Málaga - a melting pot of history and civilizations, this is the city that lets you travel back in time

Málaga really is a city that takes you on a journey through the history of the ancient world. This, the southernmost large city in Europe (population: 600,000), has been at the crossroads of civilizations for the best part of 2,800 years. Just 80 miles from Africa, the climate is very mild even in Winter, making this time of the year a great time to book your airplane ticket from Johannesburg or Cape Town . If you are thinking of getting a flight during the low season, Air France often has very competitive deals to European destinations .

Whenever you travel, Málaga's main attraction remains the same - the feeling of being able to reach out and touch history as you walk through the city. The Archaeological section of the municipal museum (the Museo de Málaga) is an absolute must, but the open-air museum of the enormous Alcazaba and the Roman amphitheatre beside its entrance are simply awe-inspiring. The Alcazaba dates from the 8th to the 11th centuries AD and is characterized by massive curtain walls and lovely gardens. In Málaga, elements of older civilizations were often simply incorporated into the architecture of their successors. A good example of this is seen in the Iglesia de Santiago, the oldest church in the city and a fine example of Mudéjar architecture (a style of building that fused Moorish and Spanish influences). The other religious construction of note in Málaga has to be the Cathedral. This unusual building has an equally unusual nickname, 'la Manquita' (the one-armed one), because one of its two main towers was never finished. It was completed in a mixture of styles, principally Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance.

Perfect for obtaining a sweeping overview of the city - and great vistas of the Mediterranean too - the Castle of Gibralfaro is located just behind the Alcazaba. It represents another example of the continuity of history running through the fabric of this city, having been a fortified place since the original foundation of Málaga by the Phoenicians.

Holiday in the footsteps of a giant of modern art - visit Picasso's Málaga

Málaga is now synonymous with Pablo Picasso, who was born in the city and spent the first ten years of his life here. There are two museums dedicated to his life and art: The Museo Casa Natal, (the Picasso birthplace museum) and the larger Museo Picasso Málaga which contains almost 300 examples of his work, including paintings, drawings, sculptures, engravings and ceramics. Other works by the artist are on display in the Museo de Málaga, which also contains art by Goya, Velázquez and Zurbarán.
Like most cities in Spain, you can be sure that the local festivals will add a real dash of colour to your holiday. The biggest events are the Holy Week celebrations, the Feria de Málaga and the Málaga Film Festival. Holy Week is marked by a number of processions featuring scenes from the Passion of Jesus Christ mounted on floats.
Travellers should remember that Spain is part of both the Schengen Area and the Eurozone. The airport is 8km from the city centre and you may find a rental car will come in useful during your stay, enabling you to visit areas of interest outside the city, such as the stunning Parque Natural de los Montes de Málaga, home to eagles and wild boar.

Planning your stay in Málaga will be child's play with the help of these websites

The following travel and tourism internet sites for Spain and Málaga will help you get the most from your holiday:


Natural Park