Top Places to Visit

Here is a list of what we consider to be the top places to visit during your stay in Malta. Ask our reception staff about our leisure programme. They will be happy to give you advice about opening hours, how to get there and give you general assistance and information.

Valletta, Malta’s capital city. A World Heritage site.

Following the end of the Siege of Malta in 1565, the Knights of St John also known as the Knights of Malta,  founded a new city Valletta.  Valletta is Malta’s capital city and the cultural, commercial and administrative heart of the islands.

It is named after its founder, The French Grand Master, Jean de la Vallette, who led the defence of the Maltese Islands against the Ottoman Turks during the Great Siege.

Valletta is one of Europe’s smallest capital cities and all the main sights can be easily reached on foot.  Within its grid of narrow streets one can find a wealth of historic and cultural riches, with many baroque palaces, churches, squares and monuments.

Places worth visiting are St John’s Co-Cathedral, The Grand Master’s Palace, the Archaeology Museum , the Upper and Lower Barakka Gardens with views of the harbors flanking the peninsula of Valletta.

Valletta is a vibrant living city, a blend of historical magnificence and modern bustling everyday life.

The Megalithic temples. World Heritage sites.

In total, there are 7 megalithic temples on the Maltese Islands. The temples date back to the period between 3,600 BC and 2,500 BC . The Ggantija temples, in Gozo,  are the oldest, free-standing monuments in the world and pre-date the Egyptian pyramids by at least 1,000 years. Other temples  are Ħaġar Qim, Mnajdra and Tarxien and the smaller temple sites of Ta’ Ħagrat and Skorba.

The Ħal Saflieni, Hypogeum Temple. A World Heritage Site.

The Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum complex is a prehistoric underground burial place. It dates back to the period of 3,600 BC – 2,400 BC.  The Hypogeum is an underground complex, covering about 500 square metres. It is made up of chambers and passages cut out of the rocks and is split over three levels.  Due to the delicate microclimate of the site only 10 visitors an hour are allowed in for a maximum of 8 hours a day. For more information and booking reservations ask our reception staff.

Mdina.

Mdina, also known as the Silent City, was once the capital of Malta. The citadel is one of the finest surviving examples of a medieval walled city and is a mix of medieval and baroque architecture.  It is a maze of shady narrow streets lined with monasteries, palaces and churches connected by small piazzas. The history of Mdina dates back more than 4000 years. It is here that the Apostle of St. Pauls in 60AD is said to have lived.

The Three Cities.

The Three Cities refer to the three fortified cities of  Cospicua, Vittoriosa and Senglea. They were renamed by the Knights of St. John following the Great Siege of 1565. They are situated on the other side of Valletta and they were the first home of the Knights of St. John.

Before the establishment of Valletta as the capital city of Malta, military powers that wanted to rule the Maltese islands would need to obtain control of Vittoriosa due to its significant position in the Grand Harbour.

The Three Cities are a delight to walk around as they are set within one of the most historical places in Malta. As you stroll around, you can witness everyday life in a truly Maltese community. The local communities have remained passionate about their religious festivals and the most spectacular events are the Easter processions when statues of the “Risen Christ” are carried at a run through crowded streets.

There are a number of interesting sites and museums to explore, ask our reception staff for more details.

They also offer a number of dining options from the traditional Maltese café to the Cottonera Waterfront, with its wide range of restaurants  situated around the marina area.

Blue Grotto.

Blue Grotto is a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. The Blue Grotto is an arch and a series of sea caves carved out of the rocks by the sea on the west coast of Malta.

Every morning from about sunrise to 1 pm, the sunlight reflecting off the crystal clear waters and produces lighting effects.  Inside some caves you will observe mirroring that will show up various shades of blue; in other caverns you will see mirrored phosphorescent colours from the underwater flora.

Boat trips to visit the caves run throughout most of the day and you can go scuba diving, snorkelling and/or rock climbing while visiting the caves. There are also a number of traditional Maltese cafes and restaurants where you can enjoy a quick snack or a meal.

Marsaxlokk.

Marsaxlokk is a traditional fishing village located in the south-eastern part of Malta. It is a picturesque bay with its many fish food restaurants and traditional fishing boats. A traditional fishing boat is known as the “Luzzu.”

This village is a popular attraction for tourists and locals because of its fresh fish and seafood market. On a Sunday, this market takes over the village. However, you must get here early as most of the day’s catch is gone by the early afternoon. The market is very colourful and throughout the years has evolved and items such as local honey, jams, pickled vegetables, souvenirs and clothes are now sold.

Gozo.

Malta’s sister island, Gozo, is only a 20-minute ferry ride away. Although so close to Malta, Gozo has a character entirely of its own. It is greener, more picturesque and the pace is slower than Malta. We would highly recommend a day trip to Gozo.

Ġgantija temple, a megalithic temple that predates the pyramids of Egypt; Xlendi Bay with its crystal blue waters and traditional fish restaurants, the Azure Window,  a natural stone arch that was formed millions of years ago when a limestone cave collapsed are amongst some of the places you can visit during your trip to Gozo.

 

For more information on these attractions, transport, our leisure and social programme , please contact our reception staff,  who will be more than happy to help you .


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