Cheap flights to Malta
An idea for runners who like a challenge, but want to be away from the crowds and constraints of organised marathons, is to run across Malta from coast to coast. End to end is almost exactly a marathon, though there’ll probably be a few bonus miles as you follow your nose. Begin at the rocky promontory of Il-Kalanka tal-Gidien (you can enjoy an early swim at St Peter's Pool). Away from the resorts and urban areas, you'll enjoy exploring the quiet countryside.
You'll meet bemused shepherds tending their shaggy flock, see ancient farmhouses as you criss-cross Malta's quiet lanes, following your nose and a compass bearing towards the sea. Treat yourself to a pampering in a hotel in Valletta afterwards. The entire city is a World Heritage Site and extremely beautiful.
Level of Difficulty: Extreme.
What to pack: Suitable clothes for running, map, compass, food and water, hat, sun protection.
Best time to go: April, before it becomes too hot.
History in abundance, stylish resorts, and some of the best diving sites in the world – it can only be Malta. Few places pack as much into such a small space as Malta.
It might only be a mere 246 square kilometres in size, but you’ll find whatever it is you’re after from a holiday in this diverse little island. Secluded beaches for you sun worshippers, 7,000 years of history for culture buffs and action-packed resorts full of watersports by day and pumping nightlife after dark – it’s all here.
As Malta inches towards its role as European Capital of Culture in 2018, why not embrace the fast-growing cultural scene here on the island? The Valletta Baroque Festival takes place in January at the stunning Manoel Theatre, while operas, plays and ballets are held every weekend at other theatres around the city, and beyond.
As the weather cools, head north to Mellieha to explore the countryside. Ghajn Tuffieha is a great place to start, with pathways leading down to dinky bays for a quick swim and sunbathe.
Summer in Malta is all about long evening strolls along the promenade. Start in Sliema and follow the coast along to St Julian's, stopping for a bite to eat or an ice cream. The rocky bays all along this stretch are also ideal for an evening picnic under the stars.
The Three Cities should top every Maltese itinerary. Bursting with history, culture, top restaurants and a marina lined with super yachts, there's something very special about this southern spot. If it was good enough for the Knights of St John, then it's good enough for us!
If you thought festivals were just about muddy fields and music, then it's time to think again. Festivals in Malta celebrate everything, from strawberries to bread, snails to Nutella. Whatever month you're over, check local listings for the schedule of zany "fests". visitmalta.com
Get on your bike at www.bikerentalmalta.com and head north to discover's Malta's off-the-beaten-track personality. Start near Golden Bay and wind your way up to Mellieha Bay - the perfect spot for a picnic in the winter sunshine.