Malta is an island in the Mediterranean Sea, to the south of Italy, where the two main languages spoken are English and Maltese. Malta has become an increasingly popular holiday resort in recent years, boasting a wide range of attractions and reliably lovely weather and hot dry sunny summers.
Malta has a subtropical Mediterranean climate, with warm and moist winters, and hot dry sunny summers. Due to the moderation from the surrounding seas, large fluctuations in temperature are rare. Malta has a narrower range of daylight hours than over northern parts of Europe, with a mean of 10 hours of daylight during December and January, rising to just over 14 in June and July.
It is a relatively windy location due to its position in the middle of the sea, and the sinoco wind occasionally delivers hot, dry and dusty conditions up from northern Africa, particularly during spring and autumn in association with depressions moving along the Mediterranean Sea.
Temperatures are mild during the winter months, while the summer months are generally hot. At Luqa Airport, the average maximum temperature ranges from 15°C in January to 31°C in July and August, while the average minimum ranges from 9°C in January to 21°C in July and August.
Frosts are very rare, even in inland parts of the island, and the only widespread air frost (minimum temperature below 0°C) since instrumental records began was early on the 1st February 1962. The summer months occasionally become excessively hot, when the winds pull hot air up from mainland Africa, and the highest maximum temperature recorded is 43.8°C at Luqa Airport during August 1999.
Precipitation shows considerable seasonal variation in Malta. The period October to January is generally wettest, with December tending to be the wettest month of all, though there is considerable variation from one month to the next- if low pressure systems track further north than usual then there are often prolonged fine spells, whereas if lows track south, then it can be very wet at times.
In contrast the period May to September is usually very dry with a mean of less than 5mm of rain per month. The mean annual rainfall total is around 550mm, which is on a par with the driest parts of Greater London, Cambridgeshire and Essex, but when it rains the rain tends to be heavier and over with more quickly than in north-western Europe.
Sunshine is far more reliable in Malta than in northern parts of Europe, even in the wet winter months. The mean annual sunshine total at Lupa Airport is just short of 3,000 hours, compared with a mean near 1,500 hours over most parts of England. Sunshine totals average 155-160 hours during December and January (a mean of five hours per day) and rise to over 350 hours (between 11 and 12 hours per day) during July.
Malta has a moderately humid climate thanks to the surrounding seas, with average relative humidity of 79% during the winter months, falling to 69% in mid-summer, though the humidity is low compared with most tropical resorts. The rain of the winter months is sometimes thundery, with a mean of 5 or 6 days per month with thunder during winter, but thunder is very rare during the dry summer months.
The mean sea temperature varies between 16°C in late winter and early spring, with a minimum in February and March, and 26°C during August, which makes diving and snorkelling attractive during summer and early to mid autumn.
What's the Weather like in Malta in January?
January is usually the coldest month of the year in Malta, but compared to the rest of Europe, it's quite mild and frost-free. It's a good time visit if you're looking for cheaper flights and accommodation but probably not if you're after a beach holiday.
Is Malta Warm In January?
At this time of the year, the average temperature stays constant at 13°C throughout the month with daily highs of 16ºC and lows of 13°C during the night.
Malta's Highest And Lowest Temperatures In January
Since 1987, the highest maximum temperature which has ever been recorded in Malta in January is 22.2°C which occurred in 1988. On the other hand, the lowest minimum temperature is 6.2°C which was recorded in 2002.
How Warm Is The Sea In Malta In January?
The average sea temperature for Malta in January is around 17°C, which is generally considered too cold to go swimming.
How Wet Is Malta In January?
Malta receives an average of 95mm of rainfall in January, which is usually spread across 17 rainy days. The rainy spells in Malta tend to be quite heavy and usually a lot shorter-lived than in most of northern and central Europe.
Sunshine Hours In Malta
Malta enjoys an average of seven hours of sunshine each day during January, which is much more than in most other parts of northern and central Europe.
How WIndy Is Malta In January?
Over the course of an average January in Malta, typical wind speeds fluctuate between light to moderate breezes.
Malta Hotels in January
There are a variety of hotels and apartments to choose from on the island of Malta, no matter what your budget or specifications are. If you're looking for a luxury hotel, then it's worth considering the Hilton Malta. Located in St. Julian's, this elegant hotel overlooks a rocky seafront and has a variety of amenities designed to make your stay as convenient and comfortable as possible.
For a sleek, modern hotel which offers easy access to the island's beaches and nightlife, try the George Hotel. Guests can expect to receive friendly-but-efficient service, along with an array of onsite facilities and amenities, like the indoor spa and heated pool. The hotel's restaurant also comes highly recommended.
Mellieha Holiday Centre
Families holidaying with young children should book the Mellieha Holiday Centre. Situated in the north of the island in the Mellieha Bay area, this charming and convenient resort complex includes a number of conveniences, not least of all its swimming pool and play park. Adults seeking relaxation can make use of the resort's spa.
Those on a limited budget can consider the Soreda Hotel in Qawra. Despite the lower price bracket, the hotel offers great value for money and there's a wealth of onsite facilities to make use of. Guests can relax at the onsite sauna and spa, lounge by the indoor and outdoor pools, and dine at the bespoke Bayleaf Restaurant.
Seafront Corner Apartments
Holidaymakers in search of a self-catering option should look no further than Seafront Corner Apartments. Overlooking the bay of Valletta, the vistas from the apartments are simply breathaking and form an excellent backdrop to the pleasingly minimal decor of the homes. They're also a great choice if you're planning to spend time exploring the attractions of the Maltese capital.
Beaches in Malta for January
Malta is a small island and doesn't have many beaches, but nevertheless, there are some that are worth considering. The main problem with spending a day at the beach during this month is that the weather is often unreliable in January.
Paradise Bay in the far north of Malta, close to the Gozo Ferry, is a very high-rated family-friendly beach, which contains many good facilities and smooth sands which are ideal for young children.
For a secluded option, consider the Ghajin Tuffieha. This beach is situated within a 15 minute bus journey of St Paul's Bay and is bordered by plenty of greenery. The only downside is that to access the beach, you have to navigate down a series of steep steps. The challenging journey is definitely worth it for the chance to relax in peace and quiet when you arrive.
Bars and Restaurants
Malta has a variety of cafes, bars and restaurants to choose from, many of which are clustered in, but not limited to the capital of Valletta. If you're in search of a romantic gourmet dining experience, then head to Medina.
Located within the Medieval citadel's network of streets, this restaurant is a real hidden gem and serves classic Mediterranean dishes with an imaginative modern touch.
Malet is another restaurant which offers fine cuisine and exceptional service. Located near the seafront of Valletta, the restaurant is a family-run business which seeks to provide visitors with a real taste of the island. There are a number of options to accommodate all diners and the staff will go out of their way to cater for you during your visit.
Piadina Caffe makes a good place to put your feet up if you're spending the day shopping and sightseeing in Valletta. This is another family-run establishment which specialises in serving up simple-yet-delicious dishes with a smile.
It's a bit on the small side, but the cosiness is part of the place's appeal. It also makes an excellent place to stop for coffee and cake if you're not feeling up to a full meal.
For evening hangouts, there's a range of places to choose from in Malta. Sporting fans should head to One38Lounge in Sliema to keep ahead of the latest games and sink a few beers. There's also live entertainment hosted here throughout the week.
Paceville is home to the Scotsman Pub, a big hit with British holidaymakers, who come for the traditional grub and karaoke evenings.
Things to do in Malta in January
Malta Classic Car Collection Museum
Malta boasts a number of attractive museums which cater for a wide range of tastes. The Malta Classic Car Collection Museum at Tourists Street, Qawra is recommended for petrolheads, and there's also a formidable collection of motorbikes under its roof. The museum similarly houses lots of bits of old car paraphernalia, such as cameras and radios, and would be of interest to those interested in collectables.
Fort Rinella at St.Rocco Road, Kalkara was originally a war machine with a 100-tonne gun which could send a one-tonne shell a distance of approximately eight miles, with the aim of taking down nearby ships. It was used as a defence against the threat of the likes of Britain and Italy taking control of the island.
Fort Rinella is now a museum, with many exhibits showing displays of how the site was previously used, together with guided explanations from operators.
Lascaris War Rooms
The Lascaris War Rooms at Valletta are a series of underground tunnels and chambers which previously housed the War Headquarters, from which defence operations were organised in Malta during WW2. Explore the finely-preserved rooms and corners to get a feel for the strategy and military exercises which once took place in the region.
Malta 5D at Old Bakery Street provides cinematic run-throughs of historic events and landmarks in Malta, using 3D views of the city and the Malta area. Malta 5D is open from 9:30am to 4pm on Mondays to Saturdays and from 10am until 2pm on Sundays and public holidays.