Top Things to Do in Malaga, as Recommended by Locals

Top Things to Do in Malaga, as Recommended by Locals

If you’re planning on venturing to the Costa Del Sol (the Southern Coast of Spain), then the port-city of Malaga is a must-visit.

We got the inside scoop on the best things to do in Malaga, the must-see sights, the best restaurants in the city, and more from lovely locals Javier and Luis; here’s their complete guide to Malaga for experiencing this part of Andalusia like the locals do.


12 cool things to do in Malaga

  1. Stroll along the seafront at the port (Muelle Uno)

  2. Enjoy the best restaurants with a view in Pedregalejo

  3. Savour delicious "espeto de sardinas" & relax at Malagueta Beach

  4. Join a food tour at Atarazanas Market

  5. Indulge in the best churros & chocolate at Casa Aranda

  6. Taste sweet Moscatel wine and experience flamenco

  7. Dive into Malaga’s ancient history at the Roman Theatre

  8. Visit the building where Picasso was born - Plaza Merced

  9. Dine on the best tapas in Bar El Beato

  10. Venture through the street that never sleeps - Calle Larios

  11. Visit Constitution Square in the Historic Quarter

  12. Marvel at the one-armed lady, The Incarnation Cathedral


Watch our really cool video to see Javier & Luis’s local travel guide and see for yourself the wonders of Malaga that await you.



1. The port of Malaga

Malaga’s seafront is a lovely place to enjoy the sun and explore walking, cycling, or even on a Segway. The temperate waters of the Mediterranean Sea welcome swimmers pretty much the whole year long and with more than three hundred days of sunshine a year, there’s few places better than the port of Malaga for enjoying the weather.


See also: Free tours in Malaga, Spain


2. Pedregalejo neighbourhood for restaurants

The neighbourhood of Pedregalejo is a charming old fishing-village a few Kilometers from the modern urban centre of Malaga. It is renowned locally for the delightful restaurants and bars converted from the old fishermen houses that line the beach-front, and unbeatable sea-food – especially the paella from the wonderfully authentic, family-run Hermanos Muñoz restaurant (Paseo Marítimo el Pedregal, 98).


3. Taste mouth-watering fresh sardines on the beach

espeto de sardinas in malaga

On Malagueta Beach, you’ll find delectable fresh sardines being smoked by wood-fired barbeque - a typical method of cooking ‘espeto de sardinas’ in Malaga. It might seem simple, but they are incredibly tasty and a portion of five sardines is only four euros!


4. Explore the colourful Atarazanas Market

The main food market in Malaga, Atarazanas Market, is a veritable treasure trove of fresh food and ingredients popular among locals and restaurants alike for sourcing the best quality food products, especially fish, fruit and vegetables, and meats – particularly Iberian ham. We recommend joining a local Malaga tapas tour to experience this place and learn its fascinating history with an expert local guide.


5. Treat yourself to chocolate & churros

Close to one hundred years old, local favourite Casa Aranda is the oldest spot to get some churros and chocolate in Malaga. The fried dough and chocolate combo is a long-loved traditional snack in Spain. Casa Aranda is, without doubt, one of the best places to treat yourself to churros in Malaga. The locals love it and the price is cheap!


6. Sweet wine and traditional Flamenco

flamenco malaga

Probably the most famous restaurant in the whole of Malaga city, and rightly so, El Pimpi is a favourite among the locals, including celebrities who regularly visit for the warm atmosphere, delicious food, and tasty traditional sweet wine, Muscatel.

Housed in an 18th Century mansion, it isn’t just great food & wine that El Pimpi specialises in; there’s a real focus on the culture & traditions of Andalusia too and, to that end, you’ll regularly find Flamenco dancers, musicians, and artists performing here. This is one of the top things to do in Malaga for a truly immersive experience.

If you are interested in flamenco and Andalusian culture, we recommend visiting the beautiful city of Seville, and Cadiz too.


7. Visit the Roman Theatre & Alcazaba fortress

A lot of different cultural civilisations have left their mark on Malaga, including the Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Romans, Visigoths, Muslims and Christians. In Calle Alcazabilla, we can see fascinating examples of the legacies of two of these – the remarkable Roman theatre and Alcazaba Muslim fortress.


8. The birthplace of Picasso

At Plaza Merced, sits a statue that curiously resembles a present-day Bruce Willis. Of course, it isn’t – rather, it is Malaga’s most famous son, Picasso. And a few metres from the likeness of the man himself is the building where he was born. Now housing a Collection of his sketches and ceramics, the house of Picasso is a really unique place to see in Malaga.


9. Find the best tapas in Malaga

When we think of tapas, we think about Spain - but where especially? Here, of course. Malaga is the mecca of amazing tapas and, complemented by the best weather in Europe, there’s no-where better to dine on delicious tapas on the terrace. This is one of the typical things to do in Malaga, according to the locals.

tapas bar malaga

We highly recommend Bar El Beato, it’s a favourite tapas bar among locals and, with a beer and tapas costing two to three euros, is a great price too.


10. Absorb the atmosphere on Calle Marques de Larios

Calle Marques de Larios, the street that never sleeps, is perhaps Malaga’s most active pedestrian thoroughfare. Twenty-four hours a day, you can see people buzzing around the busy shops by day and the exciting bars by night. Flanked by beautiful buildings, this wide street is one of the main pedestrian zones in the city and is often the site of important local public events.


11. Malaga Constitution Square

Right in the centre of the Old Town of Malaga, Constitution Square, is central to Malaga’s beautiful Historic quarter. The pedestrianized square is always bustling with activity every day. It is also the place to be for big events and parties like the Malaga Fair, fashion week, Easter parades and New Year’s Eve.

Adorned with intriguing monuments, 18th & 19th Century facades, galleries, and charming cafes, this busy square is at the heart of the action in Malaga.


12. Admire Renaissance art of The Incarnation Cathedral

malaga incarnation cathedral

Incarnation cathedral is our well-known jewel in Malaga’s historic district, but we have a nickname for it; everybody calls it “La Manquita”, which means “the one-armed lady”. Why? Well, it was built over two centuries, between 1528 and 1782, and while one of the splendid towers was completed, funds ran out before constructing of the second tower could begin, resulting in the asymmetrical appearance of the affectionately named La Manquita.

The cathedral has remained incomplete to this day. While it is a beautiful sight from the outside, the interior is also a marvel to behold with its glorious interior of baroque and renaissance splendour, exquisite sculptures, remarkable wood carvings, and wonderful Renaissance artworks. It’s well worth a visit when in Malaga.

If you want to have fun and learn about the history and traditions of your next destination, don’t forget to book a free tour in Malaga with excellent local guides.

There’s a variety of tours to choose from to help you really get under the skin of this wonderful city in Andalusia, get insights to the many fascinating facets of our local culture and heritage, as well as special local tips and insider recommendations for many more ways to explore and experience Malaga like a local.
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