Atol Protected ATOL Protected Holidays

Cheap Istan Holidays

Find information on Istan in our Travel Guide covering sights, foods and nightlife plus more...

Istan Introduction

Istan is a pretty Andalusian village fifteen kilometres from Marbella. It lies in an area of great natural beauty beneath the Sierra Blanca in the valley of the river Verde. It is close to the large reservoir which was created when the Presa de la Concepcion Dam was built in the early seventies to provide water for the growing number of towns and resorts in the Costa del Sol. Istan was founded by the Moors in the fourteenth century when they were defeated by the Christians and had to retreat from Arboto Castle. There are a number of fine old buildings in the village. An Istan holiday offers peaceful relaxation in an area of outstanding beauty with stunning views towards the coast. It benefits from being a short car ride from the sea with its sandy beaches and warm clear water.

Why Go To Istan?

An Istan holiday offers peace and relaxation in a beautiful mountain village where you can enjoy its traditional atmosphere and bask in the warmth, not only of the sun but in the welcoming hospitality of the local people. Here you have the choice of exploring the surrounding countryside, playing a round of golf at a nearby course, sailing or fishing on the reservoir, or enjoying the beaches with their golden sands and warm clear waters providing a variety of water sports.

An Istan holiday appeals mainly to couples. Although there are beautiful beaches nearby, families with small children usually prefer to be nearer the sea. Those interested in non-powered water sports will find the reservoir is the perfect place for sailing, canoeing and fishing. The area is very popular with walkers and cyclists.

When To Go To Istan

Although Istan is a year round holiday venue, the summer holiday period is probably the most popular time to go, with guaranteed sunshine. Many choose to visit Istan in the winter in order to escape the dreary, dark days at home.

Istan - The Place

Only twenty minutes from the bustling resort of Marbella, Istan is an oasis of peace and tranquillity in the hills beneath the Sierra Blanca. It is a small friendly village, unspoiled by tourism, with a population of less than two thousand. The steep, narrow winding streets were not built for the motor car and the village must be explored on foot. Whitewashed houses gleam in the sunshine, their doorways filled with pots of brilliant red flowers and with blossom cascading from their balconies. The streets contain many small shops and cafes and there are shady squares where you can enjoy refreshments in the pavement bars and cafes.

The hills surrounding the village provide opportunities for hiking, cycling, rock climbing, horseback riding, hang-gliding and jeep safaris. The reservoir permits non-powered water sports.

The beaches in Marbella have lovely thick golden sand perfect for the construction of castles or other more complex sculptures. Water sports including jet skiing, sailing, fishing and scuba diving are all available.

Many people come to this area for the golf and there are a number of excellent courses close by. Remember to bring your handicap certificate as this is usually a course requirement.

In order to make the most of your Istan holiday, car hire is recommended.

Istan Nightlife

The nightlife in Istan is very low key reflecting the popularity of the resort with couples. Evenings are spent wandering its charming streets and alleyways, enjoying local hospitality in the company of friends. There are some excellent restaurants serving mainly traditional food. If livelier nights are required, drive to Marbella and experience its clubs, discos, show bars and casinos many of which remain open until the early hours of the morning.

Istan Shopping

The narrow streets of Istan have many small craft shops where the goods are made by local people. These include pottery, embroidered linens, basketry and jewellery. In addition there are the usual numbers of gift and souvenir shops where holiday makers can purchase their mementoes. There are no large supermarkets in the village. Those looking for a wider choice of goods can take the short journey to Marbella. Here, the renowned Golden Mile is full of elegant boutiques where you will find the latest fashions. The tiny shops in the narrow streets of the old town delight shoppers with their range of often unusual goods. Puerto Banus is also known for its excellent shopping opportunities.

Istan Eating

Istan has a number of good restaurants serving mainly traditional food. Fish features prominently on menus with many sumptuous dishes waiting to be enjoyed. 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.

Children are always made very welcome in Spanish restaurants and their tastes and portion sizes are usually accommodated.

Spanish wines are pleasant and inexpensive.