If you need some November sun, but can’t face more than a three-hour flight, then Malta is a great choice.
Malta is located far enough south (at the base of Sicily) that it is parallel with north Africa. This gives Malta pleasant weather well into the autumn, with temperature highs in November of around 21C (70F), and sea temperatures of 22C (72F).
This is actually an excellent time of year to explore the country’s numerous sights without the oppressive heat of the high-season sun.
The capital, Valetta (the smallest capital in the European Union) was granted UNESCO World Heritage status in 1980. Considering its wealth of preserved 16th-century architecture, this is no surprise. Walking through the narrow, winding streets of the medieval city reveals new sights around every turn.
A main focal point, magnificent both inside and out, is St John’s Co-Cathedral built in the 1570s. Be sure to also visit the National Museum of Archaeology for a fascinating insight into Malta’s abundant history.
Valetta is also home to a labyrinth of limestone-walled streets, which host a vast array of quaint little shops where you can purchase unique gifts and even watch some being made. The art of glass-blowing can often be observed here, and you can buy the finished articles.
Just north of Valetta, Sliema and St Julian’s are the main tourist resorts, and are where the majority of the hotels and restaurants and located. Malta is not considered a party island, which is what often makes it an attractive choice for more mature travellers. However, St Julian’s does have a reasonable amount of entertainment in the evenings.
For sun-worshippers, the Grand Harbour is not to be missed, and the glorious crystal clear waters—some of the bluest and cleanest in the Mediterranean—are very inviting.
Malta has twelve blue-flag beaches, with lots of information available, and an online beach condition tracker. Malta has predominantly rocky beaches as opposed to sandy ones. However, Golden Bay has a nice sandy beach and offers spectacular sunsets. Riviera beach is also sandy.
Should you go?
Wherever you stay, the island is small enough (just over 122 square miles) that you are never far away from something of interest.
So, whether it’s culture and history you are seeking, or sun and sea, Malta will definitely tick all your boxes. The Maltese people, being especially friendly, are sure to make you feel most welcome.