Friday, August 25, 2006

Malaga, Spain

Malaga is a gem of a city on the Costa del Sol. I was quite taken with it as you can tell from the travelogue email I sent home.

Many crewmembers onboard have been buzzing for weeks about Malaga as one of their favorite ports. I now understand why--I loved this city. The birthplace of Picasso and situated on the Costa del Sol, Malaga is every inch the classic Spanish city. The traditions of flamenco dancing and bullfighting originated here and are still practiced today. One can practically here the castanets in the streets and indeed Spanish guitars serenade tourists on every corner. Rich in history, remnants of Malaga's Phoenician, Roman and Moorish roots can still be seen throughout the city. I spent a whirlwind day of sightseeing here and snapped the following pictures.

The first two are of the 18th century facade and side view of the "one armed" cathedral, so named because only one of it's bell towers was completed. The third picture is of the cathedral's baroque interior which was completed some 150 years before the exterior. I happened to visit at the end of a mass and was able hear the magnificent organ being played. The fourth picture is of the Teatro Romano, a Roman amphitheater discovered in the 1950s and is still under excavation today. The next two shots are of the Alcazaba, a Moorish fortress dating from the 12 century which also houses a palace. This is a real historical treasure with so much of it is in tact. You could walk along the parapets, look out over the city and practically feel the presence of the ancient Moors within the fortress walls. The last shot is of the Episcopal Palace which is a stunning example of Spanish baroque architecture.

I also made it to the Picasso Museum in town which has a modest but lovely collection. The museum also has a fascinating archeological exhibit because it just happens to sit on top of some Phoenician ruins dating from the 5th and 6th century BC. No photos were allowed in the museum though. Sorry this one is so long, but clearly this city made an impression on me!



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