Marbella, Spain

Marbella, Spain: Markets, Beaches and Dining

Day Three in Marbella

We had big plans for our third day in Marbella: explore the Monday morning market, lay on the beach for hours, get beachfront Thai massages, rent a bike/waterslide contraption to play with in the sea, eat more paella and enjoy more sangria. I’m happy to report that we ticked nearly all of those boxes.

After a mid-morning start, we took a stroll through Marbella to the Monday morning market. The market was a perfect stop for a few hours of exploration: stall after stall of clothing, random trinkets, shoes, fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts. The fruit and vegetable area was a bit reminiscent of the Spice Bazaar in Turkey with a number of vendors selling mostly the same fare. After about thirty minutes of exploring, we headed back to the beach to spend the rest of the day soaking up some sun.

Gorgeous beaches - where we spent our lives for three days!

The beaches are dotted with vendors selling trinkets and tchotchkes: knock-off purses, sunglasses and watches, alongside of masseuses offering inexpensive massages. Though we wrote them off the first two days, we decided that Monday was a perfect day to partake in some beachside relaxation. For €10 each, we each got a twenty minute massage (more like fifteen, really), courtesy of a friendly set of Thai sisters.

Afterwards, we grabbed lunch at our favorite restaurant thus far, Restaurant Ole. No surprise here: our order was avocado and prawn salad plus a pitcher of sangria that proved to be a much better incarnation than the sangria we had on our first day there. Wonderful food and a perfect way to ‘re-energize’ for more beach time. After a few more hours of laying out, reading and napping on the beach, we headed home to get cleaned up for our final night in the city.

Linds & I in Marbella <3

For our last evening, we decided to check out a restaurant recommended by our concierge, La Venencia. The restaurant was close to our hotel which made it a convenient dinner stop. The service was friendly, the sangria was fruity and the tapas were well-priced. We grabbed paella for our last night in town (surprised?) and enjoyed it with our second liter of sangria for the evening. Filled with paella and sangria, the waiter approached us to let us know that a gentleman from across the bar wanted to buy us drinks. We looked over to discover a 65+ year old American-turned-Marbellan man at the bar with his wife. After ordering G&Ts, this guy (we’ll call him Don Johnson as an homage to his outfit) approached us to chat.

The conversation went from semi-normal to bizarrely weird in about ten seconds flat. He asked us where we lived and how we were making money. He also let us know that we could stay with him if we were in Marbella and that he had loads of men to hook us up with. He gave us his business cards and we couldn’t help but feel as though we were being invited to join some kind of escort service… we Googled him and his ‘company’ but they were nowhere to be found. UNGOOGLABLE. I’ve never heard of such a thing. In any case, we assumed that whatever kind of operation he was running, it was sketchy at best. Plus his shiny gold-foiled business card was a bit off-putting. In any case, we finished our drinks, headed home and said our goodbyes to Marbella. After three fun days, it all had to come to an end and I can’t even tell you how many thoughts were running through my mind. I was mostly thinking of any way possible to be able to stay just a few more days. Sunshine, you are missed.

Love from London,

More about Shannon Kircher

Shannon Kircher is the founder and editor of The Wanderlust Effect. Founded in 2009, she has continued to document her international escapes as an expat in Europe and the Caribbean. Additionally, Shannon is the founder of Compass & Vine, a luxury boutique travel design firm, and is the Director of Marketing for the Frangipani Beach Resort. Shannon holds an MSc in Social Policy and Development from the London School of Economics and is a current candidate for WSET Level 3 in Wines & Spirits.