vibrant andalucian coastal town malaga in spain

I have recently been twice to Spain and finally had the change to visit the southern part, Andalucia, and see a couple of those Moorish cities: Sevilla and Cordoba, and absolutely loved them. We also explored Malaga, a coastal town that I always imagined more of touristy beach destination and I was pleasantly surprised to discover that it is much more than just a typical tourist trap! With over half a million people Malaga is also one of the largest cities is Spain, which I was also surprised to hear, for whatever reason I had always thought that it was rather a small place…

Malaga in Andalucia, Spain
“Beautiful promenades of Malaga”

The centre of Malaga has lovely little streets, some lined with palm trees and just designated for pedestrians, starting around the old Moorish fortress and the impressive cathedral. Inviting little cafes and restaurants and scattered around offering local and international cuisine rather than just chips, steaks and cheap cocktails, street artist are filling the air with music and those romantic horse-drawn carriage offer strolls around the town also here. A very relaxing atmosphere altogether!

Coastal town Malaga in Andalucia, Spain
“Moorish citadel Alcazaba dating back to 1057”

When visiting Andalucia and Malaga, flamengo is obviously something people come to see here, as are a couple of museums such as the Museum of Glass and Crystal. Since I came here to follow the Moorish trails, I was most interested in seeing the old fortress, Alcazaba, and the Castle of Gibralfaro.

Coastal town Malaga in Andalucia, Spain
“Roman amphitheater by Alcazaba”

What is amazing about Alcazaba also is that in addition to being nearly thousand years old, it is also a mix of cultures and centuries – including a Roman amphitheater. It s great to see how well these different eras and styles have been preserved here.

Coastal Town Malaga in Andalucia, Spain
“Moorish courtyard inside Alcazaba”

On top of Alcazaba you will find pretty symmetrical garden areas and courtyards with those famous tile patterns and water features. One also cannot forget the amazing views that open over the port and the city from this fortress – the only other places where one gets even better views is by hiking up the neighbouring hill to the castle of Gibralfaro.

Coastal town Malaga in Andalucia, Spain
“Views stretching over Malaga from the fortress”

The beauty of the old architecture can be appreciated from the top of the hill (either from Alcazaba or Gibralfaro) where the views stretch to the horizon and mountains there. So impressive!

Malaga Gibralfaro
“The way up to Gibralfaro is steep up the hill from Alcazaba”

 The fortress and the castle are connected, but visitors need to hike around Alcazaba to reach the path up the hill to Gibralfaro, which is actually massive in size and definitely worth a visit, especially to a castle enthusiast like myself…

Coastal Town Malaga in Andalucia, Spain
“Malaga has joined the city bicycle trend also”

I love how so many European cities now participate in the city bike schemes and Malaga also has one. The traffic didn’t seem too bad and the centre isn’t that large, so bicycle is a great way getting around!

Coastal town Malaga in Andalucia, Spain
“Tapas is the only way to go in Spain. Local specialty berenjenas con miel – aubergine with honey”

Once again I am going to have to talk about the food as this is Spain and in Malaga you can have amazing tapas and sangria at prices that are not touristy at all. I’d recommend trying the eggplants fried in honey as it was such a tasty treat!

Spanish Olives
“Always a perfect snack, especially in Spain – tasty olives”

What would I say to the key question of whether to visit Malaga or not? I would definitely say that it’s worth to spend at least a day there if the city falls on your travel path. If you are planning a beach holiday nearby I’d also adda trip to Malaga on my list. So thumb up for Malaga it is from me.

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