You only have one day to see Malaga and you don’t know how to organize it? Thanks to this article you will find out and we assure you that you will want to come back, as you will be able to keep the essence of the city but you will need several days to explore the city in depth.
What to see in Malaga in one day? Recommended route
To make your visit easier, we have made a map for your tour so that you know what to see in Malaga.
Roman Theatre and Alcazaba
What better place to start the visit than this emblematic place? Romans and Muslims were two of the three most important civilizations of Malaga along with the Phoenicians, who founded the city in the 7th century BC and gave it the name of Mlk, the Phoenicians understood the vowels, so we would call it Malaka.
The Roman theater appeared in 1995 with the construction of the house of culture and today we can enjoy this part of the theater even we can see underground pools used for food preservation and manufacture of Garum. It is a place where occasionally plays are held and Antonio Banderas even participated in a play when he was a child.
Behind the theatre, we can see the Alcazaba, one of the most spectacular buildings in the city. It was built by the Muslims during the eight centuries they were in the city. Many people call it the little Alhambra, it is a beautiful and impressive fortress but if we only have one day I recommend you to continue with the route.
You will be able to see another fortress at the top, it was the Gibralfaro Castle, formerly the wall that we see communicated the Alcazaba and the castle. If you travel by car and you have time, I recommend you to go up to the castle and enjoy spectacular panoramic views of Malaga. If you don’t have time, go to the last point of the article as there are several hotel terraces with equally spectacular views.
Church of Santiago Apostle
Located in Granada street, it is the oldest church in the city. It is the starting point of one of the routes of the Camino de Santiago, if you don’t have more than a day to visit Malaga, I doubt you have a month and a half to do the route.
When you look at the facade, you will not find it very attractive because of its humble appearance as it is a trompe l’oeil, don’t you know what trompe l’oeil is? Put the words trap and eye together and we will have the solution. Despite the appearance of the facade, it is spectacular inside, and Pablo Picasso was baptized here when he was only 10 days old. His baptismal font is inside.
Bar el Pimpi
It will be very difficult for you to pass by this bar and not want to stop for a drink but hold on, later on you can make a stop. It is the most famous bar in Malaga and I recommend that you continue along Granada street, enter the main street and go through the bar until you come out onto a square.
You can have your cameras ready and it is not necessary to consume to enter because apart from being a bar it is also a tourist site, you will see the corridors full of pictures of famous people in the bar and barrels signed by some of them. Once you get out to the square, our next stop is in front of us.
Museum of Malaga
If you are looking for what to see in Malaga for free, this is one of the best museums in the city and you don’t have to pay to enter. It used to be the customs house and it was next to the sea, although it may seem strange to you, the sea used to reach here. If you want you can enter and see it in half an hour but if you wish, you can continue.
It is a very complete museum as you can enjoy archaeological remains, works of art, even some of Picasso himself. It is also a very elegant building with a large courtyard, making it an essential visit.
This spectacular cathedral was built after the reconquest of the Catholic kings from 1528 to 1782 but as you can see, it is not complete. The south tower is still to be built, you know that the people of Malaga have no imagination for humour, so all the inhabitants know it as “la manquita”.
If you want, you can visit the cathedral (accessed from the side), and you can even climb the north tower, the views are spectacular and visit the cathedral and climb the tower will take about an hour. In total there are almost 200 stairs, not recommended for people with claustrophobia as the stairs of the tower are very narrow and spiral shaped.
Do you think it’s time to stop for a drink? You can go to the next point and stop at Calle Larios on the way back.
It is the most famous street in Malaga and is currently the fifth most expensive street in Spain in rental income. The monthly price per square meter is about 200 €. It was inaugurated in 1891 and the statue of the Marqués de Larios was erected since he was the one who built the street.
It is an emblematic place in winter, as we have the spectacle of lights on and one of the main places of the steps of Holy Week. You can walk up the street and you will arrive at the Plaza de la Constitución.
Central Market of Atarazanas
Hungry already? Then you’re in the perfect place unless it’s a Sunday, as the market is closed. This building is a Muslim legacy, the word literally translated means shipyard. As in the museum in Malaga, the sea used to come here as well.
The Central Market of Atarazanas was inaugurated as a market in the late nineteenth century and restored in 2008, one of the improvements of the market was the installation of stained glass windows that show the most emblematic monuments and elements of the city.
Both inside and outside you can enjoy several stalls that serve you fish and fresh products at a reasonable price. Most of the products are from Malaga. If the market is closed, a few meters away you will find the old guard house, the oldest bar in Malaga where you can have a snack and try their vermouth and pajarete (sweet wine typical of Malaga).
Pier one and Malagueta Square
After having visited the most important places in the centre, you can take a walk from the market or from Larios street, passing through the Plaza de la Marina, where you will find a tourist information office, passing through the port and arriving at the Malagueta beach. Once there you can try the espetos de sardina (sardine skewers), a delicious Malaga speciality.
We hope you liked the article. Of course Malaga has many more things to see but for a single day this is the route we recommend. If you like art a visit to the Picasso Museum is also a good option and if you have a car you can go up to the viewpoint of Gibralfaro as it has the best views of the city.