Regular readers will know I haven’t been travelling as much as usual because Holiday Baby’s first year hasn’t exactly been easy. (Read this poem if you want to know why – it’s not for the faint-hearted, but it might make you laugh!)
So when I found out that my blogging friend Vlad from Eff It, I’m On Holiday was off to Malta, I asked him to write a guest post about a city destination I’ve fancied visiting for quite some time – the Maltese capital, Valletta. Over to Vlad…
Malta is always overlooked as a holiday destination and honestly it’s not surprising since it can barely be seen on a map of Europe. Yes, it’s a small country and many travelers dismiss it as boring, but they couldn’t be further from the truth.
With gorgeous landscapes, clear blue water and charming cities, Malta will surprise the ones who are willing to venture beyond the obvious Mediterranean destinations.
Valletta, the smallest capital in the European Union, is the best place to start exploring Malta or, if you have limited time, it makes an excellent weekend trip. You wouldn’t get bored for a second and you will leave wishing you had more time. Here’s why…
Small but interesting
There’s no denying, Valletta IS small. So small than in one day you could probably walk on every street twice. However, the whole city wasn’t declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site for nothing, as it isn’t short of fascinating places.
You can visit Fort St Elmo, where you can learn all about the history of Malta, the knights and the wars, have a cider and watch the ships in the Grand Harbor from the serene Upper Bararakka Gardens or admire one of the world’s greatest Baroque cathedrals, the breathtaking St John’s Co-Cathedral.
What I loved the most however was wandering aimlessly on its narrow streets with their unique, colorful and picture perfect balconies.
If you like Porto, Lisbon or Rome, then you will love getting lost in Valletta.
Malta is an island after all, so why stay in the city? Thanks to the excellent bus routes, in an hour and half you could swim in a giant natural swimming pool in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. The Blue Lagoon near Malta’s smaller island, Comino, is the perfect place to relax for a few hours, swim or snorkel.
The water has an unbelievable cyan color and you’ll probably want to stay there forever and float. Just pick the right time (the water is warmer between July and September), bring sunscreen and keep an eye on jellyfishes.
If you don’t want to leave the main island, you can visit the Għajn Tuffieħa bay or the famous Golden Bay with their perfect beaches and enjoy a delicious ice cream surrounded by stunning scenery.
So how much is this going to cost you? Before you smash that piggy bank, let me say that Malta is an affordable destination.
There are a few low cost airlines that connect the island to the rest of Europe, including Easy Jet, Wizz Air and Ryan air.
Accommodation starts from €15/person for one night and with €20 you can eat a very good meal. A 2 hour bus ticket costs €3 while a card with unlimited trips for 7 days costs €21 (as of July 2015).
If you are considering a trip to Malta, check out my guide on how to plan the perfect holiday.
What do you think, is Valletta a perfect weekend destination? Would you like to go?
Author Bio: Vlad is a traveler from Romania who has been passionate about visiting new places ever since childhood, when he used to explore his home country during the endless summers.
Nowadays, with a full time job, he makes the most of his annual leave, discovering wonderful places all over Europe.
Vlad is one of my favourite part-time travellers. Check out more of his Malta posts (and everywhere else he’s written about) over on his blog. You can also follow his adventures on twitter and facebook.