The beaches of the Maltese Islands: a valuable but threatened resource?

M. L. Zammit Pace, Malcolm Bray, Jonathan Potts, Brian Baily

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


The beaches of the Maltese Islands are limited in their extent and scale, but are remarkably diverse in their settings. Many have been affected greatly by urban encroachment and intense amenity use leading to depletion and in some cases even loss. First, this chapter presents a broad review to establish the nature of the beach resource. Secondly, a quantitative survey encompassing Malta, Gozo and Comino is presented revealing that beaches cover 11.2 ha with a total longshore frontage of 5.05 km. Detailed classifications of their geomorphological settings, human usage and human impacts upon them are also presented. Thirdly, two case studies, one rural beach (Għajn Tuffieħa beach) and one urban beach (Balluta beach), are presented to exemplify the interactions between coastal processes and human pressures. Finally, the future of Maltese beaches is considered including opportunities both to sustain and enhance the resource.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLandscapes and Landforms of the Maltese Islands
EditorsRitienne Gauci, John A. Schembri
PublisherSpringer International Publishing AG
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-030-15456-1
ISBN (Print)978-3-030-15454-7
Publication statusPublished - 21 Aug 2019

Publication series

NameWorld Geomorphological Landscapes
ISSN (Print)2213-2090


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