Ciao! I’m back, and with our last “summer” vacation of 2019 – Malta! That was in September, 2 weeks after our weekend-escape in Tuscany seaside. It was also my first time to Malta. I did a little research and planning before our trip and I am happy with that! So, today I’m sharing with you our 3-day Malta itinerary, if you are going there for the first time too.
In this trip, I made the decision on only Sliema, Valletta and Gozo & Blue Lagoon. Malta is not a big country but with such rich nature and history to be discovered. I “tested” Malta’s Water only.
Day 1: Valletta
9.30am Sliema Ferry
First thing after airport is to check-in our hotel. I felt so happy that Luigi selected the best hotel, Hotel 1926, not only the super convenient connection but also the hotel itself – I will talk about it mainly on Day 2.
5 minutes on feet, we were at Sliema Ferry. Between Sliema and Valletta, bus and ferry are both easy options, but most of people including us, do prefer a romantic ferry ride. It’s frequently running, only €5 for a return trip, of course you can buy single ticket too, and most lovely, it offers the best sun-bath in the 10 mins ride and the most romantic sunset of Malta harbours.
10am Brunch at Kingway Bar & Cafe
After our 5am pre-breakfast in Rome, the first thing we want in Malta is a nice brunch. I found Kingsway Bar & Café through some Malta-based influencers on Instagram, and it turned out to be a debatable choice.
I love it – my eggs on the sweet corn purée and my iced coffee in a non-Italian way (You know I love my Rome life, but sometimes I want a long coffee latte in the afternoon, that no one will “judges” you like drinking coffee in Italy). Luigi was too hungry since 5am. He protested his avocado toast was too small.
11am Walking in Valletta city
11am Wandering around
12.30pm Visit the Malta Experience & National War Museum at Fort St.Elmo
In 1565, the Knights under the lead of Jean de Vallette, defended the island from the Turks (the Ottoman Empire), for more than 3 months. It was “mission-impossible”. The number of the Knights with the fighting Maltese are only 6000 something, while was overwhelmed absolutely by the other side of almost 40,000!
Valletta, as the name of this capital city of Malta, comes from this great Knight’s name as well!
The Knights, the fight, the heroic victory after the big sacrifice and Malta’s Throne Room (in Palace Armoury) are all about this Great Siege – No wonder, Game Of Throne made a few screens in this miracle country!
The museum perfectly cuts the Malta history to several sectors. It tells the story with a parallel timeline showing what is the significant events happening in the world, in the mean time.
We walked every corner, read and watched each introduction and video clip, until our feet and back felt enough stress.
6pm Pass by Upper Barrakka Gardens & Tritons Fountain
Malta’s sunset comes unexpectedly earlier. We closed our crazy walk day from the beautiful Upper Barrakka garden, the nation’s symbol of cannon platform, after that, we walked down to the city gate where the city’s symbol, Tritons’ Fountain is.
Before taking our ferry back to Sliema, some local beer were what we definitely want to recommend! Enjoy a sip under the beautiful sunset, changing the white city to the orange.
9am Local deli in Sliema
While we travel, we always try our best to eat at the local restaurants, no matter it’s a bistro or a fine-dining. We always go without booking as we like the flexibility and enjoy the stress-free trip.
However, we were two naive “kids”, rejected by the always-full local famous, Ta’ Kris as a result in Malta. Il-Merill, the family run restaurant – sounds just that familiar like in Italy, became our second choice. We were so amused the whole night, eating, drinking, laughing. The happiest is, counting the clocks on the wall! I think we’ve agreed on a final number of 12 or 11? I don’t remember now.
The food was really good with a generous potion – finally Luigi got satisfied, and probably way too much. We loved the typical Maltese starter mix. Not only because it’s new to us, but truly we appreciated their Gozo goat cheese and “mailendese” (well-cooked eggplants and veggies) a lot. A glass of fresh Maltese white wine or two for the whole night was with no doubt!
Meat dishes were impressive, when Luigi took his grilled fish, I “attacked” slowly on my local rabbit stew. Rabbit seems a common traditional dish in Malta. When we travelled around, we saw this dish almost in every restaurant’s menu. Funny thing is that some restaurants highlight their rabbit as “local origin”. It’s richly cooked – stew as you can understand – with carrots, onions and other malted vegetable that I cannot tell. I guess red wine was there also. The meat was so tender with low fat consistency.
I have to highlight the big dish size, as I really couldn’t finish it, even Luigi couldn’t help me that time.
It’s a long article. Pin it to read later?
Day 2: Sliema & Marsaxlokk
9am Lie down at 1926 Hotel Beach Club
After the first long day (almost 18 hours), we’ve been half destroyed. Luigi insisted a relax morning with a big breakfast in our hotel and kept relaxing in our unique hotel beach club.
I have to say, this was a great idea! Otherwise we would definitely missed one of our best morning memories.
Our hotel is 1926 Hotel & Spa. Love their cute interior design also – full of inspiration. We also enjoyed almost the whole morning under our umbrellas. The sea waves towards the rocks, the salty and wet air were in front of us. The pool was built with circulated sea water. So, it was literally like swimming in the sea.
I even wouldn’t be willing to leave this place.
P.S. We were really happy with our hotel this time. Spacious and modern design with a cute balcony that we can see a bit of the sea in the morning. Huge bathroom is absolutely important for us, especially when we go for a seaside vacation. The hotel guys were very friendly and helpful!
12pm Dip into Victorian Era Baths at Font Ghadir
In the Victoria time, the Maltese women thought it improper to bath in public while bathing in the sea was still a traditional joy. To solve the problem, the bath was built, with those natural rocks, with the higher bars around the small pool, and even a few steps to allow people walk in easier.
4pm Heading to St.Peter's Pool & Marsaxlokk
After the whole morning’s do-nothing, finally, we moved to a “far” destination – Marsaxlokk, where the very famous St.Peter’s Pool is.
Off the taxi, we walked up the off-road till suddenly the natural bay showed up. The sight was breathtaking, with milk-white huge rocks making up almost the whole bay. The deep blue waves hit the cliffs powerfully, and the softened late afternoon sun was beautiful!
There are many young people, trying out their jumps, even girls! Brave! From the two sides, there are staircases to the sea.
7pm Seafood dinner at Marsaxlokk
Day 3: Gozo city & Blue Lagoon
Summary of this Malta Itinerary
3 days are toooooo short for Malta!
We crossed over a few famous spots, spent a lot of time to learn Malta’s history, tested out a few local-loved restaurants, but I don’t even feel to speak loudly that, we have travelled in Malta.
This place is so rich of nature and adventure, culture and history, and old and modern things to do. I would like to visit Malta more times and know it better!
If you’ve been to Malta, and you know the hidden gems of Malta, leave in the comments below and I would be happy to take them all in my notes!