Raising kids in Malta

Hello everyone,

How is raising kids in Malta different from raising kids in your home country?

What are the activities that your kids seem to enjoy the most in Malta?

Do you feel that the country is "family-friendly"?

Do you recommend Malta as a good place to raise kids? Why or why not?

Thank you for sharing your experience.

Priscilla

For us certain aspects are better in Malta than the UK:

1. family life is better as no lengthy commute can have breakfast with my son and get home to spend time in the evening together and still work relatively long hours which I couldn’t do living/working in the UK. 

2. obviously outdoors more, swimming, the beach etc. 

3. restaurants more accepting for children although children's menus are poor (pizza, chicken nuggets seems to be standard) but can easily order starter size pasta, or share fish together.  This is the same for high-end restaurants - I was shocked when asked restaurants for their Christmas day dinner menu for children and that was all that was offered for children (The Villa, Taro, Barracuda)

4. No large areas or parks for children to run around in, play parks dated and poorly maintained,

5. difficulty making friends as children at school scattered all around the island,

6. children clothing/shoes/toys/books easier to order from the UK/Europe than buy in Malta (cheaper/better quality/more choice/customer service)

7. Schooling regrettably from our experience poor, lots of homework daily (60-90 minutes a day for 7 year old) so little time to fit in other activities,

8. bullying ignored and not dealt with by the school especially if the bully is a Maltese child (from our experience).

Overall has been positive for the first 3-4, but whether a life here is sustainable for the longer term for a family, we’re starting to question it as the negatives are starting to outweigh the positives.

I think the horrible quality of air, lack of greenery, nature and forests, dirty streets and ignorant drivers on the road make Malta an extremely unsuitable place to have kids. It's okay for young people who want to have fun and party, and old retired people, but not for families with little children.

1.  It isn't that different raising kids in Malta than the UK or any other Western country, really. The school system is similar to the UK, kids have access to the same kinds of activities, and most things are easily navigable. The only notable difference I've come across is that it is harder for kids to have a outdoor, rural lifestyle in Malta, because it is so built up and there is so much traffic everywhere.

2. My kids are young still, and they enjoy school, the children's sports programmes that the government runs, and messing about in the many playgrounds. Also they love Esplora, the interactive science centre in Kalkara - it's great.

3.Yes, Malta is family-friendly, especially when kids are young. My local government primary school is very good, there is free childcare for working parents, and the sports and music programmes for children are subsidised and very affordable. People are generally indulgent of young children and look out for them, much as in other Mediterranean countries.

4. Yes, I would recommend Malta as a place to raise kids, for the reasons I said above. I might worry that because it's so small and everyone knows everyone it might get a little stifling for the kids when they are older. Also I am concerned about the levels of traffic and pollution, especially in summer, which seems to get worse every year.

How is raising kids in Malta different from raising kids in your home country?
Very different. In our country kids at school and kindergarten get hot meals 3 times a day. Here at school they dont even have microwave. Ridiculous.. kids all day need to survive without hot drink or soup... just vegetables, fruit and sandwiches.. everything cold. :( Ofcourse teachers have kitchen where they can heat up their meals...:(

What are the activities that your kids seem to enjoy the most in Malta?
Definitely swimming in summer. In winter there is not much to do to be honest. Went to some concerts and Christmas markets, but you cannot compare them to any other country. Poor quality.

Do you feel that the country is "family-friendly"?
Not really, its a hassle to find restaurants with play areas. From where i am from in every single restaurant we have at least pencils and paper for kids (thats the minimum!).
Another thing- school finishes at 14:00 and after school club works until 18.00. So if you are full time working parent and do not want to pay 7-10 euros an hour for nunny (and its very unlikely that you will be able to find a nunny who will agree to work only for 1/2 hours a day) , then how you are suppose to pick up kid in time from school? Normal working hours are from 9-18, so every day i need to leave work early cause school is closing.
Then the smoking- everybody smokes wherever they want and they do not care that there is a baby next to them.


Do you recommend Malta as a good place to raise kids? Why or why not?
No, at school most of the day computer with cartoons is on.. No hot meals.
In restaurants kids menu consists of chicken nuggets, pizza and fries.. Joke. Not healthy at all.
No central heating, so in winter its cold everywhere and kids can easily get sick.

There’s good points and bad points everywhere no where is perfect, as regards hot meals , three times a day seems excessive, also it’s a lot hotter here then Latvia..

Hainta :

How is raising kids in Malta different from raising kids in your home country?
Very different. In our country kids at school and kindergarten get hot meals 3 times a day. Here at school they dont even have microwave. Ridiculous.. kids all day need to survive without hot drink or soup... just vegetables, fruit and sandwiches.. everything cold. :( Ofcourse teachers have kitchen where they can heat up their meals...:(

What are the activities that your kids seem to enjoy the most in Malta?
Definitely swimming in summer. In winter there is not much to do to be honest. Went to some concerts and Christmas markets, but you cannot compare them to any other country. Poor quality.

Do you feel that the country is "family-friendly"?
Not really, its a hassle to find restaurants with play areas. From where i am from in every single restaurant we have at least pencils and paper for kids (thats the minimum!).
Another thing- school finishes at 14:00 and after school club works until 18.00. So if you are full time working parent and do not want to pay 7-10 euros an hour for nunny (and its very unlikely that you will be able to find a nunny who will agree to work only for 1/2 hours a day) , then how you are suppose to pick up kid in time from school? Normal working hours are from 9-18, so every day i need to leave work early cause school is closing.
Then the smoking- everybody smokes wherever they want and they do not care that there is a baby next to them.


Do you recommend Malta as a good place to raise kids? Why or why not?
No, at school most of the day computer with cartoons is on.. No hot meals.
In restaurants kids menu consists of chicken nuggets, pizza and fries.. Joke. Not healthy at all.


No central heating, so in winter its cold everywhere and kids can easily get sick.

Sounds like you chose the wrong country to move to!

It does not get cold enough here in daylight hours to need to feed children hot food at school which they finish early anyway!

If you think paying for a Nanny here is expensive, try the UK!

Did you get all these things free in Latvia or did you have to pay?

Ray

not at all. they get breakfast, lunch and snack in afternoon. So you do not need to think about lunch boxes at all.

As I mentioned I am working fulltime so my kid stays at school until 17.30 every day. 
In Latvia as example- maternity leave is up to 1,5 years and you get paid 70-80% of the salary. For school/daycare with meals 3 times a day I used to pay like 40 euros a month! :) and school finishes at 19.00 so even if you are working full time you can manage easily.

So yes, i agree I moved to wrong country. :) Only thing I like here is weather.. which in Latvia is shit :)

Not best place to move with kids. (I can compare with Russia and Poland).

- no playgrounds close to the house (usually one per city, near the local consul)
- no parks to walk
- no wide pavements (except few on Sliema and Bugiba), it means it's not possible to use/play with bicycle or scooter. Also it mean it's really tricky to use stroller. Keep in mind that Malta is not designed for pedestrians, you have to use car
- there is no way to eat hot meal in kindergarden or school (sandwich is usual food)
- only few very small indoor playgrounds

As result it's really hard to find enough activity for kids.

Only the way to eliminate some of the issue is to live in Bugiba or Sliema.

Best apples and pears.
I really enjoyed your positive post.
We will be moving to Malta in Sept 2018.
Would you be so kind to let me know in which area you live & what school your kids attend?
We have already decided that our 2 little ones will go to state schools.
Am looking forward to hear from you soonest!

dizzielizzie :

Best apples and pears.
I really enjoyed your positive post.
We will be moving to Malta in Sept 2018.
Would you be so kind to let me know in which area you live & what school your kids attend?
We have already decided that our 2 little ones will go to state schools.
Am looking forward to hear from you soonest!

I don’t know if you will get a reply as the person you referred to is not normally on here and the post is from last year, if you do not get a reply please look on the search button for schools as this subject has been covered many times, good luck with your move,

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