3 Days in Malta: Ultimate 3-Day Itinerary

2-3 Days Malta Itinerary

You’re planning to spend 2 or 3 days in Malta for your next holidays?

Great choice!

I have the ideal solution: 3 days Malta itineraryTo you the sun and the sea, only 2 hours flight from France.

Discover the capital of Malta, Valletta , and the main places of interest to see such as St. John’s Co-Cathedral and Upper Barrakka Gardens. Spend a day exploring the surrounding villages of Mdina and Rabat, or bask in Comino and its beautiful Blue Lagoon.

Thanks to our itinerary and our advice, visit the most beautiful corners of Malta and optimize your time during this short stay in Malta.  And because a relaxing weekend is not complete without a nice hotel, we also give you our selection of the best accommodations. 

So what to do and see in Malta in 2 or 3 days? 

2 or 3 days in Malta: what to do and see?

Day 1: Valletta / The 3 Cities

To start your 2 or 3 days Malta itinerary, no time to lose, direction Valletta, the capital!

You do not need to rent a car for this first day in Malta. To reach Valletta from the airport, 2 solutions:

  • Take the X4 bus leaving from the airport every 30 minutes. The journey takes about 25 minutes and costs 1.50 € (2 € in summer). This is obviously the most economical solution.
  • Get in a taxi. Allow around € 15 for a 15-minute journey. The rates are supposed to be fixed so do not hesitate to insist a little if you are offered a more expensive trip.

After depositing your luggage at your hotel, it’s time to go discover Valletta’s essentials. The main thing is that the city is relatively small so you can walk very well on a day trip. Of course, visits will be a little condensed, but it will not be the race!

Visit Valetta in 1 day, first of all go to see the emblematic place of the city, the co-cathedral Saint-Jean. If you only have to visit one historic monument in Valletta, this is the one I recommend. It is the most touristy but also the most beautiful!

A tip: to avoid queues, go early enough in the morning or around 12:30 during the lunch break.

From the outside, you can not imagine that the interior is so glitzy yet! Everything is covered with gold, carved, painted to form a beautiful whole. It’s definitely one of the most beautiful cathedrals I’ve seen. Be sure to admire the marble floor beneath which are the tombs of the knights of the order and the 8 chapelsdedicated to one of the languages ​​of the order.

Plan a proper outfit, if you come in shorts, sleeveless T-shirt or dress, it will cover you with shawls made available inside the Cathedral Saint-Jean.

To visit the co-cathedral of Valletta, the information is on the official website (in English).

Interior of St. John's Co-Cathedral, Valletta, Malta itinerary
Interior of St. John’s Co-Cathedral, Valletta

Continue this 2 or 3 day stay in Malta, visiting the other tourist monument of Valletta, the palace of the Grand Masters. As its name indicates, it was the place of residence of the Grand Masters of the Order.

So you can visit the state apartments and the armory, an impressive collection of weapons and armor that belonged to the knights. For the minute culture, know that the palace now houses the offices of the President of Malta and its administration.

Leaving the palace, continue your walk in Valletta to the Lower Barrakka Garden, which offers a beautiful view of the 3 Cities.

Continue your loop, passing by the sea to join the Upper Barrakka Garden, also known for offering a beautiful panorama of the 3 Cities but also for its ceremony of the gun, fired every day at 12h and 16h. Originally, the gun was intended to accommodate foreign ships arriving in the port.

The 3 Cities, it is precisely here that I advise you to continue this circuit of 2-3 days in Malta. To get there, nothing is easier:

  1. Take a panoramic lift in Upper Barrakka Garden
  2. Once in the street, cross and take a left to join the docks.
  3. A small shuttle will take you in just 10 minutes to the other side of Valletta. Count around 2.80 € round trip.

The boat drops you off at Vittoriosa, one of the 3 Cities. The other 2 are Cospicua and Senglosa. They are known for the beautiful views they offer on Valletta. The opportunity to take a nice walk or small tourist train if you are tired or a little in a hurry.

In the late afternoon take the shuttle in the opposite direction and end the day by walking the streets of Republic Street and Merchant Street, the main commercial arteries of Valletta. You can enjoy some shopping in the many souvenir shops or clothes shops.

These streets also concentrate a multitude of cafes and restaurants. The ideal place to drink a drink and then enjoy a good meal typical Maltese.

Recommend to read my complete guide to the city: 2-3 Days in Valletta: Itinerary with Top 10 Things to Do

Accommodation in Valletta

For this weekend of 2 or 3 days in Malta, the best is to spend the night in Valletta. This is clearly the most convenient for a short stay!

Here is a selection of the best accommodation in Valletta, according to your budget. In Malta, the best hotels are very fast, so I recommend booking as soon as possible!

  • Private Room : Located 300 meters from Fort St. Elmo and 700 meters from Barrakka High Garden. Comfortable double room from 75 €, the night breakfast included. The most: the excellent location, the welcome and kindness of the host, calm.
  • Grand Harbor Hotel : Hotel with traditional architecture, located in the city center of Valletta, just 100 meters from the Barraka High Gardens. Basic double room from 90 € per night or with view of the sea and the Three Cities for 110 €, breakfast included. Pros: ideal location, beautiful views, roof terrace.
  • Tano’s Boutique guesthouse : Hotel located in the center of Valletta, 2 steps from all places to visit. Spacious and bright double room from 115 € per night. Most: central location, quiet, roof terrace for breakfast. The best value for money in the city!
  • Grand Hotel Excelsior : 5 * hotel located by the sea, the view is really sublime! Very nice rooms from 170 € per night. Pros: The pool, the jacuzzi, the free parking, the excellent breakfast, the view, the service, and many other things that will make your stay truly exceptional! Our big favorite in Valletta.
  • Hotel Phenicia Malta : Luxury hotel located on the City Gate Square. Spacious double room, bright and tastefully decorated from € 349, breakfast € 17. Most: the infinity pool overlooking the harbor, the huge garden, the location and free private parking. It’s simply the best hotel in Valletta.
3 days in Malta
The three cities seen from Valletta

Day 2: Mdina / Rabat / Dingli Cliffs / Ghajn Tuffieha Bay

For the second day of this 2 or 3 day trip to Malta, I recommend renting a car. As a weekend is short enough to visit Malta, it is better not to waste time in public transport and to be completely autonomous in your itinerary.

Once your car has recovered, go to Mdina, about 25 minutes drive from Valletta. Mdina was the ancient capital of Malta, before being abandoned by the knights of the order. He preferred to be near their ship in case of enemy attacks!

Mdina is a beautiful little walled city with charming streets. Cars are prohibited, you will be quiet to walk around and discover the main things to see in Mdina:

  • St. Paul’s Cathedral and its museum
  • Vilhena Palace
  • The Falson Palace
  • Villegaignon Street

Tips for your Malta itinerary:

To learn all about the history of Mdina, there’s nothing like a guided tour! You have 3 options:

  • Guided walking tour of Mdina:  the meeting point is at the main entrance of Mdina
  • Private Guided Walking Tour:  The same tour as above, but just for your group! The tour departure date and time are flexible depending on your schedule.
  • “All-inclusive” Night Tour:  This guided night tour includes, in addition to Mdina, a 5D show retracing the history of Malta in Valletta and a visit to the city of Mosta. Transportation from your hotel is also included.
Malta itinerary
The walled city of Mdina

After your visit to Mdina, you just have to cross the large public park to find yourself in Rabat, located just opposite.

In Rabat, you can visit a church, a cave and catacombs, all dedicated to Saint Paul. The apostle would indeed have run aground in Rabat when he was shipwrecked in Malta.

Then head to your car to reach Malta’s highest point, the Dingli Cliffs. They are located just 15 minutes drive from Mdina. The walk at the top of the cliffs is quite nice and allows you to contemplate a beautiful panorama.

Finally, to spend a more relaxing afternoon and enjoy one of Malta’s most beautiful beaches,  head north and stop at Ghajn Tuffieha Bay beach.

A real sandy beach with a very special ocher color, where you can enjoy the sun and swim if the season allows it. You will find a café, a deckchair rental and toilets on site.

I also advise you to take the walk that starts from the stairs and runs along the beach to the other side. The view when you reach the end is just splendid because you can also see the beach of Gnejna Bay, which is located just below on the left.

After this busy second day, it’s time to return to spend the night at your hotel in Valletta.

Tips for your Malta itinerary:
Provide some change for the beach car park, it is “guarded” by an old gentleman who, even when there are only 2 cars in the car park, will “help” you park and ask for a coin in exchange.

Ghajn Tuffieha Bay, Malta itinerary 3 days
Ghajn Tuffieha Bay

Day 3: Comino

For this third and last day of your long weekend in Malta (for the lucky ones among you!), head to Malta’s smallest island and one of the major tourist sites, Comino and its Blue Lagoon.

To get to Comino from Valletta, you have 2 choices:

1) Take your car or reach the North of the island by bus.

Departures for Comino are from Cirkewwa (where the ferry to Gozo, the second Maltese island is) or from Marfa Bay, just next to Cirkewwa.

For 13€ round trip, a water taxi drops you off in Comino in 25 minutes. There are about every hour, a little more in high season. You can return to Malta at any time.

2) Get to Comino with an organized excursion from Valletta or other towns like Sliema/ St Julian’s/ Bugibba.

There is no choice here in terms of schedules, excursions are organized only for the day.

To book by clicking on the orange links below or the green buttons depending on the option chosen:

1) Blue Lagoon Boat Trip:  The Classic Blue Lagoon Day Cruise. Possibility of being picked up from most cities in Malta (at an additional cost, to be arranged after your reservation)

2) Blue Lagoon catamaran cruise:  same as above but on a large catamaran! An excellent choice for a great day at sea. Pick-up also available from several locations (location to be determined after your reservation).

3) Sailing trip to the Blue Lagoon  and other pretty bays: the best option for swimming in great places besides the Blue Lagoon! Snacks, wine and lunch + free transport from Malta are included.

4) Private Blue Lagoon boat trip from Valletta : and yes, you can also take your private cruise to Comino Blue Lagoon from Valletta! A good opportunity to discover the capital and the Maltese coasts from the sea.

5) Private Blue Lagoon Sailing Trip from Valletta  – For a great day at sea on a sailboat with a private skipper!

6) Comino and Gozo Private Cruise :  Simply  the best private boat tour to visit Comino  and the Blue Lagoon. Josef, your skipper, will do everything to ensure that you have an extraordinary day at sea.

Whatever your decision, when you arrive in Comino, you will take your eyes off the Blue Lagoon! The lagoon is famous for its turquoise and translucent water and its ultra-fine white sand, a little air of Mauritius awaits you here. Impossible to resist a swim!

Before or after taking a dip, I also recommend going for a walk on the Comino Tower side . The walk is pleasant and allows you to discover many viewpoints, each one more beautiful than the other.

If the flag is hoisted at the top of the tower, you also have the right to climb it to admire a 360° panorama of the entire island of Comino and that of Gozo in the distance.

On Comino, you will find several food-trucks to eat, a hotel and public toilets. And above all, don’t miss drinking a cocktail served in a pineapple and taking a selfie with it, apparently it’s totally trendy!

If you want more details to organize your day in Comino, do not hesitate to read my dedicated article: Visiting Comino and the Blue Lagoon.

Not a bad idea to end this 2 or 3 day itinerary in Malta.

If you are going to Comino using only the shuttle, it is better to arrive there early in the morning (before 10 a.m.) to take full advantage of the place before the hordes of tourists disembark.

I’m not kidding, it’s the most touristy place in Malta. I had never had such a large concentration of people on such a small piece of land.

Then return to Valletta for the last night.

If you want to take advantage of your stay in Malta to party on the last night (or even the days before!), I recommend:

Tips for your Malta itinerary:

If you only have 2 days to visit Malta, you can:

  • Option 1: Follow our day 1 and day 2 itinerary, i.e. visit Valletta in 1 day and visit Mdina / Rabat / Dingli Cliffs / Ghajn Tuffehia Bay for the second day program in Malta.
  • Option 2:  Spend a day in Valletta and go to Comino on the second day of your weekend in Malta.

So, ready to visit Malta in 2 or 3 days?

Malta itinerary
The Blue Lagoon and its turquoise water, in Comino

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Camille L.

Passionate about foreign languages, cooking and writing. I wish to share with you the places, the meetings and the gastronomic discoveries which gave relief to my travels.

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