The city of Malaga was founded by the Phoenicians. However, a number of findings demonstrate that the province of Malaga had been inhabited long before those days. Important prehistoric settlements have been found in different parts of the province, being the most important ones the Caves of Nerja, with paintings dated 42,000 years old.
Today Malaga is a modern-looking provincial capital on the Costa del Sol. The city dates back to a Phoenician foundation and has been an episcopal seat since the 4C. The strategic location of Malaga helped them in the trade of wine, oil and other goods. The first town set up by the Phoenicians was located near the hill where today stands the Alcazaba of Malaga.
The Phoenicians were followed by the Romans. Malaga was important in the trade of garum. Garum was a sauce made with fermented fish and salt, highly appreciated at that time. The Roman theatre of Malaga, located at the feet of the Alcazaba brings us back to that moment of history.
Málaga became culturally and economically important after its capture by the Moors in 711; they extended the town until it was retaken by Ferdinand and Isabella in 1487.
The Catholic Monarchs conquered Malaga as late as 1487 (just 12 years before Granada). Christians that lived in the valley of the Guadalquivir river moved to Malaga. Mosques were transformed into churches and the construction of the cathedral of Malaga started soon later.
Nevertheless, Arab influence continued until the final expulsion of the Islamic population by Philip III at the beginning of the 17C. Malaga witnessed then of the best moments in its history when the Arabs developed beautiful mosques and other constructions like the Alcazaba.
The city of Malaga entered a long period of certain instability that lasted between the 16th and 18th centuries. Rises of Moriscos led to their expulsion during the time of Philip III. To the social unrest, we need to add natural disasters and the developments of epidemics. Live was not simple around those days. Despite this situation, the population of the city of Malaga grew and the exports of wine and raisins played an important role in the development of Malaga.
Political unrest in 1931 and the Spanish Civil War of 1936-9 brought about the severe damage or total destruction of many historical buildings. After the end of the civil war the brand “Costa del Sol” was created and the city of Malaga and the region concentrated its efforts in becoming a top tourist destination in Spain.