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Trip Report Five day visit to Malaga and Axarqía

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Hi, we just returned from a five day visit to Malaga. Here are some tips and addresses I'd like to share with the Fodor's community.

We liked this easy going city. The layout is beautiful, between the mountains and the see. This is the kind of city one should see before going to Granada and Sevilla as it is less spectacular but still has a lot to offer. We found the Malagueños to be very friendly.

We visited during the second week of March and the weather was sunny but, due to a cold northerly wind straight from the mountains, it was rather cool. The locals all were dressed in winter clothes, the tourists where shivering in shorts and T-shirts. I must admit that was a funny sight.

Hotel: we stayed in the Salles Malaga Centro.
Calle Marmoles. The service in this hotel is impeccable. Ask for a room at the back of the hotel and you will not hear a sound all through the night.
Great location, just across the bridge, a five minute walk from the Atarazanas market. Every morning we had a simple Spanish breakfast (coffee, fresh orange juice, fresh rolls with either tomato and olive oil or Serrano ham) in one of the many small coffee places around the market.

We visited the Picasso Museum and the Carmen Thyssen museum. We did a lot of walking pausing in between for a cup of coffee or a cool drink. Plaza Merced is ideal for that as is the harbor.

Places to recommend for lunch and dinner:
Los Mellizos fish restaurant in the city center Calle Sancha di Lara

For tapas: Taberna Cofrade las Merchanas, Mosquera, 5, Malaga. They do not come more Spanish than this one.

Vino Mio
Good quality, fresh food. The menu is international rather than Spanish but that makes for a nice change. Every night around 8 pm they offer a nice Flamenco dinner show. If you don't want to see the show sit outside on the terrace. Really warm atmosphere. The staff couldn't be nicer.

Meson de Cervantes
Well prepared food. We did however get the impression that we were being rushed a bit because of the second seating that night.

By far the best meal we had at Marisquería Godoy at the harbor.
We were served a freshly grilled monkfish to die for. Not cheap but a great treat!

We rented a car and drove to la Axarquía, the area north-east of Malaga.
Almond and orange trees in bloom. Bright yellow mimosa everywhere. The scent of wild herbs. Small stark white small villages e.g. Canillas de Aceituno and Frigiliana. Bliss.

We drove on to Antequera which was a revelation to us. A visit to this historical Andalucían town is a journey almost 5,000 years back in time, beginning with the Bronze Age and the native Iberians. The timeline is there to be followed in this fascinating city's profusion of burial mounds, dolmens, Roman baths, a Moorish Castle, Gothic churches, Renaissance fountains and baroque bell towers. We have decided to come back to explore more.

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