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The birthplace of Picasso, a one-armed cathedral that took 250 years to build, a Roman forum and two impressive Moorish citadels. You will find all of this in Malaga, with the added bonus of beautiful beaches with yellow sands.

The second largest city in Andalusia, Malaga is a port city located on the Costa del Sol in southern Spain. It's a perfect destination for those who want to escape winter and explore something other than Florida.

Picasso, ever-present in the city 

Even though he left the city where he was born at the age of 10, the artist is present everywhere in Malaga.

Especially at the Picasso Museum, the best place to learn about the great artist. Do not miss the audio guide (free) and be sure to go upstairs where many of his works are displayed, both paintings and sculptures.

Thematic exhibitions often occupy the ground floor. During our visit, a Picasso / Fellini exhibition was held. It was quite an interesting visit because it was about the imaginary encounters between these two great artists, who in fact never met, except through their works.

The Buenavista Palace, which houses the museum, is also remarkable. Its staircases, floors and ceilings, carved and made out of dark wood, contrast with white walls and arches. A Renaissance building, it has been enlarged in the manner of a traditional Andalusian village and leads to the Alcazaba Fortress and the Roman Theater.

The Moorish citadels

Perched on a hill whose shape harmoniously follows and dominates the modern urban landscape, the Alcazaba is an impressive group of buildings built between the VIIIth and XIth centuries. It was the fortress of the Muslim Arab elite who ruled the city.

The palace, erected in the center, is well protected by massive walls surrounding the fortress. It was the subject of a major restoration in 1930 and houses an exhibition of Muslim ceramics and pottery. Three courtyards follow one another inside the palace where archways and carved columns are remarkable, as are the stones on the ground, which are often real paintings.

Behind the Alcazaba, even higher up on the hill, stands another massive citadel, the Castillo de Gibralfaro, another vestige of the Moorish reign.

Moreover, on these hills, many trails welcome hikers who can see eagles and wild boars on occasion.

A stroll on Plaza de la Merced

Coming down from the hill, we easily reach Plaza de la Merced, one of the most pleasant squares in the city. We see the birthplace of Picasso (the corner of Merced and Gómez Pallete), go around the public market and end up on a nice terrace with tapas and local beer, before venturing into some shops that have tempting displays.

Admiring the one-armed cathedral

This is worth a stop! The imposing Cathedral of the Incarnation of Malaga took more than 250 years to build. This explains the mix of architectural styles. Started in 1528, the architecture of the main building is Renaissance, while the facade is from the Baroque period. It is one of the still-unfinished towers that earned her the nickname Manquita (one-armed).

An endless palm tree

On the way back to the port, we walk through the Palmeral de las Sorpresas (palm of surprises). This is an installation designed by the architectural firm Junquera, inaugurated in 2011 and designed to beautify the port. It is a charming success that left us with a pleasant memory - that of walking under a seemingly endless palm tree - before boarding the ship to continue our explorations on other shores.

 Christiane Théberge


The Roman Theater  

The Alcazaba

Cathedral of the Incarnation 

The Parmeral de las Sorpresas 





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