Costa del Sol, map

The Costa del Sol (literally, "Coast of the Sun"), the part of the Spanish southern coast belonging to the province of Malaga, has a Mediterranean climate, with mild, relatively rainy winters and hot, sunny summers. There are towns like Estepona, San Pedro de Alcántara, Puerto Banús, Marbella, Fuengirola, Mijas, Benalmádena, Torremolinos, Málaga, Velez-Málaga, Torre del Mar, Torrox, and Nerja.
The wind blows frequently: not by accident, the Costa del Sol used to be called Costa del Viento ("windy coast"). In the cold half of the year, the wind blows along with Atlantic disturbances, while in summer, it blows as sea breeze in the afternoon. In the westernmost part (see Estepona), the Levante, the cool wind from the east, can blow in summer, though less frequently than in the province of Cadiz.
Here are the average temperatures in Marbella.
Marbella - Average temperatures
Min (°C)67911131719191714108
Max (°C)151618212327292926221816
Min (°F)434548525563666663575046
Max (°F)596164707381848479726461

Rainfall is not abundant, and follows the Mediterranean pattern, in fact, most of it falls from October to March (in autumn and winter, it can sometimes rain a lot, especially in the western part), while in summer, it almost never rains. Also, rainfall becomes gradually less abundant proceeding from west to east: the average ranges from 690 millimeters (27 inches) per year in Estepona, to 585 mm (23 in) in Marbella, to 525 mm (20.5 in) in Málaga, to 450 mm (17.5 in) in Nerja.
This is the average rainfall in Marbella.
Marbella - Average precipitation

Winter, from December to February, is mild, and is characterized by sunny periods but also periods of bad weather, with wind and rain. When the sky is clear, the temperature at night can go below 5 °C (41 °F), while it becomes mild during the day, above 15 °C (59 °F). Very cold days are rare: only in the coldest nights, the temperature can go down to the freezing point, but even in these cases, it usually rises above 10 °C (50 °F) during the day. In practice, it never snows or freezes.

Spring, from March to May, is mild and sunny, with rainy days still possible, but not very frequent. By May, and sometimes already by April, the first hot days can occur, with highs around 30 °C (86 °F).

Summer, from June to mid-September, is hot and sunny. Typically, temperatures hover about 27/28 °C (81/82 °F) in June and September and about 30 °C (86 °F) in July and August, the weather is hot and muggy, but the sea breeze blows, in short, the typical Mediterranean summer. However, when the wind blows from the interior of Andalusia, the heat can become intense, in fact, the temperature can reach 35/37 °C (95/99 °F) and sometimes up to 40 °C (104 °F). Fortunately, in these cases, there's a moderate wind and the air becomes dry: it's better to drink often to avoid dehydration.

Autumn, from mid-September to November, is initially warm, and then becomes gradually milder, while Atlantic fronts become gradually more frequent. In October, there are still many warm and sunny days, especially in the first half. By November, we are well into autumn, actually, the weather is mild, but it's also often cloudy and rainy. Sometimes, the rains are concentrated in a short time and can be heavy, particularly in the western part.


The amount of sunshine in the Costa del Sol is very good in summer, when clear skies prevail. In the other seasons, there are many sunny periods, but cloudy periods are also possible. However, in winter, the south of Spain is one of the sunniest areas in Europe.
Here are the average daily sunshine hours in Málaga.
Málaga - Sunshine

The Alboran Sea is never very warm to swim in because of the proximity to the Atlantic Ocean, in fact, it is still very cool in June, when the water temperature is about 20 °C (68 °F), then it rises to 22 °C (72 °F) in July and September, and reaches 23 °C (73 °F) in August, when it becomes acceptable for swimming.
Here are the average sea temperatures in Marbella.
Marbella - Sea temperature
Temp (°C)161515161720222322201817
Temp (°F)615959616368727372686463

Best Time

The best time to visit the cities of the Costa del Sol for walks and hikes, corresponds to the months of April, May and October, especially if you plan an excursion to the interior of Andalusia, which is often scorchingly hot in summer.
For a beach holiday, the best period is instead the summer, from June to mid-September. In the westernmost part, it's better to bring a sweatshirt for cool and windy evenings, especially in June and September, but for safety, also in July and August.

Back to Andalusia.