A First Timer
It’s your first visit to the Maltese islands and you will want to make the most of your time. The Maltese islands are not just a beach break but offer its visitors various interesting historical towns and several bathing opportunities in the azure waters of its varied coastline. Here are some important questions many first time visitors have in mind.
Weather is an important factor to consider. Malta climate is typically Mediterranean with dry and very sunny summers while mild in winter with plenty of sunshine as well. Summer (June to September) is the peak season so during this time more will be going on. The months of April, May and October are also ideal times to visit the islands as weather is still quite nice (not too hot and neither cold) and the scenery is most green during this time of the year. Spring is an excellent time to visit the islands as the beaches and the islands in general are fairly uncrowded and wild flowers run riot. Needless to say winter here sees lots of sunshine as well. One will find the cheapest flights, hotels and car hire in winter. The islands see a large increase in visitors in July and August which are the hottest months of the year.
It is possible to get to Malta by air or ferry. Malta has only one airport which is known as the Malta International Airport and is situated in Luqa, south of Malta. Malta can also be reached by ferry, either from Sicily or by cruise liners. Gozo can be reached by a 25 minute ferry crossing from Cirkewwa, the harbour of Malta, located north of the island. Check out the Ferry Timetable.
Malta’s public transport is operated by Arriva. The public transport system can be a little complicated so booking a taxi is usually the best choice. If you are still keen on using the public transport you can find the bus timetable schedule on their website. The weekly bus pass costs 12 Euros while a day ticket costs 2.60 Euros and only valid up to 23.00hrs of the same day of purchase. The ticket can be bought at the bus station or from any driver when you get on the bus. Hiring a car is recommended to ensure flexibility and make the best of your visit.
Staying central on your first visit may be a wise choice. Sliema and St Julians are popular tourist resorts and a good base for further exploration of the rest of the islands. These areas, being the main entertainment centre on the islands, are quite hectic so if you prefer quieter areas consider St.Paul’s Bay, Bugibba, Qawra or Mellieha which are also closer to the best sandy beaches. As for Gozo, being smaller in size, any area is fine to travel around. The area around San Lawrenz/Gharb is more rural in character while if you want to stay by the beach Marsalforn or Xlendi can be the best choice. Check our accommodation section.