The least changed section lies closest to Gibraltar, the Spanish authorities are trying to prevent building on the very edge of the waves.
Where the road returns to the coast, near the mouth of the Rio Guadiaro, the artificial harbour, Puerto Sotogrande has been built.
The are eleven yacht harbour in the 200 kms. between Sotogrande and Almuñecar, on the Granada coast.
The best know of these, Puerto Banus, only 20 kilometers from our Apartments in Estepona, close to Marbella, acquired a reputation in the seventees as the playaground of the rich and wicked.
They are still there, jusdging by the huge yachts, so huge that they seem to overhang the jetty. But for most of the visitors, Puerto Banus consists of arcades of fish restaurants and luxury boutiques.
The harbors which have been build since, are similar, though smaller, and because theuy have failed to achieve Puerto Banus notoriety, have more charm.
Puerto Duquesa, 10 kilometers northeast of of Puerto Sotogrande is a goos example, also knowed as the best kepts secret on the Sunshine Coast.
Estepona most westerly of the Costa del Sol swollen fishing villages, now a large town, has so far to avoiid too many high-rises and remains Spanish with an ols quarter of narrow streets and tapa's bars. Marbella, 20 kilometers east of Estepona may be swollewn out of all recognition, its main street a jam of east-west traffic, but at its centrean old town survives of narrow white traffic free lanes.
At the centre of this is its showpiece, the Plaza de Los Naranjos, planted with orange trees and overlooked by the 16th centurt Casa del Corregidor, home to the tourist office, and one of the town's few old buildings.
On a hot summer night this square, set form side to side with ding table, lit by an orange glow, becomes one vast open air-restaurant, and can be delight even hardened Costa watchers.
Only 45 kilometers from our apartments in Estepona, Ronda, encircled by maoutains, riven by the depp fissure of the Tajo, was one of the first small Spanish cities to earn a place on a tourist map.
Coming from Estepona and san Pedero de Alcantara, you first enounter the Barrio de San Francisco which is rather like a small moutain village picked up and deposit uneder the city walls. The most striking building, reached trough the Moorish Almocobar gate is the fortress like church of the Espiritu Santo.
Winding up the hill into the old city, a small and intersting Museum, Museum of Bandits, the first motorable turn on the left leads into the Plaza de la Duquesa de Placent, a charming square with cypresses. The square is flanked by the Town Hall form the 18th Centurt, and by a 19thCentury boy's school on the site of the Moorish Fortress. Not far is the Palacio de Mondragon, a grand town hous with a stone Renaissance facade, other points of interest are Casa del Rey Moro, the Bullring (the oldest one in Spain), the Plaacio del Marques de Slavatierra, the Roman Bridge, the Arab Bridge and the Arab Baths.