Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Malta



A small European Island in the Mediterranean Sea, Malta is a mix of tropical oceans and a traditionally European culture. It is interesting to note the strange mix of typically Eastern European traditions and British influences. They drive on the left side of the road, in right hand drive cars. A large proportion of the population speak perfect English, as well as road signs, supermarket labels and restaurant menus also all presented in our mother tongue. I believe Jake heard a regular visitor say on the airport transfer that ‘everything they do here will confuse you’, and I can understand what he meant.

Jake and myself spent two weeks on the beautiful Island and managed to do a surprising amount of travelling considering our restrictions on both time and money. Added to the fact that both of us wanted to sit back and relax for the final fortnight of summer. 

We spent the first week exploring Mellieha Bay, our choice of location for renting a beautiful apartment overlooking the ocean, and experienced everything the town had to offer. Mellieha Bay is one of the few sandy beaches in Malta, which is surprising considering the country’s location. Its white sand and clear ocean however, makes it a very popular destination – particularly on the weekends when it’s rammed with both tourists and locals making the most of the sunshine. At the top of the hill you have Mellieha Church, a beautiful traditional Parish, which lights up when the sun goes down. 

One evening we embarked on a walk to St Agatha’s Tower (The Red Tower) and beyond to a scenic viewpoint, which is located further North of Mellieha, a 5.3km walk from where we were staying – and mostly uphill. The view of Mellieha on one side and the ocean on the other was worth every second of the tortuous walk however, as we sat at the top and watched the sun drop past the horizon. 

More adventures were embarked upon as we visited Popeye Village, a beautiful picturesque village but riddled with small children (not ideal when you don’t have any kids of your own). St Julian’s Bay, which was probably my favourite location on the Island of Malta, was filled with cafes, restaurants and a pathway to walk along the ocean all the way down to the capital city of Valletta. 

Valletta was a slight disappointment, not quite what one would expect from a capital city. It was made the capital after the war and today appears as the tourist centre for revenue and little else. Valletta lacks culture, what doesn’t however, is the old capital of Mdina. The Medieval town is surrounded by a large wall; making it a fortress with beautiful winding streets and horses pulling carriages around every corner. Whilst in Mdina we took the tourist train around the city and the neighbouring towns of Mtarfa and Rabat. For a history fanatic like myself, the train tour wasn’t worth the 4.50euro it cost. Lasting only 30 minutes meant whizzing past the main attractions at full speed and little historical knowledge being shared over the commentary. 

In terms of day drips, there are boats available from the north of Malta that can take you to both the Island of Comino and Gozo for a small fee. Time restrictions meant we were only able to visit Comino, which was tropically gorgeous and meant having a beach to ourselves for a few hours – before a boat brought crowds of tourists over.

Malta is beautiful and certainly worth a visit, we’re hopeful that a return trip will allow us to explore the Island of Gozo and all that it has to offer.









Find out everything else you need to know about the Island over at...

1 comment:

  1. What a beautiful Island! I love little European getaways like this more than anything... thanks for sharing ps your pics are lovely

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