Málaga is the birth place of Pablo Picasso and is situated at the Andalusian coast. It was the third jewel on our cruise with the Eurodam. From here you can go on a trip to Seville but you can also explore the town on your own. In Málaga you can explore a beautiful beach, a picturesque old town and a Moorish castle. Unfortunately, the sky was cloudy when we reached Malaga, but the Eurodam stayed in port until 11 pm. In the afternoon it was supposed to get sunny. So we first enjoyed our breakfast on board and then disembarked the cruise ship at noon.
In Málaga the cruise ships dock directly near downtown and very close to the beach. You can walk to the beach within 4 minutes and in around 15 minutes to the old town. You can easily explore Málaga on your own. Directly after disembarkation, we took a map from the tourist office stand. At the pier you will find a signpost for the city.
We loved to walk the way from the ship to the city center. First you walk along pier at the beach until you reach Muelle Uno (Muelle 1). Here the way splits up into two routes. You can either walk along the pier on top or the path underneath. The path underneath was really nice. Here were a number of restaurants, cafes and small shops. You can easily spend a whole day in this area. At the end of Muelle 1 we turned left towards the city center. We continued to walk along the harbor promenade to Plaza de La Marina. This place is right in the very pretty old town of Málaga. At the Plaza de la Marina is also the tourist information center and on the left side of the square towards Alameda Principal is the central bus station.
Holland America also offers a Shuttleservice with a fee to get to the city centre. You could buy tickets on board.
At the pier you could also take a taxi for different routes to discover the city or just drive to the city centre. The ride to the city centre costs about 5 to 10 euros and takes about 5 minutes.
Right next to the cruise ship port is a scenic train which leaves for a tour. There are also signposts to get to the train. One ride costs 3 euros per person.
The city of Málaga also offers a cheap shuttle bus from the cruise port to the Plaza de la Marina. It leaves every 15 to 20 minutes and costs 2 euros per person one-way.
From the Eurodam we could already see the castle of Gibralfaro. It is one of the main attractions of the city and is located on a mountain next to the lighthouse. The name Gibralfaro comes from the Arabic language and means rock of the lighthouse. The castle offers great views of the city and the harbor. To get up there, there are several options:
The castle Gibralfaro is located at the end of the Muelle Uno (Muelle 1). When you disembark, you can walk to the Muelle 1 and walk straight over the Paseo de las Curas and the Botanical Garden. Then pass via the Plaza del General Torrijos and walk up to the castle. The road is a serpentine way up and you cannot miss the castle, because you only have to go straight ahead. The climb is quite steep and takes about 30 minutes.
A ride with a taxi from the cruise port to the castle costs about 15 euros.
You can also reach the castle with the public bus. You can take the bus no. 35 up to the castle Gibralfaro. We took this bus from the Plaza de la Marina. If you want to take a bus near the port, you can walk to Muelle 1 and cross the Passeo de las Curas and the botanical garden. At the Paseo del Parque you will find the bus no. 35. The bus leaves at the side of the park and drives you up to the last stop: Camino de Gibralfaro-Castillo. The public bus leaves every 40 minutes from monday to friday and costs 1.30 euros per person. We took the bus up to the castle and later on walked down and visited the old town.
We have three tips for you to spend an amazing day in Málaga.
The castle Castillo de Gibralfaro in Málaga was clearly visible from onboard the Eurodam and you could already guess that the 130 meters high castle offers fantastic views of the city of Málaga and the harbor. The castle was built in the 14th century during the Moorish occupation as a fortress to defend the city. Later on the castle was used as a prison and in 1812 the French army destroyed much of the facility. However, the walls and parts of the courtyards and buildings are still well preserved and you can walk along the wall of the castle for hours to enjoy the stunning views of the city, the historic bullring and the harbor.
We loved the view of the city from the various observation towers and took many photos of the unique zigzag design of the site and the Eurodam in the background. We did not visit the information center anymore, because we wanted to enjoy the city centre of Málaga. Admission cost 2,20 Euro per person. The Castillo is open in summer from 9 am to 8 pm and in winter from 9 am to 6 pm.
We walked from the Castillo de Gibralfaro to the old town. We passed the fort Alcazaba, the Picasso Museum and the cathedral and entered the pedestrianized Old Town. Málaga has a charming and historic old town. There is a lovely paved pedestrian area with shops, cafes and restaurants. There are some very original shops, such as Ricami & Veronica, where you can have your name embroidered on towels and other fabrics.
As in Spain, you will find countless tapas bars in Málaga. However, the tapas taste a little bit different in each region of Spain. That’s why we wanted to try the Andalusian tapas in Málaga. We tried the tapas bar “La Taberna del Pintxo Larios” in Calle Alarcon Lujan. This bar is located in the historic center of Málaga close to the Plaza de la Marina. The tapas were fantastic. You could choose from either cold tapas from the bar counter or warm tapas from the menu. In all Tapas stuck small skewers. The word Pintxo means skewer. The price of the tapas depends on the type of the skewer. A normal flat skewer cost 1.25 euros, a skewer with heart cost 1.75 euros and the most expensive was the sword for 1.95 euros. You can take the cold tapas on your plate and then pay later for your skewers. It was really tasty!
After this tasting we went back to the Eurodam. Tonight we wanted to try the Spa onboard the Eurodam and take the opportunity to taste the dishes of Jonnie Boer in the main restaurant.
Tonight the Eurodam offered two culinary highlights. In the Sea View restaurant on Deck 9 you could try a Mediterranean BBQ and the main restaurant offered an exclusive opportunity to choose dishes by Jonnie Boer, the three-star chef and head chef of De Librije in Zwolle. His restaurant received a Michelin star six months after the opening. Of course we wanted to take the opportunity to taste a dish of Jonnie Boer and tried the cod with red onion and Serrano ham. Delicious! You should not miss that experience.
With a selection of cheeses and cream Brulee we finished this wonderful dinner and were looking forward to tomorrow’s gala evening in Gibraltar.