MALTA – Travel Guide

Malta packs glorious variety into its small archipelago. You’ll find prehistoric temples, fossil-studded cliffs, hidden coves, thrilling scuba diving and a history of remarkable intensity.

Malta is not just one island. In fact, it’s configured of three separate islands, the main one being Malta, but also the neighbouring islands of Comino and Gozo.

The history

With remnants from the Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Byzantines and the Romans, the Maltese islands have a colourful history. It was the knights from the Order of St John who ruled Malta for many years, before the French and then the British came to rule. Malta broke away and became a republic in 1974, but the influences from this eventful history can be observed all around. Learn more about the legacy of the knights at the St John’s Co-Cathedral in Valletta and wander through the walled city of Mdina to discover Malta’s medieval past.

The cuisine

With gastronomic influences from all over the Mediterranean, there is a rich mix of gastronomy to experience in Malta. For an authentic experience, try pastizzi, a savoury pastry filled with cheese or mushy peas – and do not be surprised if you spy rabbit on the menu as it is a very popular dish on the island. And, of course, the fresh seafood is divine. As with many European countries, it’s usual to eat out quite late, so book a table for 8pm onwards to experience a great atmosphere. While Malta isn’t necessarily the cheapest European destination for dining, if you are used to eating out in the UK, you will find the island pleasantly affordable.

The activities

Making the most of the great outdoors is a prerequisite of any Mediterranean island visit. For a leisurely approach to activities, the island of Malta has many walking routes – and this is also a great way to drink in the beauty of the landscape. However, thrill-seekers will rejoice at the array of activities and watersports available here. There’s rock climbing, water skiing, sailing and wake boarding to name a few. Diving is another popular pastime here with unique dive sites including wrecks and caves.

The nightlife

If an alfresco bar for sundowner cocktails is what you’re seeking, then you can take your pick of wonderful locations perched by the sea. Not only do you get to soak up the final warming rays of the day, it’s the most beautiful way to watch the sun set over the island. But if your heart is set on a night to remember then head to Paceville: the epicentre of the island’s party scene. Here you will discover a different side to the island – expect lively clubs and late-night bars.

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