Where Is The Best Place To Live In Andalusia? Our Guide

Andalusia is one of the most popular regions in Spain for ex pats and for good reason. Rich culture, sun sea and sand, and friendly locals make Andalusia a great place to live. If you’ve decided you want to make the move to Andalusia then it’s time to narrow down your options and decide which province or city within the region is the best choice for you.

Andalusia is one of Spain’s largest regions and is made up of eight different provinces - Almería, Granada, Málaga, Jaén, Córdoba, Seville, Cádiz and Huelva. There’s no bad choice when looking for the right Andalusian region and they all offer the same benefits. But that doesn’t mean that each province isn’t unique and will offer a slightly different lifestyle.

Here are our guide to Andalusia’s eight provinces to help you choose:

Why Live In Almería

Almeria is both the smallest and most easterly province in Almeria. It is the closest province to Murcia geographically. Almeria is a province of two parts. It boasts both busy and bustling resorts along its coastline and a barren sparsely populated interior. If you choose to live in Almeria you must carefully consider which of these options is right for you. Although it is one of the least populated provinces in the region the capital Almeria city is home to over 17,200 British people. If you’re looking for an established ex pat community this is the place to be.

Almeria is home to the only desert in Europe called the Desierto de Tabernas and it is both warm and dry year-round.  On the eastern edge of Almería province you will find the Cabo de Gata-Níjar National Park, where ancient volcanic landscapes meet the Mediterranean and you can still find huge swathes of empty beaches - even in summer. These are the best spots for expats looking for a remote location for their dream Spanish home.

 Why Live in Granada

Moving to the west of Almeria you will find the province of Granada. This is the most mountainous provinces in Spain. Here you will find the highest peak on mainland Spain – Mulhacén which is part of Granada’s Sierra Nevada Mountain Range and the most southern ski slopes in Europe.

The north of the province is made up mostly of rural farm lands while the southern and coastal areas are the most populated spots. Almuñécar is the most popular coastal town with foreign residents so is a great choice for ex pats looking for a ready made community.

Las Alpujarras is another popular choice for expats looking to move away from the beach. This a the mountainous area to the south of the Sierra Nevada, and is home to plenty of picturesque whitewashed villages, farmhouses and miles of hiking routes. Its worth noting that winter temperatures can be cold in Granada so this is something to consider if you’re moving to Spain for year-round sunshine.

Why Live In Málaga

This is by far the most well-known Andalusian province and the one most highly favoured by foreign ex pats. A whopping 44,656 foreign people currently live in Malaga.

The buzzing resort towns of the Costa del Sol are a great choice if you’re looking for a traditional beach lifestyle or if you want to live in a city then try Malaga city. This was recently awarded position as the number 1 destination in the world for foreigners to live by InterNations Expat City Ranking 2023.

It’s worth noting that because it is so popular property in Malaga is amongst the most expensive in Andalusia. And it is the second most expensive province in the whole of Spain behind only Barcelona. But if you can afford to invest in property here then there’s no better place to be.  

Why Live In Jaén

Jaen is an Andalusian province that has no coastline at all which means that it isn’t as popular with expats or tourists as other spots on this list. It is most famous for its olive oil and the province produces an incredible 38% of the world’s olive oil supply.

If you want to fully immerse yourself in Andalusian culture and live in a region where there are very few expats then this is a great place to consider. The region has some of the best Renaissance architecture in the country (in UNESCO Úbeda and Baeza) and excellent free tapas.

Why Live In Córdoba

North of Malaga and nestled between Jaén and Seville is the province of Cordoba. The most famous part of this province is the city of the same name. Cordoba is a Moorish city with a beautiful UNESCO heritage heart La Mezquita. It is known for its beautiful patios and terraces which open up for its famous patio festival each May.

Cordoba is the hottest province in the whole of Spain earning it the title of Spain’s frying pan. During the summer months temperatures regularly exceed 40C. This can feel uncomfortable given the city doesn’t have a coastline. Something to consider if you are looking for a new home where you’ll really feel the heat in the summer months. You may also need to invest in a car so that you can join the locals and escape to the nearby Costa del Sol or Costa de la Luz when it’s just too hot to handle.

Why Live In Seville

Seville is actually a province as well as a prominent city and it is also the official capital of the Andalusia region. This is the best place to be if you’re looking for culture and entertainment. If you’re looking for a traditional Spanish and Andalusian experience then Seville is a great place to live thanks to its romantic architecture, being the birthplace of flamenco, and incredible tapas.

4.8% of the people living in Seville are foreign ex pats meaning that it has a thriving scene if you’re looking to live alongside other expats. With so many attractions and such demand this means that living in Seville can be expensive. It is also important to note that this region doesn’t have a coastline but you can easily access the beaches of Cadiz from here if you long to be near the coast.

Why Live In Cádiz

Cadiz city is the oldest in western Europe and the province sits between Málaga and Huelva. Cadiz has a coastline and the beautiful Costa de la Luz sits here.

Cadiz offers the best of both worlds. Cultural cities such Cadiz which was  founded 3,000 years ago by the Phoenicians, rural areas where much of Spain’s sherry is produced, and a vast expanse of coastline.

Water sports fans will also get on well in Cádiz, being home to the wind capital of Europe - Tarifa - the best kite and windsurfing conditions on the continent.  That makes this a great base for outdoorsy and adventurous expats who are always looking for something to do.

Why Live In Huelva

Finally the most westerly province in Andalusia is Huelva. On its southern edge is Donana National Park and the province borders southern Portugal. The city of Huelva itself isn’t considered particularly pretty but it is a great place if you want to be by the beach and you want to find a property on a smaller than average budget.

Hoping to extend your stay in Spain to a little longer than a day? Always dreamt of making this beautiful country your home? Why not get in touch with one of our local property experts to find out more about we can help you with your property search. Whether you’re looking for golden mile properties in Marbella or bargain property in Andalucia, we’re perfectly placed to turn your dreams into a reality. We can’t wait to help you!