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The rise of an underdog: Málaga

The short answer to why you should visit Malaga – the largest city along Spain’s southern Mediterranean coast – is simply because it’s a really happening place right now that offers a wide range of conveniently located attractions, including gorgeous nearby beaches and hiking trails, plenty of architectural sites, art museums, excellent shopping potential and both local and international cuisine.

While Málaga was once just a logistical formality in order to get to classic Costa del Sol destinations like Fuengirola, Torremolinos and Marbella, places that still after decades continue to attract millions of sun-hungry charter tourists from northern Europe with urban beaches and massive concrete hotel resorts, Málaga 2020 has become a singular destination in its own right.

For the last ten years or so, the hometown of painter Pablo Picasso, has gone through a metamorphic shift from grimy to chic with whole neighborhoods being cleaned up and mindfully restored. It’s a makeover that just wins you over and there are so many nice hotels, check out my recommendations below.

The city’s historic district and SoHo neighborhood are among the most visit-worthy with a plethora of magnificent architecture, cozy plazas, lush parks, shopping promenades, dozens of galleries and an endless exhibit of creatively refreshing street art. Not to mention the abundance of cafés, restaurants and tapas bars found throughout the center of town.

Málaga’s is not only one of the oldest cities in Europe, in fact, it’s one the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world and dates back 2800 years!

So, it’s not very surprising that you’ll find both ruins of a small Roman theatre and the centuries old and still vibrantly lively Atarazanas Market right in the city center.

Down by Puerto de Málaga, the city’s bustling harbor district, is just a short walk from downtown and a great place to take an early evening stroll by the sea.

Málaga has pretty much everything you can expect from a Spanish city along Costa del Sol but with a level of finesse and inspiration that other cities in Andalusia simply lack. It’s not nearly as crowded or grungy as Barcelona. And because it’s just recently risen from its uninteresting past, this is the perfect time to visit. Oh, and the airport is really, really close :-)

Málaga Málaga
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Where to Eat and what to do

Taperia Orgánica – Astrid
Really nice place with a healthy, ecological cuisine with authentic flavor.
Calle Calderón de la Barca, 6

La Baiona
This small little charming and funky Italian place is one of my favourites. They serve amazing Piadinas, craft ales, cocktails and tiramisu to die for.
Calle Beatas, 40

Speakeasy The Pharmacy
Maybe one of the best bars in Málaga. Delicious and innovative drinks in a cool setting with a divine decoration.
Calle García Briz, 3

Lova Restaurant
Lovely food and friendly staff. The restaurant is beautifully decorated. At Lova, you can enjoy a breakfast or a brunch all day. This restaurant is focused on healthy food, delicious options with lots of variety. In the evening it changes name to Lova by Kosei Ramen and serves tasty japanese food.
Calle Carreteria, 56

Ah, Fonzo our absolut favorit small and quirky bar and very friendly tapas bar in Málaga that serves original home-made dishes.
Calle Mariblanca, 4

The food is fantastic, perfect place if you want to eat healthy and still wants something delicious.
Plaza de la Merced, 22

Los Gatos
Lots of delicious tapas and canapas. Guests also come her for the their beer, especially the masterly brewed Mahou.
Plaza Uncibay, 9

Chiringuito Tropicana
Charming small restaurant located on the beach which lots of nice fish dishes.
Paseo Marítimo Pablo Ruíz Picasso

Antigua Casa de Guardia
The oldest wine bar in Malaga, it was founded in 1840 and still keeps its original decor, very authentic and they have great knowledge about wine.
Alameda Principal, 18

Centre Pompidou Málaga
The world famous gallery Centre Pompidou has come to Malaga. Without doubt the Pompidou art center in Paris is one of the greatest homes of twentieth century art and now you can enjoy it in Malaga.
Pasaje Doctor Carrillo Casaux

Museo Picasso Málaga
Devoted to the most influential artist of the twentieth century in the city where he was born. Open daily.
Palacio de Buenavista C/ San Agustín, 8

Take a long walk along the beach towards the charming old fishing village of Pedregalejo. Here you will find a fantastic selection of restaurants along the promenade, all with views of the sea.

My favorit hotels in Málaga

Hotels in the historical center

Teatro Romano
© Image Hotel Teatro Romano

Hotel Teatro Romano

Malaga Premium Hotel
© Image Malaga Premium Hotel

Malaga Premium Hotel

Madeinterranea Suites
© Image Madeinterranea Suites

Madeinterranea Suites

Hotels with pool

Soho Las Vagas
© Image Soho Las Vegas

Soho Las Vegas Hotel

Room Mate Valeria
© Image Room Mate Valeria

Room Mate Valeria

Gran Hotel Miramar
© Image Gran Hotel Miramar

Gran Hotel Miramar

Budget Hotels

The Urban jungle Hostel
© Image The Urban Jungle Hostel

The Urban Jungle Hostel

© Image Alcazaba Premium Hostel

Alcazaba Premium Hostel

© Image Dulces Dream Boutique Hostel

Dulces Dream Boutique Hostel

Apartment Hotels

© Image Valentina Home

Valentina Home

Tandem Soho
© Image Tandem Soho

Tandem Soho

Malaga Urban Homes

Málaga Urban Homes

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