Malaga is one of the most beautiful cities in Andalusia which has a lot to offer to its visitors, even to the ones who are on a budget.
For this reason, we created a list of free things to do in Malaga to let you discover all the main attractions of the city for free!
Indice de la Entrada
If you want to save some money while enjoying the city, the best day to visit Malaga is Sunday. Even though most of the stores and shopping centers close on Sunday, there is still a lot you can do since various monuments and museums have free entrance.
If you’re a tourist already tired of sunbathing on the beach, this is the best day to visit a museum, an art gallery, or admire one of the most beautiful views of the city after hiking the Gibralfaro Castle. Instead, if you’re a local, Sunday is a great opportunity to see temporary exhibitions changing every few months.
Continue reading and discover our list of the top 15 free entry places in Malaga or join us on an adventure with the free walking tour!
So, let’s get started!
On Sunday, almost all the 36 museums that Malaga offers have free entry and we think there are some of them that you cannot miss. Here we will provide a list of the most famous free museums in Malaga but, if you want to know more, check our blog post exclusively dedicated to them!
Pablo Ruiz Picasso is one of the most famous artist born in Malaga. His museum houses the collection of more than 200 art pieces which provide a great overview of Picasso’s work.
The entry to Picasso Museum is free every Sunday the last two opening hours. Since, as we said, Picasso is one of the star of Malaga, you can expect a line outside but don’t let that discourage you – it moves fast.
Two hours is enough time to see everything and go trough in a slow pace, so don’t be worried about that.
Be careful to not confuse the Picasso Museum with the “Museo Casa Natal de Picasso” (Picasso’s Birthplace Museum); the first one is located very close to the Cathedral, meanwhile the second is located in Plaza de la Merced.
The Picasso’s Birthplace Museum is designed to recreate the link between Picasso’s art and his childhood, his family and his homeland.
Opening hours Picasso Museum:
September – October / March – June: open daily 10.00 – 19.00
November-February: open daily 10.00 – 18.00
July-August: open daily 10.00 – 20.00
The Carmen Thyssen Museum is composed by artworks belonging to the collection of Carmen Thyssen.
If you want to understand the soul of Andalusia, this is one of the best museums that you can visit, since it perfectly summarises 19th-century Spanish art.
It is located in the 16th-century palace of Villalón in the heart of Malaga and it regularly houses temporary exhibitions.
You will see paintings about the Easter week, the Feria of Malaga, and paintings representing how some of the Andalusian cities used to be…but we won’t tell you more!
Entrance is free every Sunday from 17:00 to 20:00
One of the free entry places in Malaga is Centre Pompidou. It’s a modern art gallery displaying the artworks of the 20th and 21st centuries. It is the first branch of the museum outside France.
Centre Pompidou is housed in a colorful glass cube next to the port – of the landmarks of the city. The entrance is located below the cube on the side of the port. Once you go in you can get a free audio guide to help with your tour.
Entrance is free every Sunday from 16:00 to 20:00.
The Contemporary Art Centre is located in the Soho of Malaga, a neighborhood that a lot of people define as the “hipster part of the city” really worth a visit because of the street art you can see there.
The CAC Malaga itself is dedicated to contemporary art and especially visual art – paintings, sculptures, photography and videography. In its vast interior you can find permanent and temporary exhibitions showcasing works of both national and local artists. It’s definitely something every art lover should see.
The entrance to CAC is always free.
The museum is the first European branch of the State Russian Museum which houses a different exposition every year, until February 27, 2020 you can see the collection dedicated to the depiction of women in Russian art.
In addition to a very interesting collection, you can also admire the beauty of the building in which it is located.
Free Entrance on Sundays from 16:00.
Another museum on our list of free entry places in Malaga is the Museo of Malaga. The permanent exhibition brings together art and archeology since the Museum has joined Provincial Museum of Fine Arts and Provincial Archeological Museum.
As a matter of fact, the museum hosts a collection of more than 4000 pieces, while the permanent exhibition displays about one hundreds pieces of art.
The entrance if always free for all EU citizens, otherwise it’s 1,50€
The Cathedral is one of the main landmarks of the city, and everyone here in Malaga knows it with its lovely nickname “Manquita” (the little one-armed lady).
It is an impressive building located in the historic center and is definitely worth a visit. Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architectural elements reflect the long period of construction (16th-18thcentury) even if, the Cathedral was never finished and since one of the part missing is one of the main towers, it gained its nickname.
The Alcazaba of Malaga and the Castle of Gibralfaro are the heart of the city, important also to understand the history and the development of the city. The Alcazaba, is the Muslim heritage of Malaga, a fortified palace from the Nasrid period and it is the best-preserved alcazaba in Spain.
The Gibralfaro Castle is very related with the Alcazaba, since it was a part dedicated to the agriculture, besides a defensive measure. It sits on the top of the Gibralfaro mountain and from there you can enjoy one of the most beautiful views that Malaga can offer.
Both of these monuments are a “must see” in Malaga – discover the history of the city with your own eyes!
Entrance to both are free on Sundays after 14:00.
Address: Calle Alcazabilla, 2.
Summer (1 June to 30 Sep) : 9:00 to 20:00 daily
Winter (1 Oct to 31 May): 9:00 to 18:00 daily
Moving a bit from the historic center, there are other attractions that you can explore for free, even during the weekdays
The Puerto de Malaga is located just few minutes walk from the city center. The modern construction over the promenade makes it really unique. The Paseo Maritimo is full of shops and restaurants, a perfect spot to spend a nice afternoon, while admiring the skyline of Malaga.
Additionally, some companies offers cruises on yachts and catamarans. It’s a great opportunity to cool down during a hot day or enjoy a beautiful sunset watching Malaga’s coastline.
The port of Malaga is also the oldest continuously-operated port in whole of Spain and one of the oldest ports of the Mediterranean dating back to the Phoenician times.
Taking a trip away from the city center is always a good idea so, the next one on our list of free things to do in Malaga is Pedregalejo . It is a former fishing village, now one of Malaga neighborhoods. Pedregalejo is well known for the popular seafood restaurants and great atmosphere.
To reach this neighborhood you should take the bus number 3 or 11.
Pedregalejo also has a great beach, much less crowded than those located closer to the city center like the famous Malagueta. For this reason, you can relax there, try some water sports or rent a boat. We really recommend having fresh seafood in one of the famous chiringuitos of Pedregalejo and enjoying the sunset at the beach.
Malaga offers a wide choice of places to do your shopping, although we believe that you will have the a lot of fun if you visit one of its markets. It’s a great opportunity not only to buy fresh fruits, vegetables, seafood, meat or artisan products but also to immerse yourself in the local culture.
If you want to know which market you should visit go ahead and read our blog post about markets in Malaga.
One of the free things in Malaga that you cannot miss is the impressive panorama of the city. The best views are from the top of Gibralfaro hill where you can find two viewpoints. One of the viewpoints is located next to the castle right on top of the hill.
It can take between 20-40 minutes walk up the hill so be sure to take a bottle of water with you, especially during a hot day. We highly recommend enjoying the beautiful sunset over Malaga.
If you’re staying more here in Malaga, and you want to visit also some places closer to the city, we recommend you some ready to be discovered.
Only 5 km from the city centre, you can find a wide collection of palm trees, bamboo forests, aquatic plants, Malaga’s vines and the African plant species awaiting you at Malaga botanical garden.
Take a break from the city’s hustle and bustle and relax next to the waterfall at the heart of the garden.
Dogs are also welcome at the garden as long as they are on a leash and comply with the regulations.
To go to the garden, you should take the bus number 2 or 91 and later, take a short walk. To read more about the beautiful Botanical Garden Malaga click here.
Entrance is free all day on Sundays from 1 October to 31 March. The rest of the year it is free on Sundays, from 15:00 to 16:30.
Address: Camino del Jardín Botánico, 3.
Opening hours: Mon: Closed, Tue – Sun: 9:30 – 16:30.
West from Malaga you can find one of the best cities on Costa del Sol – Nerja.
Nerja is one of the famous white villages of Andalusia where you can admire a breathtaking view from the famous “Balcón de Europa”.
It’s just an hour drive from Malaga and really worth the visit.
The mountains of Nerja are a good place to do some hiking. One of the most popular walks is Rio Chillar where you walk most of the way in the water. But don’t worry, it won’t go higher than your knees. A perfect plan for a hot summer day! .
In addition, don’t miss the Caves of Nerja with impressive rock formations; to read more, check this website.
We hope that after this post you have a better ideas about things to do in Malaga for free. Share it with your friends and let us know you experience in the comments below!