Barcelona is one of the most special and intriguing places in Spain, a site that’s a unique blend of cultures and artistic traditions over the centuries. Unfortunately, nowadays it’s also something of a tourist magnet. While the city is definitely well worth visiting, if you’re taking a trip to Spain and aren’t into pushing through crowds every step of the way, you might want to look for something a bit more off the beaten path.
Enter the city of Málaga. The birthplace of Pablo Picasso, Málaga is located on the southern tip of Spain, making it ideal for travelers looking to soak up the sun in Southern Spain or take a quick trip to the tip of the North African Coast.
If you need further incentive, here are a few hotspots you’ll want to hit up on your trip to Málaga.
Palacio de Buenavista
This 16th-century blast from the past provides a unique peek into Renaissance Spain’s architecture. Moreover, it is also located near Pablo Picasso’s birthplace, Plaza de la Merced. Appropriately enough, it is now home to the Museo Picasso, which is home to 185 works by the Spanish Modernist Master.
While walking around the city, you’ll want to watch where you step – you might be standing on one of the sites which were once part of the city of Málaga, the ancient precursor to the modern city. Málaga was founded in the eighth century and has remained inhabited since, meaning it’s been continuously inhabited longer than most places in Europe and, indeed, the world.
Costa del Sol
The beaches of Málaga, known as Costa del Sol, are found along its 93 miles of coastline. With 300 days of sun a year, it’s no wonder why it’s Spain’s best kept secret. There are numerous beaches, each with their own unique characteristics. For example, Playa Puerto Banus offers a port and three beaches, and is the playground for the rich and famous. And Playa de Chullera is known for its clean waters, which makes it ideal for swimming and snorkeling.
Incredible Food and Cafés
Ask anyone who’s ever had jamón, and chances are they’ll gush about it. This special Spanish smoked ham is just one of many Málaga dishes you’ll want to try. What’s more, you’ll want to give them a whirl while inside one of the city’s many fantastic cafés, such as the Café con Libro, where you can relax with a Spanish paper or novel and take in the city like a native.