Wedding season in Malta means blooming flowers, sunshine, and loads of heat!
With 359 churches, cathedrals, and chapels on the islands, brides and grooms have loads of places they can choose to exchange their vows in.
Whilst each and every church and chapel is a vital piece of Maltese history, most of these, unfortunately, don’t come with air conditioning, and understandably so.
Beat the heat on your magical day and choose one of these 15 churches to exchange your vows in:
1.Church of St. Joseph the Worker, Xemxija
Overlooking Fekruna Bay in Xemxija, the original church dedicated to St Joseph the Worker was built in 1959 and demolished in 1988 due to land erosion. What stands in its place is the new church, built adjacent to the old site in 1993. This church is equipped with air conditioning, and attracts worshippers from Malta’s northernmost regions, including Mellieħa, Saint Paul’s Bay and Mġarr.
2.The Annunciation of Our Lady (Parish Church), Balzan
Balzan’s parish church, also known as Lunzjata, was built 40 years after the locality was declared to be a separate parish in 1655. Following its establishment, it was clear that the original church of the Annunciation – which dated back to the 14th century – would be too small to accommodate the village’s growing population.
3.Church of the Holy Family, Iklin
In the 1980s, the population of Iklin was growing rapidly and thus the need for a church arose. While the church itself has existed since 1993, after it was converted from a benefactor’s property, it was only officially recognised as a parish church in 2005.
4.Mary Immaculate, Mother of the Church (Parish Church), Ibraġ
This church has existed for as long as Malta has been independent. The Ibraġ Parish Church serves thousands of people – including those hailing from the surrounding areas of Madliena and Swieqi.
5.St. Francis of Assisi, Birkirkara
Following Valletta’s bombings during WWII, the city’s Franciscan Friars were urged to leave, finding refuge in a donated house in Birkirkara. When they moved back to Valletta in 1944, the Birkirkara congregation wanted them to stay – so a small Franciscan community was then formed.
6.Xgħajra Church, Xgħajra
This church in Xgħajra, found on Saint Elias Street, also has air conditioning!
7.Church of the Holy Cross, Żabbar
Consecrated in 1999, this church accommodates approximately 700 people and is the latest church to be built in the parish.
8.Sacred Heart of Jesus (St. Patrick), Sliema
Built between 1877 and 1881, this church has numerous gilded sculptures and paintings of different saints. It has been a parish church since 1918.
9.St. Julian's Parish Church, St. Julian’s
Overlooking Spinola Bay, this church was built in 1968 in order to accommodate the town’s increasing population. The site is not too far from the old parish – known as the Lapsi church.
10.Stella Maris Parish Church, Sliema
Serving the then-growing population of Sliema, the Stella Maris Parish church was founded in 1852 and opened in 1855.
11.St. Luke's Church, Nigret, Rabat
Another air-conditioned church – this venue serves the community of Nigret in Rabat.
12.Church of the Franciscan Sisters – Msida
After opening a school in 1961, the Franciscan Sisters of the Sacred Heart installed a chapel alongside it which is accessible to the local congregation.
13.The Don Bosco Oratory, Victoria, Gozo
Opened in 1949, Don Bosco’s Oratory was the first Salesian house to be opened in Gozo and is a hub for all things religion, culture, and sports.
14.Church of St. Paul’s Shipwreck, Munxar, Gozo
The church of St Paul’s Shipwreck has been serving Munxar’s growing community since 1921 – which became a separate parish in 1957. Munxar is the latest parish to be established in Gozo.
15.St. Anthony of Padua, Għajnsielem, Gozo
Following the donation of a plot of land in 1901, construction on what would be the Saint Anthony of Padua church started immediately, and was completed in 1906.
Image credit:James Stringer/Flickr, Le Monde1/Flickr, IKLIN - Parrocca Familja Mqaddsa/Facebook, Parrocca Ibrag/Facebook, Knisja San Franġisk Birkirkara/Facebook, Xghajra Church/Facebook, Bennphotos/Facebook, Kappa Vision/Facebook, @spinolabc1987/Instagram, Jeanne Smith/Flickr, Centru Pastorali San Luqa, Nigret - Rabat/Facebook, St. Francis School Msida/Facebook, Oratorju Don Bosco/Facebook, Julia Maudlin/Flickr, Kappa Vision/Facebook