We spent one week in Malta, which was enough to fit in the highlights but not so much time that we got bored. While one week isn’t enough to see every single great thing to do in Malta, there’s plenty of time to see some of its most incredible places. It’s also small enough that you can see a different town/city and take a new day trip every day. Here’s our Malta itinerary for one week:
Our Malta itinerary started with one of my favourite places. I recommend spending 1-2 days in Malta’s beautiful capital, Valletta. We had a much needed lie-in on our first morning in Malta at our B&B in Il-Hamrun after Matt had booked a flight landing at 1:50 AM. We caught the bus into Valletta not far away and were dropped off outside the Triton Fountain. From there, we set off exploring its gardens, grabbing some lunch at a cafe/craft beer bar, and exploring its walls and around the harbours. To end a perfect day, we went up to watch the sunset towards Sliema from Valletta’s walls followed by dinner near the Upper Barrakka Gardens.
The next morning, we continued exploring Valletta, including some brunch on one of its beautiful streets, stopped by St John co-Cathedral, and took in views of the beautiful Grand Harbour before heading on a day trip to Mdina.
Read my guide to 24 hours in Valletta to find out more of how we spent our time in Valletta.
You only really need a day, perhaps even a half day, to see the ancient city of Mdina. But it is well worth seeing.
Mdina’s well-preserved streets have unsurprisingly attracted filming crews and it was used in the first series of Game of Thrones as King’s Landing including its main gate, some of its side streets and Mesquita Square.
Plus Mdina is just pretty. We walked down quiet, beautifully old-world streets passing brightly coloured doors flanked by flowing plants and olive trees, opening onto medieval squares. One particular door seems to draw every instagrammer that wanders through Mdina’s streets. But I just couldn’t help seeking it out myself, and want a house with a blue door/purple tree just like it.
Nearby, you can reach Rabat in just five minutes, providing even more spots to explore on a day trip.
Read my day trip guide to Mdina.
Most people choose to visit Gozo on a day trip. But as I’ve recently written, I think this gorgeous island deserves a little longer, perhaps 2-3 days. Start day one with Ramla Bay, probably Malta’s prettiest beach, covered in reddish gold sand.
The island’s capital, Victoria (also known as Rabat) is worth exploring for its citadel and fortified wall along with its old-world streets begging you to get lost in them.
Gozo is also full of pretty bays and stunning coastline to explore. Little villages like Xaghra are dotted throughout the island and many accommodation take the form of farmhouses, with a large selection featuring pools. We spent our second day in Gozo just lounging by the pool before going on a stand-up paddle boarding tour across the channel to Comino, snorkelling around the crystal clear waters and exploring nearby caves.
St Paul’s Bay
Perhaps, like many visitors to Malta, you came in search of its endless sunshine. The area around St. Paul’s is great for swimming, lounging, walks around the bay, and nearby beaches. Although we based ourselves for roughly half the trip in St Paul’s Bay, we spent most of it on day trips to the surrounding areas and only spend our last day before the airport hanging around in St. Paul’s, and you probably don’t need more than that to see the area.
Across the harbour from Valletta is the cosmopolitan city of Sliema. You can see Sliema easily in a day. Sliema is great for swimming, shopping, and bars and restaurants. We headed down to Sliema from St Paul’s Bay and spent the majority of the day walking along the seaside promenade, stopping off at various spots to go swimming. After, we headed to the Point to browse some shops and watched the sunset at a restaurant on the water. Read more about the best things to do in Sliema.
Complete your Malta itinerary with a day trip to Marsaxlokk. We chose to visit Marsaxlokk on our last full day in Malta. The charming fishing village is located on the southern part of Malta. The village has gained fame for vibrantly painted fishing boats, fresh seafood, and ancient history. Spend the day wandering the harbour, sampling seafood fresh off the boat, enjoying the views and if you can, seeking out nearby swimming spots. Check out my guide to Marsaxlokk.
It can be a good spot to visit on your last day as direct buses run from the airport to Marsaxlokk. Coming back from Marsaxlokk, we stopped back off in Valletta to see the capital one last time and watch the sunset from the walls again, ending what was my absolute favourite day on this holiday.
There’s plenty more to add to your Malta itinerary if you have more than one week in this beautiful country. Find more ideas here.
Looking for more tips on getting around Malta, what you should budget for Malta, and what to see? Check out my complete guide to Malta.