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Make some magical moments in Málaga on the Costa del Sol

When visiting the Costa del Sol in southern Spain, many people consider the city of Málaga to be merely an entry and exit point on their holidays. The plane flies into the Málaga Costa del Sol airport, visitors disembark, grab their luggage from the baggage carousel and zoom off to other areas along the coastline.
Malaga City, Costa del Sol, Spain
  Photo: View from Gibralfaro Castle - Courtesy & copyright Anne Sewell

However, Málaga is a fascinating destination all on its own and is well worth a visit, even for just a day during a Costa del Sol holiday. With many great holiday apartment and villa rentals available in all areas along the coast, it is easy to get yourself settled in and start touring the area. The following is a brief introduction into Málaga city and some of the sights.

How to get to Málaga city

Getting to Málaga city is no problem at all, as regular air-conditioned buses run along the coastal highway from all the popular resorts. If staying between Fuengirola and Málaga, there’s even the very convenient Renfe Cercanias train service, which leaves every 20 minutes, running up until late in the summer evenings.

Málaga is located on a sweeping bay, with clean and beautiful beaches and is surrounded by mountainous scenery. The city has a port where many cruise ships stop over and Málaga enjoys more than 300 days of sunshine each year.

See some of the sights in Málaga

The city of Málaga is split into two distinct areas, the modern and more recently built part of the city as well as the traditional and historic quarter.
Malaga City, Costa del Sol, Spain
  Photo: Birthplace of Pablo Picasso - Courtesy & copyright Anne Sewell

As the birthplace of the famous Spanish artist, Pablo Picasso, the historic quarter reveals a couple of interesting attractions including Picasso’s birthplace, situated on a corner in the Plaza de la Merced. A reasonably short walk nearby takes you to the Picasso Museum, displaying both the artist’s work and also paintings by other popular artists.
Museo de Picasso, Malaga
  Photo: Picasso Museum - Courtesy & copyright Anne Sewell

While strolling the historic quarter, visit the beautiful Renaissance Cathedral of Málaga with its stunning Baroque façade. One little warning, however, the gypsies tend to haunt the entrance to the cathedral and will do their very best to get a few euros from you. If they approach you, just smile and say “no,” as it is always better to be safe than sorry!

Malaga Cathedral
  Photo: Malaga Cathedral - Courtesy & copyright Anne Sewell

A short walk away, La Alcazaba, built when the Moors occupied the area during the mid 15th century is a definite must-see. It is possible to climb among the ruins and as it runs up a hillside, there are some amazing views.  Down at the bottom can be seen signs of the Roman occupation in the area, including a well-preserved Roman amphitheater.

Right at the top, Gibralfaro Castle gives the best views at all. The castle is located right next to the Parador de Málaga Gibralfaro, one of the amazing Paradores of Spain, a series of special hotels in converted palaces, castles, convents and other unique buildings all over Spain. While some of these hotels can be costly, it is well worth the experience of staying even for just one night among sheer luxury and history.

Getting back to the city itself, a green and leafy experience is available to take the heat off the day. Stroll along Calle Alameda and visit the Botanical Gardens. In the photo below, a statue appears to be warning those pigeons to just stay away...
In the Malaga Botanical Gardens
  Photo: Malaga Botanical Gardens - Courtesy & copyright Anne Sewell

There are several more interesting museums on offer in the city, including the fascinating Automobile Museum, with an array of 85 classic cars on display.

Those with theatre and culture in mind should visit Málaga’s main theater, the Teatro Cervantes where another son of Málaga, Antonio Banderas, has performed in the past. He still appears on the stage there occasionally when he's in town.

Shop ‘til you drop

Calle Larios, Malaga
  Photo: Calle Larios - Courtesy & copyright Anne Sewell

Close to the historic quarter, you can stroll down the best shopping street of Málaga, Calle Larios, with its many smart shops, coffee bars and banks. Along the way you will normally see quite a few human statues or mimes, performing for a couple of euros. 
Human statue in Calle Larios, Malaga
  Photo: In Calle Larios - Courtesy & copyright Anne Sewell

The popular El Corte Inglés department store is also relatively close by for those with the urge to shop ‘til they drop, with a selection of clothing, perfumes, cosmetics and household items.
El Corte Ingles, Malaga
  Photo: El Corte Inglés - Courtesy & copyright Anne Sewell

Dining in Málaga

In Málaga, visitors are spoiled for choice with many traditional and international restaurants offering every kind of fare. There are also cafes and tapas bars on virtually every corner. One thing every visitor must experience at least once is the Andalucian specialities including “pescaito frito”, a selection of small fried fish, washed down with a fine Málaga wine.

The city is fairly spread out, so if you only spend a day in Málaga, it's worth catching the Hop-On Hop-Off bus, which takes you direct to all the major sights in comfort and allows you to get on and off as many times as you like during the day.

In conclusion, the city of Málaga is definitely worth at least a one day visit during your Costa del Sol holiday. Enjoy some more sights of the city in the video below.

Video: Anne Sewell


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