Málaga port is rapidly developing into a tourist and visitor destination in its own right. It is a place not to miss if you visit Málaga.
The Port of Málaga is an international seaport on the Mediterranean coastline of the Costa del Sol. It is the oldest continuously operated port in Spain, predating Cadiz by 100 years, and one of the oldest in the Mediterranean.
Ferry at Malaga port
The Phoenicians founded the port they called Malaka in about 1000 BC. They would be astounded how their single waterfront quay that extended for about 500 metres from where the Customs House is today, now extends over 115 hectares. In those days the Mediterranean lapped the shore just beneath the hill crowned by the Alcazabar and the Gibralfaro castle. The castle is called Gibralfaro because in antiquity, a lighthouse (faro) was built to guide ships into the port.
Malaga Alcazabar from the port
The Romans extended the original port and exported minerals, pottery, almonds, wine and oil from Málaga to Rome.
Malaga Cathedral from the port
During the Muslim period and the later Spanish Imperial period, Málaga continued to grow as a city and a port. Today over 3 million tons of imports each year pass through Málaga and over 200,000 passengers disembark from the cruise liners that visit the port.
Old kiosk on Malaga port
In the first years of the 21st century, Málaga port became a tourist destination. The main attractions are the designer shops and an incredible array of restaurants. A large underground carpark at the north end of the port caters for the thousands of people that visit each day. Names such as Boss, Lacoste and Caramba, are interspersed with restaurants serving food from all over the world.
Replica of Victoria at Malaga port
Alongside the quays visiting ships could be anything from a replica of the ‘Victoria’, Magellan’s ship that was the first to circumnavigate the world, to a submarine owned by the Spanish navy, to a very modern salvage vessel. During the summer season, boat trips arrive and depart for the almost obligatory trip round the bay. For those with no sea legs, a tourist train trundles round the area. On the far dock the roll on roll off ferries depart for Melilla, Nador, Oran, Almeria and Motril. There is always plenty of activity to watch as you enjoy a drink or a meal under the restaurant awnings strategically placed to give the best views.
Behind the port, within easy walking distance, is the centre of Málaga city which, together with the Cathedral, Alcazabar and Gibralfaro, provide a dramatic backdrop.