Malaga has much to offer the city break tourist
Malaga is the starting point for many visitors to the south of Spain but most head to other destinations. The city is often overlooked as a destination in its own right although it has much to offer the city-break tourist. Malaga can offer a welcome dose of warmth in the middle of the bleak British winter. It is often warm enough to sit out at pavement cafés during the day even in December and January.
Malaga lacks outstanding historical monuments but there is plenty to keep culture fans happy for a couple of days. Spain’s celebrated painter, Pablo Picasso was born in the Plaza de la Merced in 1881. His birthplace has been turned into a centre promoting contemporary art with a special emphasis on Picasso himself. The Picasso Museum is situated nearby in the heart of the old town in the Palacio de Buenavista. This magnificent old building has been painstakingly restored to provide a suitable home for the works of one of Spain’s great artists.
Another museum enjoying a central location is the Carmen Thyssen Málaga Museum which occupies the 16th-century Palacio de Villalón in the heart of the city. It displays the collections of the widow of Baron Hans Heinrich Thyssen-Bornemisza. Most of the works are from the 19th century, with the emphasis on Andalusian art. Artists include Zurbarán, Sorolla and Romero de Torres.
Those tourists with an interest in gardening will be fascinated by a visit to La Concepción Botanic Garden, located just outside the city centre. This garden is a tropical paradise which combines formal gardens with a lush green forest. There are regular guided tours of the gardens which pass through exotic trees and plants, Roman sculptures and a waterfall. There is also a beautiful mansion that once belonged to the creators of the gardens, the Marquis of Casa Loring and his English wife Amalia. and there are several panoramic view points.
For those who prefer just to relax and unwind and enjoy some winter warmth, Malaga is an ideal place to sit back and enjoy the Mediterranean atmosphere. Chic boutiques and cool cafés have sprung up alongside the traditional taverns in the winding lanes in the heart of the city. The waterfront is also a good place for wandering, with its promenade, bars, restaurants and shops.