How to Travel to Malta on Your Own: Detailed Plan


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I’ll walk you through organizing your own trip to Malta, covering everything from the weather to the must-visit cities and places, budgeting, accommodations, and ways to save money, as well as choosing where to stay based on your travel goals.

Malta: General Information

Malta is an island in the Mediterranean Sea and an independent state. The weather here is typically Mediterranean, warm in winter and hot in summer. Despite being one of the smallest countries in the world, Malta has a high population density.

With its millennia-long history, luxurious lagoons, rocky shores, emerald-colored sea, friendly people, delicious food, and perpetual festive atmosphere, Malta offers much more than just beach relaxation. Visitors come here to see ancient cities, stunning cliffs and bays, have fun, and enjoy tasty cuisine.

The peak season is summer, but there are still many tourists in autumn, winter, and spring. Unlike Cyprus or Greece, Malta doesn’t experience as much of an off-season lull. Even in winter and early spring, you’ll find many European tourists, mostly Italians. Sicily, just 90 km away, is easily reachable by ferry in a few hours.

The local airport serves numerous flights from major European cities, including budget airlines like Wizzair and Ryanair, as well as traditional carriers.

Malta is a small island, only 27 km long and 15 km wide, just a bit more than my daily walking distance. It has hilly terrain, plenty of roads, and cities that smoothly blend into one another.

Public transportation consists of buses and ferries, including the tourist-friendly HOP-On-HOP-OFF bus and many boat routes to local attractions.


Traveling in Malta: What to Expect

While on islands like Cyprus, Greece, or Italy, having a car is essential, in Malta, you can get around without one. However, there’s a catch. Just because you can do without a car doesn’t mean it’s necessarily better without one.

You can reach major destinations by public transport—bus or ferry. Be prepared for frequent transfers and waits of 20 to 40 minutes for the next bus, especially in the low season.

A bus ticket costs 2.50 and is valid for 2 hours, so you don’t need to pay each time you board a new bus.

Besides buses and rental cars, Malta has a well-developed ferry system and excursion boats with reasonable prices, ranging from a couple of euros for a ferry from Sliema to Valletta to 20-30 euros for a boat trip to beautiful lagoons with stops for swimming.

Il-Mellieha, Malta
Il-Mellieha, Malta – Skyline view of the famous Popeye Village at Anchor Bay at sunset with traditional Luzzu boats, amazing colorful clouds and sky

Getting to Malta: Best Options

Since Malta is an island, air travel is the primary mode of arrival. The local airport is just 7 km from Valletta and serves flights from most European countries and major cities.

Tickets range from 30 to 150 Euros. Based on my experience, after spending quite some time searching for tickets to Malta from various European countries, we flew via Poland, from Krakow with Ryanair.

From Sicily, there’s a ferry to Malta, taking about 5 hours, with tickets around 100 euros one way.

Visa for Malta

Malta is part of the Schengen Area. Therefore, no visa is required for Ukrainians with biometric passports.

Currency in Malta and Where to Exchange Money

The currency used in Malta is the Euro. Since Malta is popular among Americans, you can exchange US dollars everywhere, as there are many currency exchange points.

Cards are widely accepted everywhere. Cash is needed for transactions with local boatmen, at the market, and in some souvenir shops. The cash-to-card ratio could be around 20:80.


Where to Stay in Malta

Malta is a densely populated island, and apart from the main island of Malta, the archipelago includes the island of Gozo. Choose your accommodation based on your vacation plan and travel style.

If you’re without a car and plan to explore most of the attractions, consider staying in Sliema. From Sliema, you’ll have the best logistics around the island, and it’s approximately equidistant to the main points of interest.

Great places to explore in Malta include the capital, Valletta, and the area known as the Three Cities.

If you’re looking for more sea and nature, then definitely opt for Gozo.

I’ve already written in detail about where it’s best to stay in Malta with a brief description of the main locations.

Below, I’ll list a few hotels where we stayed or considered staying for our vacation in Malta:

  • Gest: a modern budget hotel in Mellieha Bay, rooms for two, all modern and clean. Best value for money, rooms from 40 euros per night. A find for budget travelers.
  • D Townhouse Boutique Suites: a hotel in Sliema, located in a historic building and excellently equipped. It features a terrace on the roof, spacious suite rooms, a mini-kitchen, microwave, coffee machine. My family stayed at this hotel during our vacation in Malta in March. Near the promenade overlooking Valletta, with a ferry to Valletta nearby. The only downside is weak internet in the rooms, good connection only in the lobby. Highly recommended. Value for money and comfort.
  • Galileo Rooms: probably the best budget option in Sliema. It’s a guesthouse with clean, well-equipped rooms, city views, and just steps away from the promenade and ferry to Valletta.
  • Vallettastay Old Lodge Apartment 4: relatively budget apartments in Valletta, with their own kitchen, located in the heart of the old city, easy check-in and check-out, friendly staff.
  • Inhawi Boutique Hostel: the best budget accommodation option in St. Julian’s, offering both dormitory beds and private twin rooms, with prices starting from 50 euros per night, which is very budget-friendly for Malta. Includes internet access, continental breakfast, air conditioning. Within walking distance of supermarkets, cafes, restaurants, and beaches.
  • Casa Cara: apartments in Birgu (Three Cities), offering the best location and value for money amidst magnificent historic architecture.
  • Port View Guesthouse: if you’re staying in the fishing village of Marsaxlokk, it’s logical to stay near the port and promenade. This guesthouse boasts spacious rooms and a terrace. The staff is polite and responsive, as in most places in Malta. Pleasant pricing.

Beaches in Malta

As mentioned earlier, beaches are not Malta’s strongest suit, but there’s certainly something. There are magnificent lagoons and swimming spots amidst the cliffs. If you enjoy this kind of scenery, then Malta is your island.

Malta has at least two dozen sandy beaches near every town. On the island of Gozo, there are two excellent beaches, and a couple more on the tiny island of Comino, located between the islands of Malta and Gozo.

The most popular beaches are Mellieha Bay (also known as Ghadira), Golden Bay, Ghajn Tuffieha, Gnejna Bay, and Paradise Bay.

Seasons in Malta, Weather

Malta experiences a mild Mediterranean winter and spring. In January-February, temperatures are around 18–20 degrees Celsius, with occasional brief showers. March boasts excellent weather with temperatures still around 19–21 degrees Celsius.

From April onwards, it significantly warms up. The summer is hot, but not as scorching as in Cyprus due to its location and higher humidity. Breathing here is easier than in Cyprus at any time of the year.

In winter and spring, there are traditional winds, but not every day. Mornings are cool, days are summery, and evenings cool down again.

Three Cities, Malta
Three Cities, Malta

Top Places to Visit in Malta

If you approach it carefully and want to see absolutely everything interesting in Malta, including cool natural spots, architectural beauties, and beaches, the list of attractions can easily exceed a hundred.

In any hotel or guesthouse, you’ll be given a list of “must-visit” places with a map and directions. By the way, many tourists in Malta still prefer paper maps to electronic navigation. It looks very charming.

There’s even a map with pointers to places where “Game of Thrones” was filmed.

I’ll mention only the super top places for those who are going to Malta for the first time and want to see the very best, something unique that isn’t repeated elsewhere or almost anywhere else.

  • Valletta: The entire city is a UNESCO heritage site, which should tell you something. It’s literally a collection of architectural masterpieces worth seeing. A must-visit!
  • The Three Cities: These are three small historic towns located on small peninsulas opposite Valletta. They are easily accessible by ferry from Valletta.
  • Marsaxlokk Village: A fishing village, almost the only one left in almost its classic form in Malta. Here, there’s a weekly Sunday fish market where local fishermen sell fresh catches.
  • Malta’s Blue Lagoon: A natural wonder with incredibly beautiful sea color.
  • Gozo and Comino Islands: Regardless of where you’re staying, you can reach these islands by boat or ferry for a reasonable price. These islands boast several natural spots and classic architectural locations.
  • Dingli Cliffs: A magnificent spot on the southwest coast of the island of Malta, one of the best places to watch the sunset. If you have a drone, you can capture amazing videos and photos.
  • Blue Grotto: A very beautiful sea cave in Malta, included in many boat tour routes.
  • Popeye Village: The filming location of the famous Western film, now a typical tourist attraction. It’s interesting to hike above the village on a pedestrian trail and see this place from above. Nearby, there’s another sunset viewpoint — Anchor Bay Sunset Viewpoint.
  • Coral Lagoon: The most famous natural attraction in Malta. It’s a round hole in the cliffs, inside which turquoise water splashes. Incredibly beautiful, especially at noon from above.
  • Sunset at the Chapel of the Immaculate Conception in Mellieħa: Another excellent spot for watching the sunset in Malta.
  • Mdina and Rabat: This is the ancient capital (Mdina) and the city next to it. They are a must-visit no matter how many days you plan on the island.
  • Sliema & St Julian’s: You can also stop by these two cities. Here, you can stroll along the promenade, enjoy picturesque coastline, bars, cafes, shopping, and nightlife.

How to Save Money While Vacationing in Malta

Choose the low season for your vacation. If swimming isn’t a must, then the period from December to April is excellent. If you want to swim, then the end of October and November are ideal for this.

Rent a car – you’ll see more in less time, save on restaurants since you can have a picnic in any picturesque spot. It’s not prohibited. Distances are short, so you won’t spend much on fuel, and car rental is cheap here in the low season. A car will allow you to avoid paid tours for exploring the islands and feel more free.

Instead of expensive hotels with rooftop pools and spas, opt for budget guesthouses. You can save up to 70% of your accommodation budget. Yes, in Malta, there’s such a big difference between budget accommodation and business class, not to mention luxury options.

Traditionally, you can split accommodation and car expenses among the group; it will be cheaper.

Brief Algorithm of Actions for Self-Organizing a Trip

Decide on the area of residence in Malta and the season of rest.

Buy a plane ticket, Aviasales can help with that!

Book a hotel or guesthouse; we use, although we occasionally try out many platforms.

Purchase insurance – it will be cheaper in case of sudden illness or injury. Moreover, it costs pennies.

Websites We Use for Trip Planning

This isn’t just a list of websites that abound on the internet.

This is what allows us to solve any issue related to both travel planning and working from home or online.

  • IATA Website – the official website of the International Air Transport Association, where you can find out if you are allowed entry into the country you have chosen for your trip
  • Aviasales – I search for budget air tickets worldwide, and I always find them
  • – a familiar and convenient website for searching and booking accommodation worldwide
  • LocalRent – the best website for searching and renting cars in the Balkans, Spain, Cyprus, Georgia, Thailand, and some other countries. Verified. There’s free cancellation of bookings, cars without a deposit, and other interesting options. Unfortunately, there are no offers in Malta, and in such cases, we use Rentalcars.


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