The Mediterranean island of Malta features highly on many of our bucket lists; the appeal of the azure sea and year round sunshine is hard to abate. Aside from fantastic outdoor activities and wonderful beaches, there is also an abundance of history to be found on the island. To help you choose how to spend your time in Malta, in no particular order, here’s our pick of 6 things to see and do.
Walk Along Dingli Cliffs
The Dingli Cliffs are an impressive sight, especially from the water on a boat cruise. One of the best ways to experience them however is a walk along the top of the cliffs; enjoy the view of the village of Dingli on the left hand side and views over the uninhabited island of Filfla. Come here in the evening for the charming atmosphere and stunning sunsets.
Dating back to 1878, Fort Rinella is one of the top historical sites in Malta. Regarded as the largest Victorian Fort in the world and also home to the largest cannon in the world, the fort is quite famous. With period dressed volunteers on hand to answer all of your questions, a visit here will take you back in history, more so if you join one of the guided tours. The tour will begin with the firing of the cannon (which you can do too if you want!) plus a live demonstration of how the fort would have been defended during an attack. With plenty more displays and hands on activities in this interesting and informative environment, everyone will enjoy this activity.
The Three Cities
Across the Grand Harbour from Valletta you will find Cottonera where the Three Cities; Vittoriosa, Senglea and Cospicua, lay. Here you can gain an intriguing insight into the island and its history and each has a unique charm and character that you will struggle to find elsewhere in Malta. There is plenty to see and do during your visit; why not first stop by at Bishop’s Palace built in 1542 and then visit the Maritime Museum. The Safe Haven Gardens are nice to see as well.
Mdina is the old capital of Malta and a visit should feature within your ‘To Do’ list. The medieval walled town sits atop a hill in the centre of the island and houses a population of just 300 residents within the walls. It is however attached to the village of Rabat which has a population of 11,000. Regardless of the number of residents, a visit here is a must. Come to see the fantastic buildings from St Paul’s Cathedral to Vilhenna Palace, not forgetting the Mdina Dungeons and the Benedictine Monastery.
Visit the Island of Gozo
No visit to Malta is complete without hopping aboard a ferry and visiting the neighbouring island of Gozo. Untouched and unique, Gozo is a little slice of heaven and is varied enough for a day trip or a longer stay. There is a selection of picturesque towns and villages dotted across the island each offering something a little different. You won’t tire of things to do on the island with activities ranging from diving and snorkelling in the surrounding waters to shopping or cycling. Be sure to find the Azure Window whilst you’re here; the natural arch makes for a wonderful view and the area is one of the most popular diving spots.
These are just a selection of the wealth of things to see and do in Malta. Visit the island in 2012 and discover your own list of must see and dos. If you have already been, what would feature in your top 5?