Malta is often described as a ‘gem’ of a destination. It is an extremely apt metaphor, given the diminutive, jewel-esque shape it cuts in the Mediterranean Sea. This small archipelago contains multitudes, far greater than the size of its landmass would ever let on – making its comparison to jewellery even more essential.
Malta can be found some 60 miles from the south coast of Sicily, and a little over 200 miles north of Libya’s capital Tripoli. Aside from a smattering of isles to the west, Malta sits alone, pride of place, with the best seat in the house for the best of the Mediterranean’s enviable climate.
It is natural, then, that so many gravitate to Malta each year for their summer holidays. Of UK citizens alone, half a million visit Malta every year. The unbeatable weather is a major draw, as is its remoteness; visitors are literally surrounded by sun and sea!
Malta is more than its weather, though. There are many stunning destinations within the archipelago that beg to be explored. Here, we’ll be picking five of its must-visit locations. Though first, you’d need to address the logistics of your travel.
Travelling to Malta
As with any holiday, your trip to Malta will need to begin with some research and some advance purchases. Flights are often oversubscribed in the summer, so the sooner you buy the better; the same can be said for accommodation.
Naturally, this means engaging with the sticky subject of finance well before your travel date. You’ll need to ensure you have the money available to secure both, and that you have money aside for the costs that arise day-to-day such as transport or food costs. Aside from these concerns, Malta has no real travel requirements – meaning you can focus on planning the fun stuff. Speaking of which: what fun destinations should populate your Malta travel plans?
Sliema is a peninsula of sorts, on the north-eastern coast of Malta. It is perhaps most famous as the home of Port Tigne, an eighteenth-century fort that juts out into the Mediterranean as part of a promenade. Sliema is great for nightlife, and its promenade is long enough to provide several days of entertainment.
St. Paul’s Bay
St. Paul’s Bay is one of the better-populated areas of Malta, and one of the more vibrant cultural locations for it. It’s history dates back to the Mesopotamian era, and boasts the archaeological discoveries to prove it. There is truly something for everyone here, though history buffs might have a little more fun.
Golden Bay is, without a shadow of a doubt, the best place to visit for the true Mediterranean sun-and-sea experience. It is a secluded, north-westerly bay with rocky outcrops and sandy dunes that combine the best of Sicily’s coast with the best of the Welsh coast.
Leaving the coast alone for a moment, we come to Mdina – an impressive walled city that has stood proud since 800BC. Though little of its Phoenician roots remain, there is much to discover from the Roman and Byzantine eras that superseded them.
Lastly, we take ourselves to the southern coast for Valletta – a cramped ‘fortress city’ that serves as Malta’s capital. This is where the action is, from the bustling side-streets to the edificial Gothic buildings that form its cathedrals and museums.