Popular Spanish Port Expecting Busy Fall Season, Inaugural Visits

The Port of Malaga will see seven inaugural visits from different vessels this fall, with more than 200,000 passengers in the coming months.

The Port of Malaga in southern Spain is expecting an astonishing 117 ship visits this autumn, including ships from various lines and seven inaugural visits from different vessels, including three new luxury ships that will bring discerning guests to the popular Mediterranean port.

Spanish Port to Have Exceptional Season

Cruising has returned to full bookings, astonishing demand, and pre-pandemic levels in many areas, and the Port of Malaga in southern Spain, 85 miles (136 kilometers) from Gibraltar, is no exception.

The port has 117 ship visits scheduled through the autumn months, one of the busier times of the year for the Mediterranean destination. In total, as many as 200,000 passengers may transit through the port from September through November.

Among the lines visiting Malaga are MSC Cruises, AIDA Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Cunard Line, Celebrity Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Costa Cruises, TUI Cruises, P&O Cruises, Virgin Voyages, and many others.

Cruise Ship in Malaga
Cruise Ship in Malaga (Photo Credit: Vitalii Biliak / Shutterstock)

Of the ships scheduled to visit, seven are making inaugural calls to Malaga, and the port will also serve as either the embarkation or debarkation point for seven sailings.

The busiest day on the port’s upcoming calendar is Friday November 3, 2023, when five different vessels are scheduled to be in port: Azamara Cruises’ Azamara Quest, Windstar Cruises’ Wind Star; Holland America Line’s Oosterdam, Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Beyond, and Costa Cruises’ Costa Fascinosa.

Combined, the five vessels will bring as many as 10,000 guests to the port that day.

Premium Ships to Visit

Of particular note are the three new luxury vessels that will make their inaugural visits to Malaga this fall, the first of which – Seabourn Pursuit – visited on Wednesday, September 13 as part of a 14-night itinerary from Monte Carlo to Lisbon. Seabourn Pursuit was delivered in July, and has spent her first weeks in the Mediterranean.

The second of the new luxury vessels to visit Malaga is Viking Neptune, which arrived at the port on Friday, September 15. The ship first set sail in 2022 and is currently offering autumn Mediterranean itineraries and in addition to Malaga, is visiting top ports such as Marseille, Rome, Naples, Corfu, Dubrovnik, and more.

Viking Neptune Cruise Ship
Photo Credit: Tony Russell

The third new luxury ship to call on Malaga will be Silversea Cruises’ new Silver Nova, which debuted just one month ago and will arrive for her inaugural Malaga visit on September 22 as part of an 11-night voyage from Barcelona to Lisbon, which will also include stops at four other top Spanish destinations: Palma de Mallorca, Valencia, Cartagena, and Cadiz. The ship will also visit Gibraltar, Casablanca, and Tangier on the exciting voyage.

Annual Figures Reaching Pre-Pandemic Levels

With a busy autumn season planned, the overall popularity of Malaga is now approaching or exceeding pre-pandemic levels. In total, there will be nearly 300 ship visits for 2023, with passenger numbers “completely normalized” in comparison to previous years.

This speaks well for the local economy, as visitors enjoy local attractions and visit restaurants and retailers, as well as spend for pre- and post-cruise stays when ships debark and embark from Malaga.

Malaga is a featured destination on many western Mediterranean itineraries, as well as cruises when vessels may be moving from northern European routes such as the British Isles, Scandinavia, or the Baltic Sea to the balmier destinations of the Mediterranean.

With so many calls scheduled for the port, many new guests are sure to discover the beauty of the unique Spanish maritime city.

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