St Paul’s Bay started life as a tranquil little fishing village and has grown over the years to envelope the nearby areas of Xemxija, Mellieha, Bugibba and Qawra until, today, it has become Malta’s largest and most popular holiday resort.
There’s something here to delight everybody, no matter what you look for in a great holiday. The appealing old town still retains a lot of its traditional Maltese charm, with some beautiful 18th century buildings and impressive piazzas to discover along with a fine selection of first-class restaurants and cafes.
The neighbouring district of Buggiba is the place to head for a taste of the island’s thriving nightlife, crammed full of lively bars and clubs as well as a brand new cinema complex. And for one of the best beaches on the island, the sleepy Mellieha has that rare treat, 800m of golden sands.
St Paul’s is located in one of Malta’s most picturesque spots and the surrounding countryside offers a vast network of footpaths and bike trails to explore, while the crystal clear waters off the coast are perfect for snorkelling and scuba diving.
With it prime position in the north of the island, St Paul’s also makes the ideal base for day trips to the rest of Malta’s fascinating attractions. The tiny, charismatic capital Valletta is easy to reach by car or train and the intriguing ancient catacombs of Mdina are just a short trip away.
Whether you want your next holiday to be all about lazing on the beach, dancing till dawn or exploring historical treasures, we’re sure you’ll find everything you want in St Paul’s Bay.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Malta’s capital packs a huge number of ancient sites inside its tiny borders. Constructed in the 16th century as a ‘city built by gentlemen, for gentlemen’, imposing bastion walls encircle the whole of Valletta, protecting a host of spectacular buildings. Its most famous attraction, the Co-Cathedral of St John, houses two works by the great Italian master Caravaggio.
Sitting on a peninsula between two beautiful natural harbours, some of the best views on the island are to be had from the terraces of the Upper Barrakka Gardens, a peaceful haven away from the bustling city that dates back to 1661.
One of the most important historical sites in Europe, Rabat is believed to be the birthplace of Christianity on the island, after the Apostle St Paul was supposedly shipwrecked here in 60AD. Today, you can visit the grotto where he lived, buried deep underneath the grand church that bears his name. It’s just a small section of a huge complex of catacombs that stretch for over 2,000 metres.
The city is the official summer residence of the President of Malta, and the Verdala Palace sits in the nearby forest of Buskett, a beautiful example of Renaissance architecture.
The upmarket, cosmopolitan city of St Julian’s is one of the island’s most popular stops for Malta’s cool crowd. They flock here in the summer to party at Paceville’s legendary clubs and take advantage of the world-class shopping.
A laid back, sun-kissed beach resort by day, St Julian’s is transformed by night into a thriving hotspot of hedonism, with big name DJs packing out huge venues with the latest house and R&B beats.
If you’re feeling lucky, the city is also home to the Dragonara Casino, housed in a 19th century summer palace with live blackjack, poker, roulette tables and over 190 slot machines.
Exploring St Paul’s Bay…
Malta National Aquarium
Shaped like a huge metal starfish, this impressive aquarium covers over 20,000 square metres and showcases the vast diversity of sea life in the waters around Malta, as well as from all over the world. In some of its 26 display tanks are enormous stingrays and moray eels, alongside blacktip and tiger sharks from the Indian Ocean. You can see these captivating, exotic creatures up close as you walk through the main tank’s tunnel. A brilliantly educational day out for the whole family.
Bugibba Water Park
A perfect way to cool off! This free fun park is always a huge hit with children, where they can get soaked by swinging buckets, jump over spouts and shoot each other with water cannons, all in complete safety. The park is divided into different zones for different ages, so the very youngest don’t get knocked flying by the bigger kids. And don’t worry, parents get their own area where they can keep an eye on their little ones but stay well out of the line of fire!
Try a scuba dive
If you’ve ever dreamed of experiencing the underwater world for yourself, you couldn’t choose a better place to start than in the waters off the Maltese coast. The island has some of the best diving in Europe, and there are highly trained and professional instructors waiting to show you everything the region has to offer. With training dives to suit the complete novice through to deep wrecks and reefs for the experienced technical diver, Malta is an undersea paradise.
The food in Malta is a history lesson all by itself. You’ll find delicious influences from all the different European countries that once ruled the island, along with essences of Middle Eastern and Arabic cuisine. All these different flavours have been absorbed and transformed over the centuries to give the island’s cooking a distinct but familiar taste—its time as a British military garrison, for example, means you might detect the tang of English mustard, Bovril and HP Sauce in some dishes!
St Paul’s Bay restaurants
You’ll definitely find something you’ll enjoy among the more than 100 restaurants in St Paul’s Bay. With many Mediterranean-inspired eateries, there are lots of Italian and Greek choices alongside the traditional Maltese cuisine. Or, if you fancy venturing further afield, Chinese and Indian options are plentiful. If your taste buds are feeling a little homesick, you can also find a host of English-style pubs.
Malta’s most popular holiday destination, St Paul’s Bay has something for just about everyone. Party animals will love the buzzing Buggiba, singles and couples wanting to chill out on a beautiful, sun-bleached beach can head to the tranquillity of Mellieha and the family-friendly Qawra will keep the children entertained morning to night.
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