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Santa María la Mayor Vélez

Vélez-Málaga is a municipality of 81,000 people (2018), and the capital of the Axarquía comarca in the province of Málaga. It is the most important city in the comarca. Vélez-Málaga is a market city and "bustling market town and supply centre for the region's farmers", 4 km inland from Torre del Mar, but unlike the coastal resort, it is not dominated by the tourist industry.


Locally it is referred to as Vélez. Vélez-Málaga is the headquarters of the Commonwealth of Municipalities of Costa del Sol-Axarquía. The municipality forms part of the Costa del Sol region.

Vélez-Málaga includes the districts of Triana, Trapiche, Almayate Alto, Cajiz, Chilchez and, directly on the Costa del Sol, the parts of Benajarafe, Torre del Mar , Lagos, Almayate Bajo, Caleta de Vélez. The urban area is divided into two parts, Vélez-Málaga on the Vélez valley to the west and the enclave of Lagos to the east. In between are Algarrobo Costa and Mezquitilla , which belong to Algarrobo.

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

The nearest airport is in Málaga, around 40 km away. Granada is about 60 km away.

By train[edit]

Vélez-Málaga does not have a train station.

By bus[edit]

Several bus lines connect the city with the surrounding area, the central hub is Torre de Benagalbón: M-260 (Málaga-Vélez-Málaga), M-362 (Málaga-Nerja), M-363 (Málaga-Torrox), M-364 ( Málaga-Periana), M-365 (Málaga-Riogordo).

By car[edit]

The city is well connected to the region via the A-7 (Autovía del Mediterráneo). The N340a goes directly along the coast.

Get around[edit]

The tram was shut down in 2012, but there is an extensive bus network.


  • 1 Ermita Ntra. Sra. de los Remedios. Church with a garden (Jardin de los Remedios).
  • 2 Alcazaba-Fortaleza.
Calle Alcantarilla
  • The historical centre of Vélez-Málaga is composed of two facing hills: the Velez Malaga Fortress, where the remains of the tower of the Homage and the Church of Santa María la Mayor stand out, and the Cerro de San Cristóbal, crowned by the Ermita de los Remedios. A small architecture is scattered, of cubic forms in white tones that adapt to the land, conformed by the districts of "La Villa" and the "Arrabal de San Sebastián". Extramuros, in what corresponds to the development from the sixteenth century, presents a Mudejar and baroque architecture, with palaces and characteristic residential examples, as well as a series of churches and convents around which the urban fabric was conformed, Giving rise to picturesque streets and with singular urban perspectives on the own monuments that configure it.
  • The Church of Santa María la Mayor, Gothic-Mudejar style, was built on the old Arab mosque, as shown by the minaret turned into a bell tower. It is now the headquarters of the Museum of the Holy Week of the city.
  • The Church of San Juan Bautista occupied another one of the existing mosques. It was built in 1487, although it was modified in the 19th century. The sacristy is due to Martín de Aldehuela. The tower and the roofs are Mudejar while the cover is in the neoclassical.
  • The Church of San Francisco also occupies the site of a mosque and is Mudejar-Renaissance style. It was founded by the Catholic Monarchs and built between the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. It was part of the Real Convent of Santiago, which disappeared on the occasion of the confiscation of 1836 and of which only the church has remained.
  • The Convent of the Claras (seventeenth century), of late Baroque style and rococo ornamentation, are notable; the Convent of the Carmelites (1699), of baroque style and manierista cover; the disappeared Convent of the Carmen, of which only the church is conserved converted into municipal theater; and the hermitages of San Cristóbal or the Remedios (17th century), that of Nuestra Señora de la Cabeza, located next to the cemetery, and that of San Sebastián (1487), which is in ruins.
  • One of the few stupas of Spain is in the nucleus of Triana: the Kalachakra Stupa. It is a contemporary construction of 13 m of height, but of a type of stupa unusual. It belongs to the Karma Guen centre, dedicated to the great lamas of the Kagyu lineage in Europe.
  • The hermit complex of Almayate, a settlement of a religious community where there are several cave dwellings excavated in the rock of which was an old Mozarabic church of the 8th and 9th centuries, as well as other works in stone. It is estimated that the settlement began as a result of the first pagan persecutions in Andalusia.
  • Villa Mercedes, is the last regional dwelling that is conserved in the Walk Larios of Torre del Mar. Palace of Beniel: built between 1610 and 1616, it is one of the best examples of 17th-century civil architecture in the city. Its design is due to Miguel Delgado, master of the Cathedral of Malaga. The building is the headquarters of the María Zambrano Foundation and the International University of La Axarquía.
  • Casa Larios: headquarters of the Mayor's Office of Torre de Mar. These are the offices and housing of the engineer of the sugar factory. It was built in 1888.
  • Casa Cervantes: so called because Miguel de Cervantes stayed in it when he visited the city, although this fact is not confirmed. The façade has large balconies of forge and the cover, Gothic elements. It emphasizes its interior patio with gallery of semicircular arches and columns of brick.
  • Former Hospital of San Juan de Dios: it was used as a residence for the elderly once it stopped having sanitary use. It was built in 1680.
  • Villa Mercedes: it is a stately house of late nineteenth century, of regionalist and Neomudéjar style, located in the Paseo Larios of Torre del Mar.
  • Antiguo Pósito: dates from the 18th century and consists of two floors, one for barn, and the bottom one for fish market. The facade is divided by semicolumnas adosadas, and it contains a balcony in the centre flanked by medallions.
  • Nautical Club of Torre del Mar: building of the modern movement inscribed Well of Cultural Interest in 2006. It was designed by the architect Francisco Estrada Romero in 1967. The plant is organized from three circles. On the façade to the sea, the curved shapes and the white of their terraces dominate. In contrast the facade that gives to earth is much more closed and incorporates the dark color of the brick seen.
  • Fountains: two stand out: the fountain of Fernando VI, of white marble and Renaissance style, located in the place of the Constitution. It is named after being transferred during the reign of this king, although it dates back to the reign of Philip II, as shown in a shield of the source. The other is the fountain of the Plaza de las Glorias, dating to the 16th century and has a circular pond and a bulbous shaft.
  • Old train station: is an example of the functional architecture of the early 20th century, built with the arrival of the Suburban Railways of Malaga to the municipality. It responds to the regionalist and neomudéjar aesthetics of the taste of the time. Other smaller footings in different conservation status have also survived.
  • Fortress of Vélez-Málaga: also called castle, is crowning a hill that dominates all the old part of the population. Together with the so-called Puerta de Antequera, it was almost completely destroyed during the French invasion and its remains used as quarry. It has recovered the tower of the tribute and improved its surroundings. It has been used as a royal house, captain general, jail and town hall.
  • Walls of Vélez Málaga: of the old walled set are conserved some sections and two of the four original doors: the Puerta Real and the Door of Antequera.
  • Castle of Torre del Mar: only some sections of the wall are preserved in houses attached to the castle in the 19th and 20th centuries.
  • Casa Fuerte del Marqués: also called Castillo del Marqués. It is in Valle-Niza and was built in the 18th century with a defensive purpose. It is composed of a semicircular bastion attached to a hornabeque. The interior is distributed around a rectangular courtyard. Formerly it was surrounded by a moat. It houses a hotel school.
  • Lookout towers: from what used to be the ancient defensive cord of the coast, several towers remain: the Torre Gorda in Benajarafe, the Tower of Chilches, the Tower of Lagos, the Right Tower of Mezquitilla and the towers Manganeta and Jaral, both in Almayate.


  • The most important event of the year is the Royal San Miguel festival, held at the end of September and the beginning of October each year.
  • Other festivals celebrated include the Veladilla el Carmen, Santiago (St James) and Santa Ana.
  • Semana Santa or Holy Week is also one of the most important dates on the town's calendar. With 19 cofradias (brotherhoods) and processions involving ornate floats commemorating the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus, it's one of the most notable in Andalusia.
  • The town has an active Flamenco music scene centred around its local peña (Peña Flamenca Niño de Vélez) and Flamenco Abierto, an organisation that puts on regular performances across the Axarquía region.






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