With EuroPride Valletta 2023 scheduled to take place in just a few months, we look to learn more about the wonderful nation that will be its host this year, Malta.
For the last seven years, Malta has been ranked the number one European LGBTIQ+ travel destination by ILGA-Europe. Maltese people are very welcoming and gracious hosts and with plenty of gay-friendly restaurants, events, pubs, and nightclubs, LGBTIQ+ travelers will be sure to have an enjoyable and amazing time discovering Europe’s hidden gem.
MALTA IS UNIQUE –
Malta is a beautiful archipelago nation, famed for its breathtaking coastline with stunning azure waters, tropical weather, bountiful nature, and it’s steeped in history dating back to 5900 BC.
Located in the central Mediterranean Sea, Malta is less than one hundred miles south of Sicily, Italy. This European country is the world’s tenth-smallest country in area and its capital, Valleta is the smallest national capital in the European Union by area and population. Malta is made up of three main islands, all having their own unique charms, but all possess the same gracious welcoming hospitality. The larger island of Malta boasts a greater number of attractions, while Gozo offers spectacular views and a more sedate and relaxed lifestyle. Comino is the smallest of the three main islands, mostly uninhabited (only one family resides in Comino, the Vella Family) and has one of the clearest blue seas in the world, as well as fortifications from the early 17th century.
Boasting 300 days of sunshine per year and surrounded by sapphire blue colored waters, Malta has a greater number of attractions than the other islands and is known for its 7,000 years of history, epicurean delights, including five Michelin star restaurants, stunning beaches, and memorable nightlife.
Climate — Mediterranean, that means warm and dry summers, mild wet winters. In September, you’ll likely find warm temperatures ranging between 20°-30°C or 68°-86°F, with a pleasant sea breeze.
Language — Maltese, English and Italian
Timezone — Central European Time (CET)
Currency — Euro €
Foreign Visitors – EU visitors can enter Malta with a valid national ID card. Other countries’ visitors are required a valid passport. Visitors from certain countries may need additional documentation, please check with the Maltese Embassy in your country for further information.
Electricity – Bring a travel adaptor for your electrical appliances and devices: we use the UK 3-pin rectangular plug G system. The average voltage is 230v.
With a population of around half a million and a total land area of just 122 square miles, you would think Malta would feel crowded. Fortunately, finding your own quiet place to hike, relax on the beach, or enjoy a cliff-top seafood lunch above the Mediterranean is all within reach, once you know where to look. If you don’t, ask the locals as the Maltese are eager to help.
WHERE TO STAY –
Accommodations in Malta include luxurious five-star hotels, B&Bs, guest houses, hostels, boutique hotels, apartments, villas, and even traditional farmhouses for rent. All accommodation providers welcome LGBTIQ+ visitors.
Consider staying around St Julian’s, Sliema, and Gzira if you like to be in the center of the buzz. These areas are closest to Paceville, Malta’s vibrant nightlife with nightclubs, bars, and restaurants. Sightseeing tours, boat trips, and shopping are easily accessible from Paceville, too.
If you want to immerse yourself in the island’s history and culture, stay in Mdina or Valletta. Choose Mellieha or Gozo for a peaceful getaway and enjoy spectacular views, nature, and a slower pace of life.
No matter where one chooses to stay, one can easily travel to other places of interest, as Malta’s 122 square miles is easy to get around.
Related Post: Malta – An Island Nation Where Game of Thrones Meets Da Vinci Code
All bars in Malta are gay-friendly. The following bars are particularly popular with LGBTIQ+:
Michelangelo Club Lounge (Club in Paceville)
Michelangelo is the only local gay club on the island. Spread over two floors with facilities such as a lounge/VIP area, fully stocked bar, a dance floor, and a more relaxed private area on the second floor.
Monaliza Lounge (for Drinks in Valletta)
Monaliza Lounge was built into the bastion walls of Valletta. Head upstairs to look out through a glass wall onto the outside terrace and the beautiful views of Valletta.
Enjoy the view while dining on healthy platters and indulge in some of the finest wines and cocktails on the island.
Café Del Mar (Lounge in Qawra)
The north of the island is well-known for its scenic seascapes, and Café del Mar is the ideal setting if you want to take in stunning views of St. Paul’s Island – all the while enjoying the chic surroundings of this lido. Café del Mar offers all the best aspects of Mediterranean living in one hip space: gorgeous sunsets, great music, an infinity pool overlooking the sea for daytime leisure, refreshing cocktails, flavorsome food, and good vibes. Café del Mar is especially popular during the summer on Sundays from 3 p.m. onwards, where you can enjoy DJ sessions in a buzzing atmosphere.
BEACHES ON MALTA –
Looking for the top gay beaches in Malta to enjoy some fun in the sun? There are no designated gay beaches in Malta, but all Malta beaches are considered gay-friendly! Most of the sandy beaches are in the north of the island, but rocky beaches should not be underrated, since they offer excellent snorkeling opportunities with great visibility even in the height of summer. Several Malta beaches have acquired a Blue Flag status, which guarantees a level of safety and service. Secluded beaches are hard to get to but worth the effort.
There are a few beaches that gay people tend to gravitate to. Most of these beaches are secluded.
- Riviera Bay (Għajn Tuffieħa)
- Ġnejna Bay
- Ras il-Qarraba
- Fomm ir-Riħ, Baħrija
- Mġiebaħ, Selmun
MALTA AND THE LGBTIQ+ COMMUNITY –
The Maltese LGBTIQ+ Community is a proud part of a European LGBTIQ+ Movement, but also finds itself at the heart of the Middle East and North African regions where equality is still a far cry. With Malta’s ranking at the top of the ILGA Rainbow Index for five years in a row, it works constantly to maintain and achieve full equality from the heart in Malta as well as in neighboring communities where LGBTIQ+ phobia and lack of human rights are still rife.
MALTA PRIDE –
Malta’s annual pride is held usually the first week in September. Last year’s theme was #LiveYourTruth. Pride week is a fantastic time for LGBTIQ+ travelers to be their authentic selves, to celebrate and to explore Malta, Gozo, and Comino. The website for the 2022 Pride is still up (MaltaPride.org) so you can see what great celebrations took place. And if you cannot make it this year to
EUROPRODE VALLETTA 2023 –
As a leader in that part of the world for LGBTIQ+ Equality, this could be one of the many reasons EuroPride Valletta 2023 is scheduled to be in Malta for September 7 – 17, 2023. This is sure to be an experience as it will be the largest gathering of Love & Diversity Malta has ever seen, bringing you #EqualityFromTheHeart and hosted by Allied Rainbow Communities, organizers of Malta Pride.
The target for EuroPride Valletta 2023 is to offer the EMENA (European, Middle East & North Africa) LGBTIQ+ Community a safe port of call while providing a stage where LGBTIQ+ human rights issues can be addressed and discussed. It is a way to contribute to more diversity and equality in Europe and surrounding regions and help to find ways to have a high level of human rights for all LGBTIQ+ people. For more information head over to EuroPride2023 and VisitMalta’s EuroPride Valletta 2023 page.
FINAL NOTES –
For more information about the gay scene or traveling in Malta, Gozo, and Comino, consult gaymalta.com and VisitMalta.com.
You can also find information on Gay Guide Malta and at these other following sites and channels: