Being surrounded by water, Malta, Gozo and Comino offer a beach to suit every demand from it sun worshippers to windsurfers .
The official languages of Malta are Maltese and English although Italian is also widely spoken. Maltese is based upon old Arabic, however, it is written in the Roman (western) alphabet which makes reading signs that much easier (signs are almost always in English as well as Maltese). Quite apart from that, we haven't yet found a Maltese person that does not speak very good English!
The Maltese lira was the official currency of Malta from 1972 to 31 December 2007. The lira was abbreviated as 'Lm'. In English, the Maltese currency was sometimes referred to as the Pound.
The Euro replaced the Maltese lira as the official currency of Malta on 1 January 2008.
Banks in Malta are usually open Mon-Fri from 08:30 to 11:30 and on Saturdays up to 11:30. Foreign exchange is open 24/7 at the airport and up to 16:00 at most banks.
Prior to 1800, the majority of Maltese were engaged in agriculture or fishing. Malta had very few industries except for cotton, tobacco and shipyards. The strengths of the Economy of Malta today are its limestone, a favourable geographical location and its productive labour force. Malta only produces about 20% of its food needs, has limited freshwater supplies and no domestic energy sources.
The economy is dependent upon foreign trade, manufacturing, tourism and financial services.