The State of Tourism in Málaga in 2013

Published on 01/10/2013 in Holidays in Spain

It's been a very positive year so far for tourism in the province of Malaga if you go by the stats, with good news seemingly coming from all over the province.  Numbers of international travellers continue to increase with the domestic market seemingly improving too.
Early in the year one of the world's largest and most influential traveller websites released their figures regarding hotel reservations made via their network for the first quarter of 2013. It showed surprisingly positive news for the local tourism departments with an increase of 19% in the numbers of hotel reservations made in the region via the online travel portal.  The most active markets proved to be a mix of traditional and growing with the British continuing to make up the largest proportion of international visitors but with very large increases in visitor numbers coming from the Nordic countries and the US.  Sweden, Denmark and Norway showed visitor number increases of 86%, 78% and 71% respectively.
The figures were released as part of a press conference which was held to announce an agreement between the travel giant and the Costa del Sol tourist board which will see greater cooperation between the two entities with the aim of further exploiting the coastal region as a tourist destination with obvious advantages for both parties.  Elías Bendodo, president of the Costa del Sol tourist board highlighted the importance of such agreements with the principle tourism entities both online and offline to maintain the Coast del Sol as one of the most popular destination in Spain, coming third behind the Balearics and Canary islands.
According to Carrie Davidson, the director of Expedia España, the figures show that despite the economic times and the strong competition between popular tourist regions throughout the Mediterranean, the Costa del Sol continues to attract increasing numbers of overseas visitors.
As the year has progressed into the summer season yet more encouraging statistics were released with an almost 4% increase in overnight stays in the province of Malaga according to official government figures gathered by the Junta de Andalucia.  Torremolinos had a particularly good August beating its previous record for hotel reservations, this year totalling 660,671.  Indeed Torremolinos has so far had one of its best every year's with 3.5 million overnight stays in the first eight months of the year, another record broken!
So as we move into the winter season should we be expecting more of the same?  According to news surrounding Malaga airport the answer is most definitely 'Yes'.  In August Air Berlin, the second largest airline in Germany,  announced that it would be increasing flights to Malaga airport over the winter months to and from a number of key airports.  Düsseldorf will have a daily flight to Malaga with Berlin airport offering four flights per week and Stuttgart also adding another weekly flight.  According to, Malaga airport is experiencing the greatest expansion of any airport within the national network and with 10.5% extra seats available this winter season it's easy to back up the claim.
So it seems that 2013 is likely to be an exceptionally good year for tourism along the Costa del Sol.  With increasing numbers of visitors, extra flights to accommodate them and a tourist board actively developing new relationships and markets we can hope that the lifeblood of this region is beginning to flow more easily than before.

Written by: Steve Simons

About the author:

Steve Simons is a British expat who has lived in Andalusia for over ten years.  He's experienced the Glamour of Marbella, the exotic history of Granada and the laid back atmosphere of Nerja.  He now runs his own online (Guide to Nerja) and frequently writes about his adopted home.

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MarkComer1 said:
26 January 2015 @ 09:45

Nice article, I have written reviews about several tourists destination in Malaga. The Gibralfaro and Alcazaba are must visit.

Hephaestus said:
29 September 2014 @ 12:17

When we finally manage to sort out our Dona Lola timeshare we will need to find a beach front alternative. We thought that we had done so, the photos were great, but the apartment was strangely mostly vacant. On a recent visit we managed to suss it out, great location with fabulous sea views, situated over an avenue of restaurants and a convenience store.

We mentioned this to a couple who we have known for years, they both burst out laughing and told us that one of what we thought were restaurants was a very noisy all night karaoke bar that kicked off at midnight, it was situated directly under the apartment in question, whoops.

floss said:
12 January 2014 @ 10:21

I'm in Malaga city, visiting for the first time since I sold my house in Andalusia in 2007. Malaga city is wonderful and the weather is absolutely beautiful to a Scot who's experienced nothing but dismal cloud and rain for the last few months. i am looking to buy a Spanish house again and so rented an apartment in Malaga city. I am so disappointed in the rental I have. All sorts of claims were made by the owner and I paid in full online, only to find out his claims were rubbish.
I think the Spanish are so used the Brits paying for time on the Costa, that basics are forgotten. If this is happening across the board then I suspect Brits will go elsewhere for sun.

Richard Styles said:
20 October 2013 @ 11:21

Egypt was also off the cards as a tourist destination too!

Tim Carter said:
01 October 2013 @ 12:48

Good to read some positive news about the coast with all the continuing doom and gloom surrounding Spain. I can't help but think though that this might have been a bit of an anomaly with the Costa del Sol getting more visits thanks to the troubles experienced in Turkey earlier this year.

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