I can honestly say I’ve been dreaming of going to Malta for almost 30 years. Long ago, I watched a documentary about the historical sites on this lovely island and became fascinated with the universal themes present in the ancient temples there. This tiny Mediterranean island is home to the oldest structures on earth – older than Stonehenge or the pyramids. In a previous post I explained my interest in history and Malta doesn’t disappoint in that arena. I will cover some of what has been found in Malta in future posts, so stay tuned. Today’s post will focus on something I always try to establish when we travel – our home base. In a small country like Malta, location isn’t that critical since transportation by bus and car are relatively simple and everything is close at hand. It’s easy to find good restaurants, nightlife, shopping and beaches everywhere. Because of this, we shopped for accommodations by price and ended up in the St. Paul’s Bay area. Even in October, Malta was warm and alive with tourists and services were in full swing. The sea was warm and we fully enjoyed our beach excursions and getting to know our homebase for the week.
The second day we ventured into the capital city of Valletta. Our main mission was to visit the Archeological Museum of Malta, which I will feature in my next post. In addition to the museum, we walked through the car-free zone of the city center and visited both the Upper and Lower Barrakka Gardens. If parts of Valletta look familiar to you Game of Thrones fans, it’s because several sites on the island have been used as locations since Season One of that series. I had fun looking at this website to compare some of the locations we visited with how they looked during specific GOT scenes. During World War II, Malta was a British colony and a critical strategic center for the Allies. Malta was also used as a rehabilitation center for wounded soldiers and itself endured a two year long battle. There are enough war memorials and commemorative monuments and artworks to organize an entire trip around.