If you are a food lover, then exploring around Malta is something you simply must do. It is a region where passionate chefs are birthed and where every food recipe is deeply rooted in local tradition. Variety is the order of the day as meals are served with so many different flavours.
While on a tour around Malta, be sure to try the wide variety of Maltese and western cuisine served in restaurants, streets and markets. All in some of the most popular and colourful locations of Malta.
When Dealchecker suggested we collaborate with them and present our readers with a guide to eating your way around Malta, we thought it was a great idea.
Here are the top places we would suggest you visit in your quest to …
Eat Your Way Around Malta
The ancient city of Valetta has several architectural attractions which include ornately decorated St. John’s Co-cathedral, museums, Fort St. Elmo – complete with firing cannons, and even a palace, and is small enough to walk around easily, even if you are a family have children in tow.
Culture is also seen in the wide variety of Mediterranean dishes served in various restaurants within this gorgeous city.
For those who love street foods, why not try some of the local dishes served each afternoon and evening and found dotted around the city centre.
Some of the Maltese cuisine you might want to try while in Valetta include the baked ricotta pie, rabbit stew, bread with Maltese olive oil, Maltese grilled garfish served with roasted potato (or rabbit sauce) and all the accompaniments. Many restaurants within Valetta city serve at least one of these foods. The key here is that you try as many culinary options as possible since this is one of the few places you are sure of finding a wide variety of everything; ranging from Maltese cuisine to even western meals for the kids.
This is a fish market in the village of Marsaxlokk, and where most of the fish and fish products used around Malta come from.
Bring your camera, because the colourful boats make this region a photographers dream location, and a stroll along the docking area is something you ‘must do’ through the view of your lens.
A visit to the fish market will introduce you to a wide range of fish, some of which are unique to the region. This is perfect if you have accommodation booked that has a kitchen where you can prepare your own meals. However if not, it is still worth a visit to see all the lively action sights, sounds and aromas as the fishermen engage in their daily rituals.
You can get both raw and cooked fish and fish products. While here, you might want to try some ‘Lampuki Pie‘, which is made from the Lampuki fish. Lampuki migrates to this region in the autumn so if you’d like to taste it fresh, this is the best time right up until the end of December.
The world famous Marsaxlokk Fish Market operates on Sundays and attracts both locals and tourists from all over the world. This colourful market receives a large number of fresh fish netted by the villagers caught earlier in the morning.
Do try the incredible Stuffat tal-qarnit or fish stew is often made from Squid and Octopus. You will be able to find and buy other fish and fish products like Aljotta, which is some type of a nutritious Maltese fish soup that forms part of a fisherman’s staple diet.
In Gozo, drinks play an important part in the lives of locals and although Malta islands are small, they do boast amazing wines that are locally grown.
On the island of Gozo, you can visit the Tal-Massar Winery and have a taste of the wine produced right here. You will be able to understand how wine and food interact with each other. Afterwards, you can visit a local restaurant and try out whatever you have learnt earlier in the day.
We actually learnt the art of making goats cheese and then sat down to a scrumptious lunch accompanied by amazing local wine. It was one of my favourite times in Malta and a relaxed and happy time as we chatted with those dining at adjoining tables. It is no wonder that travel bloggers from all over the world are also lured here by the charm of Gozo and restaurants around Malta.
We found great eating establishments here since they are in strategic locations dotted all over the island. Most of them are in Rabat, Marsalforn Bay and Xlendi. If you are looking for Maltese fish cuisine, then you might want to visit the restaurants in Xlendi on Gozo Island, and the quaint village of Marsalforn which both happen to be fish villages.
Mdina (old city)
There is just so much that can be seen and done in this medieval town of Mdina, and your whole family will love it. As a walled city, it boasts many historical attractions, and a horse and carriage ride through the old cobblestone streets is a must.
Mdina was once the ancient capital city of Malta and many are drawn to wander the streets each day of the year. Here you will find many cafes and restaurants frequented by both locals and visitors as the fine cuisine has quite a reputation.
Whilst in Mdina you should definitely try Pastizzi which are made from flakey pastry. Or try Qassatat which are a type of flavoured cheese rolls. You might also love the taste of Maltese bread, which is loved by locals and is always taken together with stew. You can also use some Maltese olive on Maltese bread to have a unique taste.
You must also try the famous local drink of Kinnie – it is a non-alcoholic orange and bitter herbs flavour, and a favourite with both adults and children alike. For the adults, why not order a Ċisk or local type of beer and give that a try too?
If you are getting hungry, then consult a great food guide for more local Maltese cuisine. It is wise to read up on the local specialities so you know what to look out for an order as you travel around.
Marina Hotel Corinthia Beach Resort
Perched on top of a rugged cliff and hilly area of St. George’s Bay is the Marina Hotel Corinthia Beach Resort – and because of the location, many people think that this hotel itself a tourist destination. If you do not come here for the destination, then you might also like the view looking out as the waves crash opposite. And if that is not enough to tempt you to visit, then the restaurants in this location surely will.
With numerous restaurants and bars open to the public this large resort is a drawcard to both locals and tourists staying on the island.
You can decide from many Mediterranean choices and international restaurants – some of which are accessible without even entering the hotel building itself. The vast array of worldwide cuisine means that you can choose to have anything from a lightweight and famous a Maltese salad to fine dining in the French restaurant, or chicken in a creamy curry sauce in their Indian restaurant.
A visit to Marina Hotel Corinthia Beach Resort is a great idea if you just aren’t sure what to eat whilst exploring around Malta. As you wander past the many restaurants, the aromas will help you decide the menu of the day.
Spinola Bay is so pretty by day or night, and a vibrant town with many restaurants overlooking the water. Fish seems to be one of the staple foods specific to this area as you will see fishermen going about their daily activities in the waters.
Gululu Restaurant is a well known Maltese restaurant where you must try their Spinach and Tuna Pie is one of the local dishes you are likely to love when you come here. You can also try some sea urchin which is something we both tasted with interest as its rich flavours you will either love or hate.
Whilst dining at Spinola Bay will get to enjoy your meal in a relaxing environment as you enjoy the picturesque view created by the beautiful harbour along which some of the best restaurants are found.
If you are craving a more international cuisine, why not try Mexican food at Amigos as you dine alfresco basking in the glorious sunshine as the boats bob up and down in the waters below.
Vacation in Malta
We can’t wait to get back to explore more destinations around Malta. We enjoyed a six-night vacation (flying in from Sicily, Italy) and celebrated my birthday here. Next time I would love to go and stay on Gozo Island, and relax and mingle with the locals.
There are plenty of opportunities to wander Malta safely with your camera and to be lost in the sights, sounds and magnificent aromas and culture of Malta.
Isn’t it time you booked your next vacation to Malta?