Diving the Maltese Islands
Climate – Surface Conditions
These can be split into a ‘wet/cold’ season and a ‘dry/hot’ season roughly from November to March and April to October. The coldest weather is normally in January where daytime temperatures may go down to 10 degrees (C) whereas the months of July and August would be the warmest. The average temperature is always above 30 degrees (C) with occasional peaks going up to 40 degrees. Winter time is somewhat windy so a bit of warm clothing is recommended to avoid wind chill especially when diving. In summer time, there is plenty of sunshine therefore, it is advisable to take the necessary precautions in terms of sun protection and drink plenty of water.
Climate – Sea Conditions
Relatively less extreme than the surface conditions, the sea temperature rarely goes down below 15 degrees (C)(irrespective of the depth normally catered for in recreational diving) around the month of January whereas it is warmest at around August at approximately 27C. In summer, sea temperature may vary with depth as it is usual for thermo clines to form during this period. Below 20m, sea temperature may be a bit fresher at around 22C. During the cold months it is more frequent to get windy conditions. The nature of the Maltese islands is such that there are always dive sites that are well sheltered from the prevailing wind of that particular day. In the warm months, it is unusual to get strong winds so most of the time all the sites would be suitable for diving. Note that while the effects of tides are insignificant, there are a few areas that are occasionally subject to significant current. If diving unaccompanied by our instructors, please do not hesitate to ask about the weather conditions pertinent to that particular day.
Local Regulations – Diving Medical Statement
Divers are expected to complete a medical statement form prior to any diving indicating that you are fit to dive. If you are unsure about any of the parts indicated, we do provide the service of a diving doctor. The prices for such a service rarely exceeds €50.00. Medicals from your country of origin are acceptable provided that the diving centre is provided with a copy.
Local Regulations – Unaccompanied Diving
All divers who wish to dive on their own with their buddy may do so, on presentation of PADI Advanced Open Water or equivalent certification by other agencies (e.g. CMAS Two Star Diver, BSAC Sport Diver, SSI Advanced Open Water, etc) or higher diving qualification. It is always recommended to check with the diving centre as to where would be suitable to dive, depending on weather conditions and experience.
Local Regulations – Conservation
In some sites it is easy to encounter archeological artifacts some of which may date up to the Roman era. Some of the wrecks are from the Second World War. Souvenir collection is clearly prohibited by local laws and offenders will be prosecuted. Should you think that you have come across an item of potential archeological interest please inform your instructor/dive center who will in turn relay the information of the Museums Department. As divers we all have a collective responsibility to take care of the aquatic environment by practicing ‘environmentally friendly’ diving. Our concern is that you get the best of the diving the Maltese Islands offer with the minimum disturbance to aquatic life. Should you wish to engage in any activity involving local fish life (e.g. photography) please inform us and we will be happy to provide advice.