Malta has a typically Mediterranean climate, with hot, dry summers and cool, wetter winters. In comparison to northern Europe, the climate is much milder in Winter, and December in Malta can be quite pleasant averaging 5 hours of sunshine per day.
Typical daytime temperatures in December are from 15-20C, so many people are still in t-shirts on sunny days. There should be some lengthy sunny spells, however it can rain so pack an umbrella. After sundown, which is at around 5pm in winter, temperatures can drop to around 10-12C, so pack trousers, socks and knitwear for the evenings.
Temperatures never fall below 0C, so there isn’t any frost, ice or snow to contend with. Being an island, Malta can be humid so it can feel quite chilly – even more so when there’s a strong wind blowing. Winter winds can blow for up to 3 days, and the prevailing wind is usually from the north-west, although a north-easterly wind can bring cold and unsettled weather. The wind can gust and be gale force at times, and this means that the sea can be rather rough – so check the weather forecast before you plan a trip to Gozo. Most of Malta’s rain falls from September to April, with thunderstorms normal in September, October and November. The sea is still quite warm in winter, with December’s sea temperatures averaging 17-18C, so scuba diving is possible even at Christmas.
Walking holidays are popular in winter in Malta, and the fields are a lot greener than in summer, so the landscape can be quite breathtaking with some wild flowers here and there. Many of the hotels have indoor pools and spa services, so holidaymakers can still get a feeling of having had a sunshine break before returning home.
Throughout December, festive lights adorn village squares and homes display cribs (Presepju in Maltese) in their windows for passers-by to see. Local schools stage nativity plays and there are concerts and shows throughout the islands during the run-up to Christmas; in Valletta there is even a pantomime. On Christmas day itself, there are religious processions in the villages, and many hotels serve a celebratory Christmas dinner. Many Maltese and tourists alike take a well earned break in December, and Malta has something to offer everyone at this time of year.