At the crossroads of Europe and North Africa, Malta’s unusual history has seen a string of conquerors come and go over the millennia, each leaving their imprint. Today, the island is a sublimely rich, cultural melting pot of language and traditions, not to mention seafaring symbolism. Dig in deep to the petite country’s culture by picking one neighbourhood to call home on your return stay. No doubt, Malta will have you coming back, year on year.
Undeniably one of Malta’s finest heritage hotels, the Phoenicia is a local institution. Its sprawling gardens and luxurious infinity pool nuzzle the city walls of Valletta in the capital’s sister suburb, Floriana. If the exquisite hotel bar doesn’t capture you, head over to one of Floriana’s band clubs, Il-Gazin Vilhena, an intimate bar that will transport you back to the 1970s in the best possible way.
On the beautiful Quisisana coast of Sliema, this chic, modern hotel has its own beach club for those who prefer a dip in the sea, or divine infinity pools for the less intrepid swimmers. Walk the length of Sliema’s coast to the local’s favourite pizza restaurant, Piccolo Padre, and be sure to ask for a table on the balcony overlooking the bay.
This chic hotel is perched on the shoreline of Marsamxett Harbour’s waterfront, gazing out over Gżira and picturesque Manoel Island. Boasting a heated indoor pool and an in-house restaurant that honours Maltese culinary traditions while adopting a modern flavour, the Waterfront is ideally located for a visit to Manoel Island. Be sure to pop into Funky Monkey to mingle with a cool young crowd until the small hours.
Located in downtown Mellieha, a short drive from Malta’s best beaches, this central property offers rooms, suites and apartments with contemporary interior design and views across the bay. Mellieha locals are unlikely to tell you about the tiny secret beach, Selmun (also known as Imġiebaħ Bay), whose remote sands require a well-rewarded hike to find. Don’t say you heard it from us.
The Dolmen has been welcoming guests to St Paul’s Bay for generations. Its chic redesign presents light, modern rooms for a young crowd to enjoy alongside the fun bars, decadent spa, diverse restaurant, gargantuan infinity pool and adjoining casino. The humble beach bar, Ta Fra Ben, is a neighbourhood favourite where you’ll want to watch the sunset night after night.
The eccentric, decadent design in this boutique hotel sets a scene of pure opulence for your stay in St George’s Bay. Whether you select one of the suites with a private jacuzzi or find yourself whiling away the small hours in Rocco’s Whiskey Lounge, H Hotel will not disappoint. If you want to keep experiencing the unusual, go for a climb in neighbouring Pembroke barracks, whose ruins are perfect for an Instagram photo shoot.
If you want to know where to stay in Malta for a weekend, these charming apartments in the heart of Valletta are perfect. With cool, crisp design – certain to please the discerning millennial eye – each of the Barrakka suites comes with home comforts including your own kitchen and television area. Pop out to Cafe Society, one of the city’s pioneering bars, to mix with the locals for music and the highest quality beverages in town.
One of Valletta’s finest boutique hotels, 66 Saint Paul’s was originally a glorious old palazzo. From minimalist, slick design to the rooftop pool and on-site spa, you’ll be utterly pampered after wandering the city. If you can drag yourself away, be sure to dine in Trattoria Romana Zero Sei, one of the island’s best Italian restaurants, tucked away from the crowds.
Quartered across a row of charming townhouses, this adorable guesthouse will give you an authentic slice of Sliema living. The attractive interiors, full of layered textures and patterns, provide a home-from-home feel. If a dip in the sea is not your thing, hang out with the locals at Neptunes Waterpolo Club – the freshwater pool is one of the best in Malta.
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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.
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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!
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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.