When you have teenagers, deciding what to eat at home can be tricky enough – let alone when you are on a family getaway! It is likely that the teens will not share your enthusiasm for sampling local cuisine – instead they’ll be on the hunt for burger and chips – so you will want to find a destination that caters to all tastes. In addition to this, you will need to find a family-friendly restaurant where you will all be well looked after.
So, where is somewhere that ticks all of these boxes? The pretty resort town of Nerja, on Spain’s sunny Costa del Sol, has many fantastic restaurants and eateries that will tempt their taste buds as well as mum and dad’s. Another reason that I recommend this as a destination is the fact that Spain is well known for welcoming kids of all ages and encourages family dining.
There are a handful of places serving up all kinds of great food, but here is the pick of the bunch:
Located on Plaza Fabrica de los Cangrejos overlooking the square and the ocean, this charming restaurant has a welcoming atmosphere and is very popular with families. It is easy to see why, as the menu is wide ranging and will appeal to all tastes.
I highly recommend introducing your kids to the classic, comforting, Spanish dish of paella here – this is a dish that almost everybody seems to love! The steak in pepper sauce is another great pick that will appeal to any meat-eater, plus it comes with a healthy serving of chips and plenty of vegetables – yummy and healthy!
Many guests have also commented on the value for money, as the servings are generous but the prices are affordable – perfect!
Vitaliano da Christina
You can never go wrong with pizza and particularly if you are travelling with teenagers! Vitaliano da Christina is an Italian restaurant overlooking La Torrecilla beach – an ideal spot for a family dinner after a fun afternoon on the beach. If possible, get a table on the terrace for fabulous ocean views.
The family-friendly restaurant has many tasty pizzas, including classic and more alternative toppings, so even a fussy eater should be more than happy here.
Tip: I would recommend to mum and dad that they try the homemade pasta, which the restaurant is famous for.
There are various Italian sauces to choose from, all of which smell Devine and taste just as delicious poured over a plate and accompanied by a glass of red. Finish off your meal with one of the traditional Italian homemade desserts and you will find yourself coming back for more before the end of your trip.
As mentioned, if you want to encourage your kids to sample local cuisine then paella is absolutely the way to go – you will struggle to find a meal more satisfying, flavoursome and comforting than this. Chringuito is famous for its gigantic portions of delicious paella, which is prepared over a wood fire under a thatched roof for the entire day – this also means that you never have to wait long for a plate!
I also like this eatery because it is located on Burriana Beach, which means that there is a cool, friendly and laid back atmosphere with unbeatable views of the ocean. Thanks to the thatched roof, you can also escape the sun – so head here for a spot of lunch on a beach day.
When it comes to dining with teenagers on your family holiday (or even at home), casual is the name of the game. Little Italy is the definition of casual, but the food here is exceptional. There are two locations – one on Calle Carabeo and the other on Calle Pintada (both in the town centre). Both feature an indoor seating area, as well as a small street terrace which is ideal for people watching.
Little Italy, unsurprisingly, specialises in traditional Italian cuisine. This means that your teens can stuff their faces with pizza, whilst you can sample the delicious pasta dishes (Tortellini is fantastic!), seafood or meat, or join the kids!. There is also a Take-Away option if you want to chill out and eat at home.
Many guests comment on the value of money, with dishes available from as little as €3.50 whilst a bottle of red starts at just €5.
Insider Tip: A fun, delicious and adventurous way to encourage your clan to expand their culinary horizons is with Tapas Runs. This involves visiting a number of bars together and sharing tapas – it is also a great way to soak up the atmosphere of the area and tick off a number of establishments.
You have a few options of airports to fly into from London, but I would go with Malaga airport (AGP) as it is the closest to the resort and the flight is made by a range of budget carriers, including easyJet, Monarch and Ryanair.
The flight to Malaga will take around 3 hours and Nerja is around 75km from the airport. Instead of the stress of hailing a cab or using public transportation, jump in a pre-booked and fixed price Shuttle Direct transfer and you will arrive in a little under an hour.
Where to Stay:
Hotel Plaza Cavana – Just 100 metres from the beach, this family-friendly hotel is set in the heart of the action but also has plenty of facilities to keep you all happy. There is an outdoor pool (and pool snack bar) on the rooftop terrace and a buffet restaurant, whilst the bright and spacious rooms come with air-con, private bathrooms and a television. Some have a balcony. The free Wi-Fi zone allows the teenagers to catch up with friends and upload all their snaps online. The great location and helpful staff are two aspects that many previous guests have commented highly on.
Toboso Apar-Turis – Set right on the beachfront and just 2 minutes from the lively square with plenty of shops, restaurants etc., Toboso Apar-Turis makes it very easy to get out and explore each day. The complex boasts an outdoor pool, heated indoor pool, sauna, gym, and a range of eating and drinking options. The rooms also have a kitchen which comes in very handy for those irrepressible munches, as well as air-con, en-suite bathrooms and a lounge. The Wi-Fi is free and rated as excellent – phew!
Parador de Nerja – This hotel offers direct lift access to Burriana Beach (remember to try the paella!) and provides amazing views of Costa del Sol due to its cliff-top location. You are also just a 5-minute walk from the town centre and this location is one of highest rated aspects according to previous guests. Additionally, the wide range of dishes at the hotel restaurant means that you do not have to travel far for a good meal. The hotel also features an outdoor pool, tennis courts and free Wi-Fi. The rooms come with air-con, TVs and a balcony.
About Shuttle Direct:
Want to avoid queuing for cabs or the headache of public transportation upon arrival? We can’t blame you, which is why we suggest booking a fixed price transfer with Shuttle Direct. As one of Europe’s leading transfer providers, you know that you are in safe hands with our friendly local drivers, who will be waiting at the airport to get your holiday off to a smooth start.
Book today and our expert team will handle the logistics.