Since 2012, the town of Estepona has become famous for its gable-end murals. In recent times it has even hosted an international competition as part of a search for new mural artists to adorn the streets of what is becoming an ever more artistic town. Some 70 artists entered, which is quite remarkable given the fact that Estepona is not as well known as Marbella, but it is catching up at a quick pace.
The ‘Ruta de los Murales’ (Route of Artistic Murals) takes visitors on an extraordinary tour of the streets and provides an outdoor gallery where visitors can meander the thoroughfares, finding a new vista at every twist and turn. In 2016 there were 25 murals, but with the recent competition, which added ten, the total now comes to 50, which is more than some gallery shows. The murals have been created by local and national artists, including one by inmates from Alhaurin de la Torre prison.
Visitors can ask at the Tourist Office in Plaza de las Flores for a guide to the route, and if you really want to be a ‘culture vulture’, you should get a map for the Ruta de la Poesía as well. It takes about three hours to complete the mural route, so do wear comfortable shoes.
One of the most distinctive murals is of actress Scarlett Johansson. The artist is Miguel González, from Málaga, and you’ll find this super-sized portrait on the façade of the Los Claveles building on Cristo del Amor street.
Another great favourite is Madre Amorosa by the artist Francisco Alarcón. It is painted on two walls in the Barriada Primavera neighbourhood. The mural in grey, white and black is so realistic that it looks as if photographs have been pasted onto the buildings.
The House of the Good People by Conchi Álvarez reflects the people of the neighbourhood and Siglo XXI by Néstor Prada represents Estepona’s landmark places, such as the Iglesia de Nuestra Señora de Los Remedios (Chuch of Our Lady of the Remedies), the nearby Sierra Bermeja mountain range, the sea and the produce from the land.
This is just a small selection. You should visit Estepona and see the murals for yourself. They are well worth it.
Image courtesy of: Ayuntamiento de Estepona