Malta Part 2: The First Solo Trip

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Here is the second part of my amazing trip to the incredibly amazing Malta.

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Day 5: Having done some research, my destination for today is the island Gozo the second largest island of Maltese archipelago. There are excursion trips available but, I like the idea of making it cheaper whilst also having the adventure of making my own way.

Before setting off on my journey I’m ravenous however, I want to try a new place to eat. Directly across the road from the hotel there’s a place called Jesters bar. On arrival I’m greeted by the owner Manuel then his wife Lillian moments later. They were a very lovely couple and were very welcoming towards me. After speaking for a while they recommended a visit to Mdina, the old capital of Malta. As today was already planned I thought it would be a good idea for tomorrow’s day trip.

If I’m completely honest, can’t remember what I ordered! “Because” from here onwards I returned on several occasions. But I remember how delicious and incredibly cheap everything was! Breakfast was less than €6 including my daily coffee, all the main meals were very cheap as well as desserts. Their local spirits were only €2 each! It was definitely a great decision coming here.

So, its time to leave. Manuel and Lillian advise me on what buses to get to Gozo ferry terminal and wish me well.

It’s another pleasing €1.50 bus fare! The bus journey was pleasant, going through little towns and villages, then in-between we would get views of the exquisite coastlines. This was the moment I realised just how beautiful Malta really was, it was stunning! As the bus got closer to Gozo ferry terminal the villages and towns disappeared then it was just huge bodies of water!

Outside the terminal are men selling boat trips to Gozo and Comino for €40. At this point, not really sure, I decide to just go with the original plan and think about the boat trip on the other side.

Inside the building there’s a reception desk, I go to purchase a ticket. The lady informs me the tickets are purchased on returning back.

Having never been on a ferry I’m super excited! But, we have 25-minutes until boarding time so, I grab a coffee, sit outside and try to wait patiently.

The view sat outside the ferry terminal

The ferry finally arrives, we all set off to the ferry entrance up a big slop and board. It was mesmerizing just how big this thing was! So excited! I couldn’t even choose where to sit! Eventually sitting outside downstairs to capture the views of the deep blue sea. It was breath taking except, after 15-minutes my hands and feet were numb because of how cold it was out at sea. Still, I stayed put as it was too beautiful to miss.

GOZO

After 25-minutes we arrive at Gozo port. Once off the ferry people start going in different directions, some are buying boat trips, others are getting on buses and I’m stood with no plan from here whatsoever.

There’s a bus ready to leave to Victoria Bay, with no other plans other than getting to Gozo, I get on it. The bus was probably about an hour drive, it felt forever getting to Victoria Bay but, it was nice to see more of Malta. The bus went through the countryside and its little villages and tiny streets. All the local residents were getting on and off with their groceries. I thoroughly enjoyed this as it was something not to be experienced on a hop on and off bus.

VICTORIA

We arrive at Victoria Bay it’s around 1.45pm and all I can think about is food. So hungry I don’t take in the name of the place, it was an old pub. The food was dirt cheap! A starter, main course with a glass of wine and bottled water was all under €15.

After coming out of the pub I Notice a narrow hidden street behind a market stall, I curiously head towards it, it leads me here!

A cute little residential area with religious statues carved into corners, little shops and a restaurant hidden away.

So, after walking round here and beyond, its now gone 4pm. Noticing a number of tourists walking from the same direction, I’m curious to see what’s beyond there. As I proceed and continue to walk I notice steep hills and at the top is the Cittadella (Citadel)

The Cittadella

The Cittadella, also known as the Castillo of Victoria has been home to Gozo since the Bronze Age. It consists of churches, historical buildings including the Cathedral Of The Assumption.

So I make it up the steep hills! No wonder people have hiking sticks!

It was certainly one of the most prominent sites in Gozo it was filled with history, well-preserved winding streets, incredible church as well as others, museums, an old prison and several cafes inside the walls it was like an open air museum! I didn’t pay to go and see inside anything, it felt a shame to rush around as time was getting on. It was one of those places where you needed a good few hours to explore and take everything in. I was thinking of coming back with more time. Nonetheless, just walking around the walls was absolutely stunning, the views overlooking Gozo was phenomenal! Didn’t get any pictures as my battery died! Don’t you just hate it when that happens!

Photography by Ruben Farrugia

Cathedral Of The Assumption

Photography By Ruben Farrugia

The journey home was a little hectic after waiting for around 30minutes for a bus! Once at the ferry terminal there was an enormous queue to pay for tickets. It was quite a wait, even longer as people rudely pushed in the queue. The ferry only cost €4.65 return!

Stood all the way through the ferry journey, then all through the bus journey. I was so relieved to get off the bus when it arrived back at st pauls Bay.

I return back to Jesters bar to have dinner and a few drinks whilst speaking to Manuel and Lillian. Afterwards return to the hotel, watch the Elvis impersonator for a short while before returning to my hotel room.

Day 6: It’s 10.30am I’ve had my breakfast at Jesters now I’m making my way to Mdina.

Mdina And Rabat

Mdina is the old capital of Malta also known as The Silent City. Mdina is a small town, rich with history, surrounded by tall bastion fortifications and is filled with centuries old buildings. Rabat is the village that is neighbour to Mdina, its much quieter and has a more rural feel to it. It has a few museums around but, also has its forest green areas.

Mdina was out of this world! It was most definitely one of my best experiences.

with its horses and carriages, narrow streets, alley ways, stone slabs and old architecture styles. It was definitely like stepping into a time machine that takes you to a medieval century.

The market that comes to the town every Saturday

The place is filled with individual museums, cathedrals and points of interest.

St. Paul’s Cathedral
Inside The Church of Annunciation

It was truley a fascinating place with so much to explore.

Spending so much time in Mdina left very little time to cross over to Rabat. Although, I did eat in Rabat at a place called Chalk Cafe Bar, a cute cafe with all fresh and home made food. Although, managing to have a little wonder around it was not as much as I would have liked. The time seemed to pass so quickly it was around 5.30pm, I was ready to leave.

Day 7: Today is my last full day here in Malta, my flight leaves early around 9am which means it’s an early get up. With this in mind I decide to stay more local and take a trip to sliema as it’s only a 25-minute bus ride.

Sliema

Sliema used to be a fishing village, the present day it is home to thousands of residents. It is known for being the home of many British inhabitants.

It has a front coastal line and feels quite busy with local Shops, pubs, restaurants, hotels and apartments it feels more like a holiday destination. It’s definetly worlds apart from Mdina and Rabat with a most definite 21st century feel to it. It’s also close to St. Julians which is known for it’s nightlife area know as paceville.

Although, it wasn’t to warm my plan today was to sit or walk along the coastline and to have a walk around sliema.

After sitting and walking along the coastline, had a little wonder around the neighbourhoods before looking in some shops and grabing a coffee.

How beautiful is this view!

The rest of my day was spent back at the hotel using the gym, relaxing in the pool before having to pack my stuff ready for my early flight home.

So, that was it! That was the end of my holiday. That long fear of travelling alone had been conquered! I can not even describe how empowered and independent I felt whilst on my journey back home. I kept feeling myself smiling because, I knew nothing was going to stop me now.

Thanks for reading 🙂

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