Relaxing holiday in Malaga

When you visit Malaga, you have to get in the groove. Turn off your portable devices and enjoy the simple things in life. In this blog normally we tell you the many things you can do when you come to Malaga… so this time we thought for a change telling you what will not need to do.

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Day trip for the family: Jurassic age land formation at El Torcal Malaga

El Torcal Malaga is a natural reserve located north of Malaga city. The peculiar rock formation seems out of a sci-fi movie set. This park makes for a great day hike with the family, as young and old can see fossils engraved in the limestone, wild indigenous flora and fauna and breathtaking 360º views.

Geography

To get to El Torcal drive up 1.100 meters above sea level to Villanueva de la Concepcion and take road A-7075, look for the signs for El Torcal Paraje Natural or Centro de Visitantes.

Fossil at El Torcal

Once there, you will see huge rock formations that date back to the Jurrasic period. During that time, 250 million years ago, the area that goes from Cadiz to Alicante was underwater. On the sea bed, limestone sediments accumulated that were eventually brought to the surface. The earthquakes that formed our world today made mountains out of the seabed making tall “mushroom” shaped mountains.

Hiking

There are four different hiking routes at El Torcal Malaga. The green route, which begins at the Visitor Center ( Centro de Visitantes) is a round route of 1.5 kms long. Ideal for families with small children or if you don’t have much time. The yellow route is an extension of the same green route, with 3 kms. in total. It takes you to high ground to see 360º views of the surrounds and narrow paths rich in flora.

The orange route is 3.7 kms. long and starts at the parking lot at Paraje Natural and ends at the Visitor Center. It goes through old quarries and pasture grounds and then goes uphill until finishing at the Tornillo or screw Natural Monument. Although it is not very long, this route is very rocky and irregular, so hiking shoes should be worn.

Because El Torcal is in the mountains, the temperature is lower that in the coast, so make sure to pack the appropriate gear along with water and some food or snacks.

Why visit El Torcal?

Animals at El Torcal

The main reason to visit this Natural Park is because of the peculiar rock formations and the many fossils you will find engraved in stone. There are also fantastic views of the surrounding fields and towns, as well as the sea!

The whole atmosphere of the park is incredible. The fresh air and nature surrounding are a delight to the senses. You and your family will feel like explorers in a science fiction book, discovering caves, plants, giving names to the shapes of the rock mountains. El Torcal Malaga is part of UNESCO’s World Heritage list, as part of Antequera Dolmens List.

There’s a rich variety of wild orchids in the park, along with other indigenous plants. Beware of taking any souvenirs from the park, removing plants or rocks is strictly forbidden as this is a protected natural reserve.

There are routes only accessible with park guides, but the visits are unfortunately only done in Spanish, so you might want to dust off your dictionary and start practicing!

Snow at El Torcal

The best fish restaurants in Malaga – 9 eateries to discover!

One of the first questions our customers make us when arriving to Malaga is where they can go eat delicious, fresh, fish in the city. Therefore, we’ve prepared for you a list of the best fish restaurants in Malaga.

You can read also our post on the “Best fish in Malaga” to know what’s produced locally and their traditional preparation in malagueño cuisine.

So read on, mark the spots in your maps, and prepare your appetite to eat delicious fish!

Chupytira:

Shrimp

This restaurant is located in the neighborhood of Huelin, on Calle Tomas de Echeverria 13. Mostly frequented by locals, this restaurant in located close to the beach in a residential area.

Their shrimp is always cooked to perfection, their prices are affordable and the staff very efficient. If you go on a weekend we recommend making a reservation as it is always full.

Los Delfines:

This is whitout a doubt one of the best fish restaurants in Malaga, an absolute find! You’ll find it on Calle Reding 12, at La Malagueta. The servers do not speak much English, so the fresh fish display is perfect to point at what you want to eat. The restaurant is usually busy and loud, but the food it completely worth it.

Puro Pescaito:

Best fish Malaga 1

Calle Mendez Nuñez 12. This restaurant is simple and casual, the main stage is taken by their very fresh fish, deep-fried or grilled. Make sure you understand (or ask) how something is prepared or served as to avoid surprises. Language is not a problem as most servers speak English, and the central location make it a great stop during your landmarks tour.

El Tintero:

This is one of the many great fish restaurant you will find at Pedregalejo. Located on Av. Salvador Allende 340. This restaurant is very particular, the waiters bring out food from the kitchen and shout out what they have, and if you want that, let them know. It’s sort of like going to an auction. The good thing is you order what looks good, and you don’t have to wait for your plate to be prepared. Visit this place for a different, fun type of restaurant.

El Balneario:

baños del carmen

This restaurant is located at the end of La Malagueta beach. Great location and atmosphere, perfect for watching the sunset and enjoying a meal with the family or for a romantic dinner. The food has ups and downs, sometimes it’s fantastic and some just ok, but service is always quick and attentive and the setting is magical.

El Caleño:

Best fish in Malaga 3

Another great and simple restaurant at Pedregalejo. Fresh fish served right in front of the beach. Nothing fancy, so you can roll up your sleeves and enjoy the shrimp, shellfish and paella. It’s a good idea to call in advance and make your reservation, especially for dinner service. Make sure to try the sardines Espetos. Delicious!

Pez Tomillo:

This is one of the more modern, fancy restaurants on the Pedregalejo boardwalk. Fresh fish with a contemporary/asian twist. Higher prices than other restaurants in the area, but totally worth it. Makes our list of the best fish restaurants in Malaga because they only use the freshest ingredients and because their menu is completely different from anything you’ll fiend elsewhere. It’s a great place for a romantic dinner. Location: Paseo Maritimo el Pedregal, 1.

Los Mellizos:

Best fish in Malaga 4

Located in the city center, on Calle Sanchez de Lara 7. Excellent fish and very fresh. They are mostly cooked in simple ways and do not hide flavour under thick sauces. Try the pulpo a la gallega or the sea bass and you will not be disappointed. Yum!

Catedral del Pescaíto:

fish restaurant malaga

This centrally located restaurant is movie-themed. Simple, casual, and with no tables outside, can be easy to miss. Once inside, you’ll be at one of the best fish restaurants of Malaga. Their fried fish is fantastic andthe razor clams are garlicky and delicious. Prices are also very reasonable. Located on Calle duque de la Victoria 3.

There are more great eateries in Malaga, but these are our favourite. The best fish restaurants in Malaga and their very different price ranges. One general recommendation for any restaurant is to always make sure you know the price of the “specials of the day” before ordering, as to avoid surprises.

Aside that, we recommend to always call ahead and make a reservation, these restaurants are well known among locals and you could wait a while until you are seated.

We hope you enjoy great seafood while in Malaga and if you find a great place that should be included in this list, let us know. We love good fish!

Make your holiday property in Malaga your best investment!

With the holiday rental market in Costa del Sol rapidly growing, you can make your property the best investment you have ever made. We will help you get a higher return on investment that any financial product available today!

Solaga specialises in high quality holiday homes. Thanks to our extensive experience, great customer service and personal attention, we are one of the highest-rated rental holiday agencies in Malaga.

The company

Danish resident Steffen Hansen founded Solaga 10 years ago. Steffen fell in love with our beautiful city and decided to spread the word among Scandinavians and British visitors.

Today, Solaga welcomes customers from all over the globe. The constant being their utmost satisfaction with the service and the quality and standard of their apartments. The independent review platform reviews.co.uk rates us with 4.7 out of 5 stars. Impressive!

Currently, the team is made up of 12 professionals who oversee that our guests’ holiday is perfect from the moment they land at Malaga airport until their departure day. Our multilingual staff can assist customers in English, Spanish, French, Italian and Danish.  Below part of the Administration team:

Staff Solaga

Our services

Solaga is proud to be the pioneer company specialising in holiday rentals in Malaga. Over the years we have developed strong partnerships with both homeowners and guests. This is how Solaga has grown to become synonymous with quality and trust when it comes to holiday rentals.

We can tailor-make an exclusive rental agreement suited to your goals that can realistically generate a minimum of 25,000€ per year, and allows you the use of your own property whenever you wish.

Solaga also helps you with any documentation and permits needed to start renting your property. A wide-reaching international marketing strategy is put in place to get the maximum occupancy rate and generate the highest income possible.

Our agency takes care of maintenance, cleaning, check-in and check-out, so all you have to do is watch money come in while we take care of all the work.

We oversee the maintenance of your property to keep it in perfect condition and maintain the highest standard of quality. At solaga we make sure your property is well taken care of and that guests have the best experience during their stay.

So contact Solaga today for an assessment of your property. We will advise you on the income that can be generated and give you the best plan of action. Settle for the best!

The best paella recipe ever!

If you like paella, you don’t have to wait coming to Spain in order to have some. Below you will find the recipe for the best paella in the world: the one you will make at home. Surely, some field work will come in handy to adjust a few personal touches, and perhaps even buy some saffron to highlight your dish even more.

First thing is first: depending on the region of Spain, you will find paella comes with seafood, veggies, rabbit, pork, etc. Rice can have more broth (like risotto) or dry and loose. This is all a matter of personal preference and depends on your taste, but people say the “original” Valencia paella has rabbit and the rice is loose.

Paella should be done in a low rim sauce pan, or a paella pan.

saffron in strings

True paella ingredients (makes 4 servings)

2 cups rice (round grain, bomba or senia type)

4 cups water

200 gr of chicken

180 gr of rabbit

100 gr duck

100 gr of romano beans (flat green beans) cut into 2-inch pieces

100 gr of butter beans

50 gr of tomato (blended or grated)

2 artichokes previously cooked, cut in wedges

Saffron (in strings, NOT powder)

Turmeric (for coloring)

Extra virgin olive oil

Salt

Pepper

Preparation

On high heat, pour a generous amount of the olive oil into the pan. Once it is hot, place the chicken, rabbit and duck and turn when golden. Add the beans and the tomato and wait until liquids start to boil. Add salt and pepper to taste. This will be when all the flavors start to come together. Time to add the water and afterwards the artichokes. Add saffron and turmeric for flavor and to add that nice yellow color distinctive of this dish.

Ingredients paella

Add the two cups of rice and mix everything together and to spread the rice all over the pan. Still on high heat, wait for water to start boiling. After 7-8 minutes, turn heat to medium.

The paella will be done in exactly 18 minutes. Do not mix rice while it is being cooked! This will only break the grains, make your paella too starchy and give it an unpleasant texture.

When the 18 minutes have passed, you can turn the heat to high again to get the rice at the bottom of the pan crispy. Leave it on for approximately 1 minute, then turn off. Let it sit for 5-6 minutes on the cook top before serving.

Now, research is very important, therefore we recommend an internship in southern Spain eating a lot of paella in the city, on the coast and anywhere you can think of. A good idea would be to stay at one of our apartments in Nerja and go to the famous Ayo restaurant to have paella ‘till you drop right at the beach.

Paella types

Or you can come to Malaga, buy the best saffron in the world and do a “paella tapa tour” and taste all the different variations of this delicious dish. Make sure to stop by Arrozeando, Puro Pescaito and Meson Cantarrana, they’re famous for their rices. In the city, Solaga has over 40 apartments to choose from in the center or nearby. Whenever you come, chances are the weather will be great and the paella delicious!

The Botanical Garden of Malaga

The Botanical Garden of Malaga is one of the most fascinating visits you can do during your stay. The exuberant nature, the historical constructions and the large variety of flora are truly a magical experience of contact with nature.

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10 places to visit outside Malaga city center

There is plenty more to see in Malaga that the main landmarks at the historical center or Malagueta beach. Below we propose 10 places to visit outside Malaga city center that the whole family can enjoy. If you stay for more than four days, we strongly recommend you visit these places as it gives you a broader idea of what our city is like. You’ll get a chance to go deep into more residential areas where locals live. Get a taste of the “real” Malaga in these great spaces of our city.

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Marbella: The heart of Costa del Sol

Marbella is the biggest city in Costa del Sol and the second largest in the province of Malaga after Malaga city. It’s famous for being a beach resort for jetsetters, millionaires and celebrities; but there is much more to Marbella than that. The tourism infrastructure is developed and diverse, so you can find services for your every need.

History of Marbella

Marbella was a small fishing village until the mid-20th century, when a few Spanish Aristocrats started building summer resorts for themselves and their acquaintances. Names like Rothschild, Bismark, Thyssen-Bornemisza are no stranger to the town.

Later on (promoted by dictator Francisco Franco) Puerto Banus was built. Famous people like Grace Kelly and Rainier of Monaco, Julio Iglesias, Sean Connery and Arab monarchs like King Fahd of Saudi Arabia became regulars of the fast-growing city. It is estimated that between 1950 and 2001 the population of Marbella grew by 897%.

By fernando0 – Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0

Nowadays, urban development has been more regulated as to avoid over-exploitation and the loss of the local flora and fauna.

The city

Marbella is bordered by coastal mountains to the north which provide great views of the city and the Mediterranean Sea. These mountains have very little urban development, so they preserve the local flora and fauna of the region. In the city, green spaces are made up mostly by the many golf courses available (currently 32 courses and driving ranges).

West of Marbella is neighboring town of Estepona, and to the east Mijas. In both these towns there are many parks and attractions to make your stay even more interesting if you run out of things to do in Marbella.

Picture by Herry Lawford – CC 2011

Within Marbella, you have plenty of places to visit both in the summer and the less warm months of the year (wink at the great temperatures throughout the year). The historic center, is great for a late afternoon walk, enjoying the smell of orange blossom and jasmine during spring time. Get lost in the crooked little streets, remnants of the Arab heritage of southern Spain and take a few pictures of the small balconies decorated with geraniums in the most traditional Andalusian style.

What to do

You can do great shopping in the newer parts of town or in one of the many shopping centers available. The Plaza del Mar located on the seafront promenade, Marina Banus, Corte Ingles and the Plaza Mayor are just a few of the great shopping centers you’ll find in Marbella.

There are many fantastic restaurants in Marbella to have a grand meal and enjoy the best dishes created by Michelin Star chefs like the Marbella-born Dani García, and other awarded restaurants like  Skina, El LagoEl Ancla in San Pedro de Alcantara is a great restaurant with views of the sea, ideal for having quality traditional seafood.

You can’t visit Marbella and not go to one of the many golf courses. Connoisseurs recommend Finca Cortesin, Santa Clara Golf and Atalaya Golf. If you are not an avid golfer, you can wait for your party relaxing in their spa, the pool or having cocktails in one of the bars. There are also many music festivals like Starlite which present world renowned artists from many different music genres. Beach parties, nightclubs, casinos and and much more complete the list of possibilities to have a wonderful time in Marbella and never get bored.

Naturally, you can go to the beach as well. There are plenty of water sports and activities for hire at the many beaches of Marbella. Stating May and until end of September you can bathe in the warm Mediterranean waters. In the area of the Congress Center, close to Dani García’s restaurant “Bibo” is our holiday apartment Mariana. Ideally located a short walk away from shops, the beach and lots of restaurants. The perfect holiday apartment to enjoy this beautiful city and have an unforgettable time.

See you in Marbella!

Step back in time at Nerja

The Costa del Sol has become a very popular destination among tourists, but for a truly “authentic feel” you should look towards the east and step back in time at Nerja.

Although more and more people are starting to visit this charming little town, it still keeps the essence of a small fishermen’s town. Its low rise buildings, white-colored houses (red geraniums on the balconies), and that slow-paced lifestyle of rural living, ideal for holidays.

The best beaches of the province of Malaga

It’s as if you step back in time, where traffic, crime and technology are not a big concern. Although summertime can get a lot busier and louder, you can still disconnect in one of the many beautiful beaches of Nerja, like Burriana and Maro. The latter particular, is considered one of the best beaches of the province of Malaga. Be sure not to miss it and the kayak and stand up paddle excursions offered there.

Caves of Nerja

Another great visit during your stay in Nerja is the caves. Great for the whole family, these subterranean caves have 3 huge caverns where concerts are held during the months of June and July. Check the concert programs and visit one if you’re lucky enough to be there during one.

In the town itself, you have plenty of fish restaurants to choose from, tapas bars, seafront restaurants called “chiringuitos” where you can have from homemade paella, to ice cream, to the staple fish of Malaga sworded sardines (espetos). Go to Balcón de Europa and awe at the magnificent views of the Mediterranean. Take the perfect postcard picture with your loved ones on center stage!

The caves at Nerja will entertain both young and old.

Take a stroll down Balcon de Europa

The whole Balcon de Europa area is pedestrian, and filled with ice cream shops, live music in the summer evenings, street markets, bars… the list goes on. In this area are located our Sol and Mar apartments, on Calle Carabeo. It is the ideal spot to spend a quality time relaxing, enjoying the peaceful views and sunbathing.

If you prefer to stay farther away from the center of town and enjoy the views from higher up the hills, you can stay at our newer apartment Irene. There you will enjoy the comforts of a swimming pool, three terraces and room to park out on the street.

Wherever you stay at Nerja, you will definitely have time to disconnect, enjoy the simple things in life and recharge your batteries. This charming village will delight your five senses and make you come back over and over again. Ask anyone who has come if they would recommend it and you’ll convince yourself why you should spend your next holidays in Nerja.

What to do on Feria? Activities during Feria de Malaga

If you happen to be in Malaga this weekend or throughout the next week, you’re going to find all malagueños out partying. The local festivity “Feria de Malaga” begin this Friday at midnight with a concert at La Malagueta beach and fireworks. The fiesta will last until the 20th of August.

Therefore, embrace the Feria de Malaga, do as locals and go to the different events and activities… and dance ‘till you drop!

Art shows and exhibits during Feria de Malaga

Firstly, all museums will open during Feria de Malaga. Special exhibits have been inaugurated for the celebration.  Visit them to take a break from the hot August weather.

  • Carmen Thyssen Museum
  • Contemporary Arts Center
  • Pompidou Center
  • Museum Picasso Birth-house
  • Russian Museum
  • Picasso Museum
  • Etc.
Decoration Feria Malaga 1

Paper lanterns decorating streets and squares during Feria de Malaga

Live music and concerts

Especially relevant is mentioning that celebrations in the center occur during the day. Between 13:00 and 18:00 during Feria de Malaga, music bands play live music at the different squares of the center. From flamenco, to blues, to pop, the center fills up with music and dancing. Tents are also set up with food stands, so you can try the most traditional and delicious Andalusian cuisine.

In the evenings, all major concerts take place at the auditorium set up in the Feria venue. It is called Cortijo de Torres and is located on the outskirts of the city. You can access by transit, bus lines are doubled during the festivities. The bus fare from the city center (Alameda Principal) to the venue cost 1,50€. Daytime bus lines are: 4, 19, and bus F runs all night. 

Concerts include:

  • 11 de agosto, viernes: Chambao. La Malagueta Beach (pop)
  • 12 de agosto, sábado: Danza Invisible. (pop)
  • 13 de agosto, domingo: Bertín Osborne. (balads/rancheras)
  • 14 de agosto, lunes: Málaga de Copla: Erika Leiva and Antonio Cortés. (flamenco)
  • 15 de agosto, martes: Café Quijano. (pop)
  • 17 de agosto, viernes: David Bustamante. (pop)
  • 18 de agosto, sábado: Soraya. (pop)
  • 19 de agosto, domingo: Camela. (flamenco)

Malagueta bullring

Bullfights

Parallel to celebrations, there will be bullfights and other bull-related events everyday during Feria de Malaga at the Malagueta bullring. From Saturday 12th to Sunday 20th the bullring will host a variety of bullfights. Most events are already sold out.

For more updated information or to purchase tickets visit: https://www.servitoro.com/en/61-bullfight-tickets-malaga

 

Make sure you check out our previous post about Feria de Malaga for a more general idea and history of this week-long celebration.

Lastly, we recommend if you are coming with kids, pass by Calle Alcazabilla (side street of Albeniz Cinema). There will be different activities focused on the young ones. Games, storytelling, magic and more to keep them entertained and happy!

Entrance to daytime Feria on Calle Larios