Malaga competes to become European Capital of Culture 2016

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It may be six years away, but Malaga is taking its place alongside 16 other Spanish cities all trying to win this coveted title.

Today, all competing cities must have submitted their entries to the Ministry of Culture and over the summer they will have to work hard to prove that the local inhabitants take an active role in the cultural activities on offer to them. This promises to bring a packed season of events and cultural activities, plus promotion to engage the residents in this campaign and get everyone behind the bid.

In September all the entrants are able to present their plans to the committee to allow them to evaluate the merits of each city. After these presentations the committee will prepare a shortlist of just 4 cities who can continue in the race, with the final winner expected to be announced by 2012.  

Malaga is hoping that it can impress by being the birthplace of Picasso and having a number of great galleries and museums, a popular Spanish Film Festival as well as a packed calendar of theatre, music and dance. The most important centres for these activities are the Cervantes Theatre, the stunning Picasso Museum, the Centre of Contemporary Art  and several other art and culture venues.  Malaga has been investing a lot in improving the city’s infrastructure and transport links with a new metro system and roads being built. They hope that this will put them ahead of the rest by enabling easy travel between venues. 

For Malaga this honour would bring a much-needed spotlight on this vibrant, historically important and culturally rich city which has been largely ignored by tourists who know it simply as an airport for visiting the Costa del Sol. If you have a chance to build a day trip to Malaga into your next visit I would seriously recommend it. It is a great city and there are lots on offer for a visitor whether you want to indulge in culture or not. You can visit the stunning cathedral, walk the walls and gardens of the ancient Alcazaba, enjoy great shopping on Calle Larios and sample a host of excellent restaurants, cafes and bars.

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