Christmas in Malaga: Experience the lights, markets and New Year’s Eve

The Christmas lights in Malaga are switched on the 29th of November. You can continue reading to find out what’s new this year. There are activities and events taking place during these dates in the capital and in the main municipalities.

The street Calle Larios in Malaga is where you will find this show of light and music at Christmas. This year the inauguration of the lighting will take place on the last Friday of November.

A new feature this year is a very different lighting structure; the name of the lighting structure is “The Christmas Forest” (Bosque de Navidad) and you can visit it during both day and night.

Christmas lighting 2019-2020
Photo of lighting this year in Malaga in Calle Larios

The lighting decoration and switching date change every year, however in 2016 was the same as in 2015. In past events they used up to 600.000 led lights in Larios street, the most centric street in Malaga, nevertheless this city is one of the best places to enjoy the Christmas lighting in the world.

Above you can see the 2019 lights. This year they are ready to be switched on the last Friday in November. Remember there will be light and sound shows at 6:30 pm, 8 pm and 9:30 pm every day until the 5th of January.

In 2018 the Christmas lighting and the light and music show was the same as the year before. In 2019, there is a new lighting and the decoration budget has been increased.

Lighting for Christmas in Malaga

In 2018 they did repeat design and lighting in the city centre, the design was inspired by the Cathedral of Malaga.

new Christmas lights 2017

We can expect snow cannons in the main squares of the city like Plaza de las Flores or Soho district as they did the last past years.

The company responsible for Christmas lighting in Malaga (Iluminaciones Ximénez) which is also responsible for providing lighting to different companies and cities around the world. You can find its LED lighting in New York on Fifth Avenue, Las Vegas, Dubai or even in Hong Kong among other locations.

Christmas lights project for 2017

Many visitors come from Europe not only to see the Christmas lighting in Malaga, but also to enjoy a festive atmosphere unique in the city.

There are light and music shows daily at 6:30 pm, 8 pm and 9:30 pm until the 5th of January, inclusive.

There will be typical Christmas songs and each show will last a few minutes:

  • Jingle Bell Rock by Hilary Duff.
  • All I want for Christmas is you by Mariah Carey.
  • En Navidad with Javián, Alex, David Bustamante and Academia OT.
  • Never Back Down with Battlecry.

There will be new streets in addition to Calle Larios where you can enjoy the illumination: Calle Marqués, Sagasta, Souvirón, Plaza de Camas, Calle Herrera del Rey, Puerta del Mar, Calle Moreno Carbonero, Calle Álamos and Calle Granada.

The Christmas lighting will be turned off on January 5th, with the arrival of the Night of Kings, so you better visit it before it is too late.

This central square in Malaga is decorated for Christmas with a beautiful illumination offering a show that you should not miss.

Christmas trees in Malaga

As a new there will be a visitable Christmas tree in the Plaza de la Constitucion. You will be able to visit the inside of the tree and take photos.

During Christmas in Malaga six giant Christmas trees (6 to 18 meters high) will be placed. One of them in Huelin Park, two almond trees of 8 meters, one in the square of the Cervantes Theatre and another in Alcazabilla street. A giant Christmas tree with a metallic structure in the Plaza de la Marina; also another one of 18 meters in the Plaza de la Constitución, that you can visit the inside; a Christmas tree in the Plaza Enrique García Square and finally one in Molina Lario Street. All of them illuminated with leds and decorated for the occasion.

Lighting and Christmas tree at Marina Square
Constitucion Square with Christmas lighting tree from a past event.

Switching on Christmas lights in Malaga in video

In case you’ve missed it, this is the last video of the Christmas lights being turned on and some of the main attractions of the city this winter.

Christmas lighting in other municipalities

Although the dates may vary slightly each year, it is common for lighting to begin in late November or early December in different municipalities.

  • Torremolinos Chrismas lighting on the Friday 7th of December in 2018 at Plaza Costa del Sol at 8 pm. There will be musical performances from 5 pm in Plaza Costa del Sol and Calle San Miguel.
  • 29 November at 7.30 pm is the inauguration of the Christmas lighting in Fuengirola.
  • November 30 inauguration of the Christmas lighting in San Pedro de Alcantara.
  • December 1 is the lighting of Christmas lights in Benalmádena.
  • 30 November is the inauguration of Christmas lights in Marbella, in Paseo de la Alameda.

Visiting Traditional Nativity Scenes

traditional nativity scenes

Every year they organize traditional nativity scenes, some of the most popular are the one inside Malaga Cathedral and at the Town Hall in Malaga.

The Cathedral Nativity Scene will be available from Sunday 2nd of December.

Cathedral opening time: 10am to 2am and from 5pm to 8.30pm

Town Hall opening time: 10am to 2am and from 5pm to 9pm

Best Christmas Market in Europe

In 2018 more than one million visitors visited the Christmas lighting in the city centre. In addition, Malaga won first place as “Best Sunny Christmas Markets in Europe”, from the organisation “European Best Destinations” which presents Malaga as an ideal destination to celebrate a Christmas with good weather.

Many locals enjoy the Christmas in Malaga by visiting any of the many Christmas markets in the province. Those markets in the city are usually in the area of Soho and the Alameda park, but there are many other in the province.

Initially I think the list will not be much different than the previous year, you can check our current list of Christmas Markets in Malaga.

Torremolinos chrismas lights and markets

After Christmas: New Year’s Eve in Malaga

You can find a wide variety of hotels for the New Year’s Eve party with dinner included . If you prefer, you can celebrate in one of the main squares of the cities of Malaga, there typically meet a large number of people to celebrate the arrival of the New Year.

In addition if you want to celebrate New Year’s Eve in Malaga with more people you can visit my other article with the incoming events for that night.

Malaga: Plaza de la Constitucion and Calle Larios
Torremolinos: Plaza de la Nogalera
Benalmadena: Plaza de la Mezquita
Fuengirola: Plaza de España
Marbella: Plaza de la Iglesia

Procession of the Three Kings 2020

Night of the Three Kings

The Three Kings in Malaga during 2020 will spend the night in the Alcazaba. The parade will leave from the city hall on Monday 5 January so you better be ready.

The parade will begin at 5 pm on January 5th and the route is as follows*:

  • Paseo del Parque
  • Plaza de la Marina
  • Alameda Principal
  • Puerta del Mar
  • Atarazanas
  • Plaza de Arriola
  • Pasillo de Santa Isabel
  • Carreteria
  • Calle Álamos
  • Plaza de la Merced

Do you plan to spend this Christmas in Malaga? We hope you enjoy and don´t forget to share your experiences and questions in the comments below.

Thank you for reading and Merry Christmas!

Raúl G.T

Developer and content editor at
Travel blogger, web developer and content editor. Author of many of the travel guides and tips available online about Andalucia, Malaga and Spain.
Raúl G.T
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Travel blogger, web developer and content editor. Author of many of the travel guides and tips available online about Andalucia, Malaga and Spain.

6 thoughts on “Christmas in Malaga: Experience the lights, markets and New Year’s Eve”

  1. We got caught out 2 yrs ago as wanted to see the late show ( along with a couple of hundred other people ) but it never happened. Then last year we thought, okay, let’s see the early one.. but that didn’t happen either so …

    1. Hello, it is supposed to happen the day we state in the article as it is the official date and time. This year there is not yet an official time for the music and light show, but we can expect to be the same as last year.

  2. Hi I’m a bit confused as to the date for the switch on of the lights, some say the 30th others the 24th. Which is the correct date?

  3. It should be taken into account that while the Christmas lights in C/Larios are on until 6th January the last light show is actually on Jan 4th. There are no light shows on Jan 5th as the Reyes Parade is on.

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