Málaga based in the heart of Andalusia has a lot to offer. The well-known actor Antonio Banderas was born here and all visitors can see his signed picture hanging on the wall in the famous „El Pimpi“ restaurant in the old town of Málaga, but the city has much more to offer. For example, the huge and popular Andalusian festival called „Feria“, which starts in the mid-August every year. The city is also just one hour or two away from the wondrous La Alhambra Palace in Granada and close to Sevilla and Córdoba. Málaga has so much to offer, here are the 5 top reasons to visit.
1) Unforgettable sightseeing and great shopping
Start with a coffee in the Plaza de la Constitución, then walk down the marble-paved Larios Street towards the Mediterranean. In the Larios street you will find cheap and more expensive shops and boutiques, where thousands of tourists and natives “Malagueños” stroll through the street every day presenting themselves in their latest fashion trends while going to shop. Then walk along the Muelle Uno waterfront development to the new Pompidou Centre in the glass cube up ahead. Don’t miss to visit Alcazaba and Gibralfaro. Alcazaba situated in the center next to the Cathedral was constructed in the 11th century as a fortress of a Muslim ruler during this period. Take a nice walk up along the Gibralfaro, where you will pass by fragrant and colourful flowers and palm trees while listening to the noise of the small green parrots which live up in the palms. After arriving on the top of the lookout you will have a stunning view over the port of Málaga, the sea and the bullfighting arena in Spanish called “Plaza de Toros”. There are also the spectacular botanical gardens of La Concepció, which were created in 1857 for an aristocratic family. More than 800 tropical and subtropical plants, including 100 types of palm trees, thrive in the gardens’ Mediterranean climate. Do not miss to walk along the big barrier lake while enjoying the great landscape and the fresh air.
2) Historic Museums with Unique Art and Culture
Pablo Picasso was born on the 25th of October 1881 in Málaga, and there´s a museum dedicated to him next to the Plaza de la Merced. Picasso is one of the most popular artists in the 20th century. It is essential to visit the Picasso Museum if you like cubic art. Another museum which should definitely be on your list is the Carmen Thyssen Museum, which was opened in 2011 and has a vast collection of 19th century Spanish paintings. The inner building has a lovely interior courtyard and a very stylish gift shop that´s great for one-off souvenirs. Free on Sundays after 5pm if you fancy a spot of evening culture. Do not miss the “Museo Automovilístico” where you can see colourful and stylish, famous old-timers which for example belonged to Michael Jackson or were shown in the popular movie “Titanic”.
3) Fantastic Beaches
Besides the famous Malagueta Beach next to the Pompidou Centre which thousands of tourists are visiting in summer and partying until the late evenings during the long and hot summer nights, take a drive to the beautiful beaches of Nerja in the surroundings of Málaga. By bus it takes you around 50 minutes from the bus station “Estación Muelle Heredia” next to the port of Málaga. One of the most beautiful beaches in Nerja is just next to the famous lookout „Balcon de Europa“, where you have an amazing view over the sea and the wide blue horizon. If you drive a bit outside of Malaga to Los Alamos and Torremolinos, which are around 20 minutes by train away, the beaches there are much cleaner and not that crowded as at the Malagueta Beach.
4) Delicious Restaurants and Bars
To have a nice walk next to the sea you should visit the Port of Málaga which opened in 2011 and has amazing views of Gibralfaro Castle and Alcazaba. It´s a magical place at night with bars, restaurants, shops and ice cream parlours. You can walk all the way to the end where it joins the Malagueta area and enjoy many of the tapas bars, cocktail bars with a view of big and small yachts ranking at the harbour. An insider tip is the Tapas Restaurant called “Casa Lola” in the center of Málaga, in the Street (Calle) Granada, where you can eat a variety of tasty tapas, drink a glass of wine and enjoy the best hamburger of the city. Take also a look at the famous Restaurant “El Pimpi” next to Teatro Romano, where you can sit outside and inside and have luscious selection of Spanish food and typical Andalusian wine. In summer it can be very crowded and you have to wait a bit to get a free table outside. If you go just 20 minutes by bus from the bus stop “Alameda Principal” to “El Palo” you can enjoy the huge variety of tapas and cocktail bars next to the beach with sea view and delicious fresh, grilled fish and afterwards stroll along the promenade with an amazing view of a romantic sunset.
5) Nightlife until the sun comes up
For dancing and clubbing there are many small bars and clubs in Málaga such as Teatro, La Bibilioteca or Liceo with modern music, latin music and the latest music hits. If you go by train just 15 minutes outside of Malaga to Los Alamos, you will find many nice beach bars such as “Maracas” next to the sea, where in hot summer days people are celebrating Bikini foam-parties with Mojito cocktail while lying on the beach and enjoying the hot sun, listen to the sound of the waves and to the rhythm of the music.