After over 1 month in the Caribbean, it was time to go back to our old Europe. Reputed for its pre-historic temples, limestone’s buildings, Knights and a strong catholic influence, Malta was my first stop.
Located just at 45 minutes from Sicily and 2hours from Cairo (Egypt), this honey-colored island was considered one of the most beautiful in the world by DailyMail.co.uk (you can read the post here). As the Mail Online says “Malta boasts a capital with one of the most concentrated historic areas in the world, and thrilling diving spots”.
After having spent 1 month exploring islands in the Caribbean, and now jumping to another one but this time in Europe, I just realized how much I love this lay-back or “tranquilo” lifestyle featured in Sunny Islands.
Unlike big cosmopolitan cities featured by crowded streets, stressed people, noise and traffic jam, sunshine Islands are not only an escape from all of that but they do inspire people to be happier! For me, these good vibes and energies are just priceless.
Having travelled already over 40 countries, I admit I usually pick sunny beach islands rather big capitals or cities. And now, well… I know better the Caribbean than the Western Europe (yep, never visited Belgium, Luxembourg, or Netherlands yet).
Once landed, we decided to stay in Valletta, Malta’s Capital, and in one of its most iconic hotels: The Grand Excelsior – considered by many, one of the pioneer 5 star in the Island.
However I must admit, I didn’t receive the best service expected from a 5 star. The staff in overall was not really friendly and looked very stressed (perhaps surcharged by work during Summer), but the concierge, Mr. Fiorini, was a very friendly man.
As soon as we woke up, it was time to get dressed and explore this limestone heritage country.
Since the very beginning, Malta has been built exclusively with limestone giving an extraordinary unique honey-goldish landscape across the island.
Limestone has been used for every single type of construction: from palazzos, churches to residences, which has been predominant across the ages.
There is even a very famous attraction called The Limestone Heritage, Park and Gardens.
Without a doubt, Malta is the Limestone country and Valletta its most beautiful testimony (ok…along with Mdina).
What To Do, Eat, Shop
What To Do: In Valletta, the best way is to get lost, walk around, and admire its incredible beauty and unique architecture. Explore palazzos, cathedrals (St. John Catedral is the most famous one hosting 2 Caravaggio’s paintings), and gardens.
What To Eat: Ice cream and sorbets at the Amorino. For iconic coffee shops try caffe Cordina, Prego, or Charles Grech. To try Maltese cuisine in Valletta go to the Legligin Restaurant, the service was very friendly and I really enjoyed their degustation menu. Others iconic restaurants are Malata, The Harbour Club, Da Pippo, Guze or Caffe Jubliee. Try the maltese wine at Trabaxuxu.
What To Shop: Malta’s crafts and jewelry have a tradition of worldwide reputation says malta-guide.net. Others very traditional souvenirs from Malta would be handcrafted glasses, pottery, basket ware and wickerwork, fine lace, Hand-knitted woolen garments and Maltese buses miniatures or get inspired at CamilleriParisMode.
If you have further recommendation or any question, don’t forget to drop a comment 🙂
Wish you all the best,