No Maltese Christmas is complete without these traditions

We might not have the typical White Christmas here in Malta, but the Islands still overflow with festivity and cheer each year. Local Christmas lovers take certain traditions rather seriously, but wholeheartedly enjoy all of them (and rightly so).

Here are some local traditions that make a Maltese Christmas, a Maltese Christmas

The Vetches

Otherwise known as ġulbiena, these are seeds that grow into a hairy, white shrub, often used for decoration.

Your nanna probably grows several of these under her wardrobe in November, and then places them around baby Jesus in December.

The Nativity Crib (Presepju)

This is quite the tradition for Maltese people, and you’ll find nativity cribs everywhere – in houses, shops, schools and even in public areas. Your family is also likely to have quite the collection of figurines (pasturi) that are treated like precious gems.

They even hold competitions for this… some have a functioning water system and some are even made out of chocolate! (and no, I’m not joking)

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#Presepju #Malti #Luqa #Valletta 2018

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Christmas Carbs

It’s no secret that we take Christmas lunch pretty religiously here. And the big feast has to, of course, start with some carb-galore-induced first course.

This is typically a classic timpana or yummy lasagne followed by, as expected, even more food.

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Šį savaitgalį kviečiu skoniais nusikelti į paslaptingą Gozo salą išsikepant tradicinį jų patiekalą "Timpana". Jis gaminamas iš virtų makaronų ir mėsos padažo, o tešla padeda išlaikyti pyrago formą. Šis patieklas labai gardus ir kiek primena lazaniją, jį skanu valgyti šiltą su salotomis, arba šaltą, kaip užkandį, ar neštis į iškylos vaišes. Gozo saloje timpana parduodama pjaustyta, kaip gatvės maistas, bet ji puikiai tinka ir kaip užkandis savaitgalio iškylai lietuviškoje gamtoje. Skanių savaitgalio įspūdžių! Naujas receptas bloge, jo nuoroda ir profilyje @sezoninevirtuve #kelionesreceptas #gozo #timpana #savaitgalioreceptas #sezoninevirtuve

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The Sweet Treats

One dessert after Christmas lunch? Nope. Not the Maltese way to do it. The best thing about dessert on a Maltese Christmas is that you have options to choose from (and lots of them).

From treacle rings (Qagħaq tal-Għasel), to minced pies, Christmas log, puddina tal-millied and even coconut balls; there’s always something to suit everyone’s sweet tooth on Christmas.

Lights Everywhere

Christmas in Malta isn’t Christmas until you’re blinded by blinking decorative lights literally everywhere you go.

Lights are hung up in the streets, on balconies, around windows and even on outdoor plants – some have a soft glow…but other lights flash so frequently that they can be quite the distraction when driving.


Your mother or nanna probably buy this floral plant to put all around the house for Christmas.

Whether they choose the red flowers or the white ones, these big beautiful flowers always bring along a sense of festivity with a sense of class into our joyful Christmas.

Midnight Mass

Okay, let’s face it; we were all probably unwillingly dragged to a midnight mass on Christmas Eve by our family, at least once in our lives.

And if you behaved well, you were likely to get an imbuljata tal-qastan (a hot drink made of chestnut and chocolate).

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Malta has some spectacular churches and cathedrals built from the local limestone. The Maltese people are predominantly Catholic, and have some unique architecture to their churches. The island of Gozo has almost 50 churches for a small island! Pictured here is Ta Pinu. Considered a minor Basilica, it is a popular place for tourists to visit. The Cathedral is relatively new, being built in the 1920s. The architecture reflects the Maltese people, and the inside is just as beautiful! Do you enjoy admiring the architecture of places of worship while traveling? . . . . . #gozo #gozoisland #visitgozo #tapinu #malta🇲🇹 #maltaphotography #lovemalta #visitmalta #travelmalta #maltatravel #lovinmalta #malteseislands #maltesechurches #cathedrals #basilica #amazingarchitecture #limestone #romancatholic #travelwithmeaning #traveltheglobe #lifeofateacher #lifebeginsat40 #shorttrips #wanderlusts #passionpassport #travel_drops_ #europestyle_ #living_europe

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What’s your favourite Maltese tradition on Christmas?

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