What’s on in Malaga in January 2021

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 Sunday 5 January. If you haven’t seen the Christmas lights, don’t miss the light and sound shows on Calle Larios and Calle Alcazabilla daily at 6.30pm, 8pm and 9.30pm.

Three Kings Parade

Cancelled in 2021, but you can see 3 giant figures of the kings in Calle Alcazabilla, Calle Compañía and Plaza Feliz Saenz. The Three Kings Parade usually 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. 


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.

Malaga Theatre Festival

Malaga celebrates the 38th edition of the Theatre Festival in 2 acts this year, the first between 8 January and 4 February and the second during 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.

poster for Malaga Theatre Festival 2021

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

Musical events in Malaga in January 

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

Three Kings Gala Concert 

The Malaga Philharmonic Orchestra plays John Williams classics including the sound tracks from Jaws and Jurassic Park as well as a long list of well known movie music from films like Indiana Jones, Hook and Star Wars. They play at the FYCMA (Congress and Exhibition Centre) on Saturday 9 January at 7pm and Sunday 10 January at noon. Tickets cost €15 and are available here.


The monthly free concert at the Museum of Malaga takes place on Sunday 10 January at noon and features brass musicians. Tickets are available from the museum website from Monday 4 January. Maximum 2 tickets per person.

Family fun at the Botanics

The Concepción Botanical Gardens have family fun every Saturday and Sunday in January at 11am and 12.30pm. The activity lasts 2 hours and includes games, a puppet show and guided tour of the garden. It costs €7.50 per person (under 3s are free). Maximum 20 people per group, social distancing and masks compulsory. Book your place by phoning 951 92 61 80 o 647 58 54 57.

Creators of Conscience

120 photos by Spain’s top photojournalists are on display until 19 March in the Sala Mingorance (Archivo Municipal, Alameda Principal 23) and the Sociedad Económica de Amigos del País (corner of Plaza de la Constitución). Both open Monday to Friday 10am to 2pm and 4 to 6pm; Sala Mingorance opens at weekends 10am to 1pm; and SE on Saturdays only 11am to 2pm.

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 

As well as its permanent collection – discover it here – this art museum in Malaga is showing a timely exhibition. Masks reflects on the transformation of the human figure through masks in modern art. Works on display are by artists such as Goya, Picasso, Gargallo and Modigliani until 10 January. 

Part of the autumn exhibition at the Carmen Thyssen Museum in Malaga

Open Tuesday to Sunday 10am to 6pm, 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.

Acquaintances. The Right to Come in by Miki Leal – almost 100 works including paintings and ceramics by the Spanish artist including some created especially for this exhibition. Until 21 February. 

Cabinet d’Amateur by Pedro Cabrita Reis – a giant retrospective of the Portuguese artist with bronze sculptures and over 220 paintings. Until 14 March. 

The Villagers by Rinus van de Velde – a 40 minute film featuring different characters in the village and showcasing the Belgian artist’s creative talent. Until 24 February. 

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

Tuesday to Sunday 9am-6pm. Free entry. 

Picasso Museum

The most-visited museum in southern Spain has new additions to its permanent collection, now called Conversations with Picasso 2020-2023. The exhibition explores 8 decades of artistic creativity from the 20th century’s greatest artist. The Museum has just opened a new room (Sala XII) showing 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. 

Cherry by James Turrell is the first temporary exhibition of the year, showcasing the Californian artist’s work on light and space. His installations treat both as materials in their own right. Until June. 

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.

Realism: Past & Present – the central exhibition showcases realism in Russian art from the 18th century to today. The paintings and objects run through over three centuries of Russian art exploring how artists portrayed their surroundings and the relationship between art and truth. Until April 2021. Read our guide to this art exhibition in Malaga

From the Zero People series Ilya Gaponov


Breaking silence: silent movies in Russian – a look at this genre of cinema, which used the most advanced techniques of its time. A selection of Italian and American films complement the exhibition. Until April 2021.

Andrèi Tarkosvky: Master of Space – film buffs have another treat in this photographic look at one of the greatest film directors in the 20th century. Until April 2021.

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


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

Show Your Face – a major exhibition of portraits in photo and film by 26 artists between 1972 and 2011. Until 11 April 2021. 

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 starts its season of exhibitions with a display of photos of rock star icon Marilyn Manson taken by one of the world’s most renowned portrait photographers, Perou. “21 years in Hell” showcases Manson in (as you’d expect) various guises. 

Marilyn Manson exhibition in Malaga

Until 21 January. Tuesday to Sunday 11am to 5.45pm. Free entry. Get to La Termica on the No 7 bus from the Alameda Principal or walk along the western seafront

La Malagueta Cultural Centre

The Beatles vs the Rolling Stones exhibition brings together photos of the two iconic bands by Terry O’Neill and Gered Makowitz, taken in the 1960s. Situated in the Malagueta bullring, the cultural centre is open Tuesday to Sunday 11am to 5.45pm. Free entry. 

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 9 January from 10am to 2pm and in Huelin Park (western seafront) on Saturday 23 January from 10am to 3pm.

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

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

Heads-up for February

The Teatro Soho has a flamenco festival with some big names from 12 to 21 February. Full programme and more information here. Note that due to covid-19 restrictions, this has been postponed to 23 April to 2 May.

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