There are many boats and yachts which offer dolphin trips at Puerto Deportivo. The prices vary from 10-15 euros for an hour, depending on it being high- or low season. But if you go there just before they leave for the last journey you can get a good price - we got 2 for 1. There are several drinks included in this price so it was not too bad, 7,5 euros for an hour´s boat trips with free drinks :D
They also offer 2 hours, full days and private events.
You can choose between sitting inside or sunbathing on a mattress at the front of the boat. We opted for the mattress - which gave us an extra adventure. The sea was calm at the Puerto Deportivo but as we left for the open sea it started getting rough and we got quite a ride and got totally soaked, screaming as we hit the big waves - but afterwards it was totally worth it. But we saw no dolphins, which of course is not guaranteed. I will go back!
Castillo de Bil-Bil is located by the Paseo Maritimo in Benalmádena, right by Playa de Bil-Bil :) It has got distinct Arabic influences. It is a Cultural center (Centro Cultural) and hosts exhibitions from the town hall.
In the garden there is a statue of the famous botanist and pharmacist Ibn-al-Baytar who was born 1197 in Benalmádena and died 1248 in Damascus.
A wonderful way for a family to spend the day is at SEA-LIFE AQUARIUM BENALMADENA.
New for 2008 is Medusas Jellyfish. With their primitive anatomy, there are few animals more intriguing than jellyfish. Did you know that jellyfish are more than 95% water and have no heart, no bones and no brain! Yet they are hauntingly beautiful.
One of the first things you come across is Rocky Depths (Fondos Rocosos), then it's the Ray Tank (Tanque de Rayes) - fascinating creatures aren't they!
Next was my favourite - the Nursery (Guarderia) - all the babies.
Then came the Interactive Zone, the Jellyfish and the Turtle Reef (Arrecife de Tortugas).
Amazonia, Tropical Lagoon (Laguna Tropical) Tropical Reef (Arrecife Tropical) and Discover Nemo.
Admission is 11 Euros. Brochures with discount coupons can be found in various shops,hotels and the tourist info center.
On a lovely, sunny afternoon, there is nothing better to do in Benalmadena Costa, than to take a STROLL ALONG PASEO DE LAS ISLAS. You can have your pick of many ice-cream kiosks, many shops and boutiques, terraces galore. The idea is to see and be seen. You will see local families with their children dressed up so cute. Perhaps you would like to buy some "day old bread" and feed the fish in the waters of the Marina.
Hans and I picked a lovely day to visit Benalmadena and there were many out doing the same. I enjoyed snooping in many of the little shops and boutiques. Prices were a little steeper here than in Torremolinos, for the same things.
Now that I have added tips on the Paseo Maritimo and the beaches and marina I just wanted to add some pictures of the main street in Benalmádena, Avenuda Antonio Machado. That street runs straight from Torremolinos, as Benalmádena and Torremolinos are adjacent, and there would be no telling where one town ends and the other town begins if it weren't for the sign with Benalmádena on one side and Torremolinos on the other side (I added a photo of the sign).
On Avenuda Antonio Machado, which runs through the town of Benalmádena, parallel to the beaches, there are a lot of shops, restaurants and supermarkets, hotels and bars along with some discotheques.
The Paseo Maritimo promenade is extraordinary. All along the promenade all the way down to Playa Santa Ana there is beautiful art-work in the pavement, you literally walk on it. I just wanted to add this tip here with the pictures of some of the art-work, as this is the most beautiful Paseo Maritimo I have ever been to and would not want to miss out walking there. Absolutely lovely :D
The Paseo Maritimo - the promenade in Benalmádena is just wonderful, with a lot of artwork along the way (see my next tip). There are shops and restaurants all along the promenade, it is quite a lovely walk and at night the night-life is very lifely, with artist and painters and lots of stall with things for sale.
The beaches at Benalmádena stretch all the way down to Fuengirola, I have only been down to the casino though, but the beaches I've been to are lovely. The beaches closest to the marina are called Playa de Arroyo de la Miel y Los Melilleros. Then there are Playa Santa Ana and Playa de Bil-Bil. A lot of shells on these beaches :D
The yacht-marina, Puerto Deportivo, at Benalmadena opened in 1982 and has on several occasions been awarded "The Best Marina in the World".
It is such a magical place and looks like a small Arabic town with its whitish yellow houses. It is buzzing with life and has got a great night-life, in one part there are lots of discos, bars and international and local restaurants. In another part there are shops, boutiques, cafés, the Aquarium Sea-life, street-vendors etc. There are a lot of activities for the kids there as well and a small train which takes you around the streets of the marina.
From the marina you can catch several boats, be it a ride on a pirate ship, a 2-hour-dolphin trip with Joven Maria II and parasending to name some.
I have added more pictures from the marina in a travelogue.
There are many fun things to do at the marina in Benalmádena, one of them is feeding the fish in the harbour in Puerto Deportivo. While walking there you can spot a lot of big fish swimming there around the yachts. Try feeding them and if you thought you had seen many fish before, then you are in for a surprise. They will almost jump out of the water and fight for the bread.
There is one café/ice-shop which sells bread especially for the fish, Chiringuito la Torre, and one bag full of bread is 1 Euro.
I just loved my visit to Aquarium Sea-life by the marina! There are just so many fish to see, and I pay Sea-life a visit every time I visit Costa del Sol. My favourite is the glass tunnel you walk through with sharks and sea-turtles swimming over your head. And the sea-horses, they are very lovely. I am a bit of an animal-nut so I am very easily impressed by all the various kinds of fish on display. And it doesn't hurt that Sea-life is committed to marine conservation.
It is open all year round from 10 a.m. and there are many discount tickets you can get, f.ex. 2 for 1, 2 Euros off, 4 Euros and 5 Euros off, so before visiting and paying the entrance fee of ca 11 Euros, find these discount tickets at your hotel or the information centers. I found 4 Euros off at the hotel and the Bus-terminal, but on my way to Sea-life I came across a discount ticket for 5 Euros off at one shop in Torremolinos.
A marine mammal, fish and bird park. The main attraction is the dolphin show, with the sea lion and seal show on a good second. there is also a snake show and a bird show. All worth the trip and the money.
As of the summer 2008, the price was €16,50 and children under 7 less.
You can have your picture taken with a dolphin, but reservations should be made early at the photo office as there are only room for a few each day.
To catch all the shows you should make a whole day of it and come before noon.
Good parking near the entrance.
See my Benalmadena video here!!
I was pleasantly surprised by the harbour which is surrounded by LOTS of bars and restaurants. There is a lot more money here than in my Cadiz! Nothing is old it's all very modern. I only spent a night and a day so I didn't see very much.
We ate in an Italian restaurant by the harbour which was very good with polite staff.
The Tivoli Amusement park is located in Arroyo de la Miel a complex within the Benalmadena town limits. Tivoli world has been the only amusement park of its kind on the costa del sol for more than 20 years now.
Tivoli has Flamenco dancing shows, Wild West shows, Live music, Restaurants and
The cable car journey takes about 12 minutes to get to the summit of Mount Calamorro, nearly 800 metres above sea-level.
At the top there are fantastic views of Benalmadena, Malaga to east and Fuengirola to the west. On a clear day you can apparently see Gibraltar and North Africa.
Also at the summit there are falconry displays (weather permitting) and horse-riding exhibitions.
marble floor comes from an eighteenth century boat which sank with its cargo just off the coast, and the museum has an impressive collection of pre-Columbus and Neolithic pieces gathered from the surrounding area.