Mijas Old Town
Mijas is surrounded by forest covered peaks in the foothills of the Cordón Montañoso del Litoral Mountain Range. Positioned high on the side of the mountain overlooking the Mediterranean Sea. It has a vantage view point which spans across the sea to North African coast in the south and to Benalmadena to the east and Mijas Costa to the west. The view is breathtaking and one of the best on the Costa del Sol.
Despite being one of the most popular tourist destinations in the area, Mijas remains one of the finest examples of the Andalucian Pueblo Blanco ‘white villages’. The village is a web of narrow winding lanes with sugar-cube houses and echoes of the past still ring around the cobbled streets.
Since the 1960s artists have been flocking to the area to be inspired by the tranquillity and the stunning views. There is still a thriving arts and crafts movement in Mijas with items ranging from wicker baskets and leather goods, to locally produced honey and gazpachuelo (an egg soup).
Mijas houses several significant monuments including two Mudejar churches and the Sanctuario de la Virgen de a Peña, carved out of solid rock and a tribute to the Patron Saint of Mijas. The shrine dates back to 1586 when an image of the Virgin is said to have miraculously appeared there.
Despite Mijas’s popularity, it has managed to retain some of its quaint traditions, one of the most unusual being the Donkey-Taxis which line the central plaza. Thankfully, legislation has recently been passed to ensure that these animals are not exploited and we can hope to see them ‘working’ happily for many years to come.
The best way to see Mijas Pueblo is on foot, its winding streets and alleys are often only accessible this way. If you arrive in a car there is a large car park in Calle Olivar de la Peňa and use the lift to go up to the top floor. At this level you enter the new square Plaza Virgen de la Peňa. You will find the Donkey-Taxis, the Mirador as well as many leather and souvenir shops on the square. Across the far end of the square you can use the various stair cases to take you up to the Old Square (Plaza de la Constitución).
One of the most interesting buildings in Mijas is the Shrine of the Calvario, built in 1710 which can be spotted from just about everywhere in the village and is situated halfway up the mountain amongst the Pine Forest. From here, wonderful panoramic views are to be had. Access is gained by means of a winding path from the village.
In Plaza de la Constitución and surrounding street you will find even more interesting Arts and Crafts shops specially along the Calle Malaga and Calle de los Caňos. Also this area is full of great restaurants so wait until you get here before you choose a place to eat.
On the left hand side of the Plaza de la Constitución you have another amazing Mirador with restaurants with amazing views (food can be hit and miss though).
The left hand corner of the Plaza de la Constitución you should take the Calle Cuesta de la Villa which takes you to the small bullring of oval construction dating from 1910 which is still providing entertainment in the form of bullfights and horse displays and a museum in the old town hall with a wealth of exhibits and a gallery of work by local artists.
Go past the bullring and to take a right Paseo de la Muralla which will lead you to an amazing park with views of the valley below. You can see Mijas Golf, Mijas Costa and Las Lagunas from stretching out to the coast.
Mijas was first discovered by tourists in the sixties, an incredible range of nationalities have made the pueblo their home and this has resulted in a cosmopolitan mixture of international cuisine, clubs and associations and in general, the influence of foreign culture and the arts.