Book Your Holiday Online 24/7 or call one of our travel team Monday to Sunday 9am to 8.00pm
From the Arabic 'msayda' which means `a fisherman's dwelling', Msida is a town that has long identified itself with the sea. Today, Msida is still home to a large number of boats although visitors are just as likely to find luxury yachts moored at the Msida Yacht Marina as humble fishing boats. Fishing remains an important contributor to the town's economy although the area has become considerably more urbanised in recent decades.
The construction of the University of Malta in Msida has contributed to the rapid growth of the area and visitors will be struck by the vibrant youthfulness of this bustling university town.
The university is a focal point of Msida, making it worth a visit to the Tal-Qroqq area of town where the campus lies. Although its roots can be traced back to the 16th century, the university in its current form has been around for just over two decades and currently boasts around 10,000 students. Former students of note include Kim Jong-il, North Korea's 'Supreme Leader', who learned English here.
Another sight worth visiting is the baroque St Joseph's church, built at the beginning of the 19th century. St Joseph is an important figure in Msida; as well as being the town's patron saint, the town spends a week and a half every July celebrating the feast of St Joseph. Festivities include the traditional Maltese game of Il Gostra. The 'gostra' is in fact a greasy pole which competitors must scale to reach an object placed at the end. If you find yourself in the area during the feast of St Joseph it is well worth spending a few days in Msida enjoying the holiday atmosphere and mingling with the locals.
Due to the compact size of Malta, getting around the island is easy and all the main attractions can be reached by public transport or taxi from Msida. Well worth a visit is the old walled city of Valletta, lying at the edge of a small peninsula to the east of Msida. Much of the old walled enclosure remains and the ramparts of the imposing city gate offer spectacular views across the island.
Keen shoppers will love a visit to Valletta's Republic Street, which contains a staggering range of boutiques, souvenir stores and brand name clothing. Valletta is a lovely place to simply wander around and soak up the atmosphere, stopping for refreshments anywhere that catches your eye. The area around Queens Square is a particularly attractive spot for a drink or snack at one of the many open air cafes and restaurants.
North west of Msida is the pretty and relaxed area of St Paul's Bay, which encompasses the resorts of Qawra and Bugibba. This lively spot is a great base for divers as the water around here is extremely clear. There are plenty of opportunities for experienced divers to take part in wreck and cave dives, as well as courses for beginners.
The large student population in Msida means there are plenty of options for evening entertainment. A number of small local bars cater for a young crowd; chat to the locals to find out which are the hot bars of the moment. With fewer tourists than some of the of the more established resort towns, Msida offers some excellent opportunities to sample authentic Maltese cuisine.
Just a short taxi ride from Msida is the bustling town of Sliema, Malta's largest town. During the main tourist season many of the bars and pubs compete for custom, so it is not unusual to find drinks promotions and happy hours on any night of the week. Paceville is the place to head for if you want to party, offering dozens of clubs and bars pumping out the latest sounds until the early hours.
Whether you are looking for culture, cuisine or clubbing, Msida is a fantastic base from which to explore the attractions of Malta at your own pace. The local bus network is efficient and extensive putting most of the island's main towns and attractions within easy reach.
The student population gives Msida a unique vibrancy that is not found anywhere else on the island, making this a great place for younger visitors or simply the young at heart.