Destination of the Week: Malaga
The largest cosmopolitan hub in Costal del Sol, the charming city of Malaga is much more than a pretty beachfront town. As the birthplace of Pablo Picasso, the city is filled with cultural venues and historical gems all ready to be explored. The popularity of the area in the summer has led Malaga to be filled with a host of tourist infrastructures but luckily the city has been able to maintain its unique charm all the same.
With a Mediterranean climate, Malaga has something to offer to every kind of traveller: beautiful beaches, excellent shopping venues, delicious cuisine, architectural sites, art galleries and even hiking trails in the surrounding mountains. One of the best things you can do in Malaga, though, is to simply enjoy its laidback Mediterranean atmosphere as you stroll through its picturesque streets.
What to do
A popular sunny destination for tourists from all over the world, of course this Spanish city offers stunning beaches along its coast. The most popular one is La Malagueta, as it is the closest to the city itself. It is perfect for sunbathing and enjoying a fun afternoon in the sun but if you are looking for a quieter spot to lounge, try heading east of the city.
Malaga has much more to offer besides its dreamy beaches, however. Particularly in the historic centre, you will be able to find a wide array of historical and archaeological treasures including an 11th century Moorish castle, the remains of an ancient Roman Theatre, and Castillo de Gibralfaro which offers a stunning panoramic view of the city. Malaga Cathedral is also a must for anyone who appreciates beautiful Renaissance architecture. Art lovers will not want to miss visiting Picasso’s birthplace, the Picasso Museum, the Museo Carmen Thyssen dedicated to Spanish art, and the Centro de Arte Contemporáneo.
If you are looking for some adventure, head a little north of the city for excellent rock climbing at the amazing El Torcal (near Antequerra). Hikers will want to check out the El Chorro gorge which features an impressive pathway suspended high above the gorge called “Kings Walkway”.
Where to stay
Malaga’s high popularity as a sunny destination has led it to become a highly developed city in terms of tourist infrastructures. This means you will be able to find all kinds of hotels for all kinds of budgets and preferences throughout the city. However, regardless of your budget, we suggest staying at one of two places: near the beach, if you are travelling in the summer and want to enjoy the sandy coast; or near the pedestrianized zone in the centre so you can easily get around to all of the major historical and cultural sites in the city.
Finca Cortesin Hotel Golf & Spa (£££)
If you want to splurge on your holiday in Malaga, this five star golf and spa resort is the best place to invest your money. At an average of £415 per night, you will be a little outside the city just five minutes away from Bahía de Casares Beach. Enjoy a championship golf course, a dreamy infinity pool, a private beach club and an exquisite gourmet restaurant during your stay.
Petit Palace Plaza Hotel (££)
This four star design hotel will cost you an average of £70 per night and will leave you conveniently located right in the city centre. Located just off the popular Larios Street, you will find Carmen Thyssen Museum just next door and Malaga Cathedral right at your doorstep so you can easily explore the city on foot during your stay. On site, take advantage of the hotel’s delicious breakfast buffet in the morning, its free mobile Wi-Fi service in the city, and its bicycle rental service.
El Riad Andaluz (£)
If your travel budget is a little tighter, you can still enjoy an excellent holiday in this charming port town. The El Riad Andaluz is a typical Andalusian guesthouse that will cost you an average of just £25 per night and offer you an excellent location. Set right in the centre of Malaga’s old town on a pedestrianized street, it will be hard to find a better located hotel for this price! On site, you can enjoy beautiful traditional décor and a picturesque interior courtyard.
Where to eat
Malaga is famous for its excellent cuisine so you will want to try a number of specialties during your stay. These include espetos (grilled sardines skewered on a bamboo stick), pescaíto frito (fried fish), coquinas (clams cooked in wine), and just about any kind of fresh fish marinated in a garlic and vinegar preparation (look for “cazon en adobo” on the menu). For a wide array of restaurants offering mild prices, head to the port area. As a bonus, you will be able to enjoy your meal with a beautiful sea view.
Malaga’s sweet wine (called Mosto) is also a must and can be tried at the famous La Casa del Guardia or the popular El Pimpi.
From fresh seafood, to tasty tapas, and delicious wine – Malaga simply has it all!
Image source: sport.gentside.com
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