Discover December’s Festive Charm in Malta

Malta, along with its sister islands Gozo and Comino, is a delightful destination for everyone seeking a sunny winter getaway, including families, couples, digital nomads or retirees. Enjoy an average of five sunshine-filled hours each day and a cozy average daily temperature of 15°C (59°F) — a pleasant contrast to much of Europe’s chill.

While the cool air may not be ideal for beach lounging and dips in the sea, Malta’s rich 8,000-year history awaits exploration, alongside a festive array of Christmas Markets and engaging pantomimes. Remember to pack an umbrella; December’s showers are frequent and robust.

How Cold is Malta in December?

Minimum Temperature: Daytime 14°C (57°F), Night 13°C (56°F)
Maximum Temperature: 18°C (64°F)
Average Temperature: 15°C (59°F)
Average Precipitation: 16-19 days
Average Daylight Hours: 8.4 (Sunrise ~8:00 am, Sunset ~4:30 pm)

Is December a Good Time to Visit Malta?

Pros

Mild climate with a high humidity of 75%; rainy yet pleasant.
Ample sunny periods perfect for hiking and outdoor exploration.
December offers some of the most affordable travel options, barring the Christmas season.

Cons

Beach and water sport activities are paused for winter.
Most boat trips are on hold until April, except for services to Gozo and occasional short trips from Ċirkewwa.
What to Wear in Malta in December
Dress in layers to adapt to the variable temperatures — mornings are cooler and evenings can be brisk. Prepare for rainy and breezy conditions: pack a mix of light and heavy sweaters, a sturdy water and windproof jacket, and comfortable shoes.
Hiking enthusiasts should include appropriate footwear. Don’t overlook a folding umbrella and a swimsuit (for those irresistible spa days).

Local Tip: Despite winter, apply sun protection regularly and wear sunglasses to safeguard against the bright, sunny intervals.

Discover December’s Festive Events in Malta

1. Embrace the Christmas Spirit in Malta

As December dawns, Malta, steeped in religious traditions, dons a festive look. Streets and shops sparkle with decorations, and the air resonates with Christmas carols. The island’s historical treasures and architectural marvels await, now free from the usual crowds.

Local Insight: Enjoy special Christmas attractions and nearly 95 village festas.

2. Explore the Christmas Village

Piazza Tritoni in Valletta (near the city gate) transforms into a Christmas hub starting December 8th. Delight in stalls offering traditional Maltese treats and crafts. The market, running till January 7th, features an ice rink and surprise visits from Santa.

3. Marvel at a Record-Breaking Christmas Tree

Witness the spectacle of Birzebbuga’s Christmas tree, over 15 meters high and adorned with 24,000 LED lights, setting a world record. Surrounded by six more trees, it’s a sight to behold.

4. Discover Maltese Christmas Traditions

Nativity scenes, handmade with intricate clay figures, are a highlight. Bethlehem f’Ghajnsielem, near Mgarr Harbour in Gozo, showcases these displays with 150 actors and artisans, offering a glimpse into traditional crafts from December 13th to January 8th.

5. Experience Santa’s Toy Town

Popeye’s Village, a summer favorite, transforms into Santa’s Toy Town in December. Children can marvel at elves crafting toys, Malta’s largest Christmas stocking, Santa’s train ride, and a festive market from December 8-10, 13, and December 15 to January 7.

Best Indoor Places to Visit in Malta During December

December in Malta often brings rainy days with heavy showers and blustery winds, making it an excellent time to explore the island’s cozy indoor attractions.

1. Savor the Valletta Coffee Scene

Rainy days are the perfect excuse to immerse yourself in Valletta’s renowned coffee culture. Tuck into quaint cafes in the capital and warm up with delicious cups of coffee. Don’t miss out on the local delight, pastizzi – a flaky pastry filled with rich ricotta cheese.

2. Discover the Splendor of St. John’s Co-Cathedral

With fewer crowds, December is an opportune time to visit St. John’s Co-Cathedral in Valletta. This Baroque masterpiece, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, houses Caravaggio’s iconic ‘The Beheading of St. John the Baptist.’ An audio tour enhances the experience, offering insights into the history of the Knights of Malta.

3. Enjoy a Festive Show at the Manoel Theatre

Experience the magic of Maltese tradition with a Christmas production at the historic Manoel Theatre in Valletta. Built in 1731, it’s among Europe’s oldest theaters and offers a unique backdrop for festive performances.

4. Underwater Adventures at Malta National Aquarium

Ideal for families, the Malta National Aquarium in Saint Paul’s Bay is a must-visit on rainy days. Featuring 41 displays, including a large main tank with a walk-through tunnel, it offers close encounters with sharks, rays, and diverse marine life.

Best Winter Activities in Malta

1. Go Trekking

Utilize the bright sunny spells in December for trekking. The central island’s Victoria Lines trail, the breathtaking Dingli Cliffs, and the path to the famous Blue Grotto offer stunning views and memorable hiking experiences.

2. Join a Jeep Safari to Gozo

Embark on an exhilarating exploration of Gozo, starting with a private boat trip from Valletta. This full-day excursion combines historical discovery and natural splendor, highlighted by a visit to the UNESCO-listed Neolithic Ġgantija Temples. 

3. Discover Valletta’s Street Food

Dive into Valletta’s culinary scene on this three-hour walking tour. Taste the essence of local street food, including various Maltese specialties, beer, and the beloved kinnie — a unique carbonated drink made from bitter oranges, rhubarb, ginseng, and licorice. The tour, starting at the City Gates, is a delightful blend of flavor and culture.

4. Make Your Own Truffles

Join skilled chocolatiers for a workshop where you’ll master the art of making truffles. Discover the intricacies of chocolate work, from flavor infusion to crafting perfect truffles. Learn about pairing wine with chocolate and how unique flavor combinations can tantalize your taste buds. Leave with a box of 12 handcrafted truffles, a perfect Christmas gift.

Malta: A Delightful December Destination

Malta in December offers pleasantly warm days, though rain might occasionally alter your plans for outdoor adventures. However, you might also find yourself pleasantly surprised by plenty of sunny days and lots of activities to keep you busy. 

The post Discover December’s Festive Charm in Malta appeared first on My Dolce Casa.

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