Many people in Malaga have no idea that in Benalmadena, which is a small city near to Malaga, with pretty cool things to check out. Getting to Benalmadena is quick and easy with the short distance train line Cercanias C1 from the center or from the Maria Zambrano train station.
The short distance trains and nice, clean and punctual, you can buy return tickets to the “Benalmádena-Arroyo de la Miel” station and back for 4.10€ at the time of writing this article.
Teleferico and birds of prey show
Let’s start with the maybe most interesting one, the Calamorro mountain that you can see from Malaga when you look to the west, the direction of the Airport. It’s the mountain in the distance with antennas on it. There are cable cars, called: “Teleferico” for about 12€ that take you to the top of the mountain. You can buy the tickets on their website, or in the ticket office. When you get off the train from Malaga, you need to get to the cable cars. It’s only 5 minutes walk from the train station, and there are several ways to find it:
1.) Use Google maps: The address: Av. Manantial, 6, 29631 Benalmádena, Málaga.
2.) Ask someone: “Teleferico?”
3.) Look up… do you see cable cars? Go where they land.
If you never used cable cars, it might look frightening at first, but don’t worry it’s perfectly safe. There were only a few cases around the world when people died in cable car accidents, such as in 1976 in Italy when 43 people died when the cable broke and they fell 200 meters before a 3-ton overhead carriage assembly banged onto the roof of the car making sure no one survived. So, nothing to worry about! \(ᵔᵕᵔ)/
From the top of the Calamorro mountain, if the weather is good you can see the rock of Gibraltar and the coast of Africa over the Mediterranean Sea. Of course, there is also spectacular view to the city of Benalmadena as well as to Malaga, but you that is not surprising at all.
The bird show with huge predator birds will surprise you much more, especially if you pay attention to the instructions of the presenter and you sit to those spots where you can interactive part of the show, meaning you can feed an eagle from your hands, and other cool stuff. If you are not comfortable with these birds flying centimeters away of your head then choose the less interactive seats where you can be just a regular spectator of the show.
They have the bird show twice a day, but depending on the time of the year it might start at a different time. To see the actual schedule, please check the same website where you can buy the tickets, they have the updated and actual information of the bird show start times. In October, for example they start at 13:00 and 16:00.
There is a small and absolutely not challenging hiking route that goes around the top of the mountain, you can see wild goats and chameleons on your way if you pay attention or you are lucky enough to bump straight into one, just like I did:
When you visit the Calamorro mountain, you can take food and drinks with you, there is a nice picnic area where you can have a meal. If you don’t want to carry your lunch but rather spend money in an overpriced restaurant, then I have good news, you have that option too.
After visiting the mountain and the Teleferico and the bird show, you might want to check out the Selwo Marina delfinarium where you can watch a nice dolphin show and encounter other marine animals like penguins, sea lions, and some not really marine ones like snakes and birds.
On the website, when you buy the Teleferico tickets, there is an option to buy combined tickets that includes the entrance to this park as well.
Parque De La Paloma
Right in front of the Selwo Marina, there is a free public park, called Parque De La Paloma. I mentioned it another article on Surviving Malaga, because that was the park that made me realise how cool Malaga is.
In this park there are many kinds of animals walking around in peace, seemingly without getting eaten/killed by us humans, which is pretty rare and amazing in my opinion.
Aquarium Sea Life Benalmadena
Fun fact, that in Benalmadena there are two aquariums/marine parks just to confuse you. One is the Selwo Marina, and the other is the Aquarium Sea Life Benalmadena, which is located in the port. They are separate businesses, so if you want to visit this one too, you need to buy tickets separately on their website.
The biggest difference between the Selwo Marina and the Aquarium Sea Life Benalmadena is that the Selwo Marina is passive entertainment, you can just watch the animals doing their thing, while in the Aquarium Sea Life Benalmadena you can touch them, play with them and feed them. This way you can get much closer to the sea creatures, understanding and knowing them better, just as Steve Irwin did before he got stabbed in the heart by a smiling stingray.
The bottom-line is: If you want dolphins jumping around, Selwo Marina, if you are interested in what the hell is in the sea? Then Aquarium Sea Life Benalmadena.
During your cable-car trip you will notice that you pass over an amusement park. It’s called Tivoli World and it’s a decent place, but don’t expect the world’s biggest or most frightening rollercoasters here. It’s mainly for children and fainthearted adults, certainly not for hardcore adrenaline junkies.
These are the main attractions of Benalmadena, but there many other things that you can explore if you want to spend some more time around. For example if you are into overdecorated nonsense, then visit the Castillo Monumento Colomares, which is a fake castle built in 1987. Maybe that is your thing. (｡◕‿◕｡)