Once known as Narixa when Muslim rule came to the Axarquia region of Spain in 711, Nerja was a tiny fishing community.
Nerja became famous for its production of textiles, employing around 13,000 people when the catholic Kings arrived in 1487 and change came to the region. Although Muslims continue to live in the area, the Christian and Jewish communities grew.
All non-Muslims were then ordered to convert to Christianity or leave the Kingdom, leaving the area very sparsely populated by the start of the 16th Century.
Northern Spaniards from Asturias, Valencia and Galicia came to the area and re-populated the town of Nerja. A threat of Islamic remained and canons were placed in the Torre de los Guardas – now the Balcon de Europa.
In 1567 the battle of the Moorish rebellion of the Alpujarras in Competa marked the end of hostilities in the region and Nerja began to grow.
La Torrecilla was built in Nerja to spot pirates off shore, and the ruins can still be seen today on the western edge of Torrecilla Beach.
The first sugar factory in Spain was built in 1697, near Nerja, followed by the completion of the chapel ‘Ermita de las Angustias’ in 1720.
In the 19th Century road building from Nerja linked both Malaga and Almeria with the town, bringing with it financial benefits to the local population of 8,000 people.
In 1884, Nerja was rocked by an earthquake which caused significant damages to the town and the town’s fortunes. More tough years followed during the civil war in Spain until the discovery of the Nerja Caves.
The incredible Nerja Caves are the third most visited monument in Spain, and are officially recognised for their historical and artistic importance. The caves were discovered by accident in the 1959 by five local lads who were bat-hunting, and date back some five million years. Large chambers are filled with superb rock formations, including the world´s largest stalactite. The caves stretch over 4,000m. Theatre seating has been built into the caverns, and concerts are staged throughout the summer months.
Properties for sale in Nerja include townhouses, villas and apartments – popular with ex-pats for holiday homes and permanent residences.
A former Arabic fortress, the Balcón de Europa, or the Balcony of Europe, is one of the most famous landmarks in Nerja. Situated at the end of a tree-lined boulevard on a rocky ridge, the Balcón de Europa offers stunning views over the Mediterranean Sea, the mountains of the Sierra Almijara and over the city of Nerja. Visitors can enjoy breath-taking sunset or sunrise views.
Tapas can be enjoyed in most of the cafés and bars of Nerja, and are often served free with a drink. Whether you are looking for traditional tapas, including chorizo, ham and cheese, spicy sausage or a seafood paella, you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing a restaurant for lunch or dinner.
Seafront properties in Nerja are among the most sought-after holiday homes in Nerja.
If you are visiting Nerja in summer, a trek along the Rio Chillar is a great way to keep cool. Refreshing streams, shady rocks and waterfalls make this one of the most interesting walks in Nerja. The walk is around 7km in length, and starts in Calle Picasso next to the sports park. It is advisable to wear comfy shoes, and to take your swimming gear. You will also find some great places on route to stop and enjoy a picnic.
Properties for sale in Nerja
Properties for sale in Nerja offer excellent rental and investment potential.