Malta is a country famous for its stunning Mediterranean beaches. From wild, secret swimming spots to popular plunge pools, we’ve got the low-down on exactly where you should swim on the island.
With 300 days of sunshine per year, Malta is one of Europe’s most sunkissed countries. While the UK is home to pebbly coves and its fair share of vast sandy beaches, we don’t exactly have a reliably warm climate to match. For those in dire need of a refreshing dip, or a sunny cove to read on, pencil Malta onto your travel bucket list!
Whether you head to the Mediterranean archipelago on a relaxing cruise or on an adventurous solo trip, you are sure to discover that Malta’s coves and swimming holes are comparable to the sparkling delights of Croatia and Greece. As a tourist destination, it’s on the underrated side, meaning there are fewer tourists and there is more space on the beach for you to relax with a great read. While the island nation is small, you will have your pick of pristine beaches and swimming holes. Here’s where to begin.
Situated on the northwest coast of the island, Għajn Tuffieħa is one of Malta’s best beaches - however you will need to work for the privilege of an afternoon swim here. Għajn Tuffieħa, or the ‘Apple’s Eye’ in Maltese, is not the most accessible of all beaches. Ditch the flip flops and slip into some sturdy walking shoes, as you will need to descend more than 100 steps to reach the bay below. Fortunately, you will be more than rewarded for your efforts.
Towering cliffs frame the striking red sand beach and its clean, aquamarine waters, making it picture perfect. You might have also guessed that Għajn Tuffieħa is one of the finest Maltese locations for viewing the setting sun.
If you’re planning on spending the day at this dreamy site (why not?) there are plenty of sunbeds and umbrellas available for hire, plus there’s a snack bar that will help to fuel you for your daily activities - whatever you choose!
St Peter’s Pool is quite different to the other swim spots, in that it’s a naturally-formed ocean pool. Plunge off limestone cliffs into the azure waters for a bit of a thrill, or recline onto one of the many flat rocks for a well-earned doze in the sun. If it’s a peaceful, quiet spot you’re searching for, head to this beauty spot in the early morning. St Peter’s tends to fill out as the day goes on.
Mellieħa Bay, also known as Għadira, is the largest and most popular sandy beach in Malta. So if you fancy a bit of atmosphere, pack your beach bag and get on down to Mellieħa. Well-loved by families, the sprawling sandbank is easily accessible and is home to safe, shallow waters. If you’re feeling up to it, the beach also offers a wide range of aquatic activities, including paddle boating and jet skiing. Whatever you do, be sure to slather on that sunscreen!
If Għajn Tuffieħa is not quite rugged enough for you, we can recommend Fomm ir-Riħ, which is one of Malta’s truly wild beaches. This stunning pebbly beach is favoured by divers and snorkelers for its secluded and diverse natural environment. Be careful and choose a calm day to visit, as it can be dangerously wavy during high winds.
The path down to the beach only takes 20 minutes, however it can be fairly steep. This means there is the risk of slipping on the way down, and overheating on the journey back up - so only head to Fomm ir-Riħ if you are confident in the outdoors.
Tucked between striking limestone cliffs on the western coast of Malta is Ġnejna Bay. This vibrant spot is a total sun trap. The sandy beach is beloved by locals, offering plenty of opportunities to swim and relax in a scenic, quiet location.
Ġnejna is a fantastic location for travellers to appreciate the raw Maltese environment at its finest. If you are looking for a range of amenities, you unfortunately will not find it here. Which can be a good thing - if you can best appreciate nature at its most pristine! However you might like to prepare a cool bag of food and drinks in case the seasonal vendors and mobile snack bars are not available on the beach during your visit.
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