Malta Journals

Four Days in Malta - by a First Time Visitor

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A February 2010 trip to Malta by fizzytom

The Waterfront in Sliema... Photo, Malta, Europe More Photos
Quote: How much an you cram into four days in this little Mediterranean island? Hopefully I can convince you that you can get a good insight into Malta in just that time. Come and take a virtual tour of Malta and Gozo!

The Mosta Dome (Rotunda of St. Marija Assunta)

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Attraction | "The Marvellous Mosta Dome"

The Mosta Dome (Rotunda of St. Marija Assunta) Photo, Mosta, Malta
Quote:
Not many people know that many moons ago I complete the first year of a degree in the History of Art and Architecture. I decided after the first year that I didn’t want to continue and subsequently took a degree in Politics. My interest in art and architecture has not diminished, however, and although these days you’re much more likely to find me in the country than the city, I still get excited by flying buttresses, pilasters and caryatids. (Look ‘em up, this isn’t a lesson in architectural features!)While we were on a bus bound for Mdina, the ancient capital of Malta, we passed though the town of Mosta which is dominated by the Church of St Marija Assunta, more commonly known as the Most...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 16, 2012

The Mosta Dome (Rotunda of St. Marija Assunta)
Rotunda Square
Mosta, Island of Malta
21 433826

Luciano Restaurant and Pizzeria

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Restaurant | "Will You be Lucky at Luciano's?"

Luciano Restaurant and Pizzeria Photo, Valletta, Malta
Quote:
On the basis that somewhere really busy at lunchtime (McDonalds, Pizza Hut, etc excepted) is likely to be good, we walked into Luciano’s in the heart of Valletta. Although it was February, it was a reasonably warm sunny day and the folding doors had been opened out so that the front of the restaurant was open; it was the final day of our short break in Malta and it was nice to be able to make the most of our final few hours of Mediterranean sunshine. Luciano’s looks like the kind of lively Sicilian-style diner that other restaurants can only evoke by displaying framed black and white photographs. I’m not really a fan of "themed" décor, but it works in Luciano’s where the back wall is cover...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on June 23, 2011

Luciano Restaurant and Pizzeria
21 Merchant Street
Valletta, Malta

Dee Goose Restaurant

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Restaurant | "Sauce for the Goose"

Dee Goose Restaurant Photo, Sliema, Malta
Quote:
Dee Goose is the sort of place that only the most inquisitive tourist would find; in spite of its location in the heart of Malta’s Sliema, the restaurant is easy to miss because it is situated in a pedestrian only alley that connects two main streets that run parallel to each other and it was only because we sensed a short cut that we found the place at all. Since coming back from Malta I've tried unsuccessfully to find Guze Fava Street on several street maps of Sliema so the best advice I can offer is that if you start at the little bus terminus on the Strand, cross the road and head uphill on the shopping street, you need to look to your right and look out for a connecting lane. I'm sure the locals ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 13, 2011

Dee Goose Restaurant
7, Triq Guzi Fava
Sliema , Malta
21311705

Blondino Restaurant

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Restaurant | "This Maltese Won't Make You Cross"

Blondino Restaurant Photo, Sliema, Malta
Quote:
Back in February 2010 I had some days holiday I needed to use by the end of the working year so we booked a short break in Malta. Althought a lot of retired Brits spend the winter months in Malta it's really the off season and not all restaurants and bars are open all year round. During the day there seemed to be a fair number of people around but in the evenings it was pretty quiet which did affect the ambience for evening dining. We ate at Blondino's, a family run restaurant, on the first evening of our trip, a Friday and only one other table was occupied, by an eldelrly couple who gave the impression of being regulars. We had found the restaurant earlier that day and, reading the specia...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on February 17, 2011

Blondino Restaurant
15, Ghar Il-lembi Street
Sliema , Malta

Rabat - Maltese Suburbia

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Story/Tip

Tourists Welcome Photo, Malta, Europe
Quote:
Rabat is a word you’ll hear a lot in Malta and its smaller sister island of Gozo. The word is of Semitic derivation and roughly means suburb but is more commonly used to mean a principal town or city; the capital of Morocco is called Rabat, and on Gozo, the main town of Victoria is less formally known as ‘rabat’. In the centre of the island of Malta, though, is the Rabat that is better known to foreign tourists; Rabat is so called because it was a suburb of Mdina, which was once the capital of Malta.People mistakenly view Rabat as some less interesting appendage to Mdina; it’s hardly surprising really, because with its impressive fortifications, its magnificent cathedral and plethora of fa...Read More

Azure Window

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Attraction | "A Window on the World"

Azure Window Photo, Gozo, Malta
Quote:
The "Azure Window" is one of Gozo's most photographed sights and is included in almost every tour itinerary on the island. However, if you are visiting independently it's easy to get to.Basically the Azure Window is a fifty foot arch in the Dwejra Point cliffs on the west coast of Gozo. The hole was caved by the tides, which can be fierce at times, making the spectacle even more dramatic. In Maltese its name is it-Tieqa - the window. It is also tempting to climb down onto the rocks in front of the arch to take photographs and while this is pretty safe, it can get quite slippery underfoot. The sight of the foam breaking and the water splashing high into the air as it breaks agai...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 4, 2010

Azure Window
Dwejra
Gozo, Malta

Gozo (General)

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Story/Tip

Mgarr Harbour Photo, Gozo, Malta
Quote:
Gozo is approximately one third the size of the island of Malta and can be reached by means of a twenty minute ferry ride from a small harbour situated at the northern tip of Malta. It’s possible to take one of Malta’s distinctive yellow buses directly to the port but we had booked our excursion with a local tour company which picked us up at our hotel and took us to the port. We then had to pay for our own crossing, and once disembarked in Gozo, we were allocated to different minibuses depending on which tour we’d chosen. If you do wish to visit independently, there are more of the yellow buses covering Gozo. If you are staying in Gozo your hotel or tour operator will normally arrange a transfer but,...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 4, 2010

Spinola Bay, St. Julian's, Malta Photo, Malta, Europe
Quote:
On Malta's east coast, nestled in the next bay north from Sliema, is the resort town of St. Julian's. Sliema and St. Julian's blend into one another imperceptibly such is the level of development on this part of the island. Just after arriving in Sliema we went out for a walk and within a few minutes we'd strayed into St. Julian's. (When construction works allow) it's possible to walk all the way along the wide promenade from the far end of Sliema to St. Julian's and beyond to Paceville, the suburb of St. Julian's best known as the nightlife Like most other resorts in Malta, St. Julian's doesn't have any beaches but as the town huddles around the bay, climbing up the hills, it is at least slightly mor...Read More

The Yellow Buses of Malta

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Story/Tip

Maltese Buses - interior Photo, Malta, Europe
Quote:
One of the first things that visitors to Malta notice is the fleet of cheerful yellow buses that cover the whole island, especially the very distinctive older ones. Thanks to these buses and the relatively small size of the island, getting around by public transport is simple and cheap. The buses are mainly old British ones which have been given the distinctive yellow livery and given a new lease of life in their twilight years. Many of them don’t have a side door, passengers simply climb up the steps and into the bus to pay the driver or present their travel passes. Although the buses are a conventional single decker size, there isn’t a lot of headroom inside and when the buses are busy y...Read More

Mdina - the Fairly Silent City

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Story/Tip

Cathedral of St Paul, Mdina Photo, Malta, Europe
Quote:
Malta has had a turbulent history with one group of invading forces after another setting its sights on the little archipelago in the middle of the Mediterranean. Almost every headland has some kind of fortification, many of which can be visited by the public, but best of all is the walled town of Mdina which stands on a high plateau towards the south west of the island of Malta. A visit to Mdina and the adjoining town of Rabat, a former capital of Malta, makes an excellent day trip and the twin towns can be reached within an hour from most parts of the island. Lots of travel companies offer tours to Mdina/Rabat but it is easy to pick up a yellow service bus and make your own way there. However, as th...Read More

Dishing the (Dog) Dirt on Sliema

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Story/Tip

The Waterfront in Sliema... Photo, Malta, Europe
Quote:
Holiday resorts cluster on the eastern coast of Malta and this area has the densest concentration with one resort merging into another. A strip of concrete a mile wide pushes up against the rocky coastline; there are no sandy beaches. There are a couple of lidos but they are small and I couldn't see how spending the day at one would be much fun, even in summer. Hotels overlook the sea, usually narrow but many storeyed, none of them picturesque or appealing from the exterior. I don't think my opinion would have been improved by visiting in summer - unless business proprietors were still to carry out their repairs and renovations before the season got properly underway. Even on the front, scores of comm...Read More

115 The Strand Apart Hotel

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Hotel | "Aparthotel 115 - A Surprising Success "

115 The Strand Apart Hotel Photo, Sliema, Malta
Quote:
People who regularly read my travel reviews will surely know that I am not a package holiday type of person. I am, however, a cheap holiday type of person, willing to abandon my lofty principles for a good price. Forced to use or lose two days annual leave, I checked Easyjet Holidays for last minute deals to Malta and had a number of very inexpensive options to choose from. What was so remarkable was that the combined cost of three nights accommodation and flights was only very slightly more than the cost of flights only. Internet reviews painted most of the hotels as the sort of dump you wouldn’t house your worst enemy in but we took a chance with Aparthotel Strand 115 in the resort of Sliema which i...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 4, 2010

115 The Strand Apart Hotel
115 The Strand
Sliema , Malta Gzira 1027
(356) 21 318923