This post is also available in: Español (Spanish)
This article was updated June 28, 2022.
In the summer months, the gays go rushing to this seaside town just outside of Málaga to layout and soak up the sun, especially during their annual events like Torremolinos Pride, Mad Bear Beach Weekend, Delice Dream and Wonder Beach Festival. There are three gay beaches to pick from, the most popular being El Gato/Eden Beach where you’ll find beautiful views of all the beautiful men. It’s easy to get to from the center of town and popular for visitors and locals.
Torremolinos was a gay hotspot that started in the 1960s when its first gay bar opened. Today, it may seem a little outdated as the 60’s and 70’s style is largely still present, but its relevance to the LGBT+ community remains strong as many gays continue to head there during the warmer months or for popular LGBT+ events. Some go to relax on the warm sandy beaches, to party in the gayborhood of La Nogalera or for shopping along the pedestrian street of Calle San Miguel. Whatever your interests may be, here are some reasons why this former fishing village in the south of Spain is worth checking out.
Table of Contents
1. General Tips
2. Transportation & Airport Transfer
3. Gay Hotels in Torremolinos
4. Sightseeing & Activities in Torremolinos
5. Gay Shows in Torremolinos
6. Restaurants & Cafes in Torremolinos
7. Torremolinos Gay Bars
8. Torremolinos City Gay Clubs & Parties
9. Torremolinos Gay Saunas & Cruising Bars
10. Torremolinos Gay Beach
11. Gay Events in Torremolinos
12. Day Trips from Torremolinos
Located just west of Malaga in Andalusia, the city experiences a subtropical, Mediterranean climate providing mild winters followed by hot summers. Plenty of year-round sunshine makes it an ideal place for vacation and breezes from the sea keep the summer heat tolerable. It’s the perfect place to get a great tan and enjoy some outdoor activities. Torremolinos is well known as one of the most gay-friendly cities in Spain and you'll see a large representation of both LGBT+ visitors and locals.
Transportation & Airport Transfer
Visitors to Torremolinos will most likely first arrive in Malaga by air or train. From airport terminal 3, you simply take the Cercanias train in the direction of Fuengirola. The Malaga airport is actually located between Malaga and Torremolinos and the journey takes just 10 minutes. After 5 stops, you’ll arrive at the main train station in Torremolinos, which is centrally located in Plaza de la Nogalera. If you are coming by train from Malaga you will take the same route, only starting from Malaga’s main train station María Zambrano. The ride is about 20 minutes. Once you arrive in Torremolinos you should be able to get around on foot as the town is small and almost everything is within a 15-20 minute walk maximum. Taxis are inexpensive as well and can drive you if you are traveling a bit further or don’t want to walk.
Gay Hotels in Torremolinos
Hotel Ritual Torremolinos – a gay hotel with a unique concept. With direct access to Bajondillo beach, the center of Torremolinos and the Nogalera district, the hotel is perfectly located. Fully refurbished, you can enjoy sea views, sauna, spa, and infinity pool in the nudist area with a rooftop bar.
Meliá Costa de Sol – Located in the center of Torremolinos, Melia Costa del Sol is just a 10-minute walk to El Gato/Eden Beach, the most popular gay beach of Torremolinos. The property has a great outdoor terrace and bar as well as an outdoor pool, gym and a luxury spa with a sauna and Turkish steam bath. Guests can dine at one of several onsite restaurants.
Hotel Fénix – This 4-star property is located in the heart of Torremolinos. Amenities include a day spa, as well as a Jacuzzi, an outdoor pool and sauna. The hotel is for adults only and is a great option if you want to avoid families with children. The hotel is just a 10-minute walk to the beach.
Hotel el Pozo – this modern guest house is centrally located and just a 10-minute walk to the beach. Guests can enjoy a book from the onsite library or rent a bike from the front desk to explore the seafront.
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Sightseeing & Activities in Torremolinos
Torremolinos is primarily a beach resort town and there aren't many historic sights or monuments. For those looking to do a bit more sightseeing, you'll want to take the train to Malaga, which is just a 20-minute ride to the center of town. Torremolinos has better beaches but Malaga definitely has more history, landmarks and monuments.
Al Andalus Hammam (Malaga) – experience the deeply relaxing experience of a traditional Hamma on this 90-minute visit to the Al Andalus Hammam in the heart of Malaga's historic city center. Enjoy hot, cold, and warm baths, the steam room, and plenty of time to relax with a mint tea. Get tickets →
Food Tour (Malaga) – on this amazing Malaga Food tour, you will discover the most interesting parts of the city center while tasting the best local dishes. Enjoy local cuisines, such as fried anchovies, Manchego cheese, Serrano ham, tortilla de patatas, wine, and more. Book tour →
La Punta de Torremolinos – a small little cliff point that separates the north side of the city known as El Bajondillo from the south side known as La Carihuela. This area was a former fishing village in Torremolinos until tourism started booming in the 1950s bringing about many restaurants, shops and hotels. The most common dish to get here is definitely “pescaíto frito” or small fried fish. This is also a great area to relax on the beach also called La Carihuela Beach with just over 2 kilometers of coastline. Though little remains of the traditional looking old quarters, La Carihuela is still a cute area to take a stroll, visit some shops and enjoy a nice meal by the beach.
Gay Shows in Torremolinos
Guapatini’s Show Bar – Torremolinos has one of the funniest and most spectacular drag shows hosted by a local who hails from the UK. Guapatini is live singing, comedy drag entertainment that you’ll surely enjoy. The show starts at 8:30pm and is a fun and gay activity to do while you're in town.
Restaurants & Cafes in Torremolinos
Eden Beach Club – this is the most popular gay gathering place located along the beach of Torremolinos. The club offers an onsite restaurant serving both lunch and dinner as well as drinks and cocktails all day long. The beachside club is all outdoor dining and they offer daybeds for rent along the beach. During the peak summer months, Eden offers live DJs in the evenings until late. This is the place to be in Torremolinos in the afternoons and early evening.
El Gato Lounge – this outdoor terrace restaurant is located just next to the gay beach and Eden Beach club. The atmosphere is welcoming and gay-friendly and the restaurant serves a mix of Asian and Mediterranean cuisine for lunch and dinner. This is perhaps the 2nd most popular beach club for LGBT+ visitors given its proximity to the gay beach.
La Piazetta – you’ll find friendly staff and a relaxed crowd at this is a popular Italian restaurant located in the center of Torremolinos serving authentic and delicious Italian dishes. Seating is primarily outside on the plaza terrace. Reservations are recommended since this place books up during the high season.
Torremolinos Gay Bars
The gay nightlife in Torremolinos is quite a fun scene and has something for everyone. The gay area, La Nogalera, is in a little crowded pocket behind some local businesses. You can walk right past it and not even realize it, but once you turn down the right street you'll find rows of gay bars huddled together with outdoor terraces lining the street. They all start picking up after midnight and just a tip, the bar Eden Copas has some of the cutest servers! For bears, head to Bacchus; for drag shows go to Contacto, and for a mixed scene check out Chessa Bar. Most bars in La Nogalera have outdoor seating so just take a stroll around and see what looks most interesting to you. With so many options, you’re bound to find your perfect place!
Torremolinos City Gay Clubs & Parties
Parthenon Club – this is a small dance club located in the heart of La Nogalera, a popular place for young visitors and locals with underground/house music. An entrance fee of around 8-10€ is typically charged, which includes a ticket for one drink.
Centuryon Club – this is the largest gay dance club in Torremolinos and they often host large events and circuit parties. The themes can change but they typically play house music. An entrance of 10-20€ is typically charged depending on which event is on that night. This venue attracts a mixed crowd of all ages, but definitely people more interested in the circuit part scene. The entrance fee will usually include one drink.
Aqua Club – perhaps a bit confusing but the Aqua brand operates a gay bar and two separate clubs. Aqua Club is just downstairs from Aqua Terraza (bar). Aqua Emporio is a bit larger in size and is located across the walkway and has a separate entrance. The two clubs are actually connected by a shared darkroom and depending on the night of the week, you may be able to pass from one to the other without paying a separate entrance. Music typically is pop/top 40 though some house music might be played depending on the event.
Torremolinos Gay Saunas & Cruising Bars
Apolo Sauna – this is the only gay sauna in Torremolinos and it is located outside of the city center. The most practical way to get there is by taxi and the drive is around 10 minutes from the center. The facilities have been recently updated. The venue is large with 1,500 square meters of facilities with a Finnish sauna, Jacuzzi, pub, showroom, smoking area, individual cabins, labyrinth, dark room, glory hole cabins, bondage area with cage, harness and cross and video room. On weekend nights the sauna turns into something of an after-party upstairs with DJ’s, dancing and performances.
There are also plenty of small cruising bars like Free Eagle, Men’s Bar and Querell located in the center of Torremolinos. These venues typically close around 3am.
Torremolinos Gay Beach
The sand at the beaches in Torremolinos is perfect for lying out and soaking up the sun. For the gays, there are three main beaches to choose from. El Gato/Eden Beach is a popular gay beach with plenty of gorgeous guys to keep your eyes busy. Both tourists and locals go here and it’s quite accessible from the main part of town. Poseidon Beach right next to the restaurant by the same name was a more popular gay beach a couple decades ago. Nowadays it’s become less popular with the gays having more straight visitors and families. For a cruising/nude beach, Guadalmar Beach is a mixed nude beach farther out from the city between Torremolinos and Malaga near the Campo Golf Course.
Gay Events in Torremolinos
There are plenty of great LGBT+ events held every year in Torremolinos providing a great excuse to visit the city. Torremolinos of course has its own gay pride event which occurs in June every year. Wonder Beach Festival recently came to Torremolinos in early July. This five day celebration is filled with concerts and some of the most well-known parties in Spain including WE Party, My Pleasure and PAPA Party – hosted by Eliad Cohen. Lastly, there’s the Mad Bear Beach Festival which is a long weekend full of parties for, you guessed it, bears!
Also, for more than a decade, Delice Dream brings their popular festival to Spain, now to the gay-friendly town of Torremolinos (previously in Sitges). This event features awesome parties and activities in one of the best gay beach cities in Europe. Expect a drag queen and best bum contest, barbecue, pool party and more.
Day Trips from Torremolinos
Malaga – Explore Málaga with a local guide on this private tour. The most important attractions and monuments of the city will be covered and it is the ideal choice for couples or groups of friends. Founded by the Phoenicians around 770 B.C., Málaga is one of the oldest cities in the world. It has been inhabited by a large number of civilizations, such as the Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Romans, Visigoths, Muslims and Christians. Book tour →
Ronda – Do not miss the opportunity to visit one of the most emblematic cities, which is the third most visited city in Andalusia, offering culture, nature and Celtic origins. With this day tour, you have the opportunity to enjoy a unique excursion. Ronda is one of the main cities of the province of Malaga and along with the capital, it is one of the most visited cities due to its enriching cultural heritage and rural environment. Ronda is surrounded by different mountain ranges, like the Sierra de Grazalema and the contrasts in its landscape are highly praised by visitors. Book tour →
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