Big City Buzz, Culture and Beaches
The Jewel in the Costa del Sol Crown
Southern Spain is home to both the sun-kissed Costa del Sol and historic gems such as Granada, Seville, Cordoba and Cadiz. In Malaga all these elements come together in an exciting mix
In recent years the captivating city of Malaga has undergone a true renaissance, with new public facilities and improved transport links contributing to an impressive beautification process that has transformed it into one of Andalucía’s finest cities. Malaga is now firmly on the map and holding its own against famous sisters Granada, Seville and Cordoba as a cultural destination in its own right.
Thanks to millions of euros investment, the city’s historic centre has once again become a major international attraction, drawing visitors to its grand architecture, fine museums, vibrant gastronomic scene and lively streets bustling with cafés, tapas bars and shops.
Founded by the Phoenicians, Malaga is a city rich in historic traditions that also include the Romans, Moors, Iberians, the Renaissance, Baroque, Art Nouveau and Art Deco.
A key attraction in the birthplace of Pablo Picasso is the museum dedicated to him and located since its opening in 2003 in the beautifully restored Buenavista Palace. It stands under the shadow of the imposing Malaga cathedral, whose magnificent architecture and workmanship is certainly worth a visit. Less than a kilometre from here you will find the Carmen Thyssen Museum, another temple of art housing works that reach across the centuries.
The Classic Car Museum represents another art form altogether, but housed in the magnificent old tobacco factory just out of the centre it offers one of the finest experiences of its kind in the world, with a collection that will enthral lovers of design and beauty, and of course fine automobiles.
If you can resist the nearby beaches, then head for the elegant Teatro Cervantes, the Roman amphitheatre or the imposing neoclassical buildings at the base of the Gibralfaro. Situated on a prominent hill overlooking the entire city, this old Moorish citadel now houses a stylish Parador hotel that allows you not just to view one of Malaga’s oldest buildings, but experience it first hand.
Big City Atmosphere Within Sight of Glorious Beaches
There are not many big cities in Europe that can boast of sun-kissed sandy beaches within walking distance from the centre
Gastronomy and Nightlife the Andalucian Way
Open Air Shopping in a Glorious Setting
The shopping street to head for first is the Calle Larios, a broad and attractively paved promenade lined with attractive shops, cafés, tapas bars and designer outlets located at the base of stylish historic buildings. Pass the Art Deco Hotel Larios and you come to the Plaza de la Constitucií³n, from where the atmospheric pedestrian shopping streets continue to wind their way through the city’s historic centre.
Dotted with galleries, charming boutique hotels, restaurants and theatres, this elegant shopping district with its marble pavements is the lively heart of the city. You can walk around for hours, chancing upon quaint squares, old-fashioned shops and modern outlets without having seen it all, and if it’s serious retail therapy you’re after then just cross the bridge over the Guadalmedina River and you’re only a short walk from one of Spain’s famous El Corte Ingles department stores.
Also popular is Muelle Uno, a modern quayside development featuring award-winning architecture. Situated close to where the many cruise ships visiting Mšlaga dock, it is also just a few hundred metres from Calle Larios, though offering a much more languid waterside atmosphere. Naturally there are also large shopping malls outside the centre, but those in search of the unusual might just want to follow their nose and savour the quaint old shops and authentic atmosphere of the areas on the edge of the old town.