This tiny southern European island nation packs an impressive punch for its size. Check out these budget-minded hotels sprinkled around Malta, bookable on Culture Trip, and get ready for an adventure.
Malta’s 300 days of sunshine a year and Mediterranean setting should be enough. Tack on its gobsmacking history that melds together several religions and cultures, spanning 7,000 years, and you’ve got the makings for an unforgettable trip. Whether you want to go scuba diving, explore the museums and churches or hit the charming streets and harbours with a camera, you can stay cheaply and comfortably in these hotels, and even a campground.
Malta’s photogenic capital, Valletta, is home to the family-run Casa Asti, which occupies a charming 400-year old building near cafes, restaurants and wine bars. Look for original details like wood-beam ceilings and exposed stone walls in three different room types that accommodate solo travellers, couples and families (some have shared bathrooms). Enjoy the complimentary continental breakfast at the hotel before exploring the nearby Upper and Lower Barrakka Gardens for spectacular views of the Mediterranean, as well as historical landmarks like St John’s Co-Cathedral. Walk to the bus station and ferry terminal for access to the rest of the island.
Situated in St Paul’s Bay on the north coast, the Buccaneers is a solid family-friendly option that’s walking distance to the Malta National Aquarium. While common areas feature a nautical theme, the rooms feel more contemporary and come in a variety of sizes – including a quadruple option, with four twin beds. Take a dip in the above-ground swimming pool and catch some rays on the terrace. There’s an all-day restaurant serving pub fare, plus cafes, pizzerias and even a chocolate factory in the neighbourhood. Staff can assist with organising beach trips and guided tours (shuttle service is available for a fee).
On Malta’s southeastern shore is one of the island’s most quaint and traditional villages – called Marsaxlokk – where you’ll find this family-run guesthouse. Rooms are equipped with mini fridges and microwaves, while a bigger studio comes with a kitchenette and private terrace. Colourful fishing boats bring in the day’s catch: try local delicacies at several restaurants by the promenade, including a seafood soup called aljotta. There’s also easy access to St Peter’s pool, a natural rock formation and swimming/snorkelling area, just a 30-minute walk from the guesthouse.
On the northern tip of the island, this resort offers 356 modest rooms with private balconies and varying views, indoor and outdoor seawater pools, and a spa and fitness centre. Choose between several bars and restaurants featuring Italian and Middle Eastern cuisine, and a lovely beachside lounge. Walk to the ferry for day-trips to Gozo and Comino, or set up a lesson at the on-site internationally certified diving centre.
This elegant five-room townhouse is located in the heart of the Three Cities, close to great restaurants and a quick ferry ride from Valletta. Rooms are unique and may include industrial design or classic decor with box balconies. Common areas ooze with charm, from the converted wine cellar to the sunny rooftop terrace with Grand Harbour views. Friendly staff can help set up transportation, tours and excursions, or simply ask them to share their knowledge about Maltese history and suggestions for lesser-known gems.
Opened in 2016, this family-run boutique hotel can be found in one of Malta’s most historic towns, Haz-Zebbug, named for the surrounding olive groves. It’s also smack dab in the middle of the island for those who want their pick of attractions in every direction. Guests can choose between individually designed rooms with vintage decor, mini bars, bathrobes and slippers. Common areas provide a beautiful terrace and outdoor pool, plus a TV area, library and self-serve tea, coffee and water. Continental breakfast is served each morning.
Look for the bright blue door of this restored 16th-century building, in the old town of Naxxar, just 10km (6mi) north of Valletta. Elegant rooms and common areas feature exposed stone walls and tasteful antiques from the collection of the owner, who lives on-site. Ask him for help with tours, excursions and recommendations for restaurants and wine bars. Guests also have access to a rooftop terrace and a small plunge pool. Continental breakfast is provided daily and includes lovely house-made items.
Get back to nature with a stay at this campground operated by the Scout Association of Malta for the ultimate affordable stay. The site offers 20 camping plots, each supplied with water and electricity, and two main areas with toilets and showers. The best part? Campers are just a short walk to one of the best beaches in Malta, Golden Bay. Self drivers can load and unload in the main campsite, and then park in the lot. Everyone else can use the bus route for access to Valletta and the airport. If you don’t feel like making your own meals, head to the nearby Indian restaurant or Radisson Blu resort with its three eateries and ice cream parlour.
This is a rewrite of an article originally by Nicola Collins.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.