Malta Area Guide

The Republic of Malta is a European Member state in the centre of the Mediterranean, just 93 km South of Sicily (Italy) in Southern Europe. Malta is an island nation that consists of three islands: Main Island Malta, Gozo and Comino. The country’s official languages are Maltese and English. Malta’s capital city is Valletta, which is centrally located on the island’s North coast and has the island’s largest harbour.
The main island of Malta is the largest and most developed island. Its sister-island of Gozo is idyllic and peaceful and mostly rural, offering breath-taking views and great opportunities for outdoor activities, such as hiking, biking, rock climbing and diving. Comino is the smallest island of the three and is inhabited by only a few people. The island hosts a hotel renowned for its hospitality and facilities to spend relaxing holidays in Malta and is the location for one of Malta’s most beautiful bays: the Blue Lagoon.

Estate Agents normally section off the island as follows:

Sliema, Valletta & Surrounding: Valletta, Sliema and the coastline up to neighbouring St Julian's constitutes Malta's main coastal resort. It is a centre for shopping, restaurants and café life. These areas, on the east side of Malta constitute its major commercial and residential areas and house several of Malta's most recent hotels as well as the majority of residential units. The Sliema promontory offers on one side stunning views across to Valletta and on the other, open sea views. There is a long promenade running from St. Julians for about 5 km leading to Valletta and on summer evenings the seafront becomes a sociable meeting place for locals as well as foreigners.

Central: The central part of the island refers to villages such as Mosta, Lija, Balzan, Gharghur, Naxxar, Rabat & Zebbug. These are older parts of the island and hundreds of years ago were mainly only inhabited by farmers, however these places have also become urbanized with an abundance of more modern apartment blocks being built throughout. It is normally quite easy to distinguish which the older part of the village is, as charming character houses and converted farmhouses stand out with all their authenticity and charm.

North: Malta’s main beaches and best swimming spots are in the north of the island so it is no wonder that locals see these areas as the more “touristic part” – Places like Mellieha, Qawra and Bugibba are located here and modern properties, many of which overlook the sea sprout up by the week. It is busy and popular in the summer months and a little more on the quiet side in winter.

South: The southern part of the island is probably the oldest and arguably most picturesque - some of the oldest residences can be found here. The south played a vital role in the Siege of Malta in 1565 and the majestic fortifications can be seen dominating over one of the most beautiful ports in the world – The Grand Harbour. The south also hosts Marsaxlokk, a charming fishing village, and the Malta Freeport where most of Malta’s trade lands.

Gozo: Malta’s charming sister island is quiet and peaceful, Gozo, which in Maltese is called “Għawdex”, has an area of 67 square KMs, is 14 KMs long and 7 KMs wide. With a coastline of 43 km, - Gozo earned its popular nickname the Island of the Three Hills probably derived from the hilly view when observed from mainland Malta. Throughout the years Gozo has been vastly influenced by the cultures and history of a series of dominators including the Phoenicians, Romans, Arabs, Normans, Spanish, the Knights of St. John, the French and the British, who all left their mark on the cultural and the folkloristic heritage of the population.

In comparison with mainland Malta, one finds a more varied geology and larger relief contrasts, with typical flat-topped hills. Over 31,000 people inhabit the island and this amounts to one-twelfth of the overall population of Malta. Gozo is not over-populated, and therefore greener and more peaceful. Many Maltese and foreigners alike have in fact chosen to purchase holiday homes on this peaceful and charming island, traditional farmhouses and seaside apartments are also very popular.

The main sources of income are from Tourism, Agriculture, and Fishing together with a number of small and medium-sized enterprises.

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