Hot skies and warm smiles
Many say that it was the big city souls of Valletta who discovered the charms of Sliema first, since they were using it for holidays and building summer homes here as far back as the 1800s.
The rest of the world quickly cottoned on though, and today the popularity of Sliema package holidays means town has seen much in the way of development, in both hotels and amenities, to make it a social town rich in friendly hubbub and countless activities.
Nevertheless, it's the coastline that's the big pull for a great many of us, and you won't be left wanting here. The promenade stretches for kilometres, winding around the shore and giving tremendous views of both the city sights and the boats that bob idyllically in the marina.
Steps and slopes across this serene path give you the chance to head down to the seaside, although you'll find that many of the beaches here are pebbly, which makes for a keen ruggedness compared to the sleek modernity of your surroundings. Either way, beach life remains popular in Sliema, as do waterfront pursuits such as fishing, boating and painting the view of the harbour.
Sliema shopping sensations
The interwoven streets and inherent style of Sliema could easily see you losing yourself to some well-earned retail therapy on your Malta holidays. Because Malta has plenty of history with the UK, a good number of familiar shopping chains from home are easily found here, including Boots and good old Marks & Sparks.
Yet if you head deeper into the shopping district, you'll find the part of Sliema known as The Ferries. Here, upmarket boutiques, stores bursting with high fashion and outlets dedicated to cutting edge sophistication are lined up for your attention. We told you they knew how to do shopping right in Sliema.
Flavours with history
There's a great deal to like in Sliema, and when hunger comes calling, you're going to find the meals are part of that package. Enticing Mediterranean flavours await you across a spectrum of restaurants, with Il Fortizza being one of the more notable. It's an Italian restaurant, housed in the ancient walls of a former fortress, and you can be assured that there are plenty of tales this place can tell.
If dining by the sea is more your scene, you'll be in good company when heading to Surfside Sports Bar & Grill, where a full panorama of the Mediterranean is a very welcome dinner guest. Seafood platters await you at Barracuda Restaurant, while Marianna's Tex-Mex Restaurant serves up the best burritos this side of Cancun.
Toasting your travels
Lively nightlife characterises Sliema wonderfully. Venues range from live music joints that encourage you to clap along to the beat of tunes from folklore, to the nightclubs that get everyone talking, and the beach bars where cocktails under the stars are a given.
Rustic pubs like The Plough & Anchor and The Jack of All Trades give plenty of warmth and company, while Pier 90-91 Boat Bar lets you sip your tipples at sea, so you'll really feel like you're on holiday.