Frigiliana, Andalusia, Spain.
A happy marriage of culture and nature, this slice of the Costa del Sol - the eastern gateway to Malaga - is one of our favourite spots for a long, lazy weekend. Picture dusty, steep, sun-soaked streets crammed with whitewashed villas; a tangle of alleyways giving way to Moorish-Mudéjar architecture. While Frigiliana still goes under the radar for the cool kids, we'd argue that its lack of hipster hangouts is what makes it that little bit more magical.
To appreciate the place in all its glory, start by exploring the ninth-century Castillo de Lízar, before popping into Vinos El Lagar for a glass of muscatel and some plates of local tapas. Keen hikers will want to take the 7km hike from Frigiliana to hilly El Fuerte, where, at a staggering height of 963m, you'll be rewarded with sweeping views across the dazzling town.
Visit in August - that way, you can experience the legendary Festival de las Tres Culturas, a village-wide celebration of Christian, Muslim and Jewsih traditions.
Where to stay?
In a world where design-driven hotels have become par for the course for jet-setters, it's refreshing to discover a landscape scattered with botlholes that reflect the heritage and cultural roots of their surrounds. Among these is La Posada Morisca (The Moorish Inn), a 12-key converted farmhouse backed by the Sierras of Tejeda, Almijara and Alhama Natural Park. There are two different room types to choose from: one comes with a covered porch; the other has a spacious solarium terrace. Both, however, are decked out with the same dark-wood furnishings, floor-to-ceiling shuttered windows and airy bathrooms that come generously stocked with locally sourced organic toiletries. One of the major perks of this intimate space is the outdoor infinity pool, with bamboo parasols and loungers that will send you into a deep sleep - you know where to find us.
Where to go for dinner?
The Garden Restaurant is our favourite spot in town, partly for its undisturbed views and plant-filled interior, but largely for its classic Mediterranean menu. Plan your visit for 7pm, to enjoy a feast with a side serving of sunset vistas. The grilled chorizo and houmous starter is worth visiting for in itself.
And for a drink…
Head to Bar el Picoteo. You won't find picture-perfect interiors, but you will rub shoulders with a crowd of free-spirited locals looking to enjoy a jug of sangria. Come for good vibes and an unpretentious traditional Spanish menu.
Who to take with you?
That friend who's started seeking an alternative kind of hedonism to that found on the White Isle. They'll enjoy the slower pace of life found in Frigiliana.
Essentials to pack
There's nothing that sends us into a hotter sweat than misplacing our passport - which inevitably happens at least five times before making it past check-in. Prepare to be organised like never before with the Loewe zipped cardholder. It's the perfect place in which to stash those all-important essentials - and it looks great, too.
How to get there
Take a direct flight from London Gatwick to Málaga-Costa del Sol Airport, from where Frigiliana is just an hour's drive away. Alternatively, fly into nearby Granada Airport - a flight route available from a handful of UK airports.