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Discover the charm: Exploring the historic streets of Malaga

Malaga is a wonderful travel destination, offering an abundance of culture and picturesque scenery. Its beautiful regions and captivating cultural experiences are complemented by a culinary scene that is not to be missed. From fresh seafood sourced directly from the Mediterranean Sea to traditional tapas and classic Spanish dishes, Malaga has something to satisfy every palate.

The city’s attractions are diverse, catering to all types of travellers. History enthusiasts will appreciate its historical landmarks, such as the Alcazaba fortress and the Roman Theatre. Art lovers can explore exquisite architecture and fabulous museums, including the Picasso Museum and the Carmen Thyssen Museum. Shoppers will delight in boutique shopping along Calle Larios, one of Spain’s most famous shopping streets.

With its rich history, vibrant culture, delectable cuisine, and numerous attractions, Malaga is best explored on foot. Many travel companies and certified guides offer walking tours of different interests and durations around the city. Here’s our pick:

Exploring City Centre of Malaga on foot

Start your journey at La Plaza de la Marina, just a step from the Port of Málaga. Here, you’ll find the recently renovated Calle Larios, a street that has become one of Spain’s premier shopping areas since its inception in the late 19th century. This elegant pedestrian street is lined with upscale boutiques, lively tapas bars, and historic buildings. Take a leisurely stroll along Calle Marqués de Larios and soak in the vibrant atmosphere of Malaga’s Old Town.

Streets of Malaga

Nearby, discover the beautiful Atarazanas Market, originally a 14th-century Nasrid shipyard. Over time, it served as barracks and a military hospital before being transformed into a market in the late 19th century. Recently refurbished, it stands as one of Málaga’s most intriguing buildings.

The market’s exterior retains its Arab heritage, showcased by its grand entrance and a stunning stained-glass window depicting Málaga’s landmarks. Inside, the market is bustling with stalls offering a variety of local fruits, vegetables, meats, and fish, highlighting the rich produce of Málaga’s regions, from Guadalhorce Valley to La Axarquía. Small bars within the market provide a casual way to sample Málaga’s culinary delights.

atarazanas market Malaga

Adjacent to the market, narrow streets reveal hidden gems like the San Juan Church and the quaint Cinco Bolas Street. Don’t miss Plaza de Camas, a rare open space in the historic centre. Nearby, Calle Cisneros (later Especerías) leads to Plaza de la Constitución, a key city square. Divert slightly to Calle Salvago and Calle Compañía to visit the Sacred Heart of Jesus Church and the Carmen Thyssen Museum, which boasts an impressive collection of 19th and 20th-century Spanish paintings, including works by Sorolla and Romero de Torres.

From Plaza de la Constitución, wander through the Passage of Chinitas, rich with history and local life, filled with traditional businesses and cozy restaurants. Continue south to Salinas Street and reach Plaza del Obispo, home to the main entrance of the Cathedral of Málaga. Known as ‘La Manquita’ due to its unfinished tower, the cathedral offers tours of its interior and rooftop, providing stunning views of the city.

Cathedral of Málaga

Next, head to Císter Street, leading to the Museum of Málaga, the largest museum in Andalusia. It houses extensive collections from the Museum of Fine Arts and the Provincial Archaeological Museum, including 15,000 archaeological artifacts and 2,000 artworks. Nearby, visit the Roman Theater (1st century BC) and the Arab Alcazaba (11th-14th centuries), both highlighting Málaga’s rich cultural history.

Continue to Plaza de la Merced, where Pablo Picasso spent his early years. This vibrant square is lined with bars and restaurants, perfect for enjoying the Málaga sun. Nearby Granada Street passes the 16th-century Santiago Church and classic local businesses like Zoilo groceries and the iconic El Pimpi near Plaza de la Judería.

Picasso Museum

Further along, Calle San Agustín offers a blend of narrow, cobbled charm and gastronomic delights, and it leads to the Picasso Museum, the ideal place to explore the works of Málaga’s renowned artist. Finally, let yourself get lost in the city centre’s streets—Beatas, Plaza de Uncibay, Plaza del Siglo—until you find yourself back at Calle Larios, the perfect starting and ending point for a tour of Málaga.

Expert Tips to Maximise Your Malaga Experience
Comfortable Shoes: Malaga’s historic centre is best explored on foot, so wear comfortable shoes.

Stay Hydrated: Carry a water bottle, especially during warmer months.

Local Customs: Embrace the local siesta culture, with many shops closing in the afternoon between 3pm 4pm till 6 pm.

Budget-Friendly: Malaga is generally more affordable than other Spanish cities, making it a great destination for a budget-friendly trip​.

E-Bike tours: If walking isn’t your preference, consider renting an e-bike. These are readily available at numerous bike rental shops in and around the city centre.

Hop-on Hop-off bus: Malaga city also offers hop-on hop-off bus tours starting from 23 Euros.

Explore International Cuisine: While we didn’t try any Indian food on this trip, we did enjoy a fantastic Moroccan restaurant offering a variety of vegetarian options, including dishes with Indian flavours. This is a great choice if you find yourself craving Indian cuisine after an extended stay in Spain.

Closed on Sundays: Except for the restaurants, bars and souvenir stores, all the shops in the city are closed. So plan your trip accordingly.

How to reach Malaga: 

From Madrid:
Malaga is approximately 530 kms from Madrid. You can reach Malaga by train in about 2 hours and 30 minutes. By car, the journey takes around 5 hours and 30 minutes.
From Barcelona:
Malaga is about 970 kms from Barcelona. The high-speed train connects the two cities in approximately 5 hours and 40 minutes. By car, the journey takes nearly 10 hours.

Numerous car rental companies offer self-drive options, and local DMCs (Destination Management Companies) also provide self-drive, transfer, or chauffeur services. Our city tour was provided by IM Experience travel company.

Malaga also has an international airport with airlines like Qatar Airways, Etihad Airways and Turkish Airlines offering one-stop connections from many Indian cities.