By Sally Harrison
CHILCHES is not easy to find. This small village, situated between Benajarafe and Rincon de la Victoria, is about 12km from Malaga.
There is a beach, but the village itself is inland, just over the motorway and up in the hills.
Once there, the 17th century church of Immaculate Conception that sits proudly in the Plaza de Constitution, next to the deputy mayor’s office, is worth a visit.
Since the streets around it are quite narrow, it is probably best to park further away and take a stroll up through the village.
Chilches used to have two towers, but around 1492 they were divided between noblemen who had fought in conquest of Granada – among them the Marquis Garci Fernandez Manrique and the Count Manrique de Lara.
During one of the battles, the inland tower was destroyed, leaving just the coastal one which we can see today.
Chilches playa is a long stretch of beach with very little on it except a small lawned area with palm trees and a lifeguard’s lookout tower.
There are a couple of good seafood restaurants and a kiosk selling ice-cream and drinks.
In summer the beach is filled with Spaniards vacationing and sitting in the shade under their gazebo tents or multi-coloured parasols. It is a lively scene, and the smell of fresh fish cooking lures you in from the road.
For the energetic the beach is excellent for running, or just taking a stroll with the sea lapping at your ankles.
If you want to walk your dog, make sure you do it very early in the morning and take plenty of plastic pooper scooper bags.