Surrounding area: what to visit?
Villages in the south of Malta are the soul of island and if your visit is well-timed to coincide with a lively village ‘festa’, you will be able to enjoy the typically Maltese experience. The South also has its own set of must-see tourist attractions including the Megalithic temples, traditional fishing villages and spectacular sea caves. Some coastal towns and villages in the vicinity of Marsaskala that are definitely worth a visit are Marsaxlokk, Kalkara, Qrendi, Xgħajra, Birżebbuġa, Żurrieq and Qrendi. There are also inland towns and villages such as Żejtun, Santa Luċija and Ħaż-Żabbar which all have their own parish church and adjacent square where the locals often meet up to exchange gossip or simply sit and watch the world go by.
Restaurants in Marsaskala
Marsaskala is known for the great selection of restaurants it offers making it very popular with locals and tourists alike. Choose from different kinds of cuisines available and enjoy al fresco dining with beautiful views of Marsaskala town and the beach.
Hiking and Trekking
With gentle hillsides, breathtaking cliffs, isolated seaside inlets and secluded pathways, there’s no shortage of trails to explore around the Maltese archipelago. Spring, autumn and most of winter offer the perfect climate to walk the contrasting and rich Maltese countryside. Coastal towers, wayside chapels, indigenous wild fauna along typical rubble walls, and rugged garigue with sweeping coastal views are a gratifying way to explore the island. You can start your walk from the picturesque Marsaskala and walk down to Marsaxlokk admiring the outstanding sea views and diversity of habitats and plants along the way. If you visit Marsaxlokk on a Sunday, you will surely not want to miss the popular fish market where you can admire the decorative Maltese boat called ‘luzzu’.
A Day at the Beach
Even though Malta has a multitude of historic and cultural gems, the sunny weather and idyllic beaches remain a main draw for tourists. There are the obvious popular sandy beaches as well as the rugged but no less beautiful rocky coasts. Gozo also has a number of unique spots and Comino’s Blue Lagoon remains one of the best spots for swimming and snorkelling anywhere in the Mediterranean. Some of the most beautiful swimming spots in the south of Malta are the number of beaches from Żonqor Point to St Thomas’ Bay, as well as Għar Lapsi, Żurrieq Valley, St Peter’s Pool and Pretty Bay, the lovely sandy beach in Birżebbuġa.
If you’re staying in Malta, then you definitely don’t want to miss the island’s three UNESCO World Heritage sites: the capital city of Valletta, the Megalithic Temples of Malta, and Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum. Thanks to the capital city’s 320 monuments, UNESCO has dubbed Valletta as “one of the most concentrated historical areas in the world”. Many people are also surprised to learn that Malta’s Megalithic Temples, found on the islands of both Malta and Gozo, are the oldest free-standing monuments in the world – even older than the pyramids of Egypt or Stonehenge! Described as “a site that bears a unique testimony to a cultural tradition which has disappeared,” the Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum is a complex made up of interconnecting rock-cut chambers set on three distinct levels. The earliest remains at the site date back to about 4000 BC, and the complex was used over a span of many centuries, up to c. 2500 BC. It is also the only prehistoric burial site which is accessible to the general public. Furthermore, bones of ice age animals are visible inside Malta’s oldest prehistoric site, Għar Dalam.
The Maltese Islands’s rural element is also fascinating, thanks to Malta’s charming villages and captivating folklore. The country is additionally packed with other attractions and places of interest, including the impressive collection at the National Museum of Fine Arts, the medieval Palazzo Falson in Mdina and the exhibits at St John’s Cavalier Art Centre. Children will undoubtedly enjoy fun parks, such as the original movie set where Popeye was filmed, known as Popeye Village, and so many more activities and events happening all over the islands.