Downtown Málaga is still a well-kept secret from international attention.
Yes, a lot of people fly into Málagas airport (3rd largest in Spain), but are normally headed elsewhere: Nerja, Marbella, Cordoba, Ronda, Granada, so on and so forth. Which still keeps Málaga very Spanish and very local.
Málaga is not Barcelona’s international vibe by any means. Which also means good information and recommendations are harder to come by, ESPECIALLY in the form of a language you might be a little more proficient in!
So if you find yourself in downtown Malaga and want to blow off a little steam, potentially have more that just your occasional Caña (small beer) or vino dulce (sweet wine), and even possibly want to show off your dance moves; this article might be for you!
If any of the above tickles your fancy, continue reading as all of this information comes from yours truly, a local resident that knows the local watering holes and discotecas (clubs) scene. Trust me I wish this article existed when I moved here years ago…
We won’t waste your time; you’re hard-earned money and hopefully help you enjoy a hell of a night in Málaga.
Let’s Get Started…
“ALCOHOL: Because no great story ever started with someone eating a salad!”
We are going to try our best in keeping everyone happy in this article and give you not only our favorite places, but also the more famous and under rated spots as well.
**WARNING** Non of the below are paid advertisements.
Your First Beer of the Night: 🍺
El Rincón de Cervecero
Address: Calle Casas de Campos, 5, 29001 Málaga | Hours: 1-4PM & 7-1AM | Website: elrincondecervecero.com
First on our list is a favorite of mine that a good friend introduced me to a while ago and I have been hooked on ever since.
El Rincón de Cervecero is a great spot to grab your first drink of the night, as it will surely be the most delicious.
This spot is right in El Soho neighborhood not far from El Centro (downtown); they offer a quiet atmosphere and their bar staff is very knowledgeable on the different beers they offer.
My favorite part… The beer is not over-priced for micro beers imported from around the world or brewed in Spain. With my experience, many other micro-cervecerias around town can strangle your wallet rather quickly.
Affordable & Fun 🙌🏻
Address: Calle Nosquera, 5, 29008 Málaga | Hours: 5pm-3am |Website: https://www.facebook.com/smileincmalaga
Smile INC. is normally an awesome coffee, juice, all-natural hipster paradise during the afternoon, but when the sunsets, the beer starts flowing like the cheap Ryan Air flights in the summer time.
With awesome affordable prices, good strong drinks, free billiards, fuzball, janga and cards what is not to love about this place?
Did we forget to mention they have a lot of seating and room to mingle? Which is a rare commodity here in downtown Málaga!
They also have a happy hour, but I cannot remember exactly what time it ends. I think 9-11 pm, but don’t quote me, I will update next time I grab a liter of beer for a few euros!
Address: Calle Ramón Franquelo, 7, 29008 Málaga | Hours: 1:30pm-3am | Website: https://www.facebook.com/DrunkoramaBar/
Drunk-o-Rama is a hell of a name for a bar no? But it gets me every time and so does this awesome local watering hole that you have to try for yourself.
Drunk-o-Rama is a blast from the past in the décor department and as well as the beer prices. They recently just released a full-blown food menu not to long ago and it is awesome!
If you are feeling extra lucky, try your luck on the Jägermeister futbalene (fuzball) table. Matches can get pretty intense and rowdy with the locals; remember football is life here in Spain.
Address: Calle Nosquera, 2, 29008 Málaga Hours: 10:30pm-4am | Website: https://www.facebook.com/alquimia.bar.malaga/
Next on our list is an awesome place to stop by through out the night, but be warned that staying here for to long can be dangerous!
Have you ever heard of a Chupiteria? Chupito in Spanish means shot, like the kind you knock back when you are really trying to forget about your problems.
Alquimia is our favorite shot bar in the city as it is affordably priced and a hell of a lot of fun. They have a big board on the wall with all different kinds of crazy shots. At first it can be overwhelming but the friendly staff can help you along the way to a solid liver beating. Did we mention this place is across the street from Smile INC.?
Address: Calle Álamos, 4, 29012 Málaga | Hours: 11pm-3am | Website: https://www.facebook.com/lagarrapatamalaga
It does not get more local than this, La Garrapata is that hole in the wall, dive bar that everyone freaking loves. You should go and see for yourself!
Drinks are strong, beer is delicious, the prices are awesome and the music is even better. The crowd that frequents this stop is also some very awesome people as well.
La Garrapata will never charge for entry. Check it out while you make your rounds around town.
Address: Plaza Marqués del Vado del Maestre, 629008 Málaga | Hours: 0:00-24:00
The final stop is a must as well. Known as Plaza Mitijana, is a small little hidden plaza that will fill up to the brim with people.
There are about 7 bars in a short distance from each other and once everyone has their drink, they typically go and socialize in the center of the plaza! It’s very unique and fun.
When its time to close down, the police and street sweepers start making their rounds and push everyone out of the plaza. It’s hilarious to be honest, as you always get a laugh at the drunk guy or girl who is about eaten by the street sweeper.
Time to WINE Down! 🍷
Wine in Spain continues to amaze me, not only for the amazing prices, but the amazing quality. Málaga is a great place for all you wine lover out there!
Málaga is known for its sweet wine; so when in Málaga, do as the Málaguenos do! Drink the sweet stuff!
Address: Calle Granada, 62, 29015 Málaga | Hours: 9am-2am | Website: www.elpimpi.com
We don’t want to beat the dead horse over here but if you have not heard or read about El Pimpi yet, you are definitely missing out!
This spot is both a favorite for both the locals and tourists a like. Not only is their food and service good but also their wine.
We suggest and only recommend ordering a bottle of Vino Mascotel. This sweet wine is strong, but oh so smooth and delicious. A must have for every visit to Málaga.
Address: Calle Carretería, 93, 29008 Málaga | Hours: 12:30pm-2am | Website: http://www.latranca.es
Our second stop is to a fun little bar that is off the beaten path and does not get a bunch of love on the Internet, until now!
La Tranca is a hole in the wall locals spot that has a variety of delicious local sweet wine served from the barrel and is exceptionally good for the price. We like it here because it’s actually accessible to get a drink unlike the next best wine bar in Málaga.
Antigua Casa Guardia
Address: Alameda Principal, 18, 29005 Málaga | Hours: 10am-10:45pm | Website: http://antiguacasadeguardia.com
Antigua Casa Guardia is a tried and true wine bar in Málaga and will remain that way forever; for a good reason! They are the oldest and most authentic watering holes in all of town. If you are in the area and it is not terrible busy, we suggest you try a few different styles of wine from here. We suggest the Pajarete, its marvelous!
Life is Better with LIVE MUSIC! 🎸
Live music is a nightly happening in and around Málaga! If our suggestions below don’t have something happening, just keep you ear open as you walk around downtown and you are bound to find something going on.
Address: Calle Tejón y Rodríguez, 6, 29008 Málaga | Hours: 10:30pm-6am | Website: www.zzpub.es
ZZ Pub is one of the oldest live music bars in all of Málaga. They offer music 7 nights a week!
Stationed in a smaller cozy bar, it can get packed on the weekends, as entry is normally always free. So get there early and prepare your eardrums for a blasting of some good ol’ rock n roll!
Sala Páris 15
We are going to kill three birds with one stone on this one here! Sala Trinchera, Sala Páris 15 and Sala Eventual are the local’s hidden gems in the industrial area of Málaga.
These venues are only a 15-minute cab ride away from downtown, but well worth it if you find yourself really wanting to enjoy some live music or an awesome concert at the best venues in town. There is no curfew out in this area, so concerts will start late and go late. No neighbors to keep awake out here! Also typically, the locals will pre-game out in the street before hand, which makes a great opportunity to make some new friends before the music starts blasting! BYOB
Address: Calle Comedias, 15, 29008 Málaga | Hours: 10pm-7am | Website: www.velvetclub.es
Next on our list is the well-known and personal favorite Velvet! This bar/club hosts a lot of live music events sporadically through out the week, so keep up to date through their website or social media.
When talented artists are not ripping it up, there is always an equivalent in the DJ department. Never a disappointment for late night hours, as the music is always good.
International Shenanigans 🍾
I know the feeling: “I wish my Spanish was a little bit better and then I would have more fun socializing and meeting new people.” So we bring you the international part of this article, where you will probably not find a local Spaniard here unless they are tourists themselves.
I also want to set a disclaimer here and let you know that we suggest going to an Intercambio (language exchange) if you are interested in improving your Spanish speaking ability. Locals are always trying to improve their English! Who knows, you might make a new friend, business contact, or possibly a future ex-wife (they are that awesome!).
We also do not condone bars that have the word “Pub” in them. We are sure they are great, but why did you come to Spain in the first place if you plan on going to a place like this?
Plaza De La Merced
Address: Calle Comedias, 15, 29008 Málaga | Hours: 00:00-24:00 |
We suggest checking out the many bars around Plaza de la Merced. This is a very popular international drinking area. They also typically have a pub-crawl that starts there and ends at a discoteca, don’t worry if you don’t find them, they will find you!
Mercade de la Merced
Address: Calle Merced, 4, 29012 Málaga | Hours: 7am-2am
We also really like the new and improved Mercado de la Merced (Merced Market) right across the street. In the morning one side of the market is a fish and meat market, but in the evenings and afternoons everything changes.
A bunch of little restaurants and bars open up on the other side, that offer an array of affordable drinks, beers, wines, tapas and fully portioned meals. Live music is also not an uncommon thing to hear.
It’s like Disco Inferno up in here! 💃🏻🕺
Welcome to the dancing and clubs section!
One word of caution: Clubs in Málaga can be hit or miss, some can be expensive, some can be grungy, but above all, they open late and close even later (12 am to 7 am). We hope we can shed some light on our favorites. But first we want to enlighten you on a few insider tips and tricks that only a local would know here in Málaga. Introducing…
The Fundamental Guide to Dance Clubs in Málaga:
Pro Tip: Drinks are always more expensive at clubs than anywhere else, so if you are like me and need a little bit of liquid courage before showing off those dance moves. I suggest finding it before hand, as drinks can be double the price at clubs.
We also suggest, that if you are approached by a club promoter early on in the night and have not decided on a place to go yet, let them take you to their club. They will more than likely let you in for free and might even invite you for a free drink! If the club is not what you expected or it is still very early and no one is there, leave! But make sure you get hand stamped so you can return later when the club is popping and they are charging an entry fee at the door! Note that most bars close around 2 am or earlier, so that’s why you might be confused on the lack of people if you go around 12 for example!
Without a doubt we have many favorites in the discoteca genre, but every place is different, every single night of the week. It truly depends on the night, DJ, vibe, time of year, amount of people and of course your crew! With an open mind and sometimes an even more open wallet, you are going to have a hell of a night out on the town. We suggest the following clubs but are not going get to much into specifics as they are all very similar and exist for one reason: to dance your fucking ass off! So last but not least, here are our top picks for the best dance clubs in Málaga Spain! Enjoy!
Address: Calle Comedias, 15, 29008 Málaga | Hours: 12pm-2am | Website: www.velvetclub.es
Address: Calle Luis de Velázquez, 5
29008 Málaga | Hours: 10pm-7am | Website: http://discotecasenmalaga.es/gold/inicio/
Address: Calle Santa Lucía, 11
29008 Málaga | Hours: 10pm-7am | Website: http://discotecasenmalaga.es/wenge/inicio/
Address: Calle Lazcano, 5
29008 Málaga | Hours: 10pm-7am | Website: http://discotecasenmalaga.es/theatro-club/inicio-2/
Address: Plaza de San Francisco, 8, 29008 Málaga | Hours: 11pm-7am | Website: https://www.facebook.com/SalaSpectraMalaga/
Address: Calle Convalecientes, 5, 29008 Málaga | Hours: 11pm-5am | Website: https://www.galleryclubpartyinmalaga.com
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