A short walk up from the Plaza de Aduana are the solid fortified walls of La Alcazaba, a major landmark of the city. This fortress dates back to the 700s, although much of the structure belongs to the mid 11th century. The entrance is through the gateway known as the Puerta del Cristo (Christ's Door), where the first mass was celebrated following the Christian victory over the town.
The fortress is one of the largest Muslim military buildings preserved in Spain. It formed part of the Arab Malaka defensive system and was linked to the town ramparts, which have now disappeared.
It is made up of a double encircling wall and rectangular towers. From the zigzag access ramp which runs up from the Alcazabilla street, you will appreciate the view over the remains of the brick walls that cling to the hill.
Fortified gates, decorated with columns and Roman capitals, mark the pleasant walk. This maze of gates and nooks makes the long journey even more pleasant.
Having crossed the Christ Arch, you will reach the Arab gardens with marvellous alleys bordered by bougainvillea, jasmine and honeysuckle.
From the top of the walls, do not miss the very attractive view over the town and the port. Finally, make the most of your visit to the fortress by going to the archaeological Museum, the Roman Theatre and the Gibralfaro Castle.
A walk loaded with history that you will definitely not regret.
Castillo de Gibralfaro
This magnificent building dates back to the beginning of the 14th century when it was built by Yusef 1 of Granada on a former Phoenician site and lighthouse from which the castle's name was derived - gebel-faro (rock of the lighthouse).
The castle is famous for being the site of a three month siege by the citizens of Málaga against the Catholic monarchs, Ferdinand and Isabella. This came to an end only when hunger led to capitulation, after which Ferdinand occupied the site while his queen took up residence in the town. All that remains of this historic monument today is the series of solid ramparts which rise majestically among dense woods of pines and eucalyptus.Cathedral
Málaga´s cathedral was built between 1528 and 1782 on or near the site of a former mosque. While original plans had allowed for two towers, lack of funds resulted in the completion of only one, giving rise to the name by which the cathedral is affectionately referred to, La Manquita , loosely interpreted as "one armed woman".
The mixture of styles is very apparent, with a predominance of the Renaissance style. The lower parts are Gothic, while the coverings and facades are Baroque.
Outside, you will see three very decorative doors in different colours of marble with on the middle door, the relief painting of the Incarnation, the name of the cathedral.
Inside, you will be struck by the great size of this hall-church of three spaces, side chapels and ambulatory. To ensure the support of the high nave the architect used an original method, the superimposition of the supports; on the pillars of fasciculated columns with Corinthian capitals, he placed entablatures holding another level of pillars.
The bays are covered with attractive highly decorated domes on pendentives, The superb stalls 17C of the coro were partly created by Pedro de Mena.
Notice also the two magnificent Baroque organs. (18C) and the marble pulpits(18C) decorated with ecclesiastical shields.
The side chapels contain interesting works : a attractive Weeping Mother by Pedro de Mena, a Christ on the cross by Alonso de Mena, a large Virgin of the Rosary by Alonso Cano.
Around the ambulatory, do not miss the chapel of Notre-Dame-des-Rois and its exquisite Virgin and child, the chapel of Ste-Barbe and its attractive Gothic retable, and the chapel of the Incarnation wholly made of marble with four monumental agate columns.
Iglesia de los Martires (left photo)
Founded in 1487 and dedicated to the martyrs of the town, this pretty church features a striking Mudejar tower, as well as a richly decorated baroque style interior, which includes a sculpture by Franciso Oritz.
Iglesia de Santiago
Founded in 1490, this church is noted for its tall Mudejar style steeple and baroque interior which contains some notable chapels. Pablo Picasso's baptismal certificate is on display here.
Iglesia del Santo Cristo de la Salud
The interior of the 17th century church is very attractive with a stunning altarpiece and beautifully decorated cupola.
Iglesia San Juan Bautista
Founded in 1490, the church's baroque style tower above the main entrance was added in 1770. Inside are several fine chapels and a rich altarpiece. The 17th century figure of San Juan is the work of Francisco Ortiz.
Santuario de la Victoria
The church was erected in 1487 on the site where the Catholic Monarchs pitched their tents during the siege of that year. Its main feature is the magnificent retable which rises above the main altar. In the crypt is the family vault of the counts of Buenavista who were responsible for the rebuilding of the church in the 17th century.
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