August Fair: Feria de Malaga
Malaga prepares itself all year to host its August fair known as Feria de Malaga, one of the most popular and colourful fairs in Andalusia, which transforms the entire city for several days. The people of Malaga make great efforts to put in talent, enthusiasm, happiness, hard work and passion, and they achieve a magnificent result. These festivities play a great part in presenting the happy character of the city.
When is celebrated Feria de Malaga in 2017?
This festivity in 2017 will take place from 13 to 20 August.
About the Malaga fair: History and location
The first fair in Malaga was celebrated the 15th of August in 1491, this event was proposed by the town hall to commemorate the victory over Malaga from the Catholics in 19 August in 1487. There was a parade from Malaga Cathedral to the Santiago Church where they ended praying.
The fair evolved year after year, it became more a popular celebration than a Catholic victory event, moving from a simple religious parade to a popular festivity at Malaga port area, Malaga park, Plaza de la Merced (as shown in image on the right from 1884), Teatinos area and later on to the actual place, Cortijo de Torres.
The fair actually takes place in two areas: one during daytime, in calle Larios and its surroundings (the town centre) and the other at nigh-time in the special fair area at 'El Cortijo de Torres'.
The Night Fair is the favourite of many visitors due to more comfortable temperature and the rides, there are many stands and places to eat, from typical Spanish food to fast food.
The feria area is set up in the open air. Within its 500,000 square metres are assembled over 15 stalls, as well as a large parking area and a fairground. Each year Malaga City Council anticipates the extra costs to fit 300,000 electric light bulbs, 200,000 street lanterns and 150 lampposts so that those who go to the fair, and average of 3 million people each year, are able to enjoy the spectacles in full light.
If you like stands for shopping, at the Malaga Night Fair you will find many.
The avenida del Marqués de Larios dresses for fiesta with thousands of garlands. Above these the street is sheltered by sheets of canvas to protect the fair-goers from the strong summer sun.
During the day, one of the most traditional shows is the parade of thousands of horsemen, either on horseback or in wagons or coaches, intricately decorated with Andalusian motifs, many colours and many flowers. The animals are usually presented in their finest trappings. In recent years, this tradition, deeply rooted within the population of Malaga, has been restricted to some avenues of the Malagueta area and the horse and carriages' access to the town centre impeded to prevent the disturbance the used to cause to the traffic.
Expect high temperatures so get useful clothes and a hat, it is common to see people drinking and dancing on the streets.
How to dress during the feria?
During the feria you will see the typical Andalusian folkloric dress, worn especially by ladies and young girls. Most often seen and traditionally custom is the flamenco dress. It is brightly coloured, fitted to the body, with frills as well as mantillas and accessories to match, essential to complete the fiesta outfit. The boys who choose to dress typically usually opt to dress as the young Andalusian gentleman whose suit consists of fitted black trousers, braces over a white shirt and finally, to complement the suit, a black wide-brimmed hat.
Unfortunately like at any other crowded place on the world, please pay attention to your personal belongings..Thieves could take advantage for picking your purse without you noticing in crowded places.
How to get to feria de Malaga? By train, bus or using a car?
The use of a private vehicle can be only recommended for getting to the Night Fair, at this fair there are many public parkins available but if you are not used to the area you could get lost...do not worry, there is much police presence around and many signals showing you the right way to the fair.
If you want to get to the Malaga Day Fair I recommend to use public transport, driving in city centre during the fair festivities will end with the patience of anyone.
Using train or bus
You can use the train or special buses for getting to the Malaga Fair during the day or the night from diverse areas on the Costa del Sol, schedules of buses are extended during this period.
There are public bus services from Torremolinos, Benalmadena Costa, Alhaurin de la Torre, Rincon de la Victoria, Cartama, Casabermeja or Santa Rosalia.
If you prefer using the commuter train for getting to the Day Fair choose the last train stop in Malaga, the fair is at walking distance from there. For getting the commuter train to the Night Fair just choose Victoria Kent stop and walk from there around 5 minutes, you will see the fair lights while walking.
The subway might be useful also, it links many areas of Malaga and could be a deal if you are coming from somewhere close a subway station, just choose Puerta Blanca station for getting at walking distance from the fair.
Complicated? It might sound so for a first timer in Malaga, just remember:
- Day Fair: At Calle Larios, use bus or last stop of commuter train for getting there.
- Night Fair: At Cortijo de Torres, use of bus or commuter train (Victoria Kent station) for first timers, if you know the area there are other options you can explore such the subway or the bus to Puerta Blanca from where you can walk to the fair.
Map of transport links between day and night fair: