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Gibralfaro Castle (Castillo de Gibralfaro)
Gibralfaro Castle (Castillo de Gibralfaro)

Gibralfaro Castle (Castillo de Gibralfaro)

Free admission
Camino Gibralfaro s/n,: Camino de Gibralfaro, 11

The Basics

The Castillo de Gibralfaro was built by the Caliph of Cordoba to protect the nearby Alcazaba palace in 929 AD, in the days when the Moors of North Africa ruled over the Iberian peninsula. The castle was also, famously, the site of a 3-month-long siege by the so-called Catholic Monarchs—Ferdinand and Isabella—during the reconquest of Spain in 1487, when the Moors were forced out of the country.

Today, you can walk the castle’s perimeter walls and get a true bird’s-eye view of the city from its grounds. The Castillo de Gibralfaro is a regular stop on Malaga city tours, and you can choose to visit by bus, segway, or electric bike or to come on foot.

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Things to Know Before You Go

  • You must pay an entry fee to visit the castle.

  • If you choose to walk, be warned, the trek to the castle is a very steep climb; make sure you wear suitable shoes and carry water with you.

  • With steps and steep, narrow paths, the castle is not suitable for wheelchairs.

  • There’s a small cafe and bathrooms on site and a hotel next door with a bar and restaurant.

  • There’s no direct access from the castle to the Alcazaba.

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How to Get There

The Castillo de Gibralfaro is located on a hilltop on the edge of Malaga’s historic district. You can walk to the castle via Paseo Don Juan Temboury and Subida Coracha or drive up Camino Gibralfaro. You can also take the number 35 bus directly to the castle from the intersection of Paseo del Parque and Plaza de la Marina. Alternatively, visit on a hop-on-hop-off bus or as part of a guided tour that includes transportation.

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When to Get There

Malaga boasts pleasant temperatures and sunshine all year round. The castle is open daily from mid-morning until evening (with extended hours in the summer) but is closed on major public holidays. If you’re going to walk up the hill, try not to head out in the hottest part of the day, especially during the summer.

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Visit Picasso’s Birthplace

Head to Plaza de la Merced—Malaga’s former market square—to visit the Picasso Birthplace Museum (Casa Natal Picasso), which is dedicated to the artist’s early life. The museum holds a number of personal artifacts from Picasso’s youth, including family photographs. If you want to see more of the artist’s works, head to the Picasso Museum (El Museo Picasso Málaga) which is roughly five minutes away by foot.

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