October 5th, 2012 · Anne
· Travel ,
We have been so fortuned to have a friend of mine, who is a true expert in travelling with kids, make us a mini guide for Malaga. Nanna lives in Copenhagen now with her husband and two children, but have lived several years in Bruxelles and now own an appartment in Berlin and Malaga. With a big international growd of friends, nanna and her family is often on the go and one destination, they specialy love is the south of Spain and the city of Malaga. Nanna gives you here all the insider tips for discovering Malaga with the family - a Mini Guide with all the practical information on where to sleep, eat, play and shop...so you just need to book the tickets and enjoy!!
"In no other Spanish city have I been as happy and comfortable as in Malaga. I am captivated by the beauty of Malaga, its sea, its luminosity, and the hospitality of its people” This was written by the Danish fairy-tale author, Hans-Christian Andersen, when he visited Málaga in 1862.
This is still true, which makes the city of Malaga and the Malaga region a perfect place for holiday with kids.
First time, I went to Malaga, I had many prejudice against the Costa del Sol region, especially when
travelling with kids. I thought it would be a holiday in a terrible hotel, no city live, and loads of horrible
amusement parks. But luckily, it was not at all like that.
Where to stay:
I am a city loving mum, so my favourite hotel in Malaga for family stays is the Petit Palace Plaza
Malaga, located in the historical centre of Malaga. It has great family rooms with space for up to five
people and a small gift for the children upon arrival.
Or you can also easily find holidays apartments or villas for rent, some of them even with great roof terraces. With an apartment you get more space around you and a night when the kids are asleep, you can still enjoy a glass of win and play a game. Book your an apartment on One here
or on Friendly Rentals
Places to eat:
As said before the malagueños are very friendly people and they love kids, so as a family you are welcome over all. The bite sized tapas of traditional Spanish dishes are perfect for children and mostly served all in once so you do not have to wait for the kids’ meal while you are having your starter.
On Placa de la Merced you can find a restaurant with swings for chairs. However, not many restaurants have high chairs or changing rooms.
One of my favorite family friendly restaurants with high chairs restaurants are Vino Mio
. It has a children menu printed with either princesses or pirates for the kids to color, and they provide you with pencils. A children menu includes a small surprise. Every night there is flamenco show.
Another great tapas restaurant is called La Plaza Malaga
and is situated on Plaza de Merced 18. The decor is beautiful and you have indoor and outdoor seating, very nice food, children's menus and high chairs. The restroom is very clean so even if you don't have a changing table, you still have room to change a diaper or two during your stay. The kids loved the mini burgers!
Things to do:
Just walking around in the old city center is worthwhile for the whole family and it is very easy to get around even with the youngest part of the family since the historical city center is closed for cars. You can for instance pass by the old Cathedral and wonder if the missing tower really has been taking by a mad dragon, and when it is time for a playground and a cup of coffee, the Parque de Malaga has two playgrounds with outdoor cafés.
When time for lunch you can walk to the renovated harbor area, where you will find more playgrounds, a small amusement park, and lots of cafés and shops.
In Malaga center, a visit to the castle Alcazabar is interesting for both adults and kids. My daughter ran around in the citadel imagining she was a princess. A visit is perfect for a lazy Sunday when other attractions and restaurants might be closed and the surrounding gardens makes it a great spot for a picnic.
Obviously, Malaga’s beaches are a good place to spend some times. All along the coastline you will find playgrounds and little restaurants, but remember to pack the nursery back well, toilet facilities are not the best.
In the evening a stroll down the Calle Larios is really exciting. It is the most famous pedestrian street in the whole Costa del Sol region, and in summer time it is full of artist performing – some quite good, some needs to practice better for the next season. Even in the high tourist season, you will not feel overran by tourists. They seem to leave Malaga city center in the night to go back to their costal hotel or cruise liner.
For a longer fun
trip for the whole family, I will suggest you spend a day going to Gibraltar. Within a verysmall area you have everything from shopping, history and animal watching. You can go from Malaga to Gibraltar (130 km) either by car or by bus. If by bus, you can should take the Portillo Bus from Malaga Bus Station to La Línea, and then walk 10 mins to the Gibraltar boarder. Timetables can be found here
: Be sure to book a direct bus. Otherwise it will be stopping in many places.
Coming to Gibraltar, both climate wise as well as culture wise, you immediately know you are on British territory; Bobbies in the street, tapas is replaced by fish and chips and because of its geographical location in the Strait of Gibraltar and the Mediterranean Sea, the weather feels like in the UK – so remember a jacket. A trip to with the Gibraltar Cable Car runs from outside the Gibraltar Botanic Gardens to the top of the Rock where you can see the monkeys running free.
You can also go crocodile hunting. The Crocodile Park Torremolinos
is a short 20 minute drive on the A7 from Malaga, and a fascinating experience for the kids. The Crocodile Park holds around 300 of the animals, and if you are brave, you can take the chance to even hold one.
Spanish fashion is famous throughout the world and you will find many high street brands such as Zara with much cheaper prices than everywhere else. Clothes shopping for the whole family, don't forget a visit to the Massimo Dutti shops on Calle Larios.
I also love the Tuc Tuc
childrens wear in Calle nueva. I am also very fund of Mayoral
and the shop can be found in Calle de Sánchez Pastor.