The stony streets of Balluta Bay seem to be right on top of the turquoise shallows in this charming enclave of bustling St. Julian’s.
Stroll the promenade of Balluta Bay until the sun goes down and listen to happy conversations carried on the warm air. Arrive just before sunrise to see the northeastern-facing bay light up with rosy colors. This village sits on a clear emerald bay within the fashionable resort district of St Julian’s.
The seaside at Balluta Bay isn’t sandy, except for a few silvery square feet appearing at low tide. Climb down steps from street level into the warm water or sunbathe, Maltese-style, on the pavement or nearby rocks. Scuba dive in these calm waters.
A promenade runs along the coast between the neighboring enclaves of Sliema and St. Julian’s, as well as through Balluta village. Facing the water is the neo-Gothic church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, whose architecture is unique in Malta. Its dramatic façade dominates the streetscape here. Watch Sunday processions and listen to bells ringing.
Farther along the road are the sumptuous Balluta Buildings, a row of handsome apartment buildings created in the art nouveau style. The Balluta Square is a triangle framed by lovely places to eat and drink in the shade of oak trees, as “Ballut” is the Maltese name for oak. Famous Maltese personality Antonio Cassar Torreggiani built a lavish villa here, which has become The Villa, a restaurant on the grounds of the luxury hotel Le Méridian. Balluta Bay is a regional dining hub. Enjoy local seafood at one of the quality restaurants here. Try old-style cafés too, such as Balluta Kiosk, for something less flashy.
The shape of Balluta Bay makes it a bit secluded from the buzz of the rest of St. Julian’s. Although it’s part of a resort district, many locals have been living here for decades so it has retained some Old Malta authenticity. While nearby Paceville is more energetic, here in Balluta Bay you can sit and enjoy the view and watch people go about their day in the Maltese sun.