The Picasso Museum 
The formidable citadel of Gibralfaro
A Gourmet Destination

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Tapas for all tastes

The elegant central zone of Málaga – a stop-off on your MSC cruise of the Mediterranean – is largely pedestrianized with the focal point, marble-paved Calle Marqués de Larios, lined with fashionable stores, its most elegant thoroughfare.
Plaza de la Constitución, Málaga’s main square, hosts a monumental fountain flanked by slender palms and the terraces of numerous cafés and restaurants. Málaga centre has a number of interesting churches and museums, not to mention the birthplace of Picasso and the Museo Picasso Málaga, housing an important collection of works by Málaga’s most famous son.

Perched on the hill above the town are the formidable citadels of the Alcazaba and Gibralfaro, magnificent vestiges of the seven centuries that the Moors held sway here.

Málaga is also renowned for its fish and seafood, which can be sampled at tapas bars and restaurants throughout the city, as well as at the old fishing villages of El Palo and Pedregalejo, now absorbed into the suburbs, where there’s a seafront paseo lined with some of the best marisquerías and chiringuitos (beachside fish restaurants) in the province.

The impressive Alcazaba is the place to make for if you’re joining a shore excursion. Clearly visible from your cruise ship, to the left of its entrance on c/Acazabilla stands the Roman Theatre accidentally discovered in 1951, and – following excavation and restoration – now a venue for various outdoor entertainments.

The citadel, too, is Roman in origin, with blocks and columns of marble interspersed among the Moorish brick of the double- and triple-arched gateways. Above the Alcazaba, and connected to it by a long double wall (the coracha), is the Gibralfaro castle. Like the Alcazaba, it has been wonderfully restored and now houses an interesting museum devoted to its history.

Must see place in Malaga

Discover our excursions

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    Situated in the deep south of Spain on the Mediterranean coast, the city of Málaga is not just a popular tourist attraction for its sunny climate and beaches; it is also one of the world’s oldest cities and the birthplace of Pablo Picasso. Your half-day excursion begins with a guided tour through the main streets of the city, passing the Alameda Principal – a grand boulevard flanked by lush trees – on the way. A visit to the 16th-century Cathedral, one of the most important examples of Andalusian Renaissance architecture, as well as a look around the Gibralfaro fortress are equally on the tour itinerary. Your return to the port and your ship brings the tour to an end. Please note: the visit to the Cathedral and the Gibralfaro fortress must be reconfirmed during your cruise. Conservative attire recommended for visiting places of religious importance.
      • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

        Difficulty Level

      • Duration
        4:30 h

      • Adults£42.00Price per person

      • Children£32.00Price per person




      Your half-day excursion to the seaside resort of Marbella – one of Spain’s most popular holiday destinations on the Costa del Sol and certainly one of the prettiest – begins with a scenic 1-hour coach ride from Malaga port. Marbella is ideally set, tucked away in between the Sierra Blanca mountains and the Mediterranean Sea. Your guide will show you around the key sights of the city, such as the 16th-/17th-century Iglesia de la Encarnación, a fabulous church built in late Gothic style that features an ornate golden altar. The next stop is the pretty marina at Puerto Banús, a suburb of Marbella. You will have some free time to have coffee (not included in the price of the tour), explore the resort and admire the beautiful yachts moored in the luxury marina before returning to the port and your ship. Please note: external viewings only of the places visited. Guests using a wheelchair are advised that they must be accompanied by a paying helper to provide assistance with getting on and off the coach and that wheelchairs must be collapsible/foldable since the coach has neither a ramp nor a lift. Guests using a wheelchair who would like to participate in this tour are requested to contact the Shore Excursions’ Desk promptly once they are on board so that arrangements can be made.
      • Wheelchair and disabled-friendly tour – Wheelchair guests must be accompanied by their own helper to get on/off the coach. Wheelchairs must be foldable as the coach is not provided with ramps or lifts. Once onboard, please contact Excursions Desk staff promptly so they can help make arrangements.

      • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

        Difficulty Level

      • Duration
        5 h

      • Adults£39.00Price per person

      • Children£29.00Price per person




      Situated only a little way inland from the beautiful Costa del Sol coastline approx. 1 hour’s coach ride from Malaga lies Mijas, a pretty little Andalusian town with cobbled streets and typical white-washed buildings. Thanks to its elevated location at a height of 428 metres above sea level, the town’s Pueblo Mijas district is known for its views of the African coast, the Atlas mountains, the rock of Gibraltar and a generous portion of the Costa del Sol. There are many small independent stores mainly selling meticulously crafted artisan products, including attractive pottery and clothing. You will have some free time to enjoy Mijas on your own before heading back to Malaga and your ship. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties or using a wheelchair.
        • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

          Difficulty Level

        • Duration
          4 h

        • Adults£39.00Price per person

        • Children£29.00Price per person

      The excursions in the programme above are intended to provide MSC Cruises guests with an idea of the different tours which can be arranged in each port of call; this programme is merely a guide and confirmation of each excursion and its description and prices will be made during your cruise. 
      Shore excursions programmes and itineraries may vary depending on local conditions and/or any unforeseen events in relation to the timing on the day of the tour.
      Some excursions are very popular and therefore availability cannot always be guaranteed, it is advisable to book in advance to avoid disappointment. The guides are guaranteed in English. Only for South America cruises, the guides are guaranteed in Brazilian Portuguese. Narration in other languages depends on the availability of guides. Please note that the final language of the tour will be confirmed on board during the cruise.

      Reach the port

      Port of Malaga

      This section contains information on how to reach the port.

      Cruise Terminal:

      Dique de Levante

      Reach the port by

      • Car

        If you are hiring a car at the airport, take the following route to the port. Leave the airport on the MA21 and then continue along Av. Velazquez to the city centre or, alternatively, leave the airport on the MA21 and after 6 km (4 miles) take the exit for the MA22, signposted Malaga City Centre and Port.

        If you are hiring a car at the Maria Zambrano Railway Station, take the following route to the port: Join the Avenida Ingeniero Jose Maria Garnica and continue to the first roundabout, taking the third exit as if you were turning left, then continue along this road for 4 km (2½ miles) until you reach the port.
      • Train

        The Maria Zambrano Railway Station is only 4 km (2½ miles) from Málaga port. There is a taxi rank just outside the station.
      • Plane

        Malaga Airport is just 15 km (9 miles) from the city’s port. There is a taxi  rank outside the airport building.
        Travel time: about 18 minutes, depending on traffic.


      Love at first sight
      Love at first sight

      If you’re visiting Spain for the first time, be warned: this is a country that fast becomes an addiction. You might intend to come just for a cruise holiday, a walking tour or a city break, but before you know it you’ll find yourself hooked by something quite different – the celebration of some local fiesta, perhaps, or the otherworldly architecture of Barcelona.

      Even in the most over-touristic Mediterranean resorts of the Costa del Sol, you’ll be able to find an authentic bar or restaurant where the locals eat, and a village not far away where an age-old bullfighting tradition owes nothing to tourism. 

      A holiday to Spain can also show you the large cities of the north like Barcelona, which have reinvented themselves as essential cultural destinations (and don’t all close down for hours for a kip every afternoon). 

      And when the world now looks to Spain for culinary inspiration – the country has some of the most acclaimed chefs and innovative restaurants in the world – it’s clear that things have changed. Spain, despite the current economic uncertainty, sees itself very differently from a generation ago. 

      So should you – prepare to be surprised.