As the weather gets warmer we’re all on the lookout for places to dine outdoors and enjoy a meal in the open air. We’ve compiled a list of our top picks for dining ‘al fresco’ at eateries across the island. Look no further – for your next lunch in the sunshine, or dinner under the stars could be any one of these superb restaurants and bistros serving up some tasty dishes and drinks (best enjoyed with a side of sunshine!).
1. Madliena Lodge
Surrounded by greenery in the midst of a hill, Madliena Lodge is a restaurant serving a Mediterranean cuisine that is authentic and contemporary. On arrival, guests can make use of the ample available parking and enjoy the breath-taking views that the terrace provides. Most importantly the location provides a sense of peace and serenity that is hard to match.
Within this atmosphere, whether inside or al fresco, one may enjoy food created and served by a very passionate team. The restaurant strives to source most of their ingredients from the local market and also propose a curated selection of wines and beverages for guests to savour.
The restaurant is also an attractive destination for various events that can take place indoors or on the terrace.
2. ION Harbour by Alex Dilling
ION Harbour is a Michelin star restaurant which is currently lead by two Michelin star chef Alex Dilling.
Situated on the stunning rooftop of Iniala Harbour House, ION Harbour offers a unique dining experience that ventures beyond the usual boundaries of fine dining.
The tasting menu is served for lunch and dinner and it’s complemented with wine pairing to enhance the ION experience.
ION Harbour’s gastronomy creates dishes from traditional Maltese exquisiteness and transforms them into a French delicacy. Alex Dilling carefully curates the dishes by combining the finest ingredients and traditions to create a Michelin Star experience.
3. La Vela
Sip and dine at the serene water-side setting that La Vela offers. The restaurant is discreetly located at the Msida Marina, where guests can find plenty of parking just steps away. Diners can enjoy a variety of fish antipasti, home-made pasta and daily fresh fish. The menu is changed regularly, and the expert chefs prepare new specialities each week. Don’t miss out on our wine List, which holds over 250 bottles of wine to choose from!
4. San Giuliano
Situated in the heart of the iconic and picturesque Spinola Bay – San Giuliano Restaurant is a prominent Italian restaurant where guests can dine while taking in the panorama of the vibrant St. Julian’s town and the bay that it surrounds. Watch the fishing boats come in and out by day, or be dazzled by the shimmering lights reflected on the water as the town is light up at night – either way it’s a spectacular sight that complements a truly enjoying meal accompanied by a well-curated wine list.
Cockney’s started life 90 years ago as a fishing shop and adjacent cafe’. Presently, Cockney’s is one of the best known family-run restaurants famous a the great selection of seafood, shellfish and fresh fish brought in daily by local fishermen. The varied menu also encompasses exciting starters, delicacies to share, healthy bites and juicy meat dishes.
Located at Marina di Valletta, right by the water’s edge at the foot of the majestic fortifications of Valletta. Samizu is a modern and impeccably-furnished bistro serving up delicious Mediterranean cuisine and an extensive wine and signature cocktail list to choose from. Choose to dine outdoors to the view of the boats docked in the Marina, beneath the magnificent bastions of the capital city. With easy parking, efficient service and prime location – Samizu ticks all the right boxes.
7. Hammett’s Macina
Hammett’s Macina Restaurant has an Ethnic Mediterranean cuisine, which is served with a plates-to-share concept. The Macina building is hundreds of years old and the history seeps through in the dishes, which are a modern take on historic plates. Macina’s terrace overlooks the Grand Harbour and Birgu city. Be sure to check out the restaurant’s social media pages for their Acoustic Nights held every Thursday night.
Enjoy dining ‘al fresco’ on one of the restaurants many terraces, taking in the gorgeous view of the sea below. The perfect outdoor spot to sip a delicious cocktail or glass of wine, together with what is always a delicious meal of fresh ingredients, creatively constructed to excite both the adventurous and more conservative diner. Their vast outdoor seating area makes Giuseppi’s a great venue for larger gatherings and dinner parties during the Summer months.