Málaga has undergone a transformation over the last 15 years. The Andalusian city, aware of the importance of being a smart tourism destination, committed to a period of urban regeneration that has placed art and culture at its heart.
A renewed focus on cultural heritage is leading the way
Today, a region that was known for its beaches has become the ‘City of Museums: Where art lives’. As the quality of its attractions improves — including the Picasso Museum and Centre Pompidou — so tourism has increased: to four million visitors in 2017. Those tourists, who brought €2.85 billion to the area that year, have had a positive impact on both visitors and residents, as significant funds have been invested to turn it into a socially-conscious city. Visitors with reduced mobility or visual impairments can take advantage of a completely adapted bus network, while more than 50% of the city’s taxis are accessible for wheelchair users. Further initiatives, including the Enjoy the Beach programme and the Málaga Accessibility project, ensure that all visitors to Málaga are able to enjoy its many attractions.
Málaga has undertaken major regeneration projects to position itself among the leading cities in terms of sustainable development and advances in new technology. Visitors to the city can now join the 26,000 users of the public bike-hire service, cycling around 43km of lanes as they explore the vast array of botanical gardens, municipal green spaces, and beaches on offer.
Málaga has proven itself to be a setting which offers significant business opportunities and intends to promote itself as a smart city that connects with residents and visitors to build a sustainable future. Your trip to southern Spain is made easier thanks to numerous apps that give travellers access to guides, discounted tickets, live parking information, and a handy way to contact local police.
In barely two decades the number of museums in Málaga has shot up from just 4 to 37. Today, there are over 80 museum visits for every 100 overnight stays and initiatives such as the Soho project and the White Night Festival offer unique art-infused moments. These events offer visitors an insight into local life, and it is easy to see why journalists say that this “once down-at-heel city has become one of Europe’s hippest destinations”.