La Feria in Málaga
The Malaga Fair is the biggest street party in southern Europe. Seeing is believing! In our opinion, everyone has to experience La Feria of Malaga at least once in their life. So make sure to put it on your post-COVID bucket travel list!
What is the reason for la Feria?
On August 19th 1487, the Catholic Monarchs King Ferdinand and Queen Isabel conquered the city of Malaga ending eight centuries of Moorish rule.
And we are still celebrating the Christian conquest of the city over 500 years later with the biggest street party in southern Europe- the Feria of Málaga! However, the only religious commemoration these days during the fair is on the first day of the fair when you can experience a colourful pilgrimage of horses and carriages.
The parade starts at the Malaga City Hall and makes it way to the Iglesia de la Victoria where a mass is celebrated in honour of la Virgen de la Victoria- whose statue was presented to the city by the Catholic Monarchs in 1487.
When is the fair of Malaga?
The fair is always in the month of August and usually lasts for 9 days. The feria dates will always coincide with the anniversary of the conquest, August 19th.
A massive beach party kicks off the celebrations on the eve of the feria for the official opening (the pregón) of the fair. In addition to a concert on the Malagueta Beach close to the city, there is an amazing fireworks display at midnight.
Where is the fair of Malaga held?
The feria of Malaga is unique in the fact that it takes place in two distinct areas of the city.
In the case of La Feria del Día (the day fair), this takes place in the narrow streets and beautiful squares of the historical centre. Whereas La Feria de la Noche (the night fair) happens just outside the city centre in El Real Cortijo de Torres next to the Palacio de Congresos (Congress Centre). Despite its name, the night feria is open during the day as well as at night.
Customs and Traditions
Generally speaking, the Day Feria has a more traditional feel. The streets are full of locals dancing to traditional music like Sevillanas and Verdiales. As well, you can see bands walking around the streets playing popular songs and ‘paso dobles’. As a result, onlookers break out into song and dance. The atmosphere is absolutely fantastic!
In the main plazas of the city centre (Constitución, Mitjana, Flores, Merced), there are live concerts during the week. For example, a must-see favourite of the feria is the FREE SOUL BAND. It is a great cover band that plays every afternoon in the Plaza de los Flores.
How can I get to the Night Feria?
You can go for a charming night Malaga walking tour, but there are also extra buses scheduled that leave regularly from the Alameda Principal. They go directly to the fair grounds- bus info. Alternately, you can take the Cercanias train schedules from the Malaga Centro Alameda station next to the dry river. Get off just two stops later at the Victoria Kent station which is just across the street from the fair grounds.
Also, you can take advantage of our bike rental service and cycle to the grounds in under 15 minutes. It’s always better on a bike!
La Feria de la Noche/ The Night Feria: they convert the fair grounds into a temporary town of streets filled with “casetas”- individual bars and restaurants. Unlike other ferias in Andalusia, the casetas are free to enter. Typically, they sell traditional local food and drinks. Additionally, many have live music and concerts. Furthermore, there is also a fun fair with all kinds of rides that goes well into the night.
During the day, the streets of the feria grounds are filled with horses and carriages parading up and down. The señoritas dress in the typical trajes de flamenco and the señores in their trajes de corto. It is a wonderfully colourful sight!
What else is there to do in Malaga during the feria?
All in all, the feria of Malaga is a unique unforgettable experience. However, if you need to take a break from the festivities, why not rent a bike from us and take a relaxing ride along the coast? We will give you lots of routes, tips and maps on where to go, the best beach bars and sights to visit near Málaga.
As well, all the museums are open during the feria, many of which can be easily reached by bike.
Have a great feria everyone!