Adventure sports are challenging enough without having to worry about the weather. Luckily, Malta’s mild climate affords excellent conditions to enjoy them all year round, and some stunning scenery to take in at the same time. While the island may be known for its historic forts and secluded beaches, there’s a burgeoning extreme sports scene attracting thrill-seekers from all corners of the globe. From scuba diving in the Mediterranean Sea to off-road mountain biking and cliff rock climbing, the Maltese islands are a fitness enthusiast’s playground. Find out how to get involved with this guide to adventure sports in Malta.
The Maltese islands are built for rock climbing. Whether you prefer cliff face climbing, sea level traversing, bouldering or abseiling, there’s a rocky surface to whet your climber’s whistle. The cliffs make for a challenging yet beautiful climb over the ocean, while the coastline is littered with giant cliff-side sandstones that are ideal for bouldering. Like anywhere in the world, it’s safest to climb with a professional company. MC Adventures takes visitors to the best spots in Malta, while Gozo Adventures offers full-day and half-day climbing trips to sites on neighbouring Gozo.
If you’re a born water baby, exploring under the sea is one of the most thrilling experiences you can have. While not without its risks, the opportunity to see marine life up close is a powerful draw. Visibility in the clear blue Mediterranean Sea surrounding Malta is excellent, and there are a number of natural reefs, caves and shipwrecks to explore that are teeming with species such as stingray, groupers, parrot fish, moral eel, bream, octopi and scorpion fish. In the winter months you may even spot a dolphin as the sea mammals seek refuge in warm Mediterranean waters. There are dozens of dive schools across the island, many of which offer certified PADI courses.
Get back to nature with extreme off-road mountain biking. A great way for adventure seekers to explore the island while satisfying their inner thrill seeker, biking is one of the most popular sports in Malta. Speed down sloping hills, through green woods and past historical sites, and back up through the Maltese countryside to seek out breathtaking views of the coastline. Bikes can be hired from companies such as EcoBikes Malta and The Cyclist, while visitors without a reliable sense of direction can choose to sign up for guided tours.
Challenging, exciting and extremely popular, kite surfing is one sports fad that’s here to stay. Picking a location with optimal wind conditions is essential because surfers must harness the power of the wind to fly the kite. The best spots are on the north of the island at Golden Bay, Mellieha Bay and Ghajn Tuffieha Bay (locally known as Riviera). Each beach enjoys predominant winds from the north, which is ideal for the sport, so strap on your kite and you’ll be flying in no time.
Are you an art lover or culture vulture holidaying in Malta? Well, you’ll be pleased to find that this Mediterranean island may be small, but it packs a punch when it comes to art and culture. Here are six recommended destinations to add to your itinerary to experience the best of Malta’s art scene.