As I promised, here are a few photos of our trip to Malta. Have you ever been? We chose Malta because of its understated vacation spot status. It’s one of those places that are still pretty new to tourists and because of that it still feels very pure and untouched. To be honest, we consciously haven't read too much about the island beforehand as we wanted to explore it day by day in an organic fashion.
Balazs and I arrived pretty late Thursday evening and as soon as we exited the tiny plane, the hot and humid air totally caught us by surprise. We stayed in one of the two tourist-friendly areas of the island called Qawra/Bugibba - a beautiful seaside town near St. Paul’s Bay. Our hotel was just 2 minutes walk from the sea with plenty of private and public beaches. All of Malta's beaches besides one are stone/rock beaches but there are a few with very fine rocks that resemble a sand-like texture.
Our neighbourhood had tons of little alleys full of cafes and seafood restaurants on one side and ports and seashore on the other side.
On the first day Balazs challenged me to try the fish spa. Have you ever heard of it? It’s like a food massage and a pedicure in one where tiny fish clean and massage your feet for 15 minutes. For the first 30 second I couldn’t stop giggling because it felt super weird but after that, it felt amazing and my feet ended up smooth as a baby’s bottom:)
The same night we took a bus all the way to a dreamy little village called Zebbug where the locals celebrated a summer religious festival with a street band, a concert, Maltase food trucks and a beautiful display of fireworks. It was magical to walk around the local church and the little streets full of festive spirit.
We even had a chance to catch a breather in the backyard of a little church (photo above). It felt like a secret garden.
After a day on the land we went for a whole day on an old and beautiful Maltese style sailing boat. We got a package that included sailing on the sea, popping into little lagoons along the way, visiting the island of Gozo, swimming in the most clear and beautifully blue water ever, jumping to the sea straight from the boat, sunbathing on the deck, visiting caves and taking a few-hour stop at the mind-blowingly stunning Blue Lagoon on the Island of Comino.
It’s one of the tiniest and most crowded places ever, but a must see for sure. The water is warm, salty, refreshing and the scenery is like out of a postcard. Plus, there is a little food truck that serves the freshest prawns and salmon baguettes that we couldn’t get enough of.
As soon as we arrived, all the locals we met told us that no trip to Malta can be complete without a visit to the capital city called Valletta. They were right. It’s a tiny town sitting on the top of a rock surrounded by water.
The little streets/alleys are very tiny, super long and mostly with tons of stairs. People there must be very fit since they are jogging up and down all the time. We visited a few museums and just strolled around the place. I kept of snapping photos of the beautiful buildings, blooming flowers (that to my surprise keep so fresh in such a warm climate) and lazy cats that are very friendly. Balazs said those cats must be following us, since we kept on spotting them everywhere.
On the same night, just when we were about to catch a bus back to the hotel we noticed a man in a gondola type of boat who offered to take us on a ride around the city. The boat looked like a rainbow coloured fisherman's boat. The views were swoonworthy, he happily showed off his city full of beautiful rock formations and we got a treat that we will remember for a very long time.
One of my favourite things we did each morning was eating crepe in a local café. We also enjoyed strolling down the shoreline during the evenings, eating ice cream or sitting on the rocks with a cup of coffee. It was such a perfect finish to a hot day to sit there and listen to the sounds of water.
A few fun facts:
- The whole Malta island resembles the shape of a fish (the pilot proudly informed us)
- To swim in the sea you need swimming shoes since the sea bottom is rock based. You can get those shoes in every shop by the beach. They are super inexpensive.
- The whole island is only 120 sq. miles or 316 sq. km with fantastic public transportation. A whole day bus ticket is only 2.60 euros.
- Everyone speaks English
- If you're there, you should totally try the Goza goat cheese, Maltese sausages, all the fresh seafood you can find and a dish called Hobz biz-zejt.
- The most wonderful thing about the locals is that each evening they all come out of their flats and set up grills on the seashore. They grill freshly caught fish with veggies while chatting away. We got the feeling that they all lead very relaxed and fulfilled lives:)
- And lastly, our favourite restaurant in Malta is called Victoria on Bay Square in Bugibba.
Hope you enjoyed the recap:) If you have any other questions about it, please let me know. What do you think about Malta? Would you go? xo
P.S: Plus, a few other travel lusts.
P.P.S: And this little nifty trick I learned from a Maltese man:)
(Photos by Balazs and I for exPress-o)