Casares is built on the slopes of the Sierra Crestellina mountains near Estepona and Marbella.
This classic "pueblo blanco" (white port) is an ideal place for people looking for traditional Andalusian rural life. It is rich in history, beauty and culture and is easily accessible from the coast.
It was named after the famous former Spanish governor Julius Caesar, who reportedly visited nearby hot sulfur springs. The ruins of the Moorish castle, which sits on top of a pile of houses called "sugar cubes", points to the city status as one of the last fortresses of the Moors. Casares was also one of the few places that resisted the power of the Napoleonic army.
In Casares you will find everything you would expect in "pueblo blanco"; streets with old white buildings lined with flowers, a square in the heart of the city where you can sit and enjoy the quiet atmosphere and stunning walks to the Sierra Crestellina nature reserve. It is also home to wonderful craft shops, one of the region's most famous golf courses and estate properties with views stretching from the mountains to the coast of Gibraltar.
The village itself remains predominantly Spanish with about 3,000 inhabitants. Although some locals live in the village, most can be found in the surrounding countryside, and in the modern cities near Casares Costa.
If you're lucky, you can buy one of the traditional white village houses, many of which are 100 years old.
Perhaps because of its undiscovered status, Casares isn't exactly a retail mecca, but it has a few small village shops selling food and crafts, as well as a weekly street market. There are also some excellent restaurants and bars where you can sit, eat, drink and chat late into the night.
The car is quite essential here as there are only two buses daily to Estepona, one in the morning and one in the evening. The 15-minute drive to the coast leads through an incredibly picturesque landscape.
There are few jobs in the village itself; most people commute to the coast to work in the tourist industry. Try Marbella, which is the most dynamic city for business in the region and accounts for 14% of the region's business.
For everything that cannot be treated in the hot springs of Julius Caesar, you will find a public health clinic in the village along with several pharmacies. For anything more serious, visit a hospital in Marbella or Estepona.
Three Spanish public schools covering primary and secondary education can be found in Casares. If you'd like to follow the British curriculum, there's an international school in Sotogrande half an hour's drive away.
This is not the cheapest part of the Costa del Sol as it is just outside the "golden mile" of Costa del Sol. However, it is perfectly possible to live within the budget if you use the larger supermarkets on the coast.