The region of Malaga, located on the Costa del Sol in the South of Spain is a beach city known for its dramatic, high rising hotels and resorts, almost emerging from beautiful golden sandy beaches. Although the town is not particularly expensive, we have curated a list of cheap activities to do in Malaga. Since all the activities on the list require you to interact with nature to a certain degree, there’s probably no better and cheaper way to discover Malaga. So let your pockets rest easy and get ready for an adventure to remember.
Rafting down the Genil River
Row, row, row your boat (not so) gently down the Genil! Rafting in the Genil river is the first activity on our list of cheap activities to do in Malaga. The best whitewater experience in Andalusia can be had on the Genil river, which flows between the regions of Malaga and Cordoba. This is the ideal spot to introduce yourself or your young ones to the sport of whitewater river rafting.
Overcoming large rocks, paddling between waves and rapids, will certainly give you a thrill! The first section of this Genil River, going from Benamejí to Palenciana, is approximately three kilometers long with rapids easy enough for the first-timers to get excited. Depending on the variant you pick, you can either experience a 4 hour, class III rapid excursion or a 1-2 hour, class II rapid excursion, starting from just 19 euros! All that jargon about rapid classes can seem a bit confusing – you could educate yourself on the subject by reading about our complete guide on whitewater river rafting.
SUP Lessons in Los Granados
For the next adventure on our list of cheap activities to do in Malaga, we take you to Los Granados in Estepona, a resort town on the Costa del Sol in southern Spain, 1 hour away from Malaga’s city center via the AP-7. The sunny beach is your classroom to learn techniques of a very relaxing and enjoyable activity – Stand Up Paddle. Access to equipment for this activity is not that easy, but you could do take SUP lessons in Los Granados for just 30 euros!
The origins of the sport are up for debate with some saying that it originated on the islands of Hawaii, while some say it’s just a variant between kayaking and surfing. Either way, one thing is for sure, the warm waters of the Mediterranean are the perfect scenery for a fun day paddling on board a stand-up paddleboard! There are different levels you could opt for depending on your capabilities: beginners and intermediate, both of which will last for about 2 hours, including the lesson and the ride.
Parasailing in Fuengirola near Malaga
Fuengirola may not be in the city of Malaga but sometimes one must go the extra mile to find hidden gems such as this. Besides, it is part of the Malaga province and just a 30-minute drive from the city center via Highway AP-7. The sunny town situated in the South of Spain is popular for its sandy beaches, summer markets, and music festivals. However, the pièce de résistance in this beach town is easily, parasailing.
The activity will cost you an unbelievably low, 35 euros and is friendly to people of all ages. Although it’s not impossible, it’s certainly difficult to go parasailing at a cheaper rate. If you’re looking for cheap activities to do in Malaga, for your entire family to enjoy, this is it. As you are effortlessly guided by the jet boat, with the wind caressing your face, you almost lose your sense of time while parasailing in Fuengirola.
Dolphin cruise in Fuengirola
If you’re in Malaga, it’s definitely worth your time to pay a visit to man’s best friend in the water: dolphins! These adorable and sensitive water beings love a bit of human interaction. Besides, a dolphin cruise in Fuengirola is far more ethical than paying to observe them in a confined space. As you know, getting to Fuengirola from the city center of Malaga is a breeze of a 30-minute drive on the AP-7.
The meeting point for this activity is Puerto Deportivo de Fuengirola, from where you will step onto a boat that will snatch you away from land, into the sea. Let’s not forget that you’re out in the wild, which means you could get lucky and spot multiple whale species such as Killer Whales, Sperm Whales, and Fin Whales! You could experience all of this for just 35 euros! The activity lasts 2 hours, strolling into our list of cheap activities to do in Malaga.
Canyoning at Rio Verde Gorge in Granada
If you’re a novice when it comes to the sport of canyoning, canyoning at Rio Verde Gorge in Granada is probably an excellent place to start. Granada is 1.5 hours away from the North of the city center of Malaga via the A-92 and is known for grand examples of medieval architecture dating to the Moorish occupation. The Rio Verde canyon is part of the Sierra de Tejeda, Almijara, and Alhama Natural Park in the South of Granada. You can enjoy turquoise and crystalline waters to cool, during the course of the activity to cool off from all the hiking.
Canyoning at the Rio Verder Gorge accommodates people with all sorts of fitness levels, as our guide will select one amongst the three difficulty levels, best suited for you. A customized canyoning tour starting from just 35 euros! What more can you ask for? The tour lasts anywhere between 4-7 hours depending on the variant you pick but is one of the best experiences you could have with a large group of friends and family.
Via Ferrata Moclin near Granada
Let’s admit it, Via Ferrata is probably not the most popular sport to make it in our list of cheap activities to do in Malaga, however, for just 35 euros, it’s a steal to experience something so thrilling! So what is Via Ferrata? Essentially, they are activities in which you discover a route equipped with various climbing aids such as handrails, suspension bridges, and zip lines. This allows you to safely reach heights you’ve never imagined achieving. The views from the top are absolutely stunning and will make you wonder why you paid a low sum for an activity which is so rewarding! If you decide to do a Via Ferrata excursion in Moclin, here’s what your itinerary will look like:
Nepalese bridge: 25 meters
Monkey pass: 8 meters
Dihedral and cracks pass
Zipline: 22 meters
It is essential that you carry comfortable clothes, hiking boots, and are in good physical condition. The activity lasts for a total of half a day, during which you are provided with snacks, drinks, and video footage of you being brave!
Caving in the Excentrica Cave near Ronda
35 euros is clearly the magic number on our list of cheap activities to do in Malaga, including for our last activity. Ronda is a 1.5-hour drive from the Malaga city center by road via the A-367 and A-357 and known for its natural beauty such as deep gorges like El Tajo. Caving may seem like a bit of an intimidating activity, and it can be one but caving in the Excentrica cave is suitable, even for 7-year-olds. The Excentrica cave is located in the small town of Igualeja, just 20 km. away south of Ronda.
This cave was discovered by chance in 1975 and will make you feel like stepping into a world that’s hard to imagine. The Excentrica cave’s beauty is highlighted by the existence of a large number of geological formations: stalagmites, stalactites, massive galleries, and narrow halls. The cave has two parts, one dry and one wet. On the second one, you’ll find a spectacular passage known as “the ring” that will allow you to enter the gallery of the eccentrics, formed in its initial part by a small lake of great beauty filled with impressive and exclusive views!
There’s a bunch of other exciting outdoor activities in Malaga if you fancy. If you’d like to venture out of Malaga and explore the rest of the country, we suggest you try out the Top 10 outdoor activities in Spain.