Malta, Gozo & Comino
|Location:||In the Mediterranean Sea, 93 km south of Sicily and 290 km from the nearest point of the North African mainland|
|Main Islands:||Malta, Gozo, Comino, Cominotto, Filfla|
|Length:||27 km (Malta) / 14 km (Gozo)|
|Width:||15 km (Malta) / 7 km (Gozo)|
|Ethnic Groups:||Maltese 95.3 %|
British 1.6 %
Other 3.1 %
|Religions:||Roman Catholic (official) 98%|
|Currency:||EURO (since 2008)|
|Time Zone:||CET / CEST in Summer|
|Country top level domain:||.mt|
|UNESCO World Heritage Sites:||3 (City of Valletta, Hypogeum of Hal Saflieni, Megalithic Temples)|
|Climate:||Subtropical - Mediterranean|
|Average temperatures:||15.2 °C (January) - 36.7°C (August)|
|Government:||Parliamentary Republic (since 1974)|
MALTA TOURIST INFORMATION
The easiest way to get to Malta is by plane, as the Malta International Airport is used by many low cost airlines offering services to and from Malta, such as Easyjet, Ryanair and Wizzair. Malta also has its own airline, Air Malta, which offers flights to major airports in Europe and North Africa. . Here you can find the Arrivals/Departures timetables from the website of the Malta International Airport.
Airport / Seaport / Vip Car Transfers. If you prefer a stress free airport transfer, we would be happy to organize it for you. We will provide a door-to-door service from the airport to your accommodation and vice versa.
Malta Seaport. Since Malta is an island, it is also linked to Europe and North Africa by sea - there are different ferries that offer services to and from Malta, one of which is Virtu Ferries that takes a mere ninety minutes by catamaran from Malta to Sicily.
Due to its size, travelling around the island is quite easy. With the regular public transport you can visit the whole island, as buses from Valletta travel to every village in Malta. Please visit the Malta Public Transport site for information on processes and routes.
The climate in Malta is mild during winter and hot in summer. As it is a Mediterranean island, the winter temperatures can drop down to 5C degrees in winter, and go up to 40C degrees in summer. The coldest months are generally January and February, while the hottest are July and August. Throughout the rest of the year, Malta has spring-like weather, with temperatures averaging 20 degrees Celsius and seasonal rainfalls.
Malta is part of the European Union (EU) and has been part of the Schengen Agreement since 2007 thus allowing entry into the islands and other members of the Schengen states. For non-Schengen member states who need a visa please refer to your local embassy of which Schengen state you are entering.
USEFUL TELEPHONE NUMBERS
Ochrona konsumentów: 21250221
Direct Dialling Code (Malta): 356
Directory Enquiries: 1182
Directory Enquiries (Go Mobile): 1187
Directory Enquiries (Vodafone): 1189
Ratownictwo śmigłowcem: 21244371
Ratownictwo patrolowe: 21238797
Emergency Vet Services: 50043888
Fire Brigade: 112
Flight Information: 52302000 (rate per call €1.00) *
Gozo Channel Co Ltd: 21556114
Hospital – Gozo: 21561600
Hospital – Malta: 25450000
International Code: 00
Lost Property: 21224781
Overseas Operator: 1152
Passport Office – Gozo: 21560770
Passport Office – Malta: 21222286
Malta is an island located in the Mediterranean Sea, 93km south of Sicily and 230km from the nearest point of the North African mainland. It is an idyllic holiday destination for families, couples and single travellers with a wealth of history and cultural activities for all. Alternatively, the are multiple beaches, bars, restaurants and world class shopping available for a relaxing time in the sun.
HISTORY OF MALTA
Malta’s first inhabitants came from Sicily, and they were mainly fishermen, farmers and hunters. The first villages formed in 5,000 BC and the villagers mostly lived in caves.
In 4,000 BC the most distinguished period in the Maltese history began, when it is believed that the first temples were built. To this day, temples built during that time can be found around the island, such as the Ggantija temples. These are believed to be older than the Stonehenge temples, and they form part of the UNESCO world heritage.
In 1,000 BC Malta was invaded by the Phoenicians, who used the islands for the market trading due to its strategic position in the Mediterranean sea.
Following the Phoenicians, other cultures have come to Malta and influenced the island, such as the Carthaginians, the Romans and the Byzantines.
The Arabs ruled Malta for 220 years in 870 AD and they had a major influence on the Maltese language, making it the only Semitic based language written in Latin.
The medieval years began when the Normans conquered the island in 1090, after expelling the Arabs. After the Normans other invasions followed until the Knights of St. John conquered Malta in 1530 and lasted for 268 years. The main influence of the knights was the change of the capital city from Mdina to Birgu and then to Valletta. Both Birgu and Valletta were built thanks to their strategic position, as they are close to the sea and therefore were used as harbours. When the Turks tried to invade Malta in 1565, the Knights of St. John defended the island and built fortifications around Valletta, Birgu and Senglea. On the 8th September the war ended as the Turks retreated, and to this day the date is celebrated and remembered as the victory of The Great Siege.
In 1798 Napoleon Bonaparte invaded Malta and his rule lasted only two years, as the Maltese rebelled with the help of the British, who then conquered the island in 1800. Malta became the headquarters of the British navy because of its excellent position and harbours.
During World War II, in 1942, Malta received the English George Cross for their bravery and it has been part of the Maltese flag ever since. In 1964 Malta requested independence through a referendum, and on the 21st September of that year they gained it, with Queen Elizabeth II still head of state. Ten years later, on the 13th December 1974, Malta became a republic. In 2004 the island joined the European Union, and is today the smallest member state.
TOP 10 THINGS TO SEE IN MALTA
Malta has many attractions to offer that suit everyone’s needs and expectations. Here’s a list of the main things people can see and do in Malta.
Malta's capital, Valletta, is a must-see for those who visit the island. Surrounded by picturesque architecture, history and filled with shops, restaurants and bars, this city is very friendly. Due to its rich history, it has been inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Mdina, the former capital of Malta, is a fortified city located in Rabat. Due to the fact that few cars are allowed in the city and its small population, Mdina is also known as the Quiet City. Known for its beautiful view of Malta and its history, Mdina is a major tourist attraction and a must for those visiting the island
Birgu, Senglea and Cospicua are three fortified towns located in the south of Malta, and together they form the famous Three Towns on the island. These cities are rich in history, dating back to Phoenician times, and can give a real insight into authentic Maltese life.
Gozo is one of Malta's sister islands and is just 25 minutes away by ferry. Although very close to Malta, Gozo is known to be more rural and peaceful. Gozo is three times smaller than Malta, but despite this, there are many places to see, such as the famous Azure Window.
Comino is the smaller of Malta's sister islands and is famous for its crystal clear water in the Blue Lagoon. Many come to the island to dive, dive or just relax by the sea. Interestingly, no one lives on the island about Comino, and you can find only one hotel there.
Malta Southern Coast. A popular attraction in Malta is the Blue Grotto, located on the south coast of the island. This site is very popular because of its location, it is recommended to visit it in the early hours of the day when the sun is still low to enjoy a better view.
Megalithic temples. It is believed that the oldest free-standing temple is a UNESCO World Heritage Site called Ggantija, a temple that dates back to 5 BC and is located in Gozo. Along with this temple, there are another 000 megalithic temples in Malta that are UNESCO World Heritage Sites; these are the temples of ĦaġarQim and Mnajdra, both found in the village of Qrendi, the temples of Ta' Ħaġrat and the temples of Skorba in Mgarr, and the temples of Tarxien in Tarxien
Rotunda of Mosta. The third largest church rotunda of Mosta in Europe is the famous Maltese Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, also known as the Rotunda of Mosta. The church is known for what is believed to be a miracle when a bomb went through the roof of the church during World War II, with hundreds of people inside, but did not explode.
Catacombs of St. Paul. Located near Mdina and Rabat, the catacombs of St. Paul are evidence of early signs of Christianity in Malta.
Fort St Angelo. Located in the center of the Grand Harbour of Birgu, Fort St Angelo is a large bastion fort that dates back to the Middle Ages when it was originally built as a castle. In the years 1530-1690, the Order of St. John rebuilt it into a bastion fort. The fort was used during attacks and wars, and although it was damaged during World War II, it was later restored.
Fort Rinella. The world's largest gun, the 100-ton gun, is located at Fort Rinella in Malta. During World War II, the fort was used by the British for coastal observation. Today, the fort has been transformed into a museum open to the public.
Dingli Cliffs. The highest point of Malta is found in Dingli Cliffs, approximately 220m above sea level, dropping right down to the sea. The beauty of this location is the outstanding views one can enjoy, with breathtaking sunsets and relaxing walks along the cliffs
Diving. Malta is one of the most popular diving destinations in Europe, with plenty of wonderful sites and perfect weather conditions and water clarity. With over 40 diving schools on the island, you can either enjoy an introductory dive or start a beginner course.
TOP 10 FOR KIDS IN MALTA
POPEYE VILLAGE - The film Popeye was filmed in Malta in the 1960’s and the set for the movie, now known as ‘Popeye Village’, has become a major attraction. Everything from this place will remind you of the famous film, from the houses to the characters ready to entertain you.
SPLASH AND FUN WATERPARK - Keep your kids entertained with water slides, the wave pool and fun activities at Splash and Fun Waterpark. Perfect for families with children of all ages and adventurous parents.
MEDITERRANEO MARINE PARK - At the Mediterraneo Marine Park in Malta you can educate and entertain your children at the same time. The park offers the opportunity to better understand dolphins, sea lions and parrots by watching shows and interacting with them. There is also the opportunity to swimming with the dolphins.
PLAYMOBILFUNPARK - At the PlaymobilFunPark kids are encouraged to play with the toys in a more creative way. With an internal and external play area, the park offers activities for children of all ages. The park offers water based activities, sand-pit, playhouse and life-size Playmobil animals.
Wildlife Park Malta is offering a unique opportunity for animal lovers who dream of getting closer to one of our beautiful animals in the Park. By adopting, you will be supporting the animal’s wellbeing and by visiting the park, you will learn more about the animal you are adopting. This programme offers various levels of adoption, including a VIP adoption programme, which gives unique and amazing opportunities for those who have always dreamed to co-own one of our amazing animals.
Esplora Interactive Science Centre. Get acquainted with the amazing and awesome world of science in a fun, exciting, and enjoyable way. Enjoy a prefect blend of fun and education as you Experience Hands-on Interaction at our activity centre and entertaining science shows.
Malta 5D is a new generation theatre where you feel the “real” emotions of the movie. In a short time, you may explore the colourful and impressive episodes of the Maltese history and culture, magnified with 3D film, moving seats, water spray, air blasts and leg ticklers. A unique experience for all ages! An exhibition of works by local artists will be on display in the foyer.
The Malta Experience Audio-Visual Show - Discover 7,000 Years Of History With Our Audio-Visual Award Winning Show. Enjoy A Spectacular Audio-Visual Show With A Perfect Blend Of Entertainment And Information. Audio Guide Commentary Available In 17 Different Languages. Enjoy A Tour Of "La Sacra Infermeria", The Holy Infirmary Of The Order Of The Knights Of St. John.
Visit The Malta National Aquarium in Saint Paul's Bay For A Family Friendly Activity In Malta. View The Various Species Of Fish And Sharks From The Main Tank Walk-Through Tunnel Which Allows Visitors To Experience The Fish At A Much Closer Range. Discover The Exhibits Amongst 41 Tanks That Are Home To A Variety Of Fish From The Mediterranean Sea, Insects and amphibians.
The Malta Classic Car Collection Museum is a must for all car enthusiasts and this flexible admission ticket allows you to spend as much time as you want admiring our remarkable exhibition. Marvel At Over 100 Classic / Vintage Cars And Motorcycles.
The Knights Of Malta Epic Adventure Museum - Discover Mysteries And Secrets Behind Facts And Legends, Learn About The History Of The Knights Of Malta, All While Listening To Our Detailed Multilingual Commentary. Enjoy An Impressive 3D Digital Audio-Visual Presentation Produced With The Latest Light And Sound Technology! Audio Guide Commentary Available In 13 Different Languages.