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Competa, lying in the Sierra Almijara north-east of Malaga, is a very attractive village, its whitewashed walls gleam in the sunshine against a backdrop of verdant hills. Competa is surrounded by national park and nature reserves making it a wonderful base for ramblers. Only a half hour drive from the coast, holidaymakers can also enjoy the sand and the sea while benefitting from a peaceful inland base. The area around Competa has one of the best climates in Spain with an average of three hundred and twenty days of sunshine each year. Although the valleys are fertile the annual rainfall is low. A Competa holiday offers a relaxing break in an area of great natural beauty, where you can bask in the warmth of the sunshine as well as in local hospitality.
Located away from the bustle of the popular coastal resorts yet close enough to enjoy a day by the sea, Competa combines the best of both worlds. Here you can enjoy the traditional atmosphere found in the village and explore its historic centre, take walks in the national parks, play a round of golf at a nearby course or enjoy the beaches with their golden sands, warm water and provision of water sports.
A Competa holiday appeals to a variety of ages and interests with the exception of young singles looking for lively evenings, and families with small children who usually prefer to be closer to the sandy beaches of the Costa del Sol. Golfers can find a choice of courses in the area and ramblers can enjoy many beautiful walking trails; those with an interest in the past can explore the many historic sites littering the area.
Competa is a year round holiday venue with hot summers and warm winters. Summer is not the most popular time for walkers as the heat of the sun can be rather intense. Early and late season are better times for rambling.
At a height of seven hundred metres above sea level, Competa benefits from stunning views with mountains and valleys and the distant Mediterranean Sea. The population of the village remains stable as many northern Europeans have chosen to settle here to enjoy the clemency of the weather. Competa is an important wine growing area and there is an annual wine festival in August, a lively affair with traditional music and Flamenco dancing.
The village is typically whitewashed with tiled roofs. Many of the houses have ornate balconies and window grills and the narrow streets are adorned with vibrant pots of flowers. The main square, Plaza Almijara, has a number of pavement cafes where you can sit in the shade and enjoy the view of the sixteenth century church.
The fertile valleys around Competa are filled with olive groves, citrus orchards, vines and all manner of fruits and vegetables. The national park and nature reserve Sierra Almijara is extensive, with many forest trails for walkers or bikers. There are two eighteen hole golf courses that are within easy reach by car and the coast is also accessible.
To make the most of your Competa holiday, car hire is recommended.
The nightlife in Competa is fairly low key with evenings spent wandering its charming streets and alleyways, enjoying local hospitality in the company of friends. There are some excellent restaurants serving mainly traditional food.
Competa has good shopping facilities with supermarkets for essential provisions as well as the many small shops hidden among the narrow winding streets. Popular buys include traditional handmade items such as hand carved kitchen utensils, pottery leather goods, embroidered linens and articles woven from grasses.
Competa has some fine restaurants serving traditional Spanish dishes as well as international cuisine. Menus include traditional local dishes including Garbanzo stew typical of the mountainous regions, as well as paella, tortillas, tapas and chorizo. A good way to try Spanish food is to order a plate of tapas which consists of a medley of bite-sized dishes. Tapas are also ideal for filling the sometimes long gap between lunch and dinner, which is served later in Spain than at home. Spanish wines are pleasant and inexpensive.
Children are always made very welcome in Spanish restaurants and their tastes and portion sizes are usually accommodated.