Malta may be small but it’s big enough to have many identities all very distinct.. with personalities, climates and activities which make them unique.
- + 10
Malta9 days / July 2017
Highs & Lows
The island Gozo is low-key and stunning from every angle.
Getting home from the Gozo festival. Luckily someone gave me a lift!
I arrived from home on a direct flight from home to Malta in the middle of summer. I had my backpack, my phone and very little in the way of a plan. I decided to head directly to the capital, Valletta by taking the bus directly from outside of the airport.
I headed to the gorgeous Barrakka Gardens to get a vantage point and a great panoramic views of the city. From there you can see how the city was used as a fortress in the most incredible number of wars over the years. I had an incredible lunch at ‘eeetwell’ which uses seasonal ingredients to great fresh and healthy meals for around €8. I opened up my phone and booked a hostel for a few nights in the St Julians area of Malta, just a quick €1 ferry ride from Valletta. I booked a 4 bed dorm in Inhawi Hostel which was just far enough away from the parties in St Julians to be quiet at night, but close enough to be a walkable distance to the action. To suit my Vegan appetite in St Julians, I headed to Wagamama’s for some branded noodles.
I’d recommend a visit to Sky Club, the biggest and best night club in Malta with different floors with music for everyone’s tastes.
After I finished my few days around Valletta, I headed to the former capital of Malta Mdina. It’s a beautiful, but tiny city on the west side of the island. Surprisingly, it costs just €1 to travel almost anywhere on the island. The maximum journey is around 1.5hrs, but you’d be hard pushed to find anywhere so far. Inside the fortress is where the beauty of Mdina shines, you’ll see “Game of Thrones” sets in this fortress city, including Little Finger’s house.
On the fortress walls, you can walk around the entire city and see almost the entire island, you’ll see the airport Valletta and even the Island Gozo.
I ended up eating at Cooli’s Tea Rooms twice during my stay in Mdina, it’s right at the tip of the fortress and consisted of a couple of courtrooms, one outside, one inside and a terrace upstairs overlooking the island; the beautiful brick walls make you feel like you’re enjoying a medieval feast.
While in Mdina, I’d recommend visiting the Dingli Cliffs & the Hagar Qim Temples, prehistoric structures dating back to 3200BC! Amazingly preserved and with a mysterious connection to the patterns in the stars!
Next I set off towards a the island Gozo, staying in a beautiful Airbnb on the northern most tip of the island. The entire island is just beautiful, and worth taking some quad bikes to explore the island in a bit of style and giving you access to cove beaches that others may be wouldn’t take the route down! Just stick to the coastal road and take random turns when you feel inspired!
Victoria is the main city on the island and, you guessed it, has an amazing fortress in the centre. The medieval feeling continues with market stalls on every corner and down the streets. I got an amazing straw hat from one.
There is an amazing free standing, converted horse cart which sells tempura vegetables and fresh fish near the “Blue Grotto”, it’s worth a visit if only for a chat with the owners and the scenery is incredible.
The best part of the island Gozo was an incredible, intimate festival with everything from yoga and massages near a red sandstone beach and electronic music with laser lighting.
Visit Malta, it’s the gift that keeps giving.
Q & A
What would you have changed?
I’d have worn more sunscreen when I visited the temples. Sunburn is no joke!
Anything go wrong during the trip?
So, one of the reasons I started my European trip in Malta was to scatter the ashes of my late Grandfather. When I threw him over the cliff, a gust of wind pushed him back into my face. I guess a little of him lives in me now.
How was the food?
Cooli’s in Mdina was incredible and worth it for the quality and general experience.
What tips would you give a friend?
I think Mdina is great, but it’s small enough to do in a day, luckily thr te,poles and cliffs are close by. But I’d just have a day trip instead next time.
Light clothing and a little as you can in your bag. You’ll be in the sea very often so a micro fibre towel is a must.
The bus is incredible. €1 per trip. Unbeatable and really reliable.
The sunscape festival was just a happy accident. I didn’t know it was on but it was a much welcome addition to my plans.
Skyscanner for flights. Airbnb and hostel world for accommodation.