Articles in this blog may be ESE news, academics pieces written by our team or events in Malta of general interest.
10 best ways to enjoy Malta this Summer – Part 1
Are you planning on joining us at ESE Malta this summer?
If you are, then my blog will help in making your visit to Malta as interesting and fun as possible.
Anyone can go abroad and have a great time, but wouldn’t you prefer to know the best places to visit before arriving so that you can get the most out of your study travel holiday with ESE?
My name is Dina. I am 21 years old and have been living in Malta all my life. I love Malta as a place, as well as the lifestyle that comes with it. Even though it is a small island that is barely even visible on a world globe, it is full of hidden treasures that will leave a great impact on anyone who visits!
My favourite thing about Malta is that it is uncomplicated. Nowhere is far from anywhere, making it easy to get from one place to another.
In my blog I’ll be mentioning what I consider to be the top 10 places, events and activities not to be missed when planning a trip to Malta during the summer.
Number 1: Gozo
The Maltese Islands are made up of a number of islands, the biggest being Malta, Gozo and Comino. Gozo, often referred to as Malta’s sister island, offers the perfect middle ground between hectic Malta and quiet Comino.
Personally, I see Gozo as a more peaceful version of Malta, yet having enough activities and amenities to keep its visitors entertained. It’s a little less developed than Malta and the lifestyle of the people living there, known as Gozitans, is less hectic with a more laid back vibe.
During carnival and the village feasts is the time of year when Gozo really comes to life! Many Maltese locals visit the sister island during these times to celebrate.
To get from Malta to Gozo it just takes a 25 minute ferry ride aboard the Gozo channel from a Maltese town known as Cirkewwa. You can hop onto a bus that will take you right to the ferry port of Cirkewwa.
If you happen to be interested in visiting Gozo during your stay in Malta, here are some places to consider:
You can’t visit Gozo without visiting it’s capital city Victoria.
Victoria, also known as “ir-Rabat”, is just a short bus ride away from the ferry terminal.
If you’re a history lover then visiting Gozo and it’s capital city is an absolute must as it holds a lot of history and culture. Victoria’s Cathedral is located in the city center along with the Cathedral Museum, the museum of Archaeology, the Folklore museum, the Old Prison and a World War II shelter.
The rest of the town consists of a small square with a few restaurants and it’s main street, Republic Street with different shops dotted along it. There are also opera houses and the Bishop’s Chancery.
At the end of Republic Street you will find the recently refurbished Villa Rundle public gardens. The gardens are beautiful with many trees and plants, along with a cooling fountain to enjoy.
These remarkable historical temples are a UNESCO World Heritage site, dating back many thousands of years. . Gozitans used to believe that the temples were built by a race of giants, hence their name Ġgantija comes from the Maltese word ‘ġgant’, meaning ‘giant’
Personally, I’m not much of a history lover myself, however, once I had a school trip to Gozo and we happened to visit the temples. I found the stories behind them really were interesting. So even if you’re not that into history, but have some free time or are in need of a change of scenery, you should definitely consider stopping by.
Also worth a visit is the Gozitan beach town of Marsalforn.
Marsalforn is the perfect mix of activity, coupled with a seaside laid back ambiance.
It has become one of Gozo’s most popular destinations, especially during Summer. Whenever I go to Gozo, I always make sure to spend at least one day in Marsalforn. Apart from its beautiful and relaxing beach, you will also find a variety of restaurants and bars to enjoy. And as if that wasn’t enough, with it’s calm clear waters, it’s also an ideal place for snorkelling and diving.
Ir-Ramla il-Hamra is Gozo’s largest and sandiest bay. This bay has a wide shoreline – perfect for sunbathing.
It is also famous for it’s fine red coloured sand, making it even more unique. With it’s sheltered bay and shallow waters, it is also a popular place for swimming.
Smaller than Marsalforn but no less beautiful, is the bay at Xlendi.
Xlendi is also sheltered, so the sea is always calm and shallow, making it perfect for swimming and bathing.
There are many restaurants, bars and cafes dotted along the waterfront and streets of the village for visitors to stop for a cool drink or a bite to eat, in between sunbathing and swimming.
I always go to Xlendi at least once during my visit to Gozo especially since my favourite Gozitan club, La Grotta is there. La Grotta is a well known nightclub where you can enjoy many parties and events, especially during the summer months.
Number 2: Comino
Comino is the smallest and quietest of the 3 main islands, located in between of Malta and Gozo.
Even though Comino is a car free island and nobody actually lives there, it is very popular especially during the summer thanks to its main attraction, the Blue Lagoon.
The Blue Lagoon is a small, sheltered bay with some of the clearest, bluest waters that you will find in Malta.
Personally, I am not usually a fan of swimming in the sea. I don’t like the feeling of swimming in dark blue water and not knowing what could lie beneath me. However, the Blue Lagoon is one of the only beaches where I feel completely relaxed and calm swimming in since the water is so clear. The crystal clear waters and white sands are an Instagramers dream and are ideal for both swimming and snorkeling as well as diving.
Number 3: St Julian’s
St. Julian’s is my favourite city in Malta and the location of ESE main school.
Whenever I meet up with friends, we always pick a place in this area to meet. It is one of the most popular destination for tourists in Malta as it has the highest concentration of bars and restaurants along with a beautiful promenade and seaside vibe.
St. Julian’s is particularly famous for its nightlife with many different kinds of restaurants and trendy nightclubs, mostly centered in an area called Paceville.
Paceville is a square in St. Julian’s which is packed with nightclubs, bars, restaurants and lounges. Heaven for young people who like to party and socialise. There are around 25 different clubs and bars to choose from, each with their own individual theme and style.
Some find Paceville a bit chaotic however in my opinion, if you choose the right places to go, I guarantee you will have a great time! It really is a great place for young people to go out with their friends to enjoy Malta’s nightlife and create unforgettable memories.
For those who prefer something a little quieter such as a relaxed drink with friends, there are also many bars and lounges on the outskirts of Paceville, along St. George’s Bay which are equally enjoyable.
Spinola Bay is further down from Paceville and lies in the centre of St. Julian’s.
Quieter than Paceville, Spinola Bay has many restaurants and bars overlooking the water. It is also known as one of the most romantic bays in Malta, especially in the evening with the glow of the street lights dancing on the sea and of course Malta’s famous “LOVE” monument.
The “LOVE” monument is a contemporary art sculpture structure with the word “LOVE” written in capital letters, backwards and seemingly upside down. The idea is that the word ‘LOVE’ will appear the correct way around, reflected on the water below it. . If you wish to make your evening even more romantic, you can take a boat tour around Spinola, Balluta, Sliema and Gzira on what is known as the “love boat”.
Located between Spinola bay and Paceville, is the glamous and upmarket area of Portomaso. Think 5 star hotels and restuarants, high class boutiques and beautiful shinny white yatchs lining Portomaso’s stunning marina.
Here you will also find Malta’s highest building – standing at 94 metres high – jokingly referred to as ‘The skyscraper’ by locals. And what upmarket area would be complete without it’s very own Hilton hotel.
Many locals find the shops and restaurants in this particular area overpriced, and so a meal at one of these restaurants is kept for special occasions such as a birthday dinner. So, if during your stay you would like to treat yourself to a fancy, top quality meal, Portomaso is the place to go!
Number 3: The Farson’s Beer Festival
Who doesn’t love a beer festival?
The Farsons Beer Festival is one of Malta’s most popular celebrations. It is an outdoor festival held in Ta’ Qali and is run by the famous Maltese company, Farsons who manufacture and distribute Cisk – Malta’s very own brand of beer.
Every year without fail, my friends and I go to this festival to enjoy the great music and live entertainment, and of course, a beer or two! It is a great opportunity to also experience some of Malta’s home grown music talent as most of Malta’s well known artists perform at this event. Several stages are set up with different genres of music, with something to suit every musical taste. There is also a food court with a wide choice of dishes on offer. So even if you are not a fan of drinking beer, you are still sure to have a great time! Whats more the the Farson’s beers festival is free to enter. It starts on 26th July and finishes on 4th of August, which means 10 straight days of fun, beer and positive vibes!
So, if you happen to be visiting during these particular dates, put this one in your diary!
That’s it for part 1 of my blog. You can find part 2 here.
Author: Dina Demajo
About the Author:Dina is Maltese and is an Intern at ESE. She is an under graduate student studying at the University of Malta, majoring in Marketing and Management. Last year Dina took a 6 month course on DJing with one of Malta’s most popular DJs, Joseph Armani. She now works part time as a DJ for different events and venues all over the island. She is a huge animal lover and loves to socialise and make new friends.
Articles in this blog may be ESE news, academics pieces written by our team or events in Malta of general interest. Please feel free to write to us with any comments, suggestions or any articles you may have written and would like to share with us and our students.