The most magical time of the year is here!

Let’s be honest, we all know that Christmas is going to be a bit different this year. But that doesn’t mean it has to be any less special.  And there is nothing more delightful than Valletta in the holiday season! Lights, elves, and even puppet shows are taking the capital by storm over the next few weeks, so if you stay safe, follow health regulations, and look out for each other, there is no reason why a festive shopping trip to the city this Christmas can’t be just as magical as always!

But don’t just take our word for it. Here are eleven reasons why families with young children should definitely head down to Valletta ASAP…

1. There is nowhere better to see the coolest stuff!

With Christmas only days away, kids revel in seeing the awesome gifts that might (if they are on the “nice” list) find their way to the tree! And there is nowhere better to browse than Valletta, the city that is practically a massive, open-air shopping arcade! From specialities to big brands, Valletta offers it all, and whilst the kids get wide-eyed at the shop windows, maybe you could hint to your significant other what you wish Santa would bring for you too!

2. Those Christmas decorations!

The street lights, the massive Christmas tree with over 5000 LEDs in front of the new Parliament Building, the presepju and the festive music in the streets. So many of our fondest Christmas memories revolve around Valletta; December in the Valletta has almost become a rite of passage. A walk through the capital means that Christmas is officially here. Ho Ho Ho!

3. It is safe for children

Photo Credit:Darren Agius | VCA

The main areas of Valletta are pedestrianised; no need to worry about cars coming and going. You can just walk with the kids with an absolute peace of mind. Time to treat yourself to another mince pie? 

4. And we’re talking Covid-19 Safety seriously

Valletta is taking NO risks at all when it comes to Covid safety. So, when it comes to you and your kids, you can set your mind at ease that sanitiser, masks, social distancing, and a limit to the number of people in shops at any one time WILL be part of your Valletta experience. Christmas is about caring and this year, caring is what your Valletta experience will be all about.

5. The WOW Projections?

Photo Credit:Darren Agius | VCA

This year, the Christmas projections on the the palace facade and the Casino Maltese will blow you away. Watch in wonder as Lisa M. Kaehler’s incredible nativity scene unfolds at the Main Guard in St. George’s Square. The projections are on every day, on the hour, from 6pm onwards. Just whip out your phone and snap some picture memories!

6. And how about a FREE Christmas show?

Photo Credit:Darren Agius | VCA

Here in Valletta we know how important it is to have fun! In fact, As part of its’ Christmas in the City programme Valletta Cultural Agency is presenting different Christmas stories being retold by master puppeteers Sean Briffa and Jeremy Vella. The full schedule of puppet shows is available on the Valletta Cultural Agency Website. Tickets for these shows are FREE but spaces are limited due to Covid-19 mitigation measures, so send an email to info@vca.gov.mt to book your place.

7. or Santa’s Elves on Stilts

Photo Credit: Darren Agius | VCA

Pandemic or not, some things never change. Like letters to Santa! And with so many long letters coming his way, the big man has had to recruit assistants on stilts this year, just so that they can read the longest one. These assistants usually work at the North Pole, but they have been given special permission to come to Valletta this year, to meet children in the capital, and even give them little pressies!

Santa’s assistants will be roaming the streets of Valletta on Wednesday 16th December (5 – 8pm), Saturday 19th December (11am – 2pm), and Wednesday 23rd December (4 – 7pm).

8. Add little culture to your shopping.

Photo Credit: Muża

We all know that the history that surrounds you in Valletta is unique, so why not take the opportunity to explore it a bit more? With the Heritage Malta passport scheme, kids are entitled to free entrance to places like The National Museum of Archaeology, The Palace Armoury, The Palace State Rooms, Fort St Elmo & The National War Museum, The Fortifications Interpretation Centre, St John’s Co-Cathedral and MUŻA – The National Art Museum. They can take two adults of their choice in with them for FREE as well! The only question is, will they choose you?! 

9. You can make a day of it

Photo Credit: Marijen30 | Instagram

Shopping, culture, Christmas lights, and then stop for some hot chocolate. It is a Christmas experience like no other. And if you don’t want to go home (you won’t!) just start all over again!

10. And there’s no hassle to park

Parking at Christmas time can sometimes be a nightmare…. but not in Valletta! There are LOADS of car parking spaces in and around the city. And don’t forget there is Free Parking at MCP on the 13th of December and from the 19th of December to the 1st of January. If you don’t like stressing over parking, then Valletta is the place for you!

11. And finally, you know you love it too

Yes, a trip to Valletta is great fun for the kiddies. But face it, you love it too. Shopping, lights, history, culture, and fun! All in one day out. And of course, if you are not the one driving, you can even sneak in a mulled wine, or three!

Bonus: Santa is officially a key worker!

Photo Credit: Freepik

World leaders have now confirmed that Santa Claus is indeed a key worker and therefore will not be bound by quarantine and travel laws, meaning he can travel freely on Christmas eve and do his deliveries as always! The magic of Christmas is indeed alive and well! So let’s celebrate it! This Christmas, I shop Valletta safely!

Ho ho ho!