Málaga Feria: They’ll be Dancing in the Street

Fireworks to start the Malaga feria

Fireworks to start the Malaga feria  [Image credit: Manolo Gómez Flickr CC]

Even the smallest village here in Andalucía has it’s own fiesta or feria, but today sees the final day of the BIGGEST PARTY OF ALL (well, around these parts at least) – the Málaga Feria!   

Held every year during August to commemorate the reclaiming of the city from the Moors by the Catholic Monarchs (Queen Isabella I of Castile and King Ferdinand II of Aragon) on 18th August 1487, the Málaga feria is one of the largest fairs in Spain with millions of people joining the fun throughout the week.

Many daytime activities take place on the main shopping street – Calle Marques de Larios, Picasso’s birth-place – Plaza de la Merced and throughout the historic centre of the city from noon until  around 8pm each day.  There are open-air bars to tempt passers-by with sherry, delicious sweet Málaga wine and tapas while the sound of music fills the air.

Many people dress in traditional costume and spontaneous demonstrations of flamenco dancing often break out in the street.  

Yesterday, it was a joy to wander around the city, soaking up the party atmosphere before heading to the Bodega Bar El Pimpi for a spot of lunch.  El Pimpi seems to get bigger and bigger every time I go, with it’s warren of rooms and outdoor terraces, which were all packed with feria-goers.  The inside walls of the bar are decorated with photographs of famous visitors and historic posters of ferias past.  You can also see the enormous barrels signed by some celebrity patrons including former UK prime minister, Tony Blair and, one of Málaga’s famous sons, film-actor Antonio Banderas.

Tradition then dictates a short siesta before heading to the outskirts of the city (next to the Palacio de Congresos building, near the airport) for La Feria de la Noche (the night fair), which starts very slowly around ten in the evening and continues all night, until the break of dawn.

Here you will find hundreds of marquees (known as casetas) scattered throughout the fairground where you can enjoy more drinks and food, whilst dancing to the sound of both modern and flamenco music.

And, if like me, you LOVE fairground rides, then you can be flung here, there and everywhere on some wild, mechanical rides or take a gentle journey on the huge ferris wheel, for great views across the feria.

There are shuttle buses throughout the night from city centre to the fairground.

 Would you like to join in the party next year?  

34 thoughts on “Málaga Feria: They’ll be Dancing in the Street

  1. Malaga Feria looks quite spectacular….I saw it from the motorway 2 years ago, amazing sight & so bright! Don’t think I’ll ever get to experience it though as I would not visit Spain again during August….unbearably hot and too busy!

  2. Pingback: Top 5 English-Language Blogs on Spain Travel | Busbud blog

  3. i hope you dont mind me emailing you but we have received you “Dancing in the street” -which we enjoyed reading and as we are thinking of coming out to live in spain within the next couple of—months and are looking in the Camposol area we were wondering if you could enliken us on what the area is like eg land grab and structual as we were looking on you tube and it has made us worried and feel it might be best to hear from yourselves thanks and heres hoping to can help us decide steve and dee moore coventry england —————————————

    • Hi Steve and Dee

      Bear in mind, I don’t live in Malaga city – I live about 50 kilometres to the east. I’m afraid I don’t know where the Camposol area is (is it in Malaga city?), but what is commonly known as “land grab” is associated with the Valencia area (I think) – so a long way from here.

      Don’t be put off by what you’ve seen on YouTube. This is a wonderful area in which to live. My advice is to come and see for yourself – but make sure to rent for at least 12 months before you buy, so you can work out which area is best for you.

      All the best 🙂


  4. We’ve been to the Pimpi bar! It’s fab. I drank too much there before a concert though and decided to slide over the back of a seat to get to my row and my dress got hitched up…ooops… Have a great time, Marianne 🙂

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