Even though Malaga is a popular European city with dozens of prominent landmarks and worthy attractions, it remains a busy, vibrant hub with noisy streets and bustling crowds. For this reason, visitors to Malaga may want to plan a series of weekend trips to the nearest towns and villages. Here’s a selection of the best day trips from Malaga for those seeking scenic locations, breathtaking landscapes, and stunning monuments of the previous epochs.
Located right in the center of Andalusia, Antequera is a perfect getaway from Malaga for those who want to discover Spanish traditions and get acquainted with Spanish culture. Antequera is home to the Bronze age tombs, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Apart from ancient excavations of the Roman baths and a medieval Moorish fortress, Antequera offers a selection of wonderful museums and whitewashed houses. This is a typical Andalusian town, unspoiled by tourism and perfectly relaxing.
When someone says Archidona, apart from the true Spanish spirit and lifestyle, olive groves and almond trees they also mean three things to see: old-style bullfighting, unexplored caves and a rehabilitation center for animals. Bulls can be seen in action in August, when the hexagonal Plaza Ochavada bullring turns into a vibrant arena. Archidona’siconic cave system with stalactites, stalagmites, water pools, and odd rock formations, Cuevas de Jumandí, is found just 4 kilometers north of the townamong the mountains of the Sierra Gracia. Many tourists also visit Archidona’s El Arca Rescue Center, thus contributing to saving parrots, anacondas, caimans, and monkeys.
Those tired of the urban lifestyle can find a safe and relaxing retreat if they arrange a day trip to Ardales. This village has fresh air you can breathe, amazing countryside you can admire, and mysterious archeological sites you can explore. Located on the edge of the Ronda mountains, Ardales has been a campground for many peoples since the Neolithic period. Ardales is so beautiful that the Moors called it the Land of Allah. Today, it is a comfortable rural resort town, popular among holiday makers. The best thing to do here is to follow the footsteps of King Alfonso and rediscover the terrifying Caminito del Rey trail.
Once a small fishing village, Nerja is aminiscule town on the Costa del Sol, which is also a thriving Mediterranean resort of huge importance, boasting 320 days of sunshine per year. In the summer, its population is tripled due to a steady flow of tourists. Nerja has everything you need for a pleasant getaway from Malaga. You can walk along its winding streets and see atmospheric whitewashed houses, a 17th-century church, and a Moorish fortress. Alternatively, you can explore 20,000-year-old caves with prehistoric drawings, chill out in a beach bar or restaurant, or enjoy seaside recreation.
Ronda is famous all over the world due to its awesome miracle of engineering, the 18th-century New Bridge, stretching over the El Tajo gorge. This bridge is in the short list of Andalusia’s most visited attractions. Yet, it by no means outshines Ronda’s other landmarks: narrow, winding streets adorned with geraniums, the historic Moorish La Ciudad quarter, and Plaza de Toros which hosted Spain’s most memorable bullfighting events. When in Ronda, you can also admire panoramic views from the viewpoint in the Alameda de José Antonio park or travel back in time to the medieval Moorish baths.
Villanueva de la Concepción
Villanueva de la Concepción is within an hour of travelling by car from Malaga, and it is truly worthy of the trip. Villanueva offers amazing karst landscapes, tranquil village lifestyle, and ornate squares among charming streets and whitewashed houses. Its Parish Church of Nuestra Señora de la Inmaculada Concepción is known for the amazing wooden carving of baby Jesus, which tourists come to see. The town is located in the hilly countryside of inland Spain close to the unbelievably beautiful El Torcal Natural Areaand on the Royal Way from Malaga to Madrid.