I saw a thread recently on an expat forum and decided to dedicate a whole post to the subject- Weather in Malta. This is not a scientific explanation of the climate (you can find that here) but a real life description of what the seasons are like to live in. In Malta there is only really two seasons, Summer and Winter.
Malta Weather: Average Temperature
The average annual temperature is 18–19 °C (64–66 °F) (one of the highest results in Europe): around 22 °C (72 °F) during the day and 15 °C (59 °F) at night. In the coldest month – January – the temperature ranges from 12 to 20 °C (54 to 68 °F) during the day and 7 to 15 °C (45 to 59 °F) at night. In the warmest month – August – the temperature ranges from 28 to 34 °C (82 to 93 °F) during the day and 19 to 24 °C (66 to 75 °F) at night.
Summer in Malta
Summer in Malta is like marmite, you either love it or hate it. It is HOT. Bastard hot. It gets incredibly humid and 30+ degrees is hot anyway but it usually feels much hotter, more around the 40+ mark. There’s rarely any breeze, it feels like there is no air, breathing is difficult and just 30 seconds from walking out your front door you will be soaked in sweat. The nights offer no relief what so ever, unlike many other warm countries that cool down in the evenings. This real intense heat lasts mainly from July to September but the weather is hot from about April all the way through to November.
Summer Temperatures July 2018
This summer 2018 in Malta is my 8th summer in Malta and so far it’s been the easiest. The first year was bad as I just wasn’t used to it and whilst I am a little more accustomed to it, this year has genuinely been the coolest yet. We didn’t have AC in our apartment and a few fans have done us fine until now (we just had AC installed though, to make sure we survive August!). The temperature for July 2018 so far in Malta has sat way below 30 degrees, when it’s usually nearer the 40 mark.
Usually in summer, anywhere that was green is burnt to a golden brown crisp, but as this year has been considerably cooler, the gardens around the island are still surprisingly lush and green.
Winter in Malta
Not many people will tell you the truth about winter in Malta before you move here. Winter does not last long in Malta and the temperatures are very mild but the physical feel is really quite cold. From January to March it’s chilly. The temperatures range from about 10-20 but on the colder days, particularly in January, it can feel anything down to 0°C (32°F). So it can feel really quite cold in January, especially after the heat of the Summer months, it’s a big shock. The Winter can also be really quite windy, sometimes I don’t even feel safe leaving the apartment as I’m very small and have been physically blown in directions I didn’t want to go, and even when it’s just a breeze, its biting and will really numb your ears and nose!
There is no central heating in Malta and the buildings are not well insulated because of the long, hot Summer. They’re built to be more bearable during those months. It means that in Winter the apartments are often colder inside than outside. You will need some kind of heat (most aircon units have a heat setting, or you can buy a gas heater) but electricity is expensive here so it’s a good idea to get slippers, a thick dressing gown and a blanket for those colder evenings on the sofa.
Can you Swim in Malta During Winter?
Something that was mentioned, by people who come from much colder countries (e.g Poland, Sweden), is that it sounds warm enough to swim all year round. Don’t be fooled by the temperatures though. What I’m mainly trying to tell you is just because it may be 15°C in January does not mean you can go swimming. The sea temperature right this second is 14.9°C and that is COLD. The sea honestly feels like ICE from November – May. I certainly never get in the sea before mid June. Although the weather feels warm, the ocean does not!
Of course there are lunatics who swim all year round (excluding days where the gale winds cause rough seas) but they are mainly wearing full body wet suits, are properly trained and slightly insane. As a normal human I would swim from around June through to October. Anything after that and the sea really is too cold to be comfortable. I have swum in April (back in 2010 on my first visit here) before. The weather was glorious and I jumped straight in. And it was like having some kind of electric shock. My whole body jolted with the cold, for a few seconds I couldn’t breath because it felt like my insides had frozen stiff!
Winter Evening Temperature in Malta
It’s the Winter evenings that get chilly really, the wind can pick up and without the sun to heat your face the temperature really drops. However the days in ‘Winter’ are generally quite nice. It’s sunny all year round, we get the odd storm but black clouds never last long. It’s always lovely and warm when you’re standing in the sunshine, and out of the wind. Today is pretty windy but when I was sheltered from the breeze and standing in the sunshine it felt like it could be Summer!
So if you’re considering a move or holiday to Malta I hope this has given you some insight into what the weather is really like.