Once you are going to visit Malta and you plan your next holiday, it is important to know certain basic facts about the Island. It will put you in the picture and help you talk about this beautiful place, so tag for quick reference and you have it all.
The diversity that it has itself brought Malta makes an interesting destination.
Where is Malta
First important fact, Malta is in the centre of the Mediterranean Sea between Sicily North Africa. Mid way between Gibraltar and Alexandria. The islands are closer to Europe than Africa. Malta has been part of the European Union since 2003.
When visiting Malta, it is a must to visit Gozo the sister island. It is a small island but with wonderful scenery and such an extraordinary place. See our other pages…..
The Capital City
The capital city is Valletta. A beautiful city
where you can observe the baroque buildings built when the knights of
St. John where in Malta. In the evening it has become a city of live
entertainment mainly Strait Street where you can find bars and restaurants and
provide live music
When it is Best to Come
The best time to visit Malta is in the spring, summer and autumn although winter has its positive aspects too. In summer the weather is beautiful and very warm. You can walk around the streets, swim at our fantastic beaches and some of the best places to visit both in Malta and Gozo.
Malta Holiday Accomodation
Malta offers many types and locations for accommodation. You can stay in hotels or rent an apartment. Hotels from the larger internationally-branded resorts to the family-run boutique hotels. From 5 star to 2 star.
The population of Malta at the end of 2016 stood at 436,947 on a surface area of 313 square kilometres. See further details about the Maltese archipelago.
History of Malta
Malta has an interesting length of ancient prehistory and military history. Settlers have lived in Malta since around 5200 BC.
It was ruled by the Phoenicians, Romans, Moors, Normans, Sicilians, Spanish, Knights of St. John, the French and by the British Empire.
In 1964 Malta became an Independent State and a Republic in 1974. Since 2004 Malta became a member of state of the European Union.
Quick Emergency Numbers
Country Code: +356
Emergency Call: 112
Malta Police HQ: 2122 4001
Mater Dei General Hospital: 2545 0000
Tourist Information: 2122 0193 & 2122 0264
The weather in Malta is beautiful practically all through the months. We get very hot summers and mainly mild winters. The only concern is the sun, as protection is important for foreigners. Torrential rain and wind thunderstorms are not frequent.
Safety in Malta
So is Malta really safe to travel to? Yes, it is much more than you’d expect it to be.
The question of whether Malta is a safe holiday destination is becoming increasingly common. And that’s no surprise.
Crime rates in Malta are relatively low compared to the other European countries.
Pickpocketing and handbag-snatching are more common in tourist
hotspots, particularly St. Julian’s and Sliema. Having said that,
compared to other popular tourist destinations in Europe, I wouldn’t say you’re
at a big risk. Just be vigilant and look after your belongings.
Two main mobile telephone operators codes for:
Vodafone Malta - 99 XXXXXX
Go Mobile Malta - 79 XXXXXX
Malta electricity voltage is 230V /- 10%. The frequency of the supply is 50 Hertz. It is important to know this for safety purposes. The British three-pin rectangular plug system is used. Adapters are very easy to find.
The Malta Currency is the Euro. Malta changed its currency in 2008. Most shops accept major credit cards.
Coins: 1c, 2c, 5c, 10c, 20c, 50c, €1, €2
Banknotes: €5, €10, €20, €50, €100, €500
Cost of Living
Is Malta a cheap Country?
It depends the area you are buying from, but overall it is the most affordable country that any other Western European countries.
Our time zone is very similar to all European countries, the clock is changed forward on the last Sunday of March and back on the last Sunday of October.
Timezone of Malta: GMT +01:00 Central European
Restaurants & Shops
You can find all sorts of food from food
chains to high standard restaurants with a mix of international cuisine.
Shops are mostly located in Valletta, Gzira, Sliema and Paceville including Paola and Hamrun which also cater for famous international brands.
Shops and Pharmacies are usually opened from 09:00 till 19:00
Groceries and mini-markets in villages open at around 06:30 - 07:00 till 19:00
Super-markets open around 08:00 till around 19:00 but there are those who remain open till around 22:00
Religion and Churches
Malta has many churches in many localities. It is a catholic country and when visiting various churches dress code has to be appropriate with no shorts or sleeveless tops. There is a percentage belonging to other churches or denominations.
Malta has its own language the Maltese but many people speak English too, as it is the second official language which is also taught in schools. English is a way of easy communicating with many foreigners. Italian is spoken by a large number of people here in Malta and understood.
Safety at Sea
You can swim safely pretty much anywhere, but the golden rule is Swim where the locals swim.
There are several areas where you can swim. See the complete list of rocky beaches and sandy beaches.
Scuba Diving in Malta
The clear blue sea around the islands is ideal for scuba diving with an abundance of reefs, caves and artificial wreck diving sites. Malta is a well known diving Mediterranean centre. There are many diving schools to choose from.
Malta Health Care
Here we have the government main hospital known as Mater Dei at Msida and small private hospitals. In almost each locality there are small government clinics where if you need assistance you will find local doctors who offer their services at certain times of the day.
In each village you can find pharmacies where some of them offer the services of a clinic with doctors offering their services at different times of the day.
Link to our phone directory with hospital and clinic phone numbers.
Road safety is one thing to keep in mind. Drivers tend to speed and not polite road. As we are a much populated island and so many cars on the road, luckily we are the lowest road fatality rate in the EU.
You are safer driving a car and bus than a motorcycle. If you tend to drive especially in slippery light rain, be careful how one drives. Beware of taxi drivers and large vehicles on the road.
Areas of Concern
The only real areas of concern is Paceville being the centre of nightlife in Malta. which is part of St. Julian’s. Although the area isn’t “unsafe”, it pays to be vigilant and to stay out of trouble. Always mind your drinks.
Drinking Tap Water
Tap water is safe for drinking in most areas though bottled water is preferred by most locals, an issue of taste rather than health. The tap water may have a taste and therefore is not always pleasant to use as drinking water.