Destinations 

5 of the best short breaks

Break from the norm

Fancy a few days away from the bustle of Benalmadena or the madness of Marbella? If so, look no further than our guide to 5 of the best short breaks in the Andalucia region. Whether you?re looking for an action-packed adventure or a restful retreat, we?ve got it covered. Words: Ellie Bligh


Seville

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Where to stay:

The ideal place to enjoy everything this vibrant city has to offer, the Hotel Casa Romana prides itself in providing a harmonious and comfortable environment to all its guests. Just a two minute walk from Duque de la Victoria Square and ten minutes from Seville?s cultural heritage reserve, the hotel is located in the city?s bohemian enclaves of the San Lorenzo neighbourhood. There are 26 elegant bedrooms, each of which has perfectly captured a unique balance between sobriety and luxury. For more information on this traditional Spanish hotel, call 0034 954 915170 or visit www.hotelcasaromana.com

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What to do:

Seville, according to legend, was discovered by Hercules, so it?s no surprise that the city is steeped in history and renowned throughout Europe for its abundance of monuments and museums. The old quarter is a must-see part of town, with its breath-taking Cathedral and the Giralda tower, which offers amazing views across the city when you climb to the top of its internal staircase. Tapas fans will be more than impressed by the number of bars in the city, where the choice of food is practically endless. Art lovers should head to the Museos de Bellas Artes, the second largest gallery in Spain.

Malaga

Where to stay:

Situated right in the heart of Malaga city and located in front of its magnificent Cathedral, the newly built Hotel Molina Lario consists of three buildings, two of which have been completely refurbished. However, they?ve managed to keep the original 19th century fa?ade, creating a unique blend of modern-meets-traditional. The hotel is just a stone?s throw away from big attractions such as the Picasso Museum and the theatre and there are 103 tastefully decorated bedrooms, all offering a wide range of high quality amenities. For more information, call 0034 952 062002 or visit www.hotelmolinariono.com.

What to do:
Known as the gateway to the Costa del Sol, Malaga is a port city perched on the edge of the Mediterranean coastline. It?s also the birthplace of Pablo Ruiz Picasso, one of the world?s most famous painters. Visit his art gallery or take a step back in time and wander around what was once his home, beside the picturesque Picasso square. There are several beaches situated alongside the city, such as Playa de la Malagueta, which comes to life with music festivals in the summertime. Malaga?s main pedestrianised street is lined with an array of shops and boutiques, adding to the city?s cool, cosmopolitan feel..

Gaucin

Where to stay:

The Hotel Hacienda La Herriza is a boutique country retreat, set in 25 acres of woodland and close to some of Andalucia?s most impressive natural parks. Family-run, the accommodation consists of 17 spacious Andalucian cottages and Spanish cortijos, all with tasteful d?cor and perfect for a relaxing break or romantic getaway. The hotel?s restaurant, El Hacho, serves some of the finest Mediterranean and regional food around, as well as a selection of Spanish and international wines. And when you?re not sunning yourself by the pool, the surrounding areas offer activities such as hot air balloon flights, mountain biking and horse riding. For more information, call 0034 951 068200or visit www.laherriza.com.

What to do:
A charming whitewashed village, set in the mountains of Southern Andalucia, Gaucin offers unrivalled views of the Straight of Gibraltar as well as the Rif Mountains of North Africa. Castillo de Aguila, a Roman castle which was once taken over by the Arabs, is now open to the public. Due to its strategic position, the castle later became a fortress and played a big part in the history of the town. There are often concerts held on the site in the evenings and birdwatchers will be in their element as birds of prey, such as kestrels and eagles, regularly swoop down from the walls of this historic building.

Vejer de la Frontera?

Where to stay:

Nestled between the medieval houses in Vejer?s main square, the Hotel La Casa del Califa has taken inspiration from the time when the town formed part of the great Islamic empire, stretching from Damascus to Granada. The hotel building dates back to the 10th Century when the Moors dominated the town?s culture and this has been reflected perfectly in the d?cor throughout the building. There are numerous courtyards and winding corridors and each of its rooms offer a different style, shape and size to the next, as well as rates to suit all pockets. For more information on this mystical gem, call 0034 956 447 730 or visit www.lacasadelcalifa.com.
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What to do:

Comfortably nestled between the mountains and the Mediterranean coastline, the hill town of Vejer de La Frontera is set 200 meters above the surrounding countryside and is a well-preserved example of Islamic Andalucia. In 1978, Vejer was declared a national monument, due to its unspoilt environment and rich history, therefore a good stroll around the town is essential. A labyrinth of whitewashed houses and cobbled streets, dotted with medieval buildings and churches, Vejer is completely uncorrupted by modern times. A trip to the nearby beach of El Palmar is a must. This is one of the country?s finest and offers fine white sand and clean, clear waters.
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Nerja

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Where to stay:

Unique, elegant and chic, this family-run boutique hotel comprises seven spacious rooms, five of which are individually decorated and offer fantastic views of the cliffs and the sea. The Hotel Carabeo is perched on the edge of the Mediterranean and is just a few minutes? walk from the centre of Nerja, the Balc?n de Europa and numerous beaches. Once an old school house, the hotel is situated in a quiet street in the old quarter of the town and boasts its very own restaurant, ?34?, which is opulently decorated with an abundance of antiques. Attention to detail here is second to none. For more information call 0034 952 525 444 or visit www.hotelcarabeo.com.


What to do:

A charming Andalucian town with bags of character, Nerja offers something for everyone. Set amongst fragrant pine trees, the Rio Chillar Waterfall is one of the most impressive sights in the area and shouldn?t be missed so remember to take your camera. Just three kilometres from the centre of town, lies another of Nerja?s most spectacular attractions ? its prehistoric caves. Discovered in 1957 by some young boys out playing, the caves offer breathtaking natural caverns which you can discover all year round not to mention an amphitheatre, where many a concert can be seen.


 


 


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