It’s beginning to feel a lot like… Christmas in Marbella!

Publication: 28 Nov. 2022
Back to Blog

La Cañada has the Christmas tree up, there are scarlet Poinsettias for sale in all the supermarkets and we can already see the beginnings of the local decorations getting readied for the big switch-on – the Christmas season is nearly upon us!

Although it is unlikely to snow in Marbella, it’s a wonderful place to be over the Christmas period. Admittedly, Father Christmas is a relatively recent arrival in Spain but – like many of its residents! – he has been enthusiastically embraced. At most big shopping centres such as La Cañada, there is a Santa’s Grotto where little ones can speak to the man himself, ably assisted by his elves, or post their list of Christmas wishes.

Traditionally, though, Spanish children receive their most important gifts from Los Reyes Magos, or The Three Kings. These arrive on January 6th, when local children leave (cleaned!) shoes out to be filled with sweets by the Reyes and hopefully gifts, if they haven’t already had theirs from Santa. Local processions of the Three Kings often have swathes of children running behind them as they throw kilos – and in the case of big cities, tonnes – of sweets into the crowds for the little ones to catch.

What to see
Local town halls adorn their main streets and most important Plazas, or town squares, with brightly coloured decorations, with Marbella’s Avda Ricardo Soriano and Plaza de Los Naranjos always a festive sight to see. San Pedro Alcantara will do well to beat the giant bauble that was in the middle of the Marques del Duero pedestrianised high street. With choreographed dancing lights to festive music, we can’t wait to see what will be in its place this year.
The biggest attraction of them all when it comes to Christmas lights, though, is Málaga.
Lighting up this year on Saturday 26th November, Calle Larios in the centre of the city will boast 16 glorious angels with 32 illuminated columns stretching the length of the main pedestrianised street. They will be accompanied by Christmas carols and songs in a sound and light show at 6.30, 8 and 10pm every night apart from 24th and 31st December, and you will be able to see them until the 6th of January. They are always worth a trip to really get into the festive spirit.

What to eat
Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without sweet treats, and you can find many traditional delights in the shops in Marbella. Turrón is Spanish nougat, a favourite that comes in many flavours, while polvorones – from the Spanish word for powder or dust – is a type of heavy shortbread made with nuts, particularly almonds, that got its name thanks to its extremely crumbly texture.

The Three Kings bring their Roscón de Reyes, a sweet enriched dough circlet dotted with candied peel, sometimes filled with whipped cream or custard. Baked into the dough are usually two surprises: A tiny baby Jesus, or a hard dried bean! One offers the finder good luck – the other less so! We don’t have to tell you how incredible they are – if you haven’t yet tried one, make this the year you do, you won’t regret it!
Christmas is a fantastic time of the year on the Costa del Sol, there’s so much going on we have barely touched the surface here.