Most people have certain priorities when visiting Spain. Madrid and Barcelona are the most famous cities. And when people look for beach or offshore destinations, the search usually boils down to Ibiza and the Canary Islands. It’s perfectly fair that all of these places represent Spanish highlights, because they’re all incredible. The country has plenty of other great destinations though, and Malaga is one of them. Furthermore, it’s a great city to visit that isn’t quite as overrun by tourists. Here are some of the fun things to do there!
Tour La Alcazaba
You won’t find many cooler fortifications or historical landmarks in Europe than La Alcazaba. It’s a Moorish fortress from the 700s that still stands proudly over the city. The walls are what you notice from afar, but up close you can explore lush gardens (protected by an outer wall) and an inner palace within a second set of walls. Thanks to some rebuilding over the years it feels remarkably well preserved, and it’s a gorgeous complement to the city.
Hang Out At Atarazanas
One local site guiding tourists in Malaga called this famous market a feast for the eyes, ears, nose and mouth. That seems fair enough! It’s primarily an indoor market in a beautiful high-ceilinged hall where you’ll find local produce, food and drink you can enjoy on the spot, and a generally happy crowd mulling about. Basically if you like to get a feel for local culture rather than just tourist landmarks, this market is a must-visit aspect of the city.
Hit The Beach
Malaga is in the coast, and in Spain that pretty much means guaranteed beauty. La Malagueta is the main city beach, large and pretty though a bit crowded at times. But because of where it’s situated along Spain’s southern coast, Malaga is also close to several other amazing beaches that are a little more relaxing. A quick search or a conversation with a local will lead you to a place like La Misericordia or Los Alamos.
Hit The Casino
Malaga isn’t known the world over for its casino culture like a few other places are, and in fact its casino isn’t even as famous as the main one in Ibiza. Even so however, Torrequebrada was included in a piece on 2018’s hot summer casino destinations. Guaranteed sun, sangria, and gaming characterizes this low-key but surprisingly large casino, which makes for a great break from ordinary sightseeing and cultural immersion.
See Roman Ruins
The Roman theatre in Malaga predates the Alcazaba by some 800 years, and incidentally sits in the shadow of its walls. Roman ruins aren’t quite as common in parts of Spain as in so much of the rest of Mediterranean Europe, but this is actually a fairly extraordinary bit of ruin. Visiting today you can still make out the seating and general layout of the theatre, where people were sitting to be entertained in the first century B.C.
Sardines aren’t for everybody. But even if you don’t typically go for them, you might want to try the espetos in Malaga. For one thing, Spain as a whole is famous for remarkable seafood preparations. For another, however, the espetos are famous. They’re basically skewered sardines grilled over an open flame, and they’re among the most famous foods specific to Malaga. Just make sure you read up on the best places to get espetos so you have the best possible experience!
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