St. Julian's is a popular town, usually flowing with tourists, especially during the summer months. It is also a well-sought after destination by the Maltese.
The population of St. Julian's is 7,667 people (Nov 2005).
The town is home to Malta's only skyscraper, the 98m tall Portomaso Tower.
However in the area known as Mensija one finds a set of cart-ruts of the late Bronze Age period. Of the Roman period one finds also a couple of tombs discovered by P.F.Bellanti in the early 20th century in the Tal-Ballut district on the site now occupied by the Chapel of the Sacred Heart Convent. One finds also the remains of a round Roman tower, one in a chain of some eight other similar ones on Malta; this lies at ta’ Cieda at the top of present-day Triq il-Korvu, Kappara. This site was later used as a Saracenic burial ground. There are also Arab influences such as the name of the valley – Wied Ghomor. Both tal-Ballut - name of a type of tree, and tas- Sliema are Moslem personal names in Sicily.
Because of fear of attacks by the Moslems, the Northern Coastal area remained undeveloped until the diminished attacks after 1565. The building of Spinola Palace, coming as it does in 1688, is to be regarded as the stepping stone for the coastal reclamation of St Julian's. The palace, together with the surrounding gardens, was built by Fra Paola Raffaele Spinola for the public entertainment as stated in the inscription which one finds above the portico. The palace was enlarged in 1733 through the efforts of Fra Giovanni Battista Spinola, Bali of the order and successor to his uncle as rector and Curator of the abbazia. During the French occupation of these islands in 1798, French troops were stationed in the palace and wrought havoc there. In fact it is thanks to them that the Order’s emblem atop the clock on the façade was mutilated.
Under the British influence St Julian’s changed from an insignificant locality to an important seaside village of pleasant residences.
The earliest documentary evidence is of the pastoral visit of Bishop Tommaso Gargallo of 1601 to this church. He states that he Church was built in 1580 and was dedicated to Saint Julian. In 1736, when Monsignor Alpheran de Bussan re-visited St Julian’s, he noted that the locality was already known as Portus Sancti Juliani, meaning after the patron saint, evidence that the previous medieval name Qaliet Gnien il-Fieres was placed aside. In 1854, the 600 residents of St. Julian's applied to the church authority, in order for St Julian’s to become a parish. The Birkirkara chapter protested strongly against such an application and consequently the application was withheld. Nevertheless, another similar application was resent in 1891 and the request was accepted. Dun Guzepp Scerri became the first parish priest.