Mellieħa Bay is the largest beach of thirteen pocket beaches around Mellieħa. It is a sheltered beach between two headlands and is situated on the Northern part of the Island.
Its sand has a low gradient slope and together with its clear, shallow water makes it the most popular family beach on the island. Mellieħa Bay has most facilities and services including restaurants and two hotels. Some parts of the bay are designated for water sports and wind surfing. Beach management is operated between June and September by the Malta Tourism Authority with the cooperation of Mellieħa Local Council. It includes the services of lifeguards, a small First Aid clinic, two beach supervisors and a number of persons in charge of beach maintenance. It is an accessible beach furnished with a mobile toilet, wheelchair access and special sand wheelchair buggies for physically impaired bathers. In 2011 the beach was awarded a Beach of Quality Award. Mellieħa Bay has an old castle perched on one side while the old village of Mellieħa is situated high on the opposite side. The hinterland of Mellieħa Bay was once an important salt flat and wetland, known as L-Għadira. It is now a Nature Reserve that boasts of indigenous flora and fauna, and is popular with bird watchers who study local and migratory birds. Mellieħa Bay is also referred to as L-Għadira.
Mellieħa ([məˈliːhə], or il-Mellieħa) is a large village (pop. 10,003 in March 2013) in the northwestern part of Malta. It is a popular tourist destination during the summer months. Mellieħa as a village developed under British colonization after the British encouraged people to settle in the area by giving leases to the population. For two centuries previously, the area was abandoned due to fear from attacks of corsairs and Saracens. Before that, only a few villagers lived in the area.
Marsaskala, sometimes written abbreviated as M’Skala, is a sea-side village in Malta that has grown around the small harbour at the head of Marsaskala Bay, a long narrow inlet also known as Marsaskala Creek. The bay is sheltered to the north by Ras iż-Żonqor, the south-east corner of Malta, and to the south by the headland of Ras il-Gżira.
The parish church is dedicated to Sant Anna (St. Anne) and St Anne’s feast is celebrated at the end of July in Marsaskala.
The Marsaxlokk market is a very popular attraction featuring in many guide books and therefore attracts many tourists and locals who go to buy fresh fish and seafood caught during the same morning as well as everyday items.
The market is very interesting and attractive as many different items are sold and people come here to socialize. Although the Marsaxlokk Sunday Market was originally a fish market, it has developed, and now it also sells locally produced honey, fruit jams, wine as well as vegetables, souvenirs and clothes. After shopping at the market, you can have lunch in one of the many seafood restaurants scattered in the picturesque bay of Marsaxlokk.
St. Julian’s is now a major residential and tourist centre, and home to some of Malta’s newest hotels. It is now an extension of Sliema although it started life as a small fishing port based on Spinola and Balluta Bays. St. Julian’s merges with Paceville, Malta’s main nightlife centre where there are clubs, casinos and numerous restaurants, cafes and bars. Picturesque Spinola Bay is still used by fishermen whose traditional boats are housed just below the restaurants. The bay is particularly attractive at night and as a venue for open-air dining. The elegant Spinola Palace, built in 1658 by an Italian knight, Giovanni Spinola, is the landmark historic building on the bay. Another fine building with superb sea views is Villa Dragonara, now a casino, on the headland of St. George’s Bay.
The Parish Church in the summer resort of Marsaxlokk was built in 1897 and is dedicated to our Lady of Pompei. The parish in Marsaxlokk is today the venue of a national pilgrimage every year on the 8th May.
Marsaxlokk Bay is Malta’s second largest natural harbour. It is the best place to see the colourful, traditional Maltese fishing boats, the Luzzus, with the mythical eye painted on their prows.
The village is the Islands’ main fishing harbour; its Sunday fish market a fascinating insight into local life and a traditional industry. The stalls brim with the night’s catch – fish of all shapes, colours and sizes. The village itself has many good fish restaurants. Marsaxlokk derives its name from the Arabic word marsa, meaning harbour, and Maltese for the south-easterly Mediterranean wind, the Xlokk (Sirocco in Italian). Marsaxlokk, with its sheltered habour, was an easy landing place for pirates and the Ottoman Turks. It was here that the Ottoman Turks landed for an attack which ended in the Great Siege of 1565. Napoleon’s army landed here in 1798; and in recent times, the harbour was the scene of the Bush-Gorbachev Summit,1989.
The headland to the left of the Bay is Delimara Point. It has two attractive, secluded rocky inlets suitable for swimming: Peter’s Pool; and the furthermost part of the headland. Fort Delimara, on the west of the peninsula, was built by the British in 1881 to guard the entrance to Marsaxlokk Bay.