Malaga in Spain Named World’s “Best Alternative Capital City” by Forbes

A study undertaken by Premier Inn analysed Google search data across 420 over 89 countries to uncover which “alternative” capital cities are drawing travellers, and Malaga has taken the crown.

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Malaga—a famous coastal city in Andalusia, Spain—has been named the “Best Alternative Capital” by Forbes magazine.

According to the data, Malaga is the most searched alternative city, with over 312,000 searches for the term “Malaga Holiday” made each year and a staggering 478,6000 overall searches.

Taking the top five spots were Malaga (1st), Venice (2nd), San Fransisco (3rd), Antalya (4th) and Brighton (5th).

Why Alternative Capitals are Growing in Popularity

Embarking on an adventure to any country’s capital undoubtedly offers travellers a wealth of experiences. However, there are sometimes drawbacks that accompany visiting these bustling centres. Whether it’s navigating through the throngs of tourists in Rome, grappling with the steep expenses in London, or the relentless pace of Tokyo, occasionally, a trip to a capital city can feel more like an endurance test than a holiday.

In addition, many tourists are on the hunt for a more authentic slice of a country’s lifestyle. The capital city, with its polished veneer, doesn’t always reflect the true essence of its nation’s character or its people’s daily rhythms. Therefore, choosing to take a vacation in a “second city” can give travellers a taste of local life, without the stress of capital travel.

Malaga Beats Barcelona as the Top Alternative City in Spain

The revelation that Málaga surpasses not only global contenders but also domestic giants like Barcelona is indeed startling.

Barcelona, with its iconic architecture and vibrant street life, has long been seen as overshadowing Madrid in terms of tourist allure and cultural significance. However, it appears that Malaga’s charm has proven irresistible to the astute traveller.

The Allure of Malaga

Malaga’s airport has served as a gateway to the Costa del Sol for years. However, this stunning city is growing in popularity as a holiday destination in its own right, as opposed simply to a stop-off point along the way to other parts of the coast.

With sun-soaked beaches, white sands and stunning architecture, Malaga offers tourists the ideal blend of modern amenities mixed with historic streets to explore.

Art enthusiasts can bask in the glow of Picasso’s birthplace and revel in the treasures housed within the Museo Picasso Málaga, while foodies can enjoy everything from beachside seafood while the sun sets, to Michelin starred dining in the city centre.

Malaga does truly offer that perfect blend of historical streets mixed with modern amenities, with rooftop bars aplenty, and fantastic shopping opportunities.

The world’s capital cities, with their history and undeniable charm, will always hold sway with travellers. Yet, it’s refreshing to witness gems such as Malaga rising in stature as tourism becomes more diverse and travellers seek out new adventures.

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