If you are thinking about purchasing or renting a home in Malta or Gozo, you may want to understand more about the cultural pull that has visitors falling in love with the sunny Islands. Malta, without natural resources, has many other different attractions that reap plenty of business and leisure tourists not to mention the long term visitors that often start out property for rent in Malta and eventually purchase a home away from home. Here below is a list:
Malta is the ideal place for a festival of any kind. Here, you’ll find all sorts of festivals ranging from the traditional ones (such as those to do with agriculture and religion) to the latest music festivals featuring top international celebrities. Alternative festivals abound too. Be it a music festival, performing arts festival or a traditional one, the quality varies, but are usually extremely high.
The Maltese theatrical scene is surprisingly vibrant. With only a limited number of theatres and small budgets available, theatrical companies succeed in producing shows of an incredibly high standard. These shows are generally well-known plays and musicals of the sort produced in London or New York, however recent years has seen an explosion in new writing and the production of locally-written shows. Many foreigners visit Malta on excursions that will include a play or two not to mention the odd opera musical.
Music plays a large part of the Maltese cultural landscape. Whatever your musical tastes, you’ll find it alive and well in Malta. Although small, the music scene is broad and of a high standard.
Many big-budget blockbusters come to Malta to shoot, relying on the island’s mixture of landscape and architecture to stand in for anywhere: Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, even mythical places. Having said that, the local film scene is gaining a steady record of increasing impressiveness thanks to government grants and facilities. Films such as Gladiator and Troy changed the impression of big-time producers and today Malta is in the running for shooting of many epics not to mention the recent Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie film, being shot on our sister Island Gozo during Summer of 2014. Such films attract a huge boost to the Maltese economy. We have even had the odd celebrity buy a second property in Malta.
Maltese artists draw inspiration from a huge selection of local places and stories, from historical locations and symbols such as the neolithic gods, to the religious, maritime or military traditions that are so much a part of Maltese culture. Maltese art is varied and rich, both in the modern and traditional sense.
Maltese literature is currently riding a wave of popularity that is well deserved and that unfortunately was lacking in decades past. Be it poetry, short story or novels, there are a number of extremely popular local authors writing excellently in both English and Maltese.
If you’re looking for something more alternative, you might want to check out two very new scenes on the local cultural spectrum: Stand up comedy and cabaret. They’re not for everyone and both are still in their very early stages of performance and development, but both are gaining quite a reputation!
These last few years have seen a resurgence in popularity of a more home-grown influence in the arts scene. A pride in Maltese history and traditions has resulted in an explosion of Malta-centric novels, plays, films and music. Folk bands, new writing, poetry, spoken word and a small alternative scene are finding new audiences.
Capital of Culture
Malta will be the European Capital of Culture in 2018, a title the Maltese government is taking very seriously. Plans have been underway for years with cultural entities all over the islands contributing towards what will no doubt be a memorable year for culture in Malta, with workshops and exchanges covering most aspects of Maltese culture from traditions and folklore to sports and education.
Clash of Cultures
Because of its location and size, throughout history Malta has been invaded and occupied by pretty much anyone who ever built a boat. This gives Malta a stunning mixture of culture in almost every sense of the word. From our language to our customs, food, beliefs, rituals, way of life, architecture and behaviour. It’s an embarrassment of riches culturally, the like of which you’ll be hard pressed to find anywhere else in the world.
So, there you are. We’ve provided you a summary of some of the interesting cultural pulls. Just to note, purchasing or buying a home in Malta will not be a cultural shock! The system is very straight forward and the legal system is solid therefore protecting your rights as a consumer. If you’re are interested in a renting or buying it is recommended that you go through a reputable estate agent in Malta.
If you’re looking for a family friendly location to buy or rent a property in Malta, it is important that you find a place that is not only safe for the kids but close to all the amenities especially if you do not plan on driving in Malta.
Malta has limited to practically no crime, however there are a couple of places that you should avoid during the late evening/early hours of the morning. Paceville, located on the outskirts of St. Julian’s – bordering Swieqi and within walking distance to Pembroke is known for its late night clubbing.
The other area that may not be recommended as a family friendly area to purchase or rent a home is Bugibba. Bugibba has been touted as the Benidorm of Malta and is a frequented holiday resort where there are several bars, restaurants and clubs.
Where to Live in Malta?
Living in Sliema means living in the centre of it all. You’ll be close to shopping malls, high street shopping, cafes and restaurants, living by the sea, and there is a wide choice of properties available for sale and for rent along the promenade as well as inland.
Within the Town of Sliema there is also a number some apartment developments with internal security namely Tigne Point & Fort Cambridge. School bus routes all pass through Sliema.
On the downside, it gets very busy and traffic is nearly always heavy. Parking can be a problem, even in the back streets.
Until recently, Swieqi was mostly semi-detached houses or large apartments. Recent development means it now offers a wider variety of properties to choose from, in different shapes and sizes and highly finished. A desirable suburban area, Swieqi is close to the shore and to the largest cinema complex in Malta, a bowling alley and several shops. On the down side, it’s also close to Paceville (Malta’s clubbing hub), which can cause parking and noise problems in some areas. As the school transport pass through Sliema it also passed through Swieqi as well as our next Town, notably Pembroke.
If your kids are students at Verdala International School or St. Catherines School, you may want to consider Pembroke as a place to live. Quiet and suburban, Pembroke is located along the coast, all of which is still unspoiled. There’s plenty of countryside for walks and playing. There are also a relatively large number of schools and sports clubs in the locality.
Balzan is a lovely place to look for a town house with a garden. You may also find lovely spacious apartments, maisonettes not to mention the odd farmhouse with pool. It’s quieter than neighbouring Birkirkara. Takethe little ones to San Anton Gardens nearby in Attard, or to the very child-friendly Ta’ Qali National Park, which is close by too. There are some lovely cafeterias as well as Supermarkets. School Bus Routes also pass through Balzan.
Busy in general, but depending what you are looking for, you may find the San Gwann valley area appeasing and convenient. It is a stone throw away to Sweiqi and St. Julian’s through the valley, a two minute drive to Mater Dei Hospital and University, easy for shopping, and with great transport links including School routes. It’s like being far enough away from the hustle and bustle but close enough to visit whenever you feel suitable. In San Gwann there are a number of rental investment opportunities as well as some lovely semi-detached and detached villas and terraced houses that are somewhat reasonable. One may also choose to go to The Village or Monterosa Gardens which have since become extensions of San Gwann.
Situated on top of a hill, Gharghur is a quiet town. It is a great place for nature walks as it is surrounded by valleys. It’s also relatively close to the coast and the largest Maltese water park. Gharghur is better known for either houses of characters or large apartments.
The town is very intimate whereby most families know each other within the core area. The Town has grown however and its extended areas which are closely touching Madliena one will find some beautiful homes overlooking Gharghur Valley namely Wied Id-Dies.
Not far from Buskett (Malta’s woodland area, ideal for picnics), Zebbug is another old village with some lovely old homes available. If you’re after old family town house, this is a good place to start looking. Think narrow streets, church bells ringing, and a large village square that gets busy on summer evenings. It’s also close to Balzan.
Busy around the beach area but quiet in the back streets, Birzebbugia has a sleepy feel too it. It can be a bit run down in places but, as it’s right on the coast, it could be a good alternative to other busier coastal towns. It’s quite close to Smart City. Birzebbugia has a number of restaurants and beaches, namely Pretty bay. Birzebbugia also is known for its archeological site Ghar Dalam.
Also close to Smart City, Marsascala is another seaside town. It can get rather busy in the summer and is an ideal place to take a dip as well as to go out fishing. The area has a safe feeling with the people being very hospitable and trustworthy. It is very close to Sant’ Antnin Family Park which is a leisure area for both locals and foreigners. Together with Birzebbugia, both located in the south of Malta, attract several local and foreign families. There is a variety of properties for sale in Marsascala mainly in the form of apartments and terraced houses. Ta Monita is also a development that one should definitely look into when considering Marsascala.
Not an obvious choice, but this could be a great place for kids. Small in size, enclosed and with no cars, Mdina is a great place for children to play outside, not to mention the sports fields in the moat surrounding thiswalled town.
Mdina might not be the best place to find a home, although there are a number of beautiful townhouses dated back hundreds of years located within the town. Mdina is also very close to San Andrea and San Anton Schools both independent educational centres located in L-Imselliet, L/O l/o Zebbiegh.
We hope this article assists you in that it provides you a good idea of popular family friendly areas where one could live in Malta. It is recommended that you visit the towns and also check out the available properties in Malta.