Is Malaga worth visiting?

Is Malaga Worth Visiting?

Malaga is the second biggest city in Andalusia and the sixth biggest city in Spain. It’s located on the coast and it’s easy to get to. So you might ask yourself: Is Malaga worth visiting? I’ll go over what to do in Malaga first and give you my honest review if it’s worth visiting at the end. 

Discover Days Gone At Alcazaba and Gibralfaro

Alcazaba is a palatial fortification on a hilltop in Malaga. It was built in the Muslim-ruled Al-Andalus period. Gibralfaro is the higher castle from the same time period. The two are connected by a walled corridor. They’re great examples of Islamic architecture in Spain. You can visit both of them for just €5. If you have been to Alhambra, you might consider Alcazaba in Malaga a smaller version of that.

At the bottom of the Alcazaba, you can find the remnants of a Roman theatre from the 1st century AD, which can be visited for free. Next to the roman theatre is a glass pyramid, which reminded me a bit of Paris. You can peek through it to see more of ancient Malaga.

Right next to Alcazaba you can also find the Malaga letters. A lot of cities have those now and I really like them. The sign in Malaga even lets you be the letter L. But is a cool city sign enough to answer the question “Is Malaga worth visiting” yes?

Malaga letters with me posing as the L
I’m the letter L in Malaga

Find a Perfect Viewpoint

View Of Malaga
View Of Malaga

You already get some great views from Alcazaba and Gibralfaro. The best view of the city with the ocean in the background is from the path between the two fortifications. If you walk from one to the other, you can’t miss it. On Google Maps it’s called Vista Lookout. 

Find Refuge At Parque de Malaga

Parque de Malaga is right next to the harbour and it’s easily overlooked. And since it’s quite a narrow park between a busy road and the harbour I didn’t expect much. So my expectations were exceeded. It doesn’t feel right in the city at all. Just sit down on a bench, close your eyes and you’ll feel like in the jungle with all the different chirping of birds. Also, there are some seriously cool trees in Malaga. I loved the trees there. So if you love a city with amazing nature you can answer the question “Is Malaga worth visiting” with yes!

Admire The Cathedral From Every Side

Cathedral of Malaga with a blooming tree and a statue
Backside of the Cathedral

The cathedral is a typical must-see in most European cities. My tip for the cathedral in Malaga, walk around it and have a look from every side. I loved the view from the back because there was a beautiful tree just blooming when I visited. 

Hang Out With Picasso At Plaza de la Merced

Pablo Picasso is the most famous son of the city. The artist was born in 1881 in Malaga and you can visit the house he grew up in. Malaga also has a famous Picasso museum where you can marvel at his artwork. However, I didn’t feel like going to museums during my visit, so I opted to visit Picasso’s statue. You can sit next to him on his bench in front of his former home and hang out with Picasso ;). 

Visit The Centre Pompidou

Colourful Cube, part of the Centre Pompidou in Malaga
Centre Pompidou in Malaga

Malaga has over 30 museums you can choose from. The most famous besides the Picasso Museums is the Centre Pompidou, a branch of the popular modern art Museum in Paris. Even if you don’t fancy going inside, you should check out the colourful cube next to the harbour, which is part of the exhibition. 

If you love modern art but Paris is too far away or too expensive, you can just say yes to “Is Malaga worth visiting” and go there instead of Paris.

Relax At The Beach

Sign of Malagueta beach in Malaga
Malagueta beach

Malaga is the only bigger city in Andalusia directly on the coast. So you can relax at the beach if you’re done exploring the city. It was quite surprising to me how dark the sand was. I expected almost white sand which you know from so many other Spanish beaches. As we visited in late October the beach was very quiet, but I can imagine it gets very crowded in summer.

Find Cool Street Art In SOHO 

Street art in Malaga depicting a flamenco dancer
My favourite piece of street art in Malaga

No, I didn’t mix up Malaga with London, Malaga has its own SOHO neighbourhood. And there you’re supposed to be able to find the best street art in Malaga. I love some good graffiti, so I had to check it out. The sides of the almost dried-up riverbed and the two massive paintings on the buildings next to it did look cool. But Malaga can not compete with some other cities known for their street art, like Valencia.

My favourite piece of street art was actually not in SOHO but in the old town close to the cathedral. It’s done by the Spanish artist Doger.

Don’t Miss Out On Rosaleda de Málaga, Gardens of Pedro Luis Alonso

Close to the harbour and Parque de Malaga lies Rosaleda de Málaga, Gardens of Pedro Luis Alonso. The garden is named after the first Major of Malaga after the war, Pedro Luis Alonso. The house at the end of the park is Malaga’s city hall. You can find the El Biznaguero statue in the middle of the park. A statue of a traditional flower seller. In summer there are supposed to be many of them in the city selling jasmine. 

Eat Some Delicious Vegan Food

I think we had the best food in Andalusia in Malaga. The food we had at Meet Vegano was simply amazing. For an average price, you get really unique dishes. Even the drinks had a twist, my iced tea for example contained frozen peaches. The burger, Jack had, was insane, it had a deep-fried bun. Looked great, but it would have been too heavy for me. I was very happy with my vegan salmon with broccoli and dill. We tried all the other all-vegan restaurants in Malaga as well, but Meet Vegano was our absolute favourite.

Is Malaga Worth Visiting?

Malaga is a big city and has lots of activities to choose from. Besides the popular activities I wrote about, there are also many less touristy things to do in Malaga. But the question remains, is Malaga worth visiting? Honestly, I think it’s not worth just going to Malaga. That doesn’t mean it’s not worth visiting if you’re in the area anyway though. Malaga might be great as a day trip from Granada. I know the other way around, staying in Malaga and a day trip to Granada is more recommended. But I prefer Granada over Malaga and would suggest spending more time in Granada. The city has so much to offer besides Alhambra. Another recommendation would be to fly to Malaga, as its international airport is well-connected. You can spend one day in the city and then set off on your trip through Andalusia.

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