CONDE Nast Traveler has revealed 2024’s top destinations in Spain and Portugal and three Andalucian towns have made the list. 

Andalucia is well known for it’s picturesque white washed houses, nature and traditional cuisine so its no surprise elite travel magazine Conde Nast Traveler has highlighted three of the region’s towns, but which ones has it chosen for it’s must see list?

Aracena y Picos de Aroche, Huelva

Photo: Ayuntamiento de Aracena y Antonio J. de la Cerda/Facebook

‘A pure Andalucian town where you’ll dream of retiring’, Aracena is a rural escape found in Northern Huelva. 

The fact that Aracena receives the most rainfall in Spain shouldn’t put you off visiting. If it weren’t for the rain, the area wouldn’t have the lush verdant countryside which makes it a beautiful destination throughout the year. 

Luxury perfumers come from all over the world to extract their scents from the paths of Aracena, so taking a stroll here is a delight for all the senses. 

Champions of sustainable tourism, you can explore the area’s many mountain paths together with expert guides.

Aracena is perfect for exploring nature’s wonders with the impressive Gruta de las Maravillas caves and bird watching opportunities. 

Nearby, Alajar has an astonishing cave system and sweeping miradors from the Peña de Arias Montano.  

Meanwhile, the Castillo de Aracena and Iglesia Prior de Nuestra Señora del Mayor Dolor will transport you back in time with their sweeping arches, arabic features and dramatic vistas. 

An epicentre of Andalucian cuisine, Aracena is known as the ‘home of Iberian ham’ and has a museum dedicated to the delicacy. 

To get a taste of fresh Andalucian cuisine, head to Meson Arrieros, Mesón el Roble or Fina Alfoliz. 

If you’re staying overnight, don’t miss Finca la Fronda or La Posada San Marcos. Dedicated to sustainable tourism, both have earnt the European Union’s ecological label. 

Marbella, Malaga

Marbella’s streets are lined with flowers. Photo by Vishnu Patel on Unsplash

‘Enviable climate, unstoppable gastronomy and some of the best hotels in the world with more to come’, Marbella has always attracted the elite.

Once the preferred holiday spot for millionaires and movie stars, Marbella is now becoming popular with international tourists. 

The cobbled streets lined with flowers are a pleasure to explore at any time of the year as boho shops, tapas bars and restaurants spill out into the alleyways. 

Visitors can enjoy a beer and people watch in the Casco Antiguo or catch a stunning sunset at the port.

While the town attracts visitors, the area is most well known for its exclusive hotel and leisure offering. 

The chic Marbella Club and Puente Romano Beach Resort are legendary for their luxury and hedonism.

Finca Cortesin, in nearby Casares, offers comfort and calm in one of Andalucia’s famous white washed towns. 

Conde Nast continues to highlight the area’s hotel offering, recommending Don Carlos Hotel & Spa, Don Pepe Gran Meliá, Boho Club, Hard Rock Marbella and Anantara Villa Padierna Benahavis Marbella Resort. 

The future looks bright for Marbella, as Traveler also praised two fresh venues: La Fonda Heritage Hotel and El Fuerte, as well as the upcoming W Marbella and Four Seasons. 

Granada, Sierra Nevada

Granada is full of history and culture. Photo by Jorge Fernández Salas on Unsplash

A long time tourist favourite, Granada returns to Conde Nast’s list this year in celebration of the beauty and history which have captivated so many travellers. 

According to the magazine: “No one leaves Granada emotionally unscathed after strolling through its neighborhoods, exploring its streets and watching life go by from its viewpoints.”

They cite famous writers like Francisco Garcia Lorca, Ernest Hemingway and William Shakespeare, all of whom passed through Granada’s maze-like streets and left inspired. 

Of course, tourists must visit the emblematic Alhambra, but those who stay within its walls risk missing the other jewels in Granada’s crown. 

The city is home to a dramatic cathedral, enchanting miradors and neighbourhoods which transport you back in time. 

The Albaicin, like the Alhambra, is a UNESCO world heritage site where you can catch a beautiful view of the fortress while listening to soft Spanish guitar. 

Visitors can lose themselves in the winding streets of Sacramonte, passing through Calle Elvira and Caldereria Nueva. 

The area has also recently upgraded its luxury offering, with the opening of five star hotel Seda Club Hotel and Michelin star restaurant La Finca. 

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