Warm your spirit in sunny Malta

Malta beachIt’s only November and those winter blues are already creeping in. If you have a little holiday time saved up and are craving a break from the cold, why not try an island paradise to warm your spirits. Malta is the perfect island retreat for anyone up for a little sun and fun. With beautiful beaches, great food and a unique culture, it’s no wonder that over 1.1 million tourists – over twice the population of this small nation – flock to Malta’s shores each year.

I had the privilege of a holiday in Malta this past summer and have already booked my holiday for next year. For four days, I dined on fresh seafood (try the octopus stew), swam in the blue lagoon, and indulged in some much needed R&R. With plenty of hotels from budget to luxury, and countless water adventures and activities to keep even the most restless content, Malta is the perfect destination for anyone seeking some solace from the cold months ahead.

Ta Cenc HotelWhile you’re there, check out the smaller sister islands of Gozo and Comino which are only a short ferry ride away from the main island. Visit the sea caves, parasail, snorkel, or even scuba off the rocky coastline and underwater caves. For a 5 star treat, spoil yourself for a night on Gozo at the Ta Cenc Hotel. A perfect retreat for those looking for something a little more tame. After all, there’s no shame in lounging poolside or visiting the hotel’s spa after a day of water fun.

Castille HotelIf you’re a bigger history buff than water lover fear not, as Malta has that covered too. Malta boasts the oldest freestanding temple in the world, Ggantija, as well as the St. Agatha’s Catacombs and Fort Rinella.  For the night, stay in Malta’s historical capital of Valletta where St. John’s Cathedral is located. I recommend the Castille Hotel, which   was built as a family residence in the 16th century. Luckily, the charming hotel has been thoroughly updated to suit the needs of a modern traveler.

It wouldn’t be a holiday without some souvenirs. Don’t worry Shopaholics, just because the island is small doesn’t mean shopping is limited.  If you’re looking for something slightly more interesting than a key chain, visit one of Malta’s open air markets or shopping districts for locally made crafts and goods. If you travel to Malta’s sister Island Gozo, visit the Ta’dbiegi craft village for beautiful lace, jewelry, and other one of a kind finds to bring back home.

Before you leave, don’t forget to sample some native food and drink, such as Rabbit Stew or Lampuki Pie. These local dishes can be found at most restaurants throughout the island and are made from fresh Maltese ingredients. Even if your budget is tight, these Maltese specialties can be found at both local pubs and high end eateries so you won’t miss out.

XlendiMalta is the perfect destination this winter. Check out our website to find great flight deals all year round and pack your sun cream because it’s summer 365 days a year in Malta. Beat the tourist rush and the snowy blues this winter and get away to this Mediterranean gem.

Kristen