Public transport in Málaga is extensive and well organized, making it easy to get around the city. Whether you’re exploring as a tourist or traveling daily as a local, there are several transportation options available to suit your needs. In this comprehensive overview, I will discuss Málaga’s public transport in all its facets, including buses, trains and the metro.
The bus system in Málaga is operated by the Málaga Transport Company (EMT). The bus network is extensive and serves virtually all parts of the city, as well as nearby suburbs. The buses are mostly modern and air-conditioned, which makes traveling comfortable even during hot summer days.
Line types EMT Buses Malaga
The EMT bus system has several lines, with each line marked by a number. The main bus lines are often numbered from 1 to 36, and there are additional lines numbered with the letters A, C, E, G, N, P and SE. There are also special lines for tourists, such as the C1 (City Sightseeing Tour), which takes you past the main attractions of the city.
Frequency and working hours
The buses in Málaga generally have a good frequency, especially on the main routes and during peak hours. However, timetables vary depending on the day of the week and the time of day. During the day, most buses run from around 6:30 am to 11:00 pm, while there are also night buses (N lines) that run throughout the night.
Rates and payment
The bus fares are reasonable and there are different fare categories available depending on your age and the type of ticket you buy. You can buy a one-way ticket or a rechargeable transport card at tobacconists, newsagents and EMT vending machines. Payment by cash is also possible on board the bus, but it is usually cheaper to use a rechargeable card.
Málaga has an excellent train network that connects the city with other important destinations in Andalusia and all of Spain. There are two main train stations in Málaga:
Malaga María Zambrano
This station is Málaga’s main train station and is located in the city centre. It serves long-distance trains, including the high-speed train (AVE), which connects Málaga with cities such as Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia.
This station is located just north of the center of Málaga and is the starting point for suburban trains that connect the city with surrounding areas, such as Torremolinos, Benalmádena, Fuengirola and other coastal towns.
AVE trains Malaga
The AVE trains are Spain’s high-speed trains and offer fast and comfortable connections between Málaga and other major cities. For example, the AVE train allows you to travel from Málaga to Madrid in about 2.5 hours.
Suburban trains (Cercanías): The suburban trains offer frequent services along the coast and to the interior of Málaga. These trains are convenient for daily commuting or for exploring nearby tourist spots. The C-1 line connects Málaga Centro-Alameda with Fuengirola, and the C-2 line goes to Álora inland.
Fares and payment: Train fares vary depending on the destination and the type of train you are taking. For long-distance trains, such as the AVE, it is advisable to book your tickets in advance to ensure availability and to potentially take advantage of early booking discounts. For suburban trains, you can buy tickets at the stations or at vending machines at the stations.
Málaga has a modern and efficient metro, which crosses the city and offers a quick way to get from one side to the other. However, Málaga’s metro is relatively small compared to those in other major cities, but it is a convenient option for short distances within the city.
Line types Metro Malaga
The Málaga metro currently has two lines: line 1 (pink line) and line 2 (light green line). Line 1 runs from Málaga Centro-Alameda station to the University of Málaga (UMA) campus. Line 2 is a branch that departs from Guadalmedina and goes to Palacio de los Deportes, home to sporting events and concerts.
Frequency and working hours: The metro has a good frequency, with trains running regularly, especially during peak hours. Working hours vary depending on the day of the week and the time of year, but generally the metro operates from about 6:30 a.m. to midnight.
Rates and payment
The metro network operates on the same ticket system as the EMT buses. You can buy a one-way ticket or use a rechargeable transport card that is valid for both the metro and buses. Tickets can be purchased at ticket machines in the metro stations.
In summary, Málaga offers a comprehensive and easy-to-navigate public transport system, which allows travelers to explore the city and nearby areas.