Malaga is a destination of boundless wonder. The capital of Costa del Sol is famous for its multicultural architecture, beautiful landscapes, and sunny beaches. One thing you don’t probably already know about that beautiful city is that you don’t have to be rich to travel there. Here are the top 10 things to do for free in Malaga.
It is perfectly possible to enjoy a city trip without breaking the bank. While you may not be able to do every single thing on your list, you can still enjoy the city and everything it has to offer on a budget. So don’t hesitate, book a flight and let’s find out what to do in Malaga for free.
1. Soho Neighborhood: Malaga Street Art District
No 1 in the list of the top 10 things to do for free in Malaga it’s Soho Neighborhood. If you love street art this is the right place for you. Soho neighborhood, in the heart of Málaga City, is the literary quarter of the Costa del Sol capital. It has become synonymous with urban art and underground culture.
One of the iconic elements in Soho Málaga is the graffiti and the wall murals that decorate several buildings. They are works by such street artists as Obey, the author of the Barack Obama poster with the caption ‘HOPE’, and D*face, whose interventions can be seen in New York, Barcelona and other cities.
The illustrations are all part of the Maus project, aimed at transforming the walls of Málaga into a huge mural painted by artists from all over the world.
2. Atarazanas Market: the best fresh local products
Visiting Atarazanas Market is another suggestion in the top 10 things to do for free in Malaga. Situated right in the heart of the city, Malaga’s Central Market is a great place to visit and come in contact with the locals.
The name “Atarazanas” comes from Moorish times, and when translated literally from Arabic means a “place where ships are repaired”. Although hard to believe now, most of the current day Malaga was underwater during the Moorish rule and the Atarazanas was right at the sea’s edge.
There are records well into the 18th century of people still fishing from the market (shipbuilding yard’s) walls. Even you are not on a mood of buying fresh meat, fish, and vegetables a walk around the colorful market stalls won’t cost you anything.
3. Free Museums in Malaga on Sundays
The best day to visit Malaga is on Sunday because almost all of the 36 museums are free.
- Carmen Thyssen Museum offers an extensive collection of masterpieces that summarize the 19th-century Spanish art and belonged to the Baroness Thyssen-Bornemisza. The entrance is free every Sunday from 17:00 to 20:00.
- Malaga’s Center of Contemporary Art, CAC as it’s known, house a really interesting collection of 20th and 21st century. The museum also helps artists of Malaga get recognition. You can access the museum for free the whole week from 10:00 to 18:00.
- Opened in the spring of 2015, this is the first Pompidou Center outside of France. Its collection displays 90 masterpieces from the 20th and 21st centuries, to which temporarily exhibitions are added twice/three times every year. If you are lucky enough to be in the city on Sunday you can visit the museum from 4 pm to 8 pm, the last entry is at 7.30 pm. If you want to go on any other day of the week, the museum opens from 9.30 am to 8 pm, at the cost of €9.
- Situated in a Renaissance building recently restored in a modern style, Picasso’s Museum hosts a collection of more than 233 paintings that will leave you breathless. The entrance is free on Sundays from 16:00 up to 19:00. If you want to know more about Malaga’s most renowned artist you can visit his birthplace which is located head towards Plaza Merced.
4. Alcazaba and Gibralfaro Castle also free on Sundays
The most popular monuments of Malaga are the Alcazaba and the Castle of Gibralfaro. The Alcazaba fortress palace dates back to the 10th century and it is the best-preserved Alcazaba in Spain. There you can visit the beautiful patios and admire the Arabic architecture.
Gibralfaro Castle sits on top of a mountain surrounded by high defense walls that you can walk around and offers the most amazing view of the city. Some people say that you can even see Africa from the top. Entrance to both the Alcazaba and the Gibralfaro castle are free after 14:00 on Sundays.
5. Malaga Cathedral and Churches: a vast heritage for free!
If you want a deeper look at art a culture of Malaga you have to visit the Cathedral which is located at the historic center of the city. “La Manquita” (The One-Armed Lady) as they call her is an impressive building with Renaissance and Baroque architectural elements.
After a long period of constriction the Cathedral never finished, lacking one of the main towers and that justifies her name. In order to enjoy a completely different view of the city center, you can visit the roof of that spectacular building.
The entrance is free on Sundays from 14:00 to 18:00. If you are in a mood to explore more you can also visit Sagrado Corazón, which is the church where Picasso was baptized, or the church of Santos Martíres.
6. “Paseo del Parque” of Malaga: a tropical paradise
Park of Malaga is located right in the center of the city, between the Port of Malaga, the Cervantes Avenue, the Alameda Principal and the Malagueta neighborhood. Although its name is Park of Malaga, it is also known as Paseo del Parque or Parque de la Alameda.
The park has been configured as one of the most important public gardens in Europe in terms of exotic flora. It’s an ideal place to unwind on a sunny afternoon and perhaps enjoy a picnic. It’s an on a budget activity that’s really worth it!
7. Malaga’s Harbour: Muelle Uno, lots of fun for free
The harbor of Malaga is one the oldest in the world counting more than 3 thousand years. Today, it’s a wonderful marvel of modern architecture—and completely free to explore.
Walking around that area you can see all the kinds of ships docking as well as another famous symbol of this city. “La Farola” of Malaga is the only lighthouse in Spain, except Tenerife, that has a feminine name. If you like sunsets the harbor is one of the best spots to watch it.
8. Best Malaga Beaches: all year round choice
Last but not least on our top 10 things to do for free in Malaga, is the beach. Malaga has 300 days of sun every year, so walking around or even swimming is always a good idea for your bucket list. The colorful beach of Malagueta is the closest beach to the city center and the easiest to reach.
Don’t worry if you are not a fun of swimming you can just relax under the palm trees and enjoy the sun. In case you are willing to explore more of the Mediterranean coast and you are willing to rent a bike you can also visit the beach in El Palo or Peñor de Cuervo beach.
The beaches there are mainly field with locals so it’s a nice way to discover another side of the Andalusian way of living.
9. Malaga viewpoints: amazing views of the bay for free
- Gibralfaro Viewpoint is everything you want in an epic view of Malaga. The castle itself is a historic landmark dating back to the 14th century and was built to house troops and protect the Alcazaba. It takes a while to get up there, but it’s definitely worth it.
Check our Sunset and Nightlights’ Tour if you want to discover the history and stories of my beloved Malaga with the best views of the city! Click HERE to book your guided walking tour up to Gibralfaro viewpoint
- “Falcon” Viewpoint is located near the southern entrance of the Parque del Morlaco. Its peculiar name of “Falcón” comes from the young people of the zone who said that one of the houses located near the viewpoint is very similar to the house of the Falcon Crest series. The best way to access this hidden viewpoint is the area of the Baños del Carmen.
10. Malaga Botanic Garden: another free activity on Sunday
In case you want to know better the fauna of Costa del Sol you can probably visit the Botanic Garden. On Sundays, from 3.30 pm to 9 pm, you have a great chance to enjoy an impressive amount of different species of plants and flowers.
Malaga’s botanic garden is renowned as the tropical and subtropical garden of Europe. Originally it was a recreational estate for a family of the high class of the city from the middle of the 19th century until in 1990 it became public.
Those were our top 10 things to do for free in Malaga. We hope that our proposals will help you to explore almost every part of the beautiful city of Malaga. So don’t think twice, pack your things and get ready for the best trip of your life!
In case you are interested in having some more interactive activities you can always visit our experiences section and check out what we offer! 😁