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What to Do in Malta with Kids: 10 Amazing Family Adventures

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Deciding what to do in Malta with kids can change an ordinary family holiday into an extraordinary adventure. With its sun-soaked Malta beaches, a rich tapestry of history, and a myriad of outdoor activities, this small island nation offers an exceptional blend of educational and exhilarating experiences for families.

In this guide, we’ll explore the top family adventures in Malta, including snorkelling in Comino, kayaking around Gozo, and discovering sandy beaches that are perfect for young swimmers. We’ll dive into Malta’s rich history with visits to the cannon-filled Mdina, the sea-faring city of Valletta, and the fascinating National Museum of Natural History.

For those seeking thrills, we’ll highlight nature and adventure outings, the excitement of Malta’s waterpark, and the whimsical charm of Popeye Village. Additionally, we’ll offer tips for eating out with kids, ensuring everyone’s taste buds are as satisfied as their sense of adventure. Whether sailing, exploring, or simply relaxing on one of Malta’s pristine beaches, this guide will help you craft the perfect family holiday in Malta.

Top Beaches and Water Activities – Malta with kids

Sandy Beaches for Family Fun

golden bay beach malta
Golden Bay, Malta

Malta offers a variety of sandy beaches that are perfect for family outings. Golden Bay and Mellieha Bay are among the most well-known, providing golden sandy shores and shallow turquoise waters ideal for young children to safely splash and play. For those seeking a quieter atmosphere, Mellieha Bay offers a less crowded environment where families can relax and soak up the sun. Additionally, the hidden gem of Paradise Bay in the northern part of the island offers a tranquil setting with crystal-clear waters, making it an ideal spot for children to paddle and splash around.

Water Parks for Splash Adventures

For a day filled with aquatic fun, Malta’s water parks offer thrilling slides, lazy rivers, and various attractions that children and adults alike will enjoy. Splash and Fun Water Park is a notable destination, open daily until October 27th, providing a splashtastic experience for the whole family. Other water parks on the island also feature exciting water slides and attractions, ensuring a splash-filled adventure for visitors.

Sea Caves and Snorkeling Spots

Exploring Malta’s sea caves and snorkelling spots offers a unique adventure for families. The island’s crystal-clear waters are home to vibrant marine life, making snorkelling a popular activity. Hidden sea caves around the island provide a serene atmosphere ideal for snorkelling and discovering marine life up close. Notable snorkelling spots include Għar Lapsi, known for its stunning underwater caves and vibrant reefs that stretch for 200 meters, offering an ideal environment for marine enthusiasts. Additionally, Comino’s Blue Lagoon and nearby inlets offer some of the best snorkelling experiences in Malta, with crystal-clear waters and abundant sea life.

Historical and Cultural Explorations

Visiting the Malta National Aquarium

The Malta National Aquarium offers a captivating glimpse into the diverse marine life of the Mediterranean Sea. Families and children can observe a variety of aquatic creatures including fish, sharks, and rays in settings that mimic their natural habitats. This popular attraction serves not only as a fun visit but also educates visitors about marine biodiversity and conservation efforts.

Learning from History at Museums and Archaeological Sites

Malta’s rich tapestry of history is displayed across various museums and archaeological sites throughout the island. These sites provide valuable insights into the island’s ancient civilizations such as the Phoenicians, Greeks, and Romans, along with details about the more recent rule of the Knights of St. John. The National Museum of Archaeology in Valletta, for instance, houses an extensive collection of artifacts, including the renowned Sleeping Lady figurine, offering a deep dive into Malta’s prehistoric times.

Exploring the Capital City of Valletta with kids

Valletta, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is celebrated for its stunning baroque architecture, historic landmarks, and vibrant cultural scene. Visitors can wander through the city’s narrow streets, visit the Grand Master’s Palace, and admire the breathtaking views from the Upper Barrakka Gardens. The city also hosts St. John’s Co-Cathedral, featuring impressive artworks such as Caravaggio’s “The Beheading of Saint John the Baptist” and is surrounded by formidable fortified walls that narrate the tale of Malta’s military architecture and history.

Check out the 17 UNESCO World Heritage sites in Portugal

Nature and Adventure Outings

Hiking with Kids in Malta’s Scenic Landscapes

Malta’s scenic landscapes offer a variety of hiking trails that are perfect for families with kids. From coastal paths to inland routes, there are options to suit all fitness levels. The Dingli Cliffs, located on the western side of the island, provide breathtaking views of the Mediterranean Sea and the surrounding countryside, making it a popular choice for family hikes. Trails like these are generally well-marked and suitable for hikers of all skill levels, ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience for families.

Boat Trips to the Blue Lagoon and Comino

One of the best ways to experience the stunning natural beauty of Malta is through boat trips to the Blue Lagoon and the nearby island of Comino. The Blue Lagoon, known for its crystal-clear turquoise waters, is a popular destination for swimming, snorkeling, and simply relaxing. Families can enjoy the panoramic views and the serene environment as they travel by boat, which can be a memorable part of the holiday.

A Visit to the Esplora Science Centre

The Esplora Interactive Science Centre, located in Kalkara, is a must-visit attraction for families visiting Malta. The center offers interactive exhibits and hands-on activities that explore various scientific concepts, making learning both fun and engaging for children. With activities ranging from playing with prisms to experimenting with electricity, Esplora provides a comprehensive educational experience that is designed with children in mind. The outdoor areas of the centre also offer additional activities, including musical and water play, ensuring that the fun continues outside.

Each of these activities provides families with unique opportunities to explore Malta’s natural landscapes and rich educational offerings, making for a well-rounded and engaging holiday experience.

Theme Parks and Play Areas

Fun Day Out at Popeye Village

popeye village mailta

Popeye Village, originally constructed as a film set for the 1980 live-action musical “Popeye,” has transformed into a vibrant theme park located in Anchor Bay, Malta. The park features 19 large wooden buildings designed to replicate an 1800s Sweethaven fishing village, offering visitors a unique blend of nostalgia and fun. Families can explore various attractions, including Popeye’s house, and engage in activities such as boat rides around the harbor and enjoying live shows. The village also provides a range of entertainment options, from a 4D cinema experience to a mini-golf course, ensuring that there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Interactive Play at Playmobil Fun Park

Playmobil FunPark offers an extensive indoor and outdoor play area where children can immerse themselves in various themed zones such as City Life, Rescue, Aquarium, Pirates, Police, Knights, and Fairy Tale. The park is designed to provide a safe, friendly, and stimulating environment, encouraging children to explore and interact with the classic Playmobil toys. Additionally, the FunPark hosts school outings and birthday parties, making it an ideal venue for special events where children can enjoy fun, games, and food while enhancing their cognitive development and social skills. Visitors should note that the FunPark operates on a first-come, first-served basis, especially during busy periods.

Eating Out in Malta with Kids

Family-Friendly Restaurants and Cafes

Malta offers a plethora of dining options that cater to families, ensuring that both adults and children have a delightful dining experience. ‘KULU’, located in Marsa, provides a spacious outdoor area perfect for children to play, featuring a large lawn and a swing set, allowing kids to enjoy themselves in a safe environment while parents relax. Another great choice is ‘Vecchia Napoli’, where children are entertained with coloring books as families enjoy a variety of delicious pizzas. For a unique experience, ‘Palazzo Parisio’ offers exquisite dishes in a family-friendly atmosphere with a dedicated outdoor space ideal for children. Along the Sliema promenade, ‘Il Gabbana’ combines fine dining with the opportunity for a leisurely stroll along the promenade, making it perfect for a family day out. Additionally, ‘Simenta’ in St. Paul’s Bay offers stunning sea views and ample space for children to play, enhancing the dining experience. For a wild dining adventure, ‘Rainforest Cafe’ in St. Julian’s creates a captivating jungle-themed atmosphere with lush greenery and animated wildlife that delights both kids and adults. Lastly, ‘Beanos’ in Marsascala provides two spacious play areas, ensuring that children have plenty of fun while parents enjoy their meal.

Trying Traditional Maltese Dishes

When eating out with kids in Malta, trying traditional Maltese dishes adds an educational and enjoyable element to the dining experience. Maltese cuisine reflects a blend of Mediterranean influences with dishes that are unique and flavorful. Families can enjoy fresh seafood, a staple in Maltese cooking, and rabbit or fenek, one of the island’s preferred meats.

Traditional dishes to try include ‘Arancini’, rice balls filled with beef or chicken, deep-fried for a crispy finish, and ‘Maltese bread’, topped with tomato paste, onions, capers, tuna, and olives. ‘Pastizzi’, a savory pastry filled with ricotta and peas, is a favorite local snack that can be found throughout the island. For seafood lovers, ‘Stuffed Squid’ and ‘Octopus Stew’ are must-try dishes that showcase the freshness of local catch .

Additionally, ‘Pumpkin Soup’ and ‘Bragioli’, beef rolls cooked in tomato sauce and red wine, offer hearty options for cooler days. For a sweet treat, ‘Cassata’, an almond cake with sweet ricotta filling, and ‘Mgaret’, a hot pastry with a date filling, provide a delightful end to any meal.

These dining experiences not only allow families to enjoy delicious meals but also help children learn about the local culture through food, making eating out in Malta with kids both fun and educational.

Where to stay in Malta with kids

Here are some of the best hotels in Malta that cater well to families:

1. Hilton Malta

  • Location: St. Julian’s
  • Highlights:
    • Spacious family rooms
    • Multiple swimming pools
    • Kids’ club and activities
    • Close to the beach and local attractions

2. Radisson Blu Resort & Spa, Malta Golden Sands

  • Location: Mellieha
  • Highlights:
    • Direct access to a sandy beach
    • Family suites
    • Kids’ club and playground
    • Large outdoor pool and indoor pool

3. db Seabank Resort + Spa

  • Location: Mellieha Bay
  • Highlights:
    • All-inclusive packages
    • Family rooms and suites
    • Water sports and activities
    • Close to the beach and nature reserves

4. Corinthia Hotel St. George’s Bay

  • Location: St. Julian’s
  • Highlights:
    • Several outdoor pools
    • Family rooms
    • Kids’ club with a variety of activities
    • Proximity to local dining and entertainment options

5. InterContinental Malta

  • Location: St. Julian’s
  • Highlights:
    • Family-friendly amenities
    • Private beach club
    • Several dining options including kids’ menus
    • Indoor and outdoor pools

6. Maritim Antonine Hotel & Spa

  • Location: Mellieha
  • Highlights:
    • Rooftop pool with stunning views
    • Spacious family rooms
    • Close to Mellieha’s sandy beaches
    • Indoor pool and spa facilities

7. The Westin Dragonara Resort

  • Location: St. Julian’s
  • Highlights:
    • Kids’ club and babysitting services
    • Private beach and multiple pools
    • Family rooms and suites
    • Dining options suitable for children

8. AX Seashells Resort at Suncrest

  • Location: Qawra
  • Highlights:
    • Family-friendly activities and entertainment
    • Kids’ pool and water slides
    • Family rooms
    • Close to the Qawra promenade and beaches

9. Salini Resort

  • Location: Salina Bay
  • Highlights:
    • Family suites
    • Outdoor and indoor pools
    • Kids’ play area
    • Peaceful location with beautiful views

10. Dolmen Hotel Malta

  • Location: Qawra
  • Highlights:
    • Private beach area
    • Family rooms
    • Several pools including a kids’ pool
    • Close to the Malta National Aquarium

Each of these hotels offers a variety of amenities and services designed to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable stay for families. Depending on your preferences, such as proximity to beaches, availability of kids’ clubs, or all-inclusive options, there’s a perfect choice for every family visiting Malta.

Conclusion

Embarking on a family adventure in Malta offers a rich tapestry of experiences that blend education with entertainment, ensuring that every family member leaves with both cherished memories and enhanced knowledge. From exploring the stunning natural beauty of Malta’s beaches and outdoor activities to diving into the island’s vibrant history and culture, this guide has outlined the top adventures that promise to make any family holiday unforgettable. The array of activities, including a visit to the Malta National Aquarium, snorkelling in crystal-clear waters, and discovering Malta’s historical gems, caters to diverse interests and age groups, making Malta an ideal destination for families seeking a blend of adventure and learning.

Planning a trip to Malta offers more than just holiday memories. It provides a glimpse into the heart and soul of the country, fostering appreciation for culture, history, and nature. I hope this guide helps you have a perfect family holiday, but the true journey lies in exploring, learning, and connecting with Malta’s beautiful landscape. It is an enriching adventure for both children and adults. Also, check out our post about Malta during the last few months of pregnancy.

FAQ about Malta with kids

What are the top destinations in Malta for families with children?

For families visiting Malta with children, there are numerous family-friendly activities and destinations to explore. These include Bird Park Malta in Salina, Popeye Village in Mellieha, the Playmobil Factory in Hal Far (near Birżebbuġa), Mediterraneo Marine Park and Splash and Fun Water Park in Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Fort Rinella in Kalkara, the Malta National Aquarium in Qawra, and the immersive Malta 5D experience in Valletta.

Where should families consider staying when visiting Malta?

When it comes to selecting the best area for families to stay in Malta, there are several options depending on your holiday preferences. Valletta is ideal for a city break, while Buggiba, Qawra, and St. Paul’s Bay are recommended for a family holiday. Mellieha is perfect for those seeking a beach holiday, Sliema is great for a romantic getaway, St. Julian’s/Paceville is suited for a trip with friends, and Gozo offers a unique experience away from the main island.

Is Malta a good destination for a family holiday?

Yes, Malta is an excellent choice for families looking for a vacation destination. The island boasts some of the most stunning beaches in the Mediterranean, such as Golden Bay, Mellieha Bay, and Paradise Bay, which are not only beautiful but also safe and child-friendly with calm, shallow waters.

What are the best activities for children in Malta?

The best activities for children in Malta that also promote learning through play include music, dancing, and singing; imaginative play; physical activities like running, jumping, climbing, and swinging; nature play; sensory play; basic board games; cooking and pretend-cooking activities; and even playing with a simple cardboard box for endless creativity and fun.

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