So you think you’re moving to the Mediterranean for long, hot summers and short, mild winters? Think again. I’ve lived in Malta for over 7 years now and I think it’s time, to tell the truth about winter in Malta. As a nation, we’ve been holding a deep, dark secret for many years, one that shocks and disturbs people when they survive their first winter here…
Winters in Malta are f**king freezing.
Average Temperature of Winter in Malta
Ok, so in a lot of Europe the temperatures fall way below zero every winter and in Malta, it rarely drops below 10 degrees. We don’t have frost, we don’t have snow. But we also don’t have central heating and humidity (you’ll get sick of that word after 6 months of living here) really does turn ‘mild’ temperatures into ‘freezing’. As a rule, anything below 15 degrees in Malta is pretty uncomfortable. If you’re outside, in the sunshine, it’ll be lovely. You’ll be sitting in the sun, drinking cocktails or enjoying a day with the family and believing that even winter in Malta is nicer than summer in your home country. But wait until the sky becomes overcast or the evening sets in.
Heating your Home During Winter in Malta
Homes are generally built to lose heat, insulation is not something that Maltese developers believe in, despite the fact it’d make homes cooler in summer and warmer in winter. To survive a winter in Malta you will need to arrange some kind of home heating. My apartment is always very cold inside and keeping warm can be a real struggle.
- Fluffy slippers,
- Thermal socks,
will become staples but along with layers, layers, layers I’d recommend a heater or two. Gas heaters, electric heaters, mobile radiators; look at all of the options and make sure to get at least one in time for winter.
Gas Heaters in Malta
Many people swear by gas heaters in Malta. Both the heaters and the gas are pretty affordable but on really cold days you can end up using it so much that the gas costs will creep up. They probably have the best warming effect but quite a small radius and you’ll only really benefit if you remain right next to them. Due to the gas they can smell and can be the more dangerous option if you have pets or small children.
Electric Heaters in Malta
There are so many different kinds of electric heaters that it’s hard to recommend them, but this would be my choice. Make sure to find some that are low energy, as electricity prices (for most renting tenants) can be very high. We have a flat wall mounted heater that takes up no space in the apartment and whilst it takes a little while to heat up, it warms more of the room and is cheaper to run than gas.
Winter Clothing in Malta
Don’t be fooled by all our Instagram posts of sunbathing in winter. It does happen that some years we get a lovely warm winter, where we can spend most of the days in t-shirts or light cardigans but this is the exception, rather than the rule. If you’re in the sun, it’ll be lovely, warm even. But move into the shade for a second and the goosebumps will creep in. Be prepared and have a winter coat, preferably waterproof, as a short, sharp, but very heavy shower is not uncommon.
My advice is to layer, so if the day ends up warm, you can strip down to your t-shirt but if it begins to cool you can pop on your jumper, your scarf or your Big Coat, depending on how chilly it gets.
Sensationalism aside, winter in Malta is much more bearable than the UK, Sweden and all other colder countries. You’re not going to get snowed in or fight with frosty windows in the morning. So long as you prepare your home and don’t throw away all your winter clothes from home, you’re going to get through it and you’re going to love how short this period is. Before you know it, you’ll be complaining that summer came around too quickly and wishing for those chilly winter nights!