The Spanish coastal strip recently experienced its warmest winter since records began, with temperatures reaching highs of 23°C on Christmas Day in Valencia and Castellon.
Average temperatures in the area were up a staggering seven degrees throughout December and the start of January, with the northern Spanish city of Bilbao – not traditionally known as a winter sun destination – clocking in at a scorching 25.1°C on New Year’s Day.
But just a few short weeks after experiencing the second-hottest winter since 1968, temperatures suddenly plummeted across the region after it was battered by a heavy storm which brought torrential rain, hail and even snow to the Costa del Sol.
Heavy rain pummelled Malaga City as the storm made its way down the coast at around 6pm yesterday, while nearby districts such as Vélez-Málaga, Valle-Niza and Rincón de la Victoria were pelted by hailstorms.
Hail was also reported in Torremolinos and Fuengirola, as well as in El Palo in Malaga city.
Meanwhile snow began to fall in the town of Casabermeja, as well as in the Sierra de Mijas and Colmenar, prompting local police to warn drivers to be cautious on the roads.
The low temperatures have continued throughout Malaga this week, accompanied by a humid easterly wind which makes it feel even colder on coastal areas.
The temperature at Malaga airport was recorded as just 4.7°C on Tuesday morning, whereas inland temperatures have slumped to below zero in other parts of the region.
Forecasters have issued a yellow weather warning in response to the cold snap, and have warned temperatures could fall to as low as -6°C later this week.
Meanwhile more snow has been forecast at heights above 600 metres, and similar warnings have been issued in Cordoba and Granada.
The last time it snowed in the region was in January 2021, when the beaches were blanketed with enormous hailstones.