Malta is packed with interest, yet is laid-back and easy. There are boat trips, beautiful towns, crystal clear sea, friendly people, magnificent views and you can go from swimming in clear sea to a cliff top prehistoric site, to a harbour side restaurant, all in a few hours. Combine sightseeing and beaches on Malta with a relaxing stay on Gozo, with its hillocks, small villages and carved-out coast, and you have the perfect holiday.
Malta’s landscape contrasts rocky stretches of coast that end in dizzying limestone cliffs with sheltered bays that hide the crystal water and sandy beaches. The islands’ marinas jostle with boats, and you can take to the water in sky-blue traditional craft, stately yachts or speedboats. Snorkelers and divers have much to explore underwater as well, a world of caves and wrecks.
The advantageous freedom to travel across Europe has signified a stark increase in the tourism industry in Malta and has had a ripple effect on the wider economy. The tourism industry is the main industry in Malta which reflects 30% of the GDP and thus generates 35% of the Government’s total revenue. In 2014, international tourist arrivals stood at 1,689,809 while tourist expenditure stood at €1.5 billion. The activity is estimated to have sustained 20,500 jobs directly and a further 7,300 jobs through supporting activities. One in every seven jobs in Malta is thus of the result of tourism expenditure. This implies that every €10 million spent by tourists sustain 137 jobs. In 2014, as a result of the 6.1% increase in tourism expenditure, 500 new jobs were created. Indicators for this industry show that over the past five years there was sustained growth which was reinforced in 2014, both with respect to competitor destinations in the Mediterranean, as well as in comparison to the growth of outbound tourists in source markets. The below figures clearly show the importance of tourism for the economy.
Tourism Economic Importance in 2014
Total tourist expenditure (000s) EUR 1,528,765
Tourist expenditure per capita EUR 905
Employment in accommodation 5,476 full time (2013 yearly average) 3,518 part time
Employment in food and beverage 4,483 full time service activities (2013 yearly average) 6,464 part time