Malta Island is by far the largest of the three islands and the one that most visitors head to, while the smaller Gozo has remarkable scenery and a rich history, and the tiny Comino at 3.5 square kilometres is mostly a reserve with no cars and one resort.
The capital, Valetta, was designed as a fortress city, and built in only 15 years, producing a late Renaissance and Baroque beauty that resulted from some marvellous town planning. Even additions up to the 19th century harmonize well with the existing structures. Just walking around Valetta without a guidebook and you’ll find little historical details to appreciate such as niches and fountains, along with petite streets with charming cafés and shops.
Malta is a favourite summer destination and it can get crowded and very hot, but the beaches, both rocky and sandy, are plentiful enough that you can get away and get back to nature. Travelling in autumn and spring will allow visitors to see the islands more comfortably. Just as the Maltese language will feel both familiar and foreign, so will the cuisine – Mediterranean at its core but with strong influences from nearby Sicily and North Africa.