Maltese island with rugged good looks
The tiny island of Gozo lives in the shadow if its big sister, Malta – which is great for those in the know. It means that its prehistoric cities, Game of Thrones coastline and growing collection of boutique hotels are crowd-free even in high summer.
Victoria is the capital of Gozo – a little citadel city that plants itself in the middle of island. Its medieval walls loop around Gozo Cathedral, the 17th-century Gozo Museum of Archaeology and the church-like Old Prison. You can also take a walk around the costume and folk exhibits at the Gran Castello Historic House.
Xaghra village lies just east of Victoria. It’s home to the toppled megalithic temples of Ggantija, which are thought to be around 6,000 years old.
For more in the way of panoramic views, head for the coast. The famous Azure Window sea arch was a casualty of the 2017 storms, but it’s been given a new lease of life as a scuba diving site of huge broken boulders and settling sea life. The rest of the coastline is sketched out in plunging cliffs and deep-cut bays with wide-ranging views of Comino, Malta and the Mediterranean.
Flight time from the UK to Malta is 3 hours and 15 minutes.
Malta benefits from almost perfect weather all year round. July through to September are the hottest months (think highs of around 30°C), while April through to June offers ideal temperatures to sightsee, with averages hovering in the early to mid-20s. The island’s less crowded then, too.
British citizens do not require a visa to visit Malta.
It is customary to tip between five and 15% in hotels and restaurants where service is not included. Taxi drivers will appreciate it if you round up the fare. Tip hotel porters one euro per bag.
The official languages of Malta are Maltese and English.