The Hendersons Malta
2014 Trip to Italy and Malta
Wednesday we left the little house in Pozzallo and drove to the ferry terminal to take the ferry to the island of Malta. It is less than a two hour ferry ride, and we found the ferry to be clean and comfortable, except for the too loud Eddie Murphy film they were showing. The ferry was an Australian built catamaran.
We had booked a two bedroom flat in the area known as St. Paul's Bay. Much to our surprise we drove straight to the flat without any kind of problems. This is particularly interesting since the address is the name of the apartment building not a street address. We arrived too early to check in so we had lunch and walked around the area of St. Paul's Bay.
The flat was a bit of a disappointment simply because it was not as clean as it should have been and the linens were very very tired and the toilets didn't flush properly. With just a little attention and money it could be a first rate holiday flat. We decided not to cook in the flat and had dinner out both of our nights on Malta. The first night we had dinner at a nice restaurant called the Overflow. It was a wonderful meal but made particularly interesting when the power went out just as we were finishing our dinner. We luckily had gotten some cash from the ATM earlier in the day so we didn't have to rely on credit cards. That was just good fortune on our part.
The next day we took the hop on hop off tour of the island of Malta. It has a fascinating history and we wish we had allowed more time for our visit. We got off the bus at an area called Rabat. This is the old former capital of Malta. There is a recently discovered Roman villa in this area. There are a couple of churches that are particularly notable and there are catacombs in this area. The streets are narrow and winding and make you think that you are in an Arab country. We took a small train (although it wasn't really a train on a track) through this area and absorbed as much of the history as we could. We also went into a beautiful Catholic Church in the village of Mosta. Rather to our embarrassment we found out as we were leaving the church that we had crashed a Maltese funeral. The church wasn't open to the public when we went in. Generally speaking we were not terribly impressed with the hop on hop off tour, partially because earlier on in the tour the audio recording was nothing but a sales pitch for various shops, and we felt that the history that was being described was rather superficial. Beyond that the tour wasn't very well organized in that we were on the bus to take us back to St. Paul's Bay when we were told to get off the bus and wait for another bus but no explanation was given. Eventually we made our way back to our flat. We had dinner at a restaurant called Duo, and it was wonderful.
Friday we had booked a ferry back to Sicily but it was leaving in the later afternoon, so we had the morning to go into the city of Valletta. We spent a little more than an hour in the Lascaris War Rooms. There is a brief video that explains the terrible siege of Malta and the convoy that the allies created to come to Malta to relieve the people. The Allies directed the invasion of Sicily from Malta. The war rooms are very similar to the Churchill war rooms in London, albeit quite a bit smaller.