It’s no secret that the Maltese love to party. Make the most out of your trip at these top autumn events in Malta
Unlike many parts of Europe, Malta remains warm throughout the autumn season. In fact, when the summer passes, the events season picks up. From wine tasting at Qormi Wine Festival to classic car rallies at the Malta Classic and sailing races at The Rolex Middle Sea Race, there’s plenty to keep visitors entertained until the (relative) chill of winter hits. Plan your trip around some of our favourite seasonal events in Malta.
Qormi in southern Malta is famous for its winemaking culture. Each September, the town hosts The Qormi Wine Festival, dedicated to the island’s abundant vineyards and favourite vintages. During the annual celebration, winemakers from across the archipelago present their best wines for public tastings, and there’s also a busy programme of live music and a selection of food stands serving local cuisine to soak up the wine.
An annual tradition that’s popular with the locals, the Boats Regatta sees teams from five Maltese harbour towns compete in a fierce race inside the Grand Harbour. As all participants sail traditional Maltese wooden boats, the race is a beautiful sight whether you’re a sailing enthusiast or not.
One of Malta’s most anticipated events, The Malta International Air Show is popular among both locals and visitors to the island. Each year, the air show presents myriad aircrafts owned by military personal and civilians. The highlight, however, is the series of airborne displays during which pilots will perform jaw-dropping routines and stunts over the gathering crowds.
For one night only, Arts Council Malta will treat visitors and residents to a free festival in Valletta featuring concerts, theatre and dance performances and visual arts exhibitions. The event is the largest outdoor festival on the island and attracts people from across the archipelago. Kicking October off in style, celebrations continue until the early hours of the morning, so come prepared to party.
Discover the rich history of the fortified city of Birgu at the annual BirguFest. During this weekend celebration, visitors can watch exciting historic re-enactments, explore churches and buildings that are usually closed to the public, and enjoy local food and live music.
If you harbour an interest in classic cars, don’t miss the Malta Classic. Each year, owners of some of the world’s oldest vintage automobiles drive their vehicles to Mdina to take part in a series of displays and drives throughout the historical city. One of the highlights is Le Concours d’Elegance on 7th October, which only the rarest vehicles are invited to take part in.
The Rolex Middle Sea Race is one of the Mediterranean’s most exciting autumn sailing events and attracts sailing teams from around the world to compete in an epic 50-hour race. Yachts leave from Marsamxett Harbour and sail a 608-nautical mile circuit around Sicily and past the islands of Stromboli, Favignana, Pantelleria and Lampedusa, before racing to the finish line at Malta’s Grand Harbour.
If you have time to pop over to the neighbouring island of Gozo, make sure you check out Festival Mediterranea. Celebrating its 15th edition in 2016, the performing arts festival will present a programme of concerts, theatre performances and operas by a combination of local and international artists.