Costa del Sol airport
The first part of the two-pronged question I ask in the blog title may be met with a sigh and a rolling of the eyes by many readers familiar with southern Spain; whether as frequent tourists, residents or those with half an eye on purchasing property here in the near future. The answer, of course, is yes. Málaga-Costa del Sol airport, to give it its proper name, is located 15 minutes from the provincial capital city of Málaga and flights from this, Spain’s fourth largest and busiest airport hub, go direct to over 100 destinations worldwide.
Pin-pointing the location
To recycle an analogy I used in a post I wrote this summer entitled “Where is Málaga? An Idiot’s Guide To The Costa del Sol”, the city of Málaga is due south of the nation’s capital and would roughly be the double three on a dartboard if Madrid were the bull’s eye.
Less than 10 kilometres along the coast to the south-west of the enchanting historic centre of Málaga lies Costa del Sol airport, which saw over 19 million passengers pass through its doors in 2018.
Ideally located for getting to all locations on the Costa del Sol, the airport is well connected and has excellent transport links. The cercanías overground train comes every 20 minutes and goes to downtown Fuengirola in one direction and Málaga city centre (and then on to the rest of Spain, if you want) in the other.
If you have a car or are getting picked up, you’re on the coastal highway pretty much as soon as you leave the airport, so there’s no messing about and you’ll find yourself en route to your destination in the blink of an eye. There are also several car hire firms in the vicinity, if you need to rent some wheels.
For passengers departing from Málaga-Costa del Sol airport, getting there is quick and efficient – either via the coastal highway or the toll road – and long-term parking is typically very cheap. So much so, in fact, that some companies advertise daily rates from as little as €1 including a car wash!
Distances to the airport
To give you some idea of how far the airport is from some of the most popular Costa del Sol areas, I’ve prepared the following list with distances (in kilometres) and approximate driving times, based on the quickest routes:
On the coast
Torremolinos: 5km (6mins)
Benalmádena: 10.5km (10mins)
Fuengirola: 22km (15mins)
La Cala de Mijas: 30km (20mins)
Riviera del Sol: 33km (25mins)
Marbella: 50km (35mins)
Puerto Banús: 56km (35mins)
San Pedro de Alcántara: 60km (38mins)
Estepona: 75km (52mins)
Alhaurín de la Torre: 8km (10mins)
Mijas Pueblo: 21km (20mins)
Alhaurín el Grande: 23km (30mins)
Coín: 42km (30mins)
Where can I fly to direct from the Coast?
Routes from Málaga-Costa del Sol airport
According to AENA1, Spain’s public airport management agency and owner of 47 other aviation facilities besides the one on the outskirts of Málaga, there are currently 108 routes operating from Costa del Sol airport.
To make them easier to digest, I’ve ordered them by country below. Which one is closest to where you live?
Belgium: Antwerp, Brussels / Zaventem, Brussels / South Charleroi, Liege, Ostend
Czech Republic: Prague
Denmark: Aalborg, Billund, Copenhagen
France: Bordeaux, Lyon, Marseille, Nantes, Nice, Paris / Charles de Gaulle, Paris / Orly, Toulouse
Germany: Baden-Baden, Berlin / Schonefeld, Berlin / Tegel, Bremen, Cologne, Dusseldorf, Dusseldorf / Weeze, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Memmingen, Munich, Stuttgart
Ireland: Cork, Dublin, Shannon
Italy: Bologna, Milan / Bergamo, Milan / Malpensa, Naples, Rome, Venice
The Netherlands: Amsterdam, Eindhoven, Rotterdam
Norway: Bergen, Oslo / Gardermoen, Oslo / Sandefjord, Stavanger
Poland: Krakow, Warsaw
Portugal: Lisbon, Oporto
Romania: Bucharest, Cluj
Spain (domestic flights): A Coruña, Asturias, Barcelona, Bilbao, Ceuta, Fuerteventura, Gran Canaria, Ibiza, Lanzarote, León, Madrid, Melilla, Palma de Mallorca, Santander, Santiago de Compostela, Tenerife / North, Tenerife / South, Valencia
Switzerland: Basel, Geneva, Zurich
Sweden: Gothenburg, Stockholm / Arlanda, Stockholm / Skavsta
United Kingdom: Belfast, Birmingham, Bournemouth, Bristol, Cardiff, Doncaster, Edinburgh, Exeter, Glasgow, Glasgow / Prestwick, Leeds, Liverpool, London / City, London / Gatwick, London / Heathrow, London / Luton, London / Stansted, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Southend
Rest of the world
Morocco: Casablanca, Marrakech
NOTE: This list of direct flight destinations was accurate at the time of writing. However, you should be aware that airlines occasionally add or remove routes, so you should always check prior to making travel plans.
It’s also worth noting that Gibraltar has an airport, too. While it is nowhere near as big as Málaga-Costa del Sol airport - the terminal building looks like a shed, by comparison - flights from Gibraltar are convenient if you're going to the UK (with routes connecting London Gatwick, London Heathrow, London Luton, Bristol and Manchester) or just over the straight to Morocco (either Casablanca or Tangier).
For more information about routes and travelling to and from Gibraltar airport, take a look at its official website here.
It’s important to consider this option, since it’s an excellent alternative for travelling to and from areas of the western Costa del Sol where it is actually closer than Málaga’s international airport.
Let’s take a popular area like Sotogrande, for example. Even if you jump in the car and whizz up the toll road as soon as you leave the arrivals hall at Málaga-Costa del Sol airport, you won’t get to Sotogrande in under an hour. From Gibraltar, it’s (almost exactly) half that.
Did you find this useful? If you haven't planned a trip but fancy some winter sun, remember that today is Black Friday and you'll doubtless find some great deals in and out of Málaga-Costa del Sol airport for the next few weeks!