Qawra is a coastal town on Malta, in the region of St. Paul's Bay which consists of several small towns. The town is sandwiched between Buġibba directly to the south-west and Naxxar to the south-east on the other side of the bay.
Qawra is directly connected to the resort town of Buġibba, and there is little difference between the two. Both contain mostly a mix of relatively small residential and commercial areas. Unlike the plain Buġibba, Qawra does have a few tourist attractions to speak of.
Buġibba is well connected to all the major towns in Malta. Most package holiday providers will provide transfers to Buġibba if you book your hotel there. Getting in by bus is also easy, there are many routes which lead/pass through Buġibba such as 49, 58, 59 and others.
The St. Paul's Bay area is relatively small and is easy to get around on foot. It's virtually impossible to get lost in Buġibba as most roads lead to the coast. If you're lost and find yourself in the residential part of Buġibba, the locals are both friendly and approachable and will gladly give you directions.
A well-paved promenade connects Qawra in the east to St. Paul's Bay in the west, going through the centre of Buġibba. It is near impossible to tell which town you are in, as they are all closely connected.
At the St. Paul's Bay end of the promenade, you'll come to a small but picturesque harbour with some of the traditionally-painted boats. This harbour also looks out onto St. Paul's Island, where St. Paul was reportedly shipwrecked in the 1st century AD.
- 1 Malta Classic Car Museum. A mid-size museum of few dozen vintage cars, and some old music boxes, pinball and slot machines and other curios from the mid-20th century.
- 2 Malta National Aquarium, ☏ . 10:00 - 18:00. Quite small aquarium with dozen of tanks full of fish and other sea creatures. It's fun if you like zoos and such. €13.90 (€12.50 if bought online).
- 3 Buġibba Temple. Despite the name, the Buġibba Temple is actually in the nearby town of Qawra, but most tourists won't even notice they crossed the border of one town and entered another. A small megalithic temple made out of several dolmens located on the grounds of the Dolmen Hotel. Access can be gained through the hotel or casino lobby (feel free to ask the staff for directions if necessary). The hotel and casino is on the seafront in the middle of the block between Triq Il-Merluzz and Triq Ghawdex and access is easiest from the rear of the building. free.
Being more to the northwest than Valletta and Sliema one has quicker access to northern beaches such as Mellieħa, and the islands Comino and Gozo. Visiting the Red Fort is an option as are the considerably quieter beaches on the north-west coast; Paradise beach (near Ċirkewwa), Ghajn Tuffieha and next to it Golden Bay near the calm village of Mġarr (not to be confused with its namesake on Gozo).
Most of the St. Paul's Bay towns come alive at night. There are only a few clubs, located near the main square, for those seeking an active nightlife but, for those wanting a more relaxed holiday, there are plenty of quiet bars where you can have a drink and a chat. Live entertainment is abundant and most hotels don't mind non-guests coming in to watch. Karaoke is offered in some bars for those with less inhibitions than singing talent.
Qawra is home to many souvenir shops, from which you can buy towels, beach accessories, handbags, ecc, but there is little in the way of genuine Maltese crafts. For shopping, a visit to Valletta or Sliema is recommended.
Qawra boasts many restaurants, but they do tend to cater for the many tourists they receive in the summer months. You'll find many restaurants around the main streets that serve all ranges of cuisine from Italian to McDonald's.
Qawra offers many pubs serving a range of drinks. Imported drinks are expensive so, if you're a British tourist expecting a good pint of John Smith's or Worthington's, expect to pay heavily! Blue Label is a great alternative for bitter drinkers and Hopleaf comes recommended for drinkers of real ale. For lager drinkers, however, Carlsberg is brewed under licence on the island and is often sold for less than 3 euro per pint but, for a few cents more, you can try Malta's own lager, Cisk. Wine is of low price and high quality, even in Qawra, so wine drinkers won't be disappointed.
Don't forget to taste the Maltese soft drink Kinnie which is a bitter orange drink. It's like a Fanta/Campari mix.
Cider is also there ad it tastes amazing, if you are coming to Malta have some Maltese cider.
Qawra is one of the main tourist areas of Malta and, as such, has many hotels to choose from. However, as most of the cater for package holidays, you are recommended to book with a travel agent in advance. A hotel given 4 stars by the Malta Tourist Board is equivalent to a 3-3½ star hotel in most brochures, but these hotels are inexpensive and provide passable amenities and comfort to most tourists.
Accommodation for longer stays
Qawra and neighbouring Bugibba is full of apartments for holiday lets or long lets.
Unless you are going to a nearby beach, you'll probably want to catch a bus to go to some other town on the island for more famous sightseeing spots.