From Jordan to Malta
Malta was a small country so I’m going to make this article small. But because it is one of the 100 countries in my life I want to share it with you. And I want to give a little bit of insight into that island. I came to Malta because it was on the way to Paris. So I thought why not stop here for a week and explore its surroundings. And I think it was a great decision for me to do that. I don’t regret it at all and I enjoyed very much my time in Malta.
Facts About Malta
Malta has three small islands. The biggest one – where I was staying – you could literally drive with the car for one hour from the most southern point to the northern tip easily. So you can imagine just how small the island is.
The public transportation is very good in Malta. But most buses aren’t on time. Actually they were mostly not on time. They have kind of their own pace of time which I will call the “Maltese time”. It is a very laid back culture (very normal for the southern part of Europe). Many planned things here end up being late or delayed so much it’s canceled altogether.
Also the services in the restaurants are strange to me. I remember how I sat in a restaurant and waited half an hour for someone to come, take my order and clean the table.
What might be interesting for many people is that Maltese is similar to the Arabian language! At least to me it sounds very similar. On the other side, the British influence is huge and Malta is still part of the British Commonwealth. Hence they drive on the left-hand side of the road.
You might wonder how their food is. I’d call it Mediterranean food with a focus on the savoury taste: like olives and olive oil, sun-dried tomatoes, local bread (they are very proud of it), hearty pastries, potatoes, rabbit and a lot of vegetables.
Malta is easily connected to its smaller sister islands Gozo and Comino. With the ferry, you can get to the others easily and fast. Gozo is still very quiet and rural. You can catch the ferry from Ċirkewwa (northernmost tip of Malta) to arrive at Mġarr, Gozo. It’s a 20-minute trip that goes past Comino.
Despite being small, Malta has 3 UNESCO World Heritage Sites which are Valletta, the Megalithic Temples of Malta and Hal Saflieni Hypogeum. One fact which is very amazing is that the remains of the Megalithic temples are the oldest free-standing stone structures in the world. Even older than Stonehenge and the pyramids of Egypt. These sites should be at the top of your list of places to see!
Sightseeing in Malta
What you definitely shouldn’t miss in Malta is a visit to Valetta with its Fort, Cathedral, Barraka Gardens and the Grandmaster Palace.
In Sliema, you can take a rest on the beach. And walk around Saint Julian in the evening and get some delicious and international food there (around Spinola Bay). I was living in Vittoriosa, a very calm area which I would definitely recommend you to stay in.
My favourite city on Malta is Mdina – a medieval town in the northern part of Malta. From there, you can also watch a beautiful sunset.
Dingli Cliffs is great for everyone who wants to go on a (very) small hike. Afterwards, you can combine it with a swim at Golden Bay, a very popular beach on Malta.
And one of my favourite spots on the main island is the Blue Grotto where you can hire a boat for 25 minutes and get around the grotto. It looks gorgeous especially in the sun!
On Sunday there is a fish market in Marsaxlokk which shouldn’t be missed in my opinion. Get there early because they close already around 2pm.
And on Comino Island, there is the famous Blue Lagoon you can visit. Additionally St. Mary’s Tower, too.
Gozo Island has a sightseeing bus but you can visit the cathedral, citadel and the Ggantija temples by yourself. No need for the bus.
I think Malta is a great escape for a weekend. Just go there, soak up some sun, enjoy the very international atmosphere and vibes of this small nation. It is not the cheapest country to be honest, but if you’re just looking for a short holiday and you don’t care much about the money – Malta is your destination- Have fun!