Northeast Coast, Malta Attractions
This stretch of coast is the island's most intensely built-up and touristy area, and construction continues at a steady pace. There are many hotels, guest houses and rental apartments for tourists, and there is also excellent shopping and nightlife, including restaurants, cafes and bars. The beaches are quite nice and there are many water sports opportunities.
Beyond Floriana the road first comes to Pietà (pop. 4,500), with St Luke's Hospital and the beautifully situated Villa Portelli, in which Queen Elizabeth II once stayed.There is not much to see or do here. Gwardamanga is mainly a residential area and Pietà is one of the main arteries leading to the west of the island. The only attraction is Malta's principal hospital, St Luke's, which was built in 1938 and occupies almost the entire peninsula that divides the Pietà and the Msida Creeks.On Gwardamanga's higher ground Lord and Lady Mountbatten resided at Villa Gwardamanga, and Queen Elizabeth II stayed at her uncle's villa during numerous visits, first as a princess and later as queen.
Located on the northeast coast of Malta is the popular seaside town of Qawra. Qawra is closely associated with neighboring Bugibba, although the two towns have some subtle differences.The waterfront at Qawra is rocky and not the best for swimming but the area does offer good snorkeling and resort hotels are generally fully equipped with pools. During the summer months Qawra fills up as tourist come to soak up the sun.
On a promontory at the west end of Marsamxett Harbor is the select residential area of Ta' Xbiex, with Lazzaretto Creek, in which some of Marsamxett's most expensive yachts lie at anchor.Ta'Xbiex is a quieter, more gentle area of villas and embassies. Visitors can stroll along the quays and the smaller yacht-marina, as well as through the little park.
St Julian's Bay
The bay takes its name from a chapel dedicated to St Julian, where during the Order's reign, the fishermen would congregate. Now it is the island's year-round resort for eating and nightlife. The curving bay is trying to return to its fishing origins and many of the buildings at the water's edge have benefited from skilled and sympathetic restoration.
Madliena occupies the hills and valleys that form the wild sprawl of high ground between the sea and the start of the Great Fault and the Victoria Lines. It is primarily a residential community of villas, but neither Sliema nor Valletta are far away.
Fort Madliena, 132 meters above sea level, is an inconspicuous fort constructed by the British in 1878. It has had many military uses throughout the years and is currently used as a training school.
Balluta Bay to St George's Bay
All along this coast are lidos, most with concessions such as water-skiing, windsurfing, etc. The new Neptunes water polo team pool in Balluta Bay is also open for matches and swimming.
Hidden behind Madliena is Gharghur, the medieval village of the Madliena area. This is a good place for cycling and hiking. There is a 17th century church here. The parish Church of St Bartholomew has been credited to Tommaso Dingli.
Bahar ic Caghaq water park has water slides, a large swimming pool and a children's play area of fiberglass prehistoric animals. The bellies of the dinosaurs house slides and other playground equipment.
Manoel Island is joined to the mainland by a short four-meter bridge. Steeped in history, the island is currently the subject of a much-needed major redevelopment proposal.