Guide to enjoy and experience the Malaga Fair (Feria de Malaga)
The Malaga Fair is held during the month of August and is as amazing as the Seville Fair or the Jerez Fair. At this festival the whole of Malaga paints the town red to enjoy one of the biggest parties of the year: the Malaga Fair that for 10 days and nights will keep both locals and tourists visiting the Costa del Sol on these summer dates more than entertained.
The Malaga Fair is possibly the most important summer celebration on the entire Costa del Sol. The reasons are many and varied, ranging from enjoying the best climate in Europe to raucous festivals, via monuments, beaches, museums and cultural visits, but, above all and mainly, good music and delicious gastronomy. Whoever you are and however intensely you want to experience it, at Malaga festivals, the most important thing is to enjoy the experience at one of the most beautiful spots in Europe.
Origins of the Malaga Fair (Feria de Málaga)
The Feria de Málaga originated as a commemoration for the incorporation of Malaga to the crown of Castile by the Catholic Kings, who entered the city on August 19th, 1487. The Kings gave the image of the Virgin of Victory to the city and the City Council, recently formed, wanted to commemorate this day with an annual holiday.
A few years later (1491), the City Council established the beginning of popular festivals and throughout the years it gained strength and today is the biggest summer party in southern Spain.
How to get to the fair
The best way to get around during the days of the fair is by public transport, which is why Town Hall makes it easy to get to both the Real de la Feria and the downtown fair, with a total of over 270 buses available.
In addition to this is Line F, which links the two parts of the fair for 24 hours, charging almost symbolic prices (€1.5). Another option is to use the taxi service, which in Malaga operates very efficiently.
Proclamation and Fireworks
The celebrations in Malaga start very close to the sea with the proclamation that some outstanding personality of Málaga performs to finish at 00:00 with a spectacular display of fireworks. If you want to witness it from the Malagueta, it is advisable to be there with approximately one hour of advance to be able to take site. However we recommend that you go better to the viewpoint of Gibralfaro or better even to the roofs of the Cathedral, and for this year they go on sale around 110 tickets that have to be booked online or through 902 646 289.
The Feria de Málaga has a great particularity and is that you can enjoy it in different environments, on one hand, during the day most of the performances are carried out in the historic center. On the other hand, during the night the party and the ‘jaleo’ is taken to Cortijo de Torres, a fairground that is located on the outskirts of the capital next to the N-340 motorway.
This two different environments does not mean that during the day you cannot enjoy the Real of the Fair in Cortijo de Torres, although of course the best party is in the center, which is undeniable.
Feria del Centro
During the days of the fair the Center invites you to enjoy the fun and the ‘jaleo’. The whole old part of the city, with Larios street and Plaza de la Constitución as neuralgic centers, grab the attention of locals and foreigners. The whole center fills even more if it fits bars, coffee shops and booths arranged to facilitate the enjoyment of the generous local wines, as well as to taste the great diversity of tapas prepared to accompany them. In addition to all the days of the Fair there are many shows, exhibitions and events, as the galleries and museums of the city have special exhibitions and schedules specially designed for this time and even Sunday afternoon for free. Also some of the most central squares feature performances.
Some of what you can only enjoy in Malaga is the pandas of verdiales that move along Calle Larios giving you the chance to experience this typical festive manifestation.
Thousands of people occupy the streets and squares in full and between glass of maple and glass, catch new forces to later enjoy the bullfight that takes place in Plaza de la Malagueta. The Bullfighting Fair is one of the most important of the national territory and a must for fans.
One of the most important things of the fair is that visitors will feel like one ‘boquerón’ more, and thanks to this they enjoy the great beauty of this celebration.
El Real de la Feria
As the night falls on the first day of the fair, another of the most anticipated events of the year takes place, the mayor presses the button that launches the illumination of the cover that will illuminate throughout the festival the Real of the Malaga fair, This form by started the fair of the real.
One of the distinguishing elements of the Feria de Málaga compared to others, is that you can enjoy each and every one of the booths, since the entrance is free, like this you can have fun with all kinds of music and in crowd of environments (malagueñas, flamenco, sevillanas, verdiales, orchestras, young music …).
The party will get better and better between glasses of cartojal, dances and many laughs throughout the night, and will only decay with the first lights of the new day
It must be said that although there are two fair areas with their pros and cons the choice is entirely personal since during the day at the Royal you will find horse and rider cars strolling quietly along the roads. Also during the day the fair is not very crowded and you can enjoy the 204 booths in a much more relaxed way.
What and where to eat and drink in the fair
The fair’s best attractions are fine dining and it is during these days that the ‘anchovy’ palate is refined. Traditional fair dishes include fried fish, ham, cheese, cooked prawns or king prawns, peppers and Spanish omelette. A whole gastronomic selection based on the sea. We recommend you visit places like La Reserva del Pastor, Lo Gueno, Antigua casa del Guardia, Los Mellizos, Los Gatos, La espiga, Peña la Solera, Cortijo Pepe, or if you want something cooler, José Carlos García at Muelle Uno.
Special mention must go to Bodegas El Pimpi, which over time has acquired the category of ‘temple.’ This is due to the fact that it is a place with a special charm where you can toast the fair with a delicious local sweet wine and try some ‘light bites’ and other delicacies. You’re probably thinking that all this sounds good, well imagine it tasting even better.
We recommend that, in addition to the famous Pimpi, you visit El Mentidero tavern, where you can enjoy the festival ambience. If you come here you must order the tomato salad, pil-pil cod, homemade flamenquín or tuna in pork fat.
Once at the fair enclosure of Cortijo de Torres, be sure to visit Peña El Sombrero, where you can enjoy traditional dishes such as fried bites, Iberian cured meats and aubergine with honey.
Tips for enjoying the Malaga Fair
Enjoy the proclamation and fireworks
The proclamation serves as the starting gun for the provincial capital’s big party and also introduces one of the most highly anticipated spectacles of the entire fair: the fireworks.
On the night of the fireworks, over 800 kg of powder go off to create an amazing show.
Be amazed at the lighting up of the Real de la Feria
The lighting up of the Portada del Real is a magical moment, a tradition that attracts more people each year.
Open-air flamenco performances
The Verdiales festival is held each day of the fair on calle Larios, where hundreds of groups and flamenco singers gather to enjoy the day.
Wear comfortable clothing
The Malaga Fair has no obligatory etiquette and, with an average temperature of 35 degrees, people usually dress casually for comfort, but only for the day fair. At night, people do wear more formal clothing to visit the fair booths.
Use public transport to get around
To prevent people driving, the city offers public transport 24 hours a day to move around the entire city.
Useful telephone numbers
- National Police (Emergencies) 091
- Civil Guard 062
- Local Police (Emergencies) 092
- Health Emergency 061
- All emergencies 112
- Health Service Emergencies 902 50 50 61
- Red Cross Emergencies 902 22 22 92
- Carlos Haya Hospital 951 03 01 00
- Civil Hospital 951 03 03 00
- Hospital Clínico Universitario 951 03 20 00
- Materno Infantil 951 03 02 00
- Hospital C. Costa del Sol 952 82 65 96
- Citizen information 010 (from the municipality of Malaga)
- Lost items 951 926 111
- Lost cards (VISA) 913 62 62 00
- Lost cards (Savings Bank) 915 96 53 35
- Card cancellation (Servired) – 902 192 100
- Card cancellation (4B) – 913 626 200
- Card cancellation (American Express) – 900 99 44 26
- Information: 952 04 84 84
- Information Line Departures 95 204 88 04
- Information Line Arrivals T2 95 204 88 44
- Information Line Arrivals T1 95 204 88 45
- RENFE. Information and bookings
Telephone 912 320 320
- EMT (Malagan Transport Company)
Customer service: 902 527 200
- Malaga bus station. Telephone: 952 35 00 61
- PORTILLO Telephone: 902 45 05 50
- ALSINA GRAELLS Telephone: 952 31 82 95
- AMARILLOS Telephone: 952 36 30 24
- FERRÓN COÍN Telephone: 952 35 54 90
- JULIÁ Telephone: 952 23 23 00
- VALLENIZA. Telephone: 952 54 27 84
- OLMEDO Telephone: 952 43 30 43
- RUIZ ÁVILA Telephone: 952 35 00 61
- VAZQUEZ OLMEDO: 952 43 35 23
- Agrupación Local y Provincial de Taxis de Málaga 952 34 56 93
- Unitaxi 952 33 33 33
- Taxi Unión 952 04 08 04 / 952 04 00 90
- Información Instituto Municipal del Taxi 952 12 20 40