Spring is now well advanced in Malaga and we think May makes one of the best months of the year to visit the city. Read on for some inspiration on what to do in Malaga in May from unusual activities, foodie experiences and side trips from the city to special things to see and places to discover. All in the 31 days of May!
Enjoy Malaga Gastronomy Festival
One of the great events in Malaga of the year and the biggest for foodies, Malaga Gastronomy Festival celebrates its sixth edition in 2019. The event usually takes place in May, although the 2019 edition has been moved to 6 to 9 June, the event brings together the best of food and creators in the province. Action centres around Plaza de la Marina where there will be workshops, show cooking demonstrations and food trucks over the weekend.
Taste the best from the sea
Sardines on a bamboo cane over a log fire and on the beach make one of the best foodie experiences on the Costa del Sol. And May opens the start of the best sardine season. Those in the know say that you should only eat sardines in months without an ‘r’ in them so make sure you enjoy an espeto or two while you’re in Malaga in May. Most beach restaurants serve them – for the cheapest, head for Pedregalejo or El Palo where 5 or 6 delicious sardines cost from €1.50.
Discover Malaga like a local
As fans of Guide to Malaga know, we like to get off the beaten track and one of the best ways to do this is to take a tour with a local. Our friend Mona from Cooltoural organises tailor-made visits to the city so you can connect with real people on your terms and in your own time. We’ve done one of these tours and you really do discover something new even if you’ve been in Malaga for years. Find out more about Cooltoural.
See some squares
Plazas are an essential part of the city in Spain and Malaga has several lovely squares. They make great places to sit and watch the world go by, admire lovely architecture or simply pass through on your way to one of the monuments or museums. See which are our favourite squares in Malaga and then add discovering them to your list of things to do in Malaga in May.
Take in the jacarandas
May means jacaranda time in Malaga when the city’s hundreds of trees burst into magnificent purple bloom. See the best in Plaza de la Merced where literally the whole square blooms purple and on the walk up to the Gibralfaro via the south side of the Alcazaba. But there are so many of these trees that almost anywhere you go in Malaga you’ll be admiring the gorgeous purple jacarandas in May.
Shop on local produce
Another idea for things to do in Malaga in May is to stock up on local produce. Think cold cuts, cheeses, olive oil, dried fruit and nuts, jams and preserves, sweets and cakes… Atarazanas Market has several stalls selling local Malaga produce, but for a change, why not visit one of the traditional grocery stores in the city? They offer personal service and prime products as well as a very different experience.
Walk the seafront
With warm sunshine and light breezes, May offers perfect weather for walking. Make it even better with a stroll along the entire seafront in Malaga. Start in the west at Sacaba Beach (get the No 40 bus from Muelle Heredia) and then make your way east to El Palo. Stop for breakfast at one of the cafés on the western seafront (we like Mum’s and Casilda), lunch at one of the beach bars in El Palo and then enjoy a sundowner at El Balneario on your way back. And if you’re feeling the heat a bit, take a quick dip along the way!
Marvell at the ceilings
Make this month the one where you discover one of the loveliest churches in Malaga. The Basílica de la Victoria (at the north end of Calle Victoria) is home to two very unusual sights – the striking black and white crypt where it’s difficult not to get goosebumps and the Lady Chapel with an ornate Baroque ceiling. Read more about this church in our walking tour of Calle Victoria.
Not as famous as Ronda, but with a much longer list of monuments and a seriously impressive hilltop castle, Antequera is well worth including on your list of day trips from Malaga. Easy to get to by bus and not too hot in May, historic Antequera offers fine churches, views to die for and some of the best dolmens in Spain. Find out more in our dedicated post below. And why not combine your trip with a wine tasting tour while you’re there?
Enjoy some funky art
Make May the month you check out La Térmica Cultural Centre. Located on the west side of town, near the seafront, this historic building hosts several world-class exhibitions a year. Photography and pop art take pride of place in the exhibition halls. Entrance is free and the Centre is open from Tuesday to Sunday 11am to 2pm and 5 to 8pm. Don’t miss the tiled floors, interior patios and stained glass windows while you there. Get to La Térmica on the No 7 bus from Plaza de la Marina or walk along the seafront. You can see which exhibitions are on in our monthly round-up of what’s on in Malaga.