Malta is an island in the Mediterranean, about 100 kilometres south of Italy and enjoys sunny weather practically all the year round. The skies are invariable blue and the sea is warm even in winter which has made Malta popular with water-sport enthusiasts. It is the ideal place for scuba-diving, skiing, swimming, sailing, windsurfing, waterpolo and fishing. Most sports facilities are available on the island including golf, tennis and horse-riding.
Malta and its smaller sister island Gozo are rich in history. Malta is full of prehistoric temples (the oldest surviving standing man-made structures in the world), subterranean Neolithic temples, catacombs, the Auberges and the formidable fortifications of the Knights of St. John which are still in a remarkable state of preservation.
Valletta, the capital of Malta, and Mdina, the capital city before the coming of the Knights, boast of many art galleries and museums. The Cathedral of the Knights of St. John in Malta, is unique for its architecture, paintings and its pavement covered with the coats of arms of the most illustrious families of Europe. Among the many treasures in the church one can find Caravaggio’s ‘St. Jerome’ and his only signed masterpiece ‘The Beheading of St. John’. The Manoel in all its baroque finery is one of Europe’s oldest theatres.
In spite of its size Malta is a modern country teeming with life, commerce and industry. In summer particularly there is an air of festivity throughout the whole Island – the seaside is dotted with the fire of a thousand barbeques, and every weekend there are feasts in different towns and villages in a blaze of colour and with incomparable firework displays.
With 160 years under British rule Malta is the most British place in Europe and the Mediterranean.
Any newsagent sells English newspapers of the day. Students coming to Malta have every opportunity to practice their English since the language is widely spoken.
LIFE IN MALTA
Maltese climate is typical of the Mediterranean and is strongly influenced by the sea. The islands have a pleasant sunny climate with a daily average of 12 hours sunshine in summer and 6 hours in mid-winter. Annual rainfall is low and swimming in the sea is quite possible well into the “winter months” and peak beach season can last until mid to late October.
History (In Brief)
The Phoenicians, the Carthaginians, The Romans, The Byzantines, the Arabs and the Spanish all ruled the islands for varying lengths of time. The Arabs who arrived in 800AD stayed for over 200 years and laid the foundations for the origins of the Maltese language. In 1530 the islands passed into the hands of the knights of St John, who eventually surrendered these to Napoleon in 1798. The French rule was brief lasting just two years before the British liberated the country from the French in 1800. This started 160 year period of British rule during which time Malta played a significant and crucial role in the 2nd world war. On 21st September 1964 Malta gained its Independence and became a Republic in 1973. In 2004 Malta became a fully fledged member of the EU.
The Maltese Archipelago lies virtually at the centre of the Mediterranean. English and Maltese are the official languages although Italian is widely spoken. 2 to 3 hours is all you need to get to Malta by air from most European cities. Direct and Frequent flights are readily available throughout Europe. Flights are also operated from North Africa & ME destinations. As an EU country, Maltaís visa requirements fall in line with EU policy. The island also form part of the Schengen travel area. Daily high speed catamaran services for passengers, cars, heavy vehicles connect Valetta, Malta and Sicily. Other ferry services connect Valetta with Italy and North Africa.
93 km South of Sicily
290km North of Africa
1,826km East of Gibraltar
1,940km West of Tel Aviv
Cost of living in Malta
Living in Malta is considerably cheaper than most city centres. Plentiful high quality housing at low cost prices compared to other European centres and significantly cheaper travel costs aligned to the beneficial tax rates available all add up to ensure you get to spend more of your hard earned Euro on the things you enjoy. Excellent healthcare facilities and cheap sports clubs Click Here for a full breakdown of average prices or to compare with your current location.
Top Attractions in Malta