Sunny, historic Malta is the perfect place for LGBT+ travellers planning a post-lockdown escape
Malta is officially re-opening for travellers this summer, which means Europe’s most LGBT-friendly holiday destination is soon yours to explore.
The Mediterranean archipelago has announced vaccinated and unvaccinated tourists will be able to visit Malta from 1 June, with at least 18 airlines, including Air Malta, making the trip. Under current plans, international travel from the UK will resume no earlier than 17 May.
Cruise liners will also be up and running again, letting you step straight off the dock into the UNESCO World Heritage Site that is the entire capital city of Valetta.
The tiny island nation at the crossroads of Europe and Africa is steeped in culture and history – and it also has the crucial bonus of being a champion of LGBT+ rights.
Malta’s strong LGBT+ equality laws have seen it top the Rainbow Europe list for the last five years in a row, ahead of Belgium, Luxembourg, France and Denmark.
Discrimination against LGBT+ people has been banned there since 2004, and in 2014 it became the first European state to enshrine gender identity as a protected category in its constitution.
LGBT+ hate crimes are prohibited by law, same-sex marriage and adoption are both legal, and conversion therapy is banned as of 2016, when Malta became the first EU country to do so.
It all adds to the Maltese’s reputation of kindness and excellent hospitality which has seen the country grow as a top tourist destination year after year.
The island also boasts a balmy Mediterranean climate with over 300 sunny days per year, a top-ranked healthcare system and some of the world’s best diving locations.
As for COVID-19, Malta’s sensible public health measures led to the World Health Organisation dubbing it “the country to follow” amid the pandemic.
At the time of of writing, Malta is one of the highest vaccinated summer destinations in Europe with over 40 doses of the vaccine carried out per 100 population.
And the average numbers of daily infections are currently hitting all-time lows for 2021, with less than 100 daily cases.
“All our decisions strive to find a balance and give priority to the health of Maltese citizens and the tourists who will come into our country,” said tourism and consumer protection minister Clayton Bartolo.
All of which is to say, Malta could be the perfect place to shake off your lockdown blues.
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