Secrets of Spain: fabulous Frigiliana

Frigiliana is officially one of Spain’s most beautiful towns. A whitewashed village that simply oozes charm, Frigiliana is perched in the Sierra Almijara mountain range, overlooking the sparkling Mediterranean, located 300 metres below. Only a few minutes drive will take you to the gorgeous seaside town of Nerja, located just 6 km away. A stay in Frigiliana offers the best of both worlds – a short trip to soak up the sun in the daytime, and the most incredible setting for romantic, relaxing evenings.

Frigiliana Spain beautiful cobbled street

Let’s stir up your senses

Let the sunset stir up your senses, as the scent of beautiful bougainvillea, jasmine and lavender waft by, in the balmy summer night air. Flowers seem to spill out of window boxes, and greet you sitting in typical terracotta pots, lined along the cobbled streets. Frigiliana is the epitome of a beautiful whitewashed Spanish village. I don’t remember seeing a prettier one yet – a few of equal beauty yes, but not prettier so far!

Frigiliana sunset over mountains-1

Not to mention the amazing views

It’s not just the little town itself that is picture postcard pretty. The views down over the countryside, coast and Mediterranean sea are purely spectacular. I’ve sat many a time just taking a coffee or a something a little stronger, marvelling at these amazing views. On an especially clear day, you may even see the North African coastline.

Frigiliana views to sea at Nerja

The prettiest village in Andalucia

Not only is Frigiliana one of Spain’s officially most beautiful towns, of which there are currently 44 in all of Spain, but it has also been voted the prettiest village in Andalucia. As you wander along the picturesque, pedestrianised cobbled streets, taking in all the colours, that contrast perfectly with the pristinely kept whitewashed houses, you’ll understand why it is the winner of these prestigious titles. The azure blue of the Mediterranean sky is a wonderful backdrop to this film location village, highlighting the whitewashed buildings, pastel colours and verdant Mediterranean flowers and shrubs.

Frigiliana bougainvilla and whitewashed street view

The bohemian atmosphere blends with the Moorish old quarter

The bohemian atmosphere blends perfectly with the Moorish old quarter. In fact you can follow the 12 ceramic plaques in the old quarter, which tell the tale of the Moorish uprising. A number of people consider the old quarter of Frigiliana to be the purest example of vernacular Moorish architecture, in the entire province of Málaga. The bohemian atmosphere has and continues to attract well-known, and lesser known artists and photographers.

Frigiliana horse and carriage

Frigiliana for foodies

You don’t need to be a foodie to enjoy tapas or lunch in one of the town’s restaurants that offer terraces, where you can be delighted with the amazing views alone. However if you like good food, Frigiliana is a promising spot. The area has an abundance of wonderful, fresh locally grown produce, being very fertile.

A signature dish of the village is kid served in an almond sauce. During Holy Week, watch out for another speciality, which is a salted cod dish. Enjoy stews and soups made from the locally sourced fresh ingredients, as well as delicious olive oil. Apart from the more typical local dishes, there’s a good choice of both Mediterranean and International cuisine.

Artisan crafts and fiestas

Another ingredient that adds to the charm of the village is that artisan crafts abound. You can buy beautiful objects crafted from wood, clay, esparto grass, beeswax, glass and gourd.

Also like all places in Spain, fiestas are an integral part of the culture. The liveliest fiesta in Frigiliana is the patron Saint fiesta, in honour of St. Anthony of Padua, which takes place around the 13th June, for about 5 days. This is a super time to visit if you can. Later in August, there’s the Fiesta of the Three Cultures, which is also very good.

Frigiliana views and flowers

Sights to see & nature

Within the area there is plenty to see in proportion to the size of the little town. Interesting sightseeing ideas include the Neolithic Cave of the Bats, the Arab Castle, The Palace of Apero, the Church of St. Anthony, El Ingenio, Las Maquinillas and the Old Fountain.

Frigiliana is one of a number of local villages that is encompassed within the borders of the Natural Park of the Sierra Tejeda-Almijara. The local tourist authority can supply you with a variety of hiking routes to explore the Natural Park nearby.

From the mountains to the sea, Frigiliana, Nerja and Maro (which is where the Nerja caves are located) are blessed with beautiful scenery. Although the area has plenty of tourism, it has not become tacky, like some other parts of the Costa del Sol.

Images: Shutterstock

Jackie de Burca is Co-owner of Catalonia Valencia.

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Comments (8)

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  1. Angela Treadway says:

    Looks absolutely beautiful. Have never been but would love to. Just looks so picturesque, waking up to them views in the morning is just pure bliss x

  2. Sandra Jo Siddall says:

    Wow so very beautiful. Would love to be lucky enough to visit such a stunning place. I think I will definitely have to add this to my Bucket list! :)

  3. Hi Angela, Do it :) Fly into Malaga airport and off you go! It is an idyllic spot, so beautiful, and so close to Nerja, which is great also. Thanks, Jackie

  4. Hi Sandra, Add it on, but bump it up that list of yours a bit. :) It is pretty accessible in terms of price and location. Flights into Malaga and off you go :)

  5. Izy berry says:

    Omg this little town is so beautiful and the views are stunning. Perfect place to go in a honey moon

  6. Helen Scanlan-Kladi says:

    Lovely article – evoked wonderful memories for me of walking from Nerja to Frigiliana with my father when I was a teenager. Very pretty village and obviously does not appear to have changed much. Have now put it on my wish list to return to Frigiliana so that my own children can share the experience too.

  7. Chris says:

    I’m one of the lucky-ones living in frigiliana & i can only confirm that it is a wonderful place… I just wonder if the local authorities know how to manage the fact of more and more turists arriving (traffic, lack of parking facilities, loss of identity…)

  8. Such a beautiful village. My husband and I were there 3 years ago in November, and it was even gorgeous then. We have also looked at property there and in Nerja, as we intend to move to Spain eventually from NYC. It is at the top of our list that is for sure. My heart belongs in Andaluz that is for sure!

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