What’s on in Malaga in January 2022

Welcome to the New Year in Malaga and a whole new series of monthly posts on events. This one rounds up what’s on in Malaga in January.

This is traditionally a quiet month for tourism in the city, but there’s still plenty going on including the annual (and highly- acclaimed) Malaga Theatre Festival. Read on for our pick of the best events in Malaga this month.

Note that covid-19 restrictions are in place in Malaga and events may be cancelled with short notice. If you have tickets for an event, double-check with the venue that it’s going ahead. 

Christmas events in Malaga in January

Christmas Lights

 

view of Calle Larios Malaga Christmas lights 2019

The 1.7 million LED bulbs continue to twinkle away until Thursday 6 January. If you haven’t seen the Christmas lights, don’t miss the light and sound show on Calle Larios between 6.30 and 9.30pm.

Three Kings Parade

At the time of writing (late December 2021), this event was still going ahead but there is talk of possible cancellation so double-check beforehand . 

The Three Kings Parade takes place from 5pm on 5 January when the three kings arrive at the Alcazaba Fortress and walk to City Hall to join the floats and rest of the parade. 

READ ALL ABOUT THE THREE KINGS PARADE

The itinerary runs along the Avenida Cervantes to Plaza del General Torrijos before returning to the city centre via the Paseo del Parque and Plaza de la Marina. From here, the Kings et al parade along the Alameda Principal, up Puerta del Mar and along Calle Atarazanas to Plaza de Arriola. They then go along Calle Carreteriá and Alamos to finish their route in Plaza de la Merced.

Christmas Garden 

The lovely Concepción Botanical Gardens twinkle with millions of little lights from 6.30 to 11pm until 9 January. The light trail runs for 2.2km around the gardens where you’ll also find Christmas bells and a “laser garden”. Tickets cost from €12 per person and there are discounts for families, senior citizens and students. All the information and link to ticket booking here. We visited this just before Christmas and can highly recommend it. 

Christmas lights at the botanical gardens Malaga

Malaga Theatre Festival

Malaga celebrates the 39th edition of the Theatre Festival in two ‘acts’: the first between 7 January and 6 February and the second from 1 to 11 May. A long list of plays and dance pieces come to the city at the Cervantes Theatre and Echegaray Theatre with a good dose of very famous Spanish actors. The majority of the works is in Spanish, but you’ll have the chance to see top class theatre and some big names on the stage.

 

You can see the full programme for the Malaga Theatre Festival here.

January sales 

The beginning of the year always means bargain shopping time and all shops in Malaga start their sales from 26 December onwards. If you’re looking for designer brands with extra discounts, head over to Designer Outlet Malaga near Plaza Mayor where stores have an additional 50% off their usual discounted prices. Get there on the Cercanías train from the city centre and get off at the Plaza Mayor stop. 

See the best places to go shopping in Malaga.

Musical events in Malaga in January 

With the Cervantes Theatre celebrating the Theatre Festival this month, concerts move to other scenarios. 

JS Bach cello solos

Cellist Adriana Rojo Ruiz plays Bach’s First, Second and Third Suites at the Jorge Rando Museum on Tuesday 4 January at 6pm. Get to the Museum on Calle Cruz del Molinillo, at the end of Calle Ollerías and opposite the Salamanca Market. Free entry.

Company 

Antonio Banderas and his troupe of dancers and singers perform the Stephen Sondheim and George Furth musical in Teatro Soho. Banderas takes the leading role in another classic Broadway show, adapted into Spanish. Performances are Wednesday to Friday at 7.30pm, Saturday at 5 and 9.30pm and Sunday at 6pm. Tickets cost from €25 and are available online here

Piano Recital

The monthly free concert at the Museum of Malaga takes place on Sunday 23 January at noon and features Maria Márquez Torres on the piano playing Granados, Chopin and other composers. Tickets are available on the door on the day – get there early to be sure of a place. 

Cuarteto al lienzo

This all-female quartet plays Chapi and Borodin at the Carmen Thyssen Museum on Saturday 29 January at 8.30pm. Tickets cost €10 and are available from the museum ticket office or online.

Concert in the gardens

The Municipal Band plays their first free concert of the year on Sunday 30 January at noon in the Botanical Gardens. Tickets are free and available online from 11am on Thursday 27 January – note that the link doesn’t work until that date and time.

Record Fair 

Visit a world of vinyls, SPs, EPs and LPs on Thursday 6 January 11am to 8pm on the Roof Terrace at the Hotel Salles (Calle Mármoles 6). Free entry.

Abbas Kiarostami Film Fest 

The Albeniz Cinema dedicates its first festival of 2022 to the highly-acclaimed Iranian film director, Abbas Kiarostami. The cinema will show six of his masterpieces in their original version with Spanish subtitles during January and February at 8pm: 

  • Thursday 13 January – Khane ye Doust Kodjast (Where is the Friend’s House?, 1987)
  • Thursday 20 January – Zendagi va digarhich (And Life Goes On, 1992)
  • Thursday 27 January – Zire dorakhatan zeyton (Through the Olive Trees, 1994).

Retro Car & Motorbike Fair 

The 9th edition of the annual vintage vehicle fair takes place this year from 28 to 30 January at the Malaga Congress Palace (FYCMA). See classic cars and motorcycles, visit the second-hand accessories and parts stalls and maybe buy a car or bike to take home. Tickets cost €9 or you can buy a combined ticket for the Car Museum and Fair for €14, available online. Friday 28 January 4 to 9pm, Saturday 29 January 10am to 9pm and Sunday 30 January 10am to 8pm. 

What’s on in Malaga in January – Art exhibitions

As always, events in Malaga in January include lots of great art (whatever your favourite genre):

Carmen Thyssen Museum 

The museum celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2021 and continues to showcase Spanish art from the 18th and 19th centuries seen in the permanent collection.

Sorolla in Javea is the latest temporary exhibition at the museum and showcases over 20 works by one of Spain’s best-loved artists. All share the common theme of Javea, on the Costa Blanca, a favourite spot with Sorolla whose paintings of the sea, cliffs, children and beaches are world-famous. Until 16 January.

The Paul Strand exhibition shows 131 photos from his collection with pictures from his native New York and travels around the world. Strand is considered one of the pioneers of modern photography and this exhibition provides an excellent opportunity to see his iconic portraits and landscapes. Until 6 March.

 

Open Tuesday to Sunday 10am to 8pm, €10 (€6 for entry between 2.30 and 4pm), free on Sundays.

The Carmen Thyssen Museum has a lovely café serving coffee, light snacks and lunch. There’s a daily lunchtime menu, which is excellent value for €11.90 and it includes entry to the museum. 

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CAC Malaga

CAC Malaga has 3 exhibitions in January.

  • The Worker and the Astronaut by Patricio Cabrero – one of Spain’s most prominent artists at the moment exhibits over 60 works including several he created in 2021. See them until 28 February. 

  • Coup de Théâtre by Dieter de Greef – this is the Belgian artist’s first individual exhibition in a museum, showcasing his use of bright colours. Until 20 February.
  • Manuel León – the Spanish artist has 10 works on show, mostly watercolours painted between 2010 and 2016. Until 28 February.

While you’re at CAC, don’t miss the permanent and Neighbours exhibitions. They’re both packed with interesting and thought-provoking artwork and installations.

Tuesday to Sunday 9am-9.30pm. Free entry. 

Picasso Museum

The most-visited museum in southern Spain has its permanent collection, Conversations with Picasso 2020-2023. The exhibition explores 8 decades of artistic creativity from the 20th century’s greatest artist and it includes 19 ceramics and 3 paintings created by Picasso between 1931 and 1962. You can also see 22 works from his La Californie sketchbook, which he drew in Cannes in 1956. 

In addition, there’s the temporary exhibition, Photos of the City Picasso Loved, showcasing photos of Paris taken by Brassai in the 30s and 40s. Picasso and Brassai had a long and close personal and professional relationship while they lived in the City of Light and this exhibition pays homage to that. As well as photos, on display are also Brassai’s book cover designs and sculptures.

Open daily 11am to 6pm. Tickets €9, free Sundays after 5pm. Note that the Picasso Museum café is currently closed 😞

Russian Museum

This art museum in Malaga has a permanent exhibition and 2 temporary ones.

This year’s exhibition takes War and Peace as its central theme with 183 works by Russian masters and French and German artists with ties with Russia. Expect to see references to epic battles, the October Revolution and World War I. The works include, as always, paintings and sculptures and provide unique insight into Russian life and culture. Read our guide to this exhibition.

 

Avant-garde in Russian Art – one of the most important artistic movements in early 20th-century Europe and this exhibition celebrates its expression in Russian artists. They include Kandinsky and Chagall as well as numerous others. Expect to see works in the style of abstraction, constructivism, futurism and neo-primitivism. 

Mayakovsky, Poet and Artist – a prominent artist in the Futurist movement, Mayakovsky is known for his revolutionary ‘calling’. 

Bi-centenary of Dostoevsky – a small exhibition honours one of the greatest Russian authors in the year of the bi-centenary of his birth. On show are portraits as well as illustrations from his books and recreations of the rooms where he wrote. 

Open Tuesday to Sunday 9.30am to 8pm. Permanent exhibition €6, temporary exhibitions €4, €8 combined ticket. Free on Sundays after 5pm.

DISCOVER MORE THINGS TO DO IN MALAGA

Pompidou Centre

The multi-coloured cube includes A Century of Spanish Art from Miró to Barceló exhibition. As usual, you can expect to see an eclectic collection of paintings, videos, installations and sculptures. Read about the latest art.exhibition in Malaga here.

Escaped Prisoner by Eduardo Arroyo at Pompidou Centre Malaga
Escaped Prisoner by Eduardo Arroyo

Sophie Calle, one of France’s best contemporary photographers and video artists, arrives on 19 November with a temporary exhibition that takes in her 40-year career behind and in front of the lens. Until 17 April. 

 

Open Wednesday to Monday 9.30am to 6pm. €7 for the permanent exhibition, €9 for both. Free Sundays after 4pm. 

La Termica Cultural Centre

La Termica Cultural Centre welcomes American photographer Dennis Manarchy and Metal, an exhibition of photos of silver-sprayed models. As well as shining brightly, the models are wearing whacky objects from Radio Guy’s (aka Steve Erenberg) collection.

 

See it until 15 January. Open Tuesday to Friday 3 to 8.30pm and weekends, 11am to 2pm and 5 to 8.30pm. Free entry.

Get to La Térmica by walking west along the seafront (the cultural centre is behind the modern glass Diputación building) or on the No 7 bus from the Alameda Principal (south side).

Top tip – art museums in Malaga have free entry on Sundays after.4pm.

Markets in Malaga in January

Monthly markets in January include:

Organic markets selling locally-grown fruit, vegetables, dried fruit and nuts, homemade bread and cakes, and handmade cosmetics take place in

La Malagueta (between Paseo de Reding and Calle Cervantes) on Saturday 8 January from 10am to 2pm and in Huelin Park (western seafront) on Saturday 22 January from 10am to 3pm.

El Zoco arts and crafts market takes place every Sunday on Muelle Uno between 11am and 6pm.

Merced Market is on Sunday 2, Tuesday 4 and Wednesday 5 January on Plaza de la Merced from 11am to 8pm.

Soho Market is on Monday 3, Sunday 23, Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 January on Calle Tomás Heredia between 11am and 7pm.

El Paseo Market arts and crafts is on Sunday 10 January on the Malagueta seafront from 11am to 7pm. 

Heads-up for February

February means Carnival in Malaga – fingers crossed this fun event will be taking place this year. Meanwhile, read all about Malaga Carnival

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