Malaga, Costa del Sol in March
A week at the “Petit Palace Plaza Hotel”:http://en.petitpalaceplazamalaga.com/map.htm in the centre of ancient Malaga was great.
We can recommend the hotel with its central situation, and the city itself, full of bustle, people. old buildings, modern shops and churches.
The week of our visit was the second week of March, and we were surprised to see the many stands which were being erected throughout the city. This was because it was getting ready for the great festival of Semana Santa. Although it was yet a week to go before the “Semana Santa”:http://www.semana-santa-malaga.com/english/holy-week-malaga.html holy week itself, there was a lot of preparation.
In the Plaza de la Constitution, just near the hotel, work was still going on with the stands, where there were seats for those lucky enough to have reserved a place.
One evening, after an early fish supper, we heard the sound of a brass band. Past the restaurant came a band of black clad young men, boys and girls. The main sound was of the percussion, a steady drum beat. So we followed them.
Further along down a narrow Calle (road) two figures of saints were brought from a church and, illuminated, carried along rhythmically by groups of men either side of the structure. The music of the band followed, with the steady drum beat which in the dark, with the scent of incense, was amazingly compulsive.At one point the ground was covered with flowers and rose petals. An extremely memorable occasion.
The festival is very important in Malaga and we should like to return to see it in its full glory, maybe next year.
The Information Desks in Malaga have some leaflets but they are in Spanish.
We can also recommend taking the Red Bus Tour, and stopping off half-way to take another bus (included in the price) to the large botanical gardens on a hillside, full of a mixture of dry, arid loving plants, and leafy forest trees and shrubs, such as bananas. Well worth it.