Monda is a tiny town (or large village) in the mountains just inland from the Costa del Sol.
Situated past Ojén on the A-355, it lies a mountain valley at 365m and has a population of less than 2,000. It is well-linked by road with Marbella, just 15km away, as well as Coin and Cartama (for Malaga). Thanks to development on the nearby coast over the last few decades, the town has enjoyed new prosperity.
The village's dominant feature, which stands out for miles around, is the large stone building which stands atop the tree-covered hill above the village. Although this resembles a fortification, it is in fact a superbly-located and traditionally-styled modern hotel, Castillo de Monda, built on the site of the Moorish Castillo de Al-Mundat. More about the castle>
MondaThe site of the town was originally occupied by an Ibero-Roman fortified enclosure established in the 3rd to 1st Centuries BC by the Romans. This was to protect the indigenous Iberian population and to defend the road leading to the more important town of Coín. More history; Roman Munda and later>
Things to see
Monda has a small central village square, Plaza de la Ermita, with the Monument to the Miner. Just outside the square is the preserved Fuente Lavadero de la Jaula. There is small museum Casa Museo Marigloria near the Iglesia de Santiago Apostol. Castillo de Monda overlooks the village. Just outside the village is the Calvario, Roman road and olive oil mill. Read a detailed description of these things to see in Monda >
Castillo de Monda has enjoyed mixed fortunes over the centuries. Read about its history and the love story of Arturo, Beatriz and the blood-red almond blossom. More>
If you arrive from Marbella you will enter at Plaza de la Ermita. You can turn left into Calle Dolores and then go down to the end of Calle Portugal where there is usually space to park. Opposite the lavadero down Calle Feria, you'll find the municipal car park. Finally, either a little way down Avenida de Guaro (A-7010 to Guaro) or Calle Malaga (A-7101 to Coin) is street parking.
SIERRA DE LAS NIEVES
You can access the Sierra de las Nieves natural park from Monda. Take the Ojen road and two km out of Monda, after the gigantic new road cutting on the right, a turning leads down to the old road. This unmade track leads into the heart of the park. It can be used as a cross-country route to Istan before circling back to the coast or even to reach Tolox.
Five km along this road stand a large factory chimney, probably used in the production of limestone. The factory is gone but a homestead remains. Read about Sierra de las Nieves >
Dia de la Sopa Mondeña takes place on the last Sunday in March - a traditional local soup is served to the village and visitors, or about 7,000 people. It is made from 120kg of stale bread, tomates de culo (dried tomatoes) and vegetables, sometimes with egg added too. The origins of the festival date back to the 19th century - the thick broth provided a nutritious meal for the miners. It is made in a one-piece carved wooden bowl.
Semana Santa - Jueves and Viernes Santo (Holy Thursday and Good Friday) - Via del Crucis (Stations of the Cross)
Dia de Carbonero - 1 May
Romeria de San Roque - May
Semana Cultural - June
Festival Flamenco Villa de Monda - July
Certamen de Danza Villa de Monda
Feria de San Roque Traditionally 11 to 20 August.
There is an interpretation centre for the Parque Natural Sierra de las Nieves conveniently located in the old water deposit building on Carretera de Guaro i.e. on the edge of the village on the road to Guaro. However this now appears to be closed. The municipal tourist office is located within the Town Hall. More>
Hiring a car is the best way to see Monda and the surrounding countryside and villages. Alternatively, three buses run daily from Monda to Malaga and also several from Marbella to Coin. See timetable on Marbella bus page.