If you want much more than simply sun, sea and sand then wow your guests in Malta, with its glorious heritage
The beautiful island of Malta and its smaller neighbouring islands of Gozo and Comino, form a tiny archipelago nestling at the heart of the Mediterranean, which have a rich blend of cultures – from Moorish to Italian, and British too – as a consequence of frequent past invasions by those nations who have tried to make Malta their own.
With sunshine throughout the year, ease of communication (because everyone speaks English as their second language) and a wealth of historical architecture that will make a glorious backdrop to your photographs, a wedding or honeymoon, or both, in Malta is the perfect choice for lovers of culture as well as beautiful scenery and sunshine. With such a history, Malta offers a wide choice of venues and settings for weddings – from grand palazzo and villas to quiet beaches and gardens.
There is plenty for you and your guests to see and do – film fans can visit the locations where Gladiator and Troy were filmed, foodies will be impressed with local wines and seafood and sun worshippers will love to simply stretch out on a beach with a good book or swim in the inky blue Mediterranean sea.
Valletta, the islands’ capital, is a glorious city of golden stone, flanked on either side by magnificent natural harbours. Within this fortress the Renaissance streets unfold in an elegant grid, lined with princely palaces and dominated by the spectacular Co-Cathedral of St John where you can learn about the fascinating history of the island and the Knight of the order of St John.
Culture vultures will love the Hagar Qim and Mnandra temples, built on the coast over a thousand years before Stone Henge. Or visit the pretty fishing village of Marsaxlokk on the south east corner of Malta and see the picture-perfect painted boats bobbing about in the bay. Don’t forget to take your camera!
Gozo can be accessed by ferry or seaplane. The island is smaller, greener and more rural than Malta with fishing and agriculture as its main industries. Take the opportunity to explore Gozo’s rugged landscape and spectacular coastline, which boasts some of the Mediterranean’s best dive sites as well as historical sites, forts and Ggantija, its spectacular prehistoric temple. At the western tip are the wild and wave battered cliffs and dramatic rock formations of Dwejra – romantic locations for memorable wedding photographs.
Marry in Malta
In the Maltese culture marriages are lavish affairs, but whether you are planning an intimate wedding or an extravaganza for 150 or more guests, you can have the wedding of your dreams on the Maltese islands – from beachside ceremonies to church weddings with tailor-made wedding packages to suit your individual taste and style.
For religious ceremonies there are over 365 Catholic churches and two Anglican churches dotted around the three islands – from grand basilicas to small parish churches in rural locations. Those preferring a civil ceremony can find plenty of stunning venues to suit their tastes – from baroque palaces and stunning gardens to beautiful farmhouses in Gozo and sandy beaches. Many couples choose to say “I do” at luxury resort hotels – Malta offers a great choice to suit all tastes and budgets.
Couples can also opt to travel like royalty to their wedding by hiring the open-topped Austin Healy used by HM The Queen in the 1940s when, as Princess Elizabeth, she and Prince Phillip lived on the island as newlyweds. Alternatively, the wedding party can travel in a vintage Maltese Bus for a wonderfully authentic experience.
- Marriages in Malta are legally binding for UK and European citizens.
- There is no minimum residency requirement.
- The application to marry must be made no less than six weeks and no more than three months before your proposed marriage.
- You will need to visit the Marriage Registry in either Valletta or Gozo with your passports on arrival on Malta, prior to your wedding day.
- As English is one of the two official languages in Malta all paper work and the ceremony will be in English.
Top things to do
1. Stroll through the Silent City
Visit Malta’s medieval walled city of Mdina for a taste of Maltese tradition. Meander through the narrow cobbled streets in the ‘Silent City’ so nicknamed because no cars, other than wedding cars, are allowed.
2. Explore the underground temple
The ancient burial ground of of Hal Saflieni Hypogeum is an UNESCO World Heritage site and the only pre-historic underground temple in the world. It’s packed with statues, tombs, rock carvings, chambers and passages carved out of the rock.
3. Party in Paceville
Visit Paceville after dark – This nightlife district is a must for those looking to party the night away and offers everything from cafes and bars to restaurants and nightclubs.
4. Discover the Blue Lagoon
Take a ferry to the virtually uninhabited (with just one hotel), car-free island of Comino. Its famous Blue Lagoon is a sheltered inlet, popular with both sun worshippers and snorkelers.