Are you staying in Malaga and you would like to discover more of Andalusia? Situated in southern Spain, Malaga is an ideal location for day trips in Andalusia. In this article, you will find many Spanish towns and what to do there when you have a free day or a weekend to travel around the Andalusian region. These beautiful destinations are perfect for a little day trip getaway if you want to see more of the vibrant and unique culture of Southern Spain. Since there are so many wonderful cities to visit on the Costa Del Sol, we collected 5 of our favorite day trip destinations in Andalusia to help you choose!
1. Day trips from Malaga: Ronda
Ronda is one of the oldest cities in Spain, 105 km west of Malaga. The city is mostly known for being built on huge cliffs, called Puente Nuevo and El Tajo Gorge. They divide the city and have been declared an Andalusian Natural Monument. You can also visit the Guadalevín river at the feet of the cliffs and Ronda’s famous white villages. Moreover, Ronda has something to offer to everyone: it is wine enthusiasts, bird watchers, and geology lovers’ cup of tea.
A must-see in Ronda:
If you are in Ronda you must visit the Plaza de Toros de Ronda or the Bullring, one of the oldest arenas in Spain. The arena opened in 1785. Although nowadays visitors can only see bullfighting during the annual September Feria, it is an important historical and cultural landmark. If this is your first time visiting an arena we recommend you check this one out as bullfighting originates from Ronda. To discover more about Spanish culture, visitors typically also stop at Ronda’s Mondragón Palace. The palace’s architecture mixes Moorish and Renaissance architecture, and you can find a museum and an impressive garden too.
2. Day trips from Malaga: Caminito del Rey
Caminito del Rey, or The King’s Pathway, is just 61 km away from Malaga. This is a must-do day trip destination for every adventure seeker and adrenaline junkie! The Caminito del Rey is a trail that is built in the 300 meters tall walls of the Gaitanes gorge canyon. Therefore, it is known as one of the most dangerous trails in the world with its 7.7 km long route.
So if you want to discover the trail by yourself, the general ticket costs 10€. If you would rather have an English or Spanish guided tour and visit with a maximum group of 30 people, the group ticket costs 18€. We recommend you check it out since the view is spectacular. You wouldn’t want to miss this exhilarating, once-in-a-lifetime experience!
3. Day trips from Malaga: Nerja
Just an hour away and 58 km away from Malaga you can find the beautiful beaches of Nerja. This stunning beach town was a fishing village in the past. On your day trip, first, you must stop at the Balcón de Europa. This balcony provides an unmatched view of the Costa del Sol and is a perfect photo spot! Secondly, Nerja is ideal for a relaxing beach day with its many golden, sandy beaches and various sea-food restaurants. After your siesta, you can also go on a stroll in the historic center of Nerja.
For a more adventurous day trip, you can visit the Nerja Caves. This historical cave system stretches for 5 kilometers under the city of Nerja. It has an intriguing discovery story, which you can discover more about during a guided tour.
4. Day trips from Malaga: Marbella
Marbella is a versatile little town that offers a wide range of activities. Situated 61 km from Malaga, Marbella is one of the tourist favorite spots for day trips from Malaga as it has the most pleasant beaches on the Costa del Sol. It is perfect for water activities and relaxing beach days.
Visit the Old Town:
Marbella has a well-known neighborhood called Old Town. With its charming colorful buildings and hillside houses, the Old Town is the quintessential Spanish holiday spot. At the port, you can also find Puerto Banús, which is a famous luxury marina and shopping complex for those who prefer to indulge on their holiday. After a long day on the beach, you might want to wind down by trying out the various restaurants in the city. Locals typically recommend espetos, consisting of sardines grilled at the beach or the gazpacho with many refreshing vegetables.
5. Day trips from Malaga: Granada
Similar to Malaga, Granada is a great historical Spanish town full of wonders, 127 km away from Malaga. Its most famous tourist attraction is the Alhambra, a palace with Islamic architecture and Spanish Renaissance influence that is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Because the whole site covers more than 140,000 square meters, we highly recommend you bring comfortable shoes when you visit the Alhambra.
In Granada, you can find various stores and restaurants in the city center but if you are looking for a more active day trip you can check out the various hiking trails that go through the magnificent Sierra Nevada National Park.
Within Granada, there are plenty of neighborhoods that you should visit during your day trip. For instance, the Albaicin neighborhood is a former Arab neighborhood situated on a hill. Here you can stroll around and admire the architecture. For very traditional Spanish entertainment, go to the Sacromonte neighborhood in the evening and watch a flamenco show. Granada is considered to be the birthplace of flamenco. So especially when the dancers perform the traditional form of flamenco, the Zambra, you simply cannot miss out on it!
Do you want to make good memories AND good photos? Check out our blog post about the best photo spots in Andalusia: The Best Photo Spots in Málaga and Its Province – Top 5 – South Tours