Malaga City - Top Ten

A view from the Gibralfaro over Malaga's bullring and port. © Michelle Chaplow .
A view from the Gibralfaro over Malaga's bullring and port.

by Fiona Flores Watson

Malaga has moved on from being the jumping-off point for holidays in the Costa del Sol. The city’s remarkable renaissance over the past decade has seen its status upped to Andalucia’s cultural capital, with an astonishing range of museums, as well as excellent tapas bars, cool roof terraces, and street-wise art in the form of graffiti, while shoppers will love the seafront Muelle Uno – all this in addition to its age-old historic and archaeological riches.

To save you time in deciding where to go and what to see in Malaga, here is our top 10.




1. Picasso Museum and Picasso’s House 2. Alcazaba
Malaga’s eternally favourite son (the most popular living one is Antonio Banderas) – see his paintings in the museum (plus browse books and prints in the shop), and personal artefacts in the Casa Natal.
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Moorish fortress overlooking the city, which dates from the eighth century, with beautiful patios and gardens and a small museum.
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3. Centro de Arte Contemporaneo 4. Gibralfaro Parador
This contemporary art centre, housed in a restored market, is easily the best in Andalucia, offering exhibitions by big international names.
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Stay in a 10th-century Arabic castle overlooking the Mediterranean. Or just sit out on the terrace with a glass of wine and enjoy the view of the Malaga and its port.
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5. Muelle Uno 6. Cathedral
One of Malaga’s newest attractions (2011) this contemporary seafront development is full of retail temptations, from clothes to interiors, plus a Michelin-starred restaurant, and a monthly market offering handicrafts and local organic food.
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This huge Gothic-Baroque basilica, known as La Manquita (the one-armed woman) since it only has one tower, dominates the city centre.
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7. El Pedregalejo 8. Museums
A fishing town, now part of Malaga city, with a relaxed feel – check out its some characterful cafes and restaurants along the beachfront. Look out for the Virgen del Carmen fiesta, patron saint of sailors, around 16 July.
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Malaga has more museums than any other Andalusian city – by a long way. Cars, fashion, interiors, glass, wine, doll’s houses, music, and of course art (see above). Literally, something for everyone.
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9. Roman Theatre 10. Beaches
The city’s oldest monument (first century BC), this is used for performances during the summer months. There’s an interpretation centre.
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Malagueta, La Caleta, El Palo – take your pick to soak up the sun, take a dip in the sea, and visit a chiringuito (beach restaurant) try the Malaga speciality of espeto - sardines on a stick barbequed over hot coals.
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