Marriott Marbella Beach Resort exterior
Hotel Puente Romano outside dining
Gran Melia Don Pepe restaurant
The Spanish are lovers of children, making this an ideal place to visit with kids for a luxury family holiday. There aren’t many restaurants or hotels that don’t bear children in mind and the Spanish themselves take their little ones everywhere with them. So whether you head out for an early breakfast or a late, post-Flamenco supper, you’ll see people travelling en famille, no matter what the time of day or night. Marbella is much more than timeshare housing and an overcrowded beach, which is the common misconception of this Costa del Sol hotspot. Those travelling with children with find endless ways to keep the whole family happy while staying in some stunning hotels.
Gran Melia Don Pepe
Wedged firmly between Puerto Banus and Marbella Port, the Gran Melia Don Pepe is a gem at the foothills of the Sierra Blanca and it's fabulously family-friendly .
One of the classic Marbella hotels thrown up in the 1960s, the Gran Melia Don Pepe is still popular with good reason. It is large (194 rooms) without verging into manic, over-sized resort territory but, with that, has an awful lot to offer. The various restaurants make it almost impossible to need to leave the grounds...Baby-friendly / Family-friendly Spa / Pre-Teen friendly / See this Hotel & Book »
Hotel Puente Romano
Designed with an Andalucian village in mind, this beachfront luxury spot, Hotel Puente Romano near Puerto Banus, has it all.
The Hotel Puente Romano is very much focused on stress relief. The various family rooms go up to three bedrooms in size, with two separate living rooms, so this is as close to villa accommodation as you can get, coupled with the lashings of luxury amenities you want from a hotel. Located on what is known as the Golden...Baby-friendly / Family-friendly Spa / Pre-Teen friendly / See this Hotel & Book »
Marriott Marbella Beach Resort
The Marriott Marbella Beach Resort offers beachside rooms of Moorish architecture and timeshare options on Marbella’s main coastline.
If you really fall in love with this luxury, very family-friendly Marriott Marbella Beach Resort, you can actually own a piece of your own and return each year come as often as you want, because the property is part of the Marriott Vacation Club global timeshare brand with a hotel on its grounds. The Marriott...Baby-friendly / Pre-Teen friendly / Summer Sun / See this Hotel & Book »
Avenida de Benamara s/n, CN 340 KM 167
The brainchild of a mother who sought somewhere lovely to spend time with her children and enjoy a quiet Mochacino, Funky Forest is more than a place to eat. Homemade dishes are served in this restaurant that sits only 100 meters from the beach within a garden of pine trees, but Funky Forest also hosts workshops and organizes activities for children, so you can stay and make a whole day of it. Russian and Chinese language classes, flamenco dancing, music and movement workshops and Spanish for babies aged 6 – 36 months are just some of the offerings that have been available. Funky Forest hosts toddler and mother groups, family nights out and, unsurprisingly, is the chosen place for a lot of birthday parties. It’s a must when visiting Marbella with little ones.
C/ Muelle Ribera, Local 48/ 49H
Many who have never even been to Marbella have heard of the institution that is Pizzeria Picasso. A simple but oh-so-fabulous pizza place located next to the mega yachts and sports cars of Puerto Banus, it is so popular there is often a queue so you’d do well to get there when they open. The location alone makes it a draw for families and, aside from the pizza which is often heralded as some of the best anywhere, the restaurant hosts lots of children’s parties and is adored for its ice cram sundaes.
Da Bruno a Cabopino
Crta. Nacional N-340 KM 194.7
On the outskirts of Marbella, set within a mass of tall pine trees, sits the quintessential family restaurant that is Da Bruno a Cabopino. With a beautiful sweeping terrace and children’s playground, there is ample room for children to run around (which doesn’t bother staff in the slightest). The children’s menu is extensive and includes favourites like the “Peter Pan Ravioli” and “Snow white’s chicken breast.” Colouring pencils and drawing pads are given to all children, and if you happen upon the joint at Christmas, your children will be given complimentary gift bags.
Selwo Aventura Estepona
A virtual African safari on the hillside in Malaga, The Selwo Aventura has an incredibly impressive population living here from elephant to zebra, lions to rhinos, and they are all roaming within vast amounts of natural space. This park is vast so plan on spending most of a day here to really see everything and, if you really want to tour it properly, consider the ‘Obama VIP tour” which is a private tour with an expert who can give you immense detail on every species seen along the way.
Families with older children and teenagers who fancy fishing should consider Luna Pesca who take families out on supervised fishing trips either in the waters just off Marbella or deep sea fishing. Everything from Mediterranean Marlin to Red Snapper can be found and you’ll be in the hands of experts so perfect if you’ve never done anything like this before.
If you want to take the water but either can’t, or don’t fancy, sailing yourself, Classic Charters will happily take your whole family out on a beautiful and fully crewed yacht who do everything from skippering to cooking.
Jet ski hire, parasailing, waterskiing, dolphin-spotting tours, kayaking and even peddle-boat hire – if it’s available on the water and you or the children are keen to get involved, Watersports Marbella can arrange it. They are also an excellent option for yacht chartering.
Dial 092 for local police and 061 for an ambulance. The three main hospitals in Marbella are USP Hospital Marbella on Avda. Severo Ochoa, 22 (+34 952 774 200), Costa del Sol Hospital on Autovía A-7 Km 187 (+34 951 976 669 or +34 951 976 670) and Hosptien Estepona on Partido de Velerin Ctra: Nacional 340, Km 162 in Estepona, (+34 952 760 600). USP Hospital Marbella has a pediatric department.
When to go
Any time of year in Marbella is lovely, but go outside the prime summer months and you’ll find a far less crowded and calmer version. Easter, though popular, is a lovely time to escape endless winter weather with the area’s warmer climes and spring feel. Christmas is quiet but, again, delightful. If you consider going between March and the end of September we suggest you book accommodation far in advance. Marbella festival is held for a week over the end of February and early March and it’s a time when locals and tourists alike dress up in carnival-esque clothing and party in the streets. Children adore it. The annual Marbella Fair takes place in early June and it’s another wonderful family option to consider; it is held mainly on the local fairgrounds on Avenida Las Albarizas and Calle Platino on the east side of town.