string of British bars.

Animal magic

Bioparc Fuengirola's an award-winning zoo with an emphasis on conservation. It gives endangered and rare animals like the Sumatran tiger and roloway monkey a happy home – check out the enclosures designed to recreate natural habitats from continental Africa, south-east Asia and Madagascar.

Retail therapy

A huge flea market springs up every Saturday at the fairground in Los Boliches, where you'll find buyers and sellers from all over Europe. The Spanish department store El Corte Ingles is also nearby, as well as a number of designer boutiques around the main square if you feel like splashing some cash.

At a Glance

  • Unfurl your towel somewhere along eight kilometres of sandy beach
  • Live it up in a different bar every night
  • Get your culture fix at Malaga's Picasso Museum