English is Malta’s second official language as it was part of the British empire for around 160 years, which shaped the island and its inhabitants, most of whom now have a good understanding of the English language.
There are many places of interest, for example, the prehistoric megalithic Tarxien Temples, home to some of the best examples of prehistoric art. Malta's size makes it a breeze to get around too, so it's possible to base yourself in one place and visit all the top attractions as a series of day trips.
- Valletta is Malta's capital, albeit small is packed full of sights; when Unesco named Valletta a World Heritage Site, it described it as 'one of the most concentrated historic areas in the world'. Valletta's status as European Capital of Culture for 2018, have seen the city reborn, with new museums, restored golden-stone fortresses, and new hotels, bars and restaurants in converted 16th-century mansions. Valletta's outskirts are even worth a visit: take the beautiful ferry trip to the Three Cities and or visit the astounding prehistoric Hal Saflieni Hypogeum.
- Geology and the sea have conspired to produce some of Gozo's most spectacular coastal scenery at Dwejra on the west coast. Two vast, underground limestone caverns have collapsed to create two circular depressions now occupied by Dwejra Bay and the Inland Sea. If this otherworldly scenery makes Game of Thrones spring to mind, you'd be right: The Azure Window was the backdrop for the Dothraki wedding in the TV show's first season.
- The Three Cities offer an intriguing insight into Malta and its history. Left largely unvisited, these cities are a slice of authentic life as well as a glimpse into Malta's maritime fortunes. The Three Cities rightly claim to be the cradle of Maltese history, as Vittoriosa, Senglea and Cospicua have provided a home and fortress to all who settled on the Islands. Their harbor inlets have been in use since Phoenician times. As the first home to the Knights of St. John, the Three Cities' palaces, churches, forts and bastions are far older than Valletta's.
- The Hypogeum (from the Greek word, meaning 'underground') is a subterranean necropolis, discovered during building work in 1902. To visit is to step into a mysterious and silent world. Its halls, chambers and passages, immaculately hewn out of the rock, cover some 500 sq meters is thought to date from around 3600 to 3000 BC, and an estimated 7,000 bodies may have been interred here.