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Museums in Malaga

pompidou centre in malaga


Malaga, better known among tourists for busy beaches, high-rise hotels and vibrant nightlife, has been busy reinventing itself over the last 20 years, with the welcomed inauguration of one brilliant museum after another.

There are, of course, many fun things to in Malaga, but this impressive collection of museums alone make a trip into the city well worth the effort, and offer some sort of respite from the relentless beach-bumming, if such a pastime has, however improbably, become dull or overwhelming.

Whether you’re into art, design, cars, wine or architecture, there is surely something amongst the museums of Malaga that you will find interesting. Here are six of the best museums in Malaga.

Museo Carmen Thyssen

Carmen Thyssen is a prolific 19th-century Andalucian art collector and since 2011 has had a museum specially dedicated to her own, ever-growing collection of around 230 works, accrued over the last 30 years.

The grand museum is divided into four sections, based on the type of painting (portrait, landscape etc.) and era within the century, but there is a certain common element among the works that still feels very relevant to the Andalucia of today. Andaluz-style patios, bullrings and traditional ceremonies, for instance, are often depicted.

  • Where? Plaza Carmen Thyssen, Calle Compañía, Malaga
  • When? Tues-Sun 10.00-20.00
  • More information:
  • Centro de Arte Contemporáneo

    Malaga’s renowned Contemporary Art Museum (CAC) is hard to miss, on account of the two, large, striking images depicted on the side of the adjacent apartment block – one of a woman in a meditative-like pose, the other of a cartoon-style fighter jet pilot with an apparent grudge against ‘d-dogs’. The latter is an example of one of the museum’s currently featured artists – d*face – who specialises in taking iconic images and transmogrifying them into something either horrifying or exquisitely fresh, depending on your understanding of the concept of contemporary art.

    Another standout feature of the CAC is the exhibition by Chinese artsist Ai Weiwei, whose 12 monumental, bronze sculptures represent each animal of the zodiac.

  • Where? Calle Alemania, Malaga
  • When? Tues-Sun 10.00-20.00
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  • Museo Picasso

    Probably the only Malaga museum that needs no introduction, the Pablo Picasso museum offers visitors a rare glimpse at some of the great Malagueño’s finest accomplishments. In addition to the 12 halls of permanent exhibition gallery, which include classic Picasso works like ‘Mother and Child’ and ‘Fruit Bowl’, there are also many sketches and ceramics to be found.

    Picasso’s birthplace, Casa Natal, is located nearby and includes more exhibitions and photos of what life was like for Picasso in his early days.

  • Where? Palacio de Buenavista, C/ San Augustin, Malaga
  • When? From 10.00-19.00, including holidays
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  • Museo Automovilistico de Malaga

    Car fanatics will feel in their element as they step back in time into this vintage automobile museum. Now five years old, the attraction houses the private collection of Portuguese automobile enthusiast Joao Magalhaes. The estimated total of the collection’s worth is around 25 million euros.

    Highlights include a crystal encrusted Rolls Royce, a solar-powered model and a multihued, cubism-inspired 1920 4cil 12cv-hp Unic customised by famous French-Ukranian painter Sonia Delaunay.

  • Where? Avenida Sor Teresa Prat, Malaga
  • When? Tues-Sun 10.00-19.00
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  • Museo del Vino

    Wine is, of course, a prized asset of Andalucia, and has for centuries provided the means of many an alcohol-imbued evening (or afternoon) all over the region. You could say that some things never change.

    The wine museum of Malaga unravels the long history of wine-making in the province of Malaga, with detailed presentations and explanations of ancient Phonecian, Greek and Moorish wines, through to 19th and 20th century wines and today’s most favoured variety, Moscatel. You can learn about the different types of grapes harvested in the province, as well as how each variety of wine is aged.

  • Where? Plaza de los Viñeros, Malaga
  • When? Mon-Fri 10.00-17.00, Sat 10.00-14.00
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  • Centre Pompidou

    Much like the CAC, you’d either be very unlucky or absent-minded not to notice the outstanding Pompidou Centre as you walked past it, since a giant, brightly-coloured cube looms over the Parisian outpost in Malaga’s port area.

    The gallery, which opened earlier this year, not only houses world-famous works formerly displayed at the Pompidou in Paris, but also includes more fruitful labours from the city’s favourite son, Pablo Picasso, which will be on display for two and a half years.

    The opening of the Pompidou Centre, if anything, only served to further cement Malaga’s status as one of the most culturally significant cities within Europe.

  • Where? Muelle Uno, Malaga Port
  • When? From 09.30 to 20.00, including holidays
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  • If you're not such a museum aficionado but still eager to explore Malaga city, perhaps you'll find some inspiration in our Malaga Rainy Days post!

    Or, if you're looking for car hire to get to Malaga, check out Espacar's latest rental deals.

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