Naturist Beaches on the Costa del Sol

Costa Natura, near Estepona, opened in 1979 and was Spain's first naturist resort © Michelle Chaplow
Costa Natura, near Estepona, opened in 1979 and was Spain's first naturist resort.

Naturist Beaches on the Costa del Sol

The Costa del Sol is jam-packed with lively urban beaches and laid-back semi-urban beaches, more than a few of which cater to the naturist fun and sun-seeker.

Costa Natura, Estepona

Costa Natura, near Estepona, opened in 1979 and was Spain's first naturist resort. Although the surrounding area is now largely built-up, once you step inside the gates it's a a village of whitewashed apartments set among lush lawns and palm trees and a riot of jazzy geraniums and bougainvillea. Facilities include a swimming pool, Jacuzzi, sauna and steam room, massage room and tennis courts. You can rent an apartment in Costa Natura (see below). Day passes are available.

The beach in front of the complex is naturist. It is narrow and relatively quiet even on summer weekends.  There is a public shower and a kiosk open for selling soft drinks and hiring sunbeds in the summer. 

To reach the Costa Natura beach, turn off the A-7 at the km 151 roundabout west of Estepona town. There is limited parking on the access road serving the Costa Natura Urbanisation and at the Gran Hotel Elba next door (not part of the complex). Walk down to the beach via the road between the Urbanisation and the Gran Hotel Elba. The naturist beach is only the section infront of the Costa Natura complex. On the other side is Hotel Suites Estepona, where there is limited parking in front of the hotel.

Cabopino, Marbella

Connect with nature on the Costa del Sol © istock photo

Connect with nature.

If you're looking for a long sandy nudist beach backed by dunes and pine trees, then try Playa Artola also known as Playa de las Dunas to the west of Cabopino Marina in Marbella. The water is shallow, so it's safe for kids and good for wading. At weekends the textile to naturist ratio is fairly even. The non-nudist west end of the beach has restaurants, showers, first aid and the usual beach facilities. The dunes are now protected and cars are not allowed to enter. 

Coming from Fuengirola on the A-7 coast road, take the Cabopino turn off, continue towards the marina and turn off to the right and park on the open ground and walk through the dunes down to the beach.

Benalnatura, Benalmadena

A tiny naturist paradise near the Torrequebrada casino in Benalmádena, Benalnatura has everything you need to spend a relaxing naked day in the sun. There are showers, toilets, a barbecue area, and a great little chiringuito (beach restaurant) doing everything from filled rolls to fried fish to a daily menu. Although the naturist beach is sandwiched between apartment blocks, as you walk down the steps through the shaded, wooded entrance, you almost feel as if you're on a jungle desert island. All around there are aloes and cacti, palm trees, pampas grass and bamboo, and the sandy beach itself is 100 per cent spotless. It's also 100 per cent nudist. You can't get served at the bar unless you're in the buff!

On the coast road from Málaga to Benalmadena to Fuengirola turn off a slip road little after the Torrequebrada Casino. Drive under the road to the sea side and  park on the service road. es.

Mijas Costa

Playa Naturista de Playa Marina is the newest of the naturist beaches, opened in 2012 and with easy access from the A-7 a few km west of Fuengirola and east of El Faro. Parking is available from the westerly direction carriageway and a footbridge available for crossing the road. There is a Chiringuito with music selling drinks and meals. This is a good spot for snorkelling. This beach is quiet.

Gaudalmar, Torremolinos / Malaga

Less than ten minutes from Málaga capital, you'll find the city's only official naturist beach, next to the mouth of the Guadalhorce River in the San Julian neighbourhood. Near the entrance where ther is more than ample parking you get a textile-naturist mix, but round to the right it's more naturist. Mostly Spanish, lots of families and a laid-back atmosphere – as long as you don't mind the low-flying aircraft overhead -it ia located right under the flight approach to Málaga airport! or stray golf balls - it is also backed (and fenced) by the Malaga Parador de Golf Hotel and Golf course. The beach is long, wide and sandy, and there are several showers, but toilets and beach bars only near the entrance.

Coming from Málaga towards Torremolinos on the A-7, take the San Julián-Guadalmar turning at Km 232. Follow the road that runs parallel to the dual carriageway and down to the beach car park.

Almayate beach, Torre del Mar

This semi-urban beach is thoroughly naturist, has relatively clean water and boasts purple mountains as a backdrop. It also has a great little chiringuito (beach restaurant) where nudity is the norm and where you can get an excellent value menu del día for €11 or a seafood paella for two for less than €20. Mostly Spanish naturists at weekends and in July and August, with lots of Germans and English and French the rest of the year. Behind the beach and the restaurant you’ll find the excellent Almanat naturist camp-site. Like most naturist camp-sites, Almanat also has ‘bungalows’ or mobile homes for rent.

Almayate beach is situated 2km from Torre del Mar along the N-430 heading towards Málaga. Turn left at the watchtower, go past the ‘naturist beach’ sign and head towards the beach. The car park belongs to the camp-site and costs around €3. Alternatively, take the next turnoff after the watchtower and follow the sign for the ‘Chiringuito’. Off season parking is free here; the rest of the time it’s €1.  

Cala del Pino, Maro

Beyond Nerja, as you near the Granada coast, the beaches become wilder and more rugged. Cala del Pino nudist beach is at the bottom of a verdant cliff-side and form s part of the Acantilados de Maro-Cerro Gordo Natural Area. Access is down a rough track: five minutes to get down, 15-20 to puff back up. But if you're after the nature in naturism and you're happy to haul your picnic and beach gear, then this is the place for you. Although it's mostly stony, there is a narrow sandy strip, so get there early to claim your spot. The sea can be rough, which makes it great fun for wave-jumping, less so for swimming. Mostly a youngish Spanish crowd.

Coming from Nerja on the A-7, once you've passed Maro, look out for the signposts for the Acantilados de Maro-Cerro Gordo Natural Park and Cala del Pino. Since it is natural park you must leave your car here,  and walk down, preferably NOT in flip-flops. As shuttle bus service is provided in the Summer.