Malta has been one of Europe’s most popular tourist destinations for many years – not only because of the cheap flights to the island’s capital, Valletta. Beautiful beaches, picturesque towns and fishing villages; monuments older than the pyramids and spectacular landscapes with cliffs glistening in the sun and turquoise waters all await you. How and when to spend time on this sunny island with toddlers, older children or teenagers? Discover Malta’s top attractions for kids (and the rest of the family too!).
An unfathomable island at the crossroads of cultures
An unfathomable island at the crossroads of cultures. Malta is a peculiar melting pot of cultures with clear Arabic, Roman, French and British influences. The Maltese Archipelago in the Mediterranean is a perfect place for explorers and history lovers. The mysterious fortifications, ancient Mdina, medieval temples and baroque palaces – all these embedded in the fabulous Mediterranean scenery. Unique monuments located on the three islands – Malta, Gozo and Comino, remind about the turbulent history of this piece of land. Many of them are included on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
Malta National Aquarium: underwater wonders in Malta
If you’re planning a trip to Malta with your children, be sure to include a visit to the Malta National Aquarium in Qawra. This place is sure to appeal to animal lovers, both young and old. It is home to many exotic species of fish and other marine animals, including sharks. You can admire them in the classic giant aquariums and even can go under some of them through special glass tunnels for the ultimate underwater adventure! Next to the building there is a marine playground for the little ones and a café.
A colourful family adventure at Popeye Village Malta
Malta’s stunning natural beauty has made it the backdrop for a number of world-class film productions. Not only were scenes for Game of Thrones filmed here, but also Gladiator, Troy and the children’s movie, Popeye. Popeye Village in Anchor Bay was built for the production and remains an interesting attraction for families with children. The colourful cascading fairytale cottages look particularly beautiful from the sea. Popeye Village offers cafes, bars, children’s entertainment and film screenings and you can also relax on the sandy beach that’s perfect for small children.
The Grandmaster’s Palace in Valletta
Built in the 15th century, once the seat of the Grand Master of the Order of St John, as well as the Mosta Dome, a 19th century rotunda of the Assumption of Mary in Most, also deserve particular attention.
Bustling cities with a short break to Malta!
When touring Malta, it is good to start with the capital city – Valletta. The founder of the city was the Grand Master of the Order of Knights of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem, Jean de Valette, who came there in the 16th century. Besides the Grandmaster’s Palace, also the Sacra Infermeria, the former Hospital of the Johanniter Order, and the elaborately decorated cathedral of St John remained.
Valletta is vibrant around the clock. It is a real paradise for party goers and shopping enthusiasts. It’s worth taking a look at Triq ir-Repubblika – the principal street of the city housing shops, restaurants and cafés. Barrakka Gardens, on the other hand, are an ideal place for an afternoon break within easy reach of the centre of the capital.
You will see that it is impossible to get bored in Malta by visiting St Julian’s, or more precisely Paceville district, populated with bars, top nightclubs and discos. The largest shopping centres and entertainment facilities are located in Sliema on the border of St Julian’s. Nightlife thrives in many Maltese towns. Bugibba, which is well connected to the rest of the island – it is only 15 km from Valletta, and from where ferries depart for Gozo, is well worth a visit. About 9 km west of Bugibba lies the charming Mellieha, known for its beautiful sandy beaches.
Sleepy towns and charming villages
Those who prefer to relax surrounded by nature will not be disappointed either. We recommend that you get off the beaten track, hide in one of the Maltese villages and enjoy the view of the majestic nature. Rabat is a great place to relax away from the hustle and bustle of Valletta. There are religious monuments and the catacombs of St Paul and St Agatha, whereas in the city centre there is no shortage of cozy cafés and restaurants serving up local specialties.
The old fishing port of Marsaxlokk, located in the south of Malta, is a popular attraction of the archipelago. The luzzu boats moored to the shore, painted blue and yellow, have become an inherent part of the landscape of this part of the island. At Marsaxlokk, you will buy freshly-caught fish and seafood. However, if cooking is not your strength you can choose one of the nearby pubs on the promenade, sit back and order aromatic tuna with vegetables enjoying the beautiful views at the same time.
… that can be seen in such films as ‘Gladiator’, ‘Troy’, ‘Alexander’ or in the ‘Game of Thrones’ series are another reason why Malta simply must be visited. Picturesque bays, shingle and sandy beaches and beautiful rock formations against the turquoise sea – they all look amazing! The mystical Blue Grotto on Gozo and the high Dingli cliffs are an absolute must-see. While in Malta, you can take a boat trip to the tiny island of Comino with its wonderful Blue Lagoon which rightly reminds of the paradisal Caribbean. So if you get tired of the busy Valletta, the intimate island of Comino will be the perfect escape from the city noise.
Leisure activities in the seaside scenery
The clear and warm water of the Mediterranean invites to water sports activities. Anchor Bay and the area surrounding Blue Grotto are great places for diving. You can see the beauty of Maltese wildlife with your own eyes. What’s more, the Maltese archipelago offers many interesting cycling routes and tourist walking trails. You can treat yourself to a yacht cruise, explore Maltese towns on a scooter, spend a day at Ramla il-Hamra red sand beach, or climb Ta’ Dmejrek – the highest point of Malta.
Holidays in Malta are a great opportunity to enjoy the local Mediterranean cuisine with distinct Italian, French and Arabic influences. What is worth trying? Typical Maltese delicacies are fenek, which consists of aromatic rabbit meat served with vegetables, as well as soppa tal-armla – vegetable soup with goat cheese. The Maltese particularly like to eat stuffed eggplants, bell pepper and artichoke as well as dried sheep milk cheese, which is the specialty of the island of Gozo.
Like in Italy, Maltese cuisine also features filling pasta dishes, including timpana (meat casserole with tomatoes and herbs). Also Britain’s famous dish – fish and chips, is a popular option. No matter the season, we can enjoy aromatic salads, refreshing Girgentina wine and Kinnie – a drink brewed from chinotto oranges.