Malaga cruises and boat trips

Autumn is the traditional start of the cruise season in Malaga. The Port of Malaga is one of the most important cruise ports in Spain, with over half a million passengers every year. Interestingly, more than 30% are luxury and premium passengers.

Malaga is both a port of departure and an important port of call for Mediterranean and even transatlantic cruises.

Every season we can see some impressive ships docking, some coming for the first time and others returning periodically.

For example, in March 2022, the world’s largest cruise ship, the Wonder of the Seas, made its first call in Europe on its maiden transatlantic voyage from Ford Lauderdale, Florida.

An impressive ship of the Royal Carribean company with a length of 362 metres and a beam of 66 metres.

Wonder of the seas in Malaga
Wonder of the seas docking in Malaga. Photo Marilu Baez, MalagaHoy

In addition to this company, there are many others that offer cruises with embarkation or stopover in Malaga, such as the MSC Orchestra. The MSC Grandiosa ends its journey in Malaga and the MSC Meraviglia stops over on a transatlantic route to Port Canaveral.

There are options for every taste, such as Virgin Voyages with Valiant Lady: millionaire Richard Branson’s adults-only cruise ship with offers such as a tattoo studio, private beach club and an outdoor running track.

Cruises from Malaga

The Port of Malaga is the departure point for numerous cruises to destinations such as the Canary Islands, Spain, Italy, France, Morocco, Portugal, Gibraltar, England, Puerto Rico, Amsterdam, to name but a few.

The Port of Malaga

The port of Malaga has good connections with other cities thanks to the airport and the high-speed train.

Malaga and its port are well connected by road, rail and air. The train station Maria Zambrano (with AVE, suburban train and metro) is 2 km away, the international airport Malaga-Costa del Sol is only 12 km away.

The AVE high-speed train links Malaga with Cordoba, Seville, Madrid and Barcelona, among other major cities. In addition, Malaga-Costa del Sol International Airport offers a very high number of regular flights both nationally and internationally.

East dock

All the large cruise ships arriving in Malaga dock at this dock. The cruise terminal is also located here.

The special charm of cruises in Malaga is the enormous proximity of the port to the historic city centre, full of monuments, museums, beautiful squares and full of life, cafes and bars.

Views of Malaga from a cruise ship
Views of Malaga from a cruise ship. Photo Marian Jose Calvo

The distance from the East dock is just over 2 km. Cruise passengers are normally taken on a courtesy bus, but you might fancy a little independence and enjoy a scenic walk into the centre, past the iconic Lightower Farola de Malaga. You can even hire a bike.

Palmgrove of Surprises and Pier One

Pier One Malaga port
Yachts at Pier One

The port of Malaga was completely renovated ten years ago and turned from an ugly dockland into a beautiful marina, now known as Muelle Uno (Pier One).

The area is full of shops, bars and restaurants and throughout the year there are a number of activities, such as street markets and live music among others. Discover Pier One.

Next to Pier One is situated is the Palmeral de las Sorpresas (Palmgrove of Surprises), a beautiful open space for strolling next to the centre and the park, a bustling place at all hours. It is also home to the Alboran Sea Museum and the Pompidou Museum.

Palmgrove of Surprises
Palmgrove of Surprises. Photo Malagaglobalportsholding

Palmeral de Sorpresas is also a berthing area for exclusive ships, just a few metres from the historic centre of Malaga and therefore one of the most attractive berths in the whole of the Mediterranean. The terminal is operated by Cruceros Málaga.

Puerto de Málaga, Palmeral de las Sorpresas

What to see in Malaga in one day

viewpoint La Alcazaba
Free walkway viewpoint La Alcazaba. Photo Pablo Carballo

We’re not going to fool you, if you can only spend one day in Malaga, you don’t know how many great things you’re going to miss. If you come to Malaga by cruise ship, we help you to make the most of your stay in our beautiful city.

In this article we have prepared some nice suggestions for you to visit Malaga in one day. Without rush.

Rent a car in Malaga port

At we also offer car hire in the port of Malaga.

office Malaga airport
Our staff our Malaga Airport

This is a very convenient option for visitors on cruises to Malaga who have more time to explore our beautiful province. Take a look at our comprehensive Costa del Sol Guide with lots of ideas!

Don’t want to hire a car? No problem, you can also hire a private transfer with us, we will take you wherever and whenever you want.

Tourist Boat Malaga

Maybe you’re not going on a cruise this time, but would you like to go on board and take a trip around the bay of Malaga? No problem! There are several companies that offer sightseeing tours with panoramic views to discover the city from the sea.

tourist boat Malaga
Fancy a tourist boat in the bay of Malaga…? Photo sightseeing spain

Another option is to book a catamaran tour and go further out to sea to see dolphins, celebrate a birthday or watch the sunset. And there’s even a sunset ride with DJ, what a great idea! The prices are very affordable, it might be a good idea to surprise someone.

We went for sunset with Dj and we can 100% recommend this experience.

catamaran tour malaga
… or a catamaran tour at sunset?

You can also book an excursion with swimming, evening parties, stargazing with guitar accompaniment or watch the fireworks in Malaga at this link.

catamaran malaga
Beautiful night view of Palmeral de Sorpresas, Alcazaba and Gibralfaro

And finally, if your pocket allows it, you can rent a catamaran for you and your friends for an unforgettable day out.

Unbeatable rates for car hire

  • Large fleet of brand new cars.
  • Pay on arrival.
  • What you see is what you pay.
  • No hard sell at desk.
  • VIP delivery service for free.
  • No fuel rip-off, we do not charge refueling service fee.

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