Malta – April 2015

In April, I attended a short familiarisation trip to Malta, courtesy of Prestige Holidays and I am pleased to share with you, my views on Malta as a holiday destination.

After a short flight with Air Malta from Heathrow we arrived in sunny Malta and quickly cleared passport control and baggage claim. Within an hour of landing we were enjoying a welcome drink at the Westin Dragonara, in the resort of St Julians and set on its own peninsula. The rooms were spacious and I had a lovely view of the swimming pool and sea. We were shown around the hotel and the various room types, including the suite where Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie stayed. We enjoyed an evening meal in Quadro which is situated by the sea and the winner of a ‘Fine Dining’ award.

Next day, we made the short journey by ferry to Gozo, a pleasant crossing taking just 25 minutes. Upon arrival in Gozo, meaning ‘Joy’, we were met by our guide and were soon on our way to the Ggantija Temples, the oldest freestanding structures in the world comprising two Neolithic temples dating back to 3500BC.

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From here, we proceeded to Dwejra to see The Azure Window, an impressive natural arch standing some twenty metres high, before visiting the Kempinski Hotel San Lawrenz for lunch. The Kempinski is a lovely hotel which has a very nice feel about it and would make an ideal choice if wishing to stay in Gozo. On our return journey to the ferry, we visited Ta Cenc Hotel,

On our return journey to the ferry, we visited Ta Cenc Hotel, situation on a 150 acre estate with landscaped gardens. If you are looking to stay somewhere completely unique, then try one of their Trullo rooms. These detached bungalows were built in a round design, creating a distinctive and quirky layout that ensures they are popular hideaways for those guests looking for something truly omalta2ut of the ordinary.

In the evening we were taken to Mdina – The Silent City. Mdina was Malta’s first capital city during the period of the Knights of Malta. We visited the boutique hotel Xara Palace Relias & Chateaux, which is a 17th century palazzo and all the rooms have been individually designed with romantic décor, original paintings, antique tapestries and furnishings.

Next day we visited Valletta, Malta’s capital, where we visited the Hotel Grand Excelsior and Hotel Phoenicia. Both hotels are ideally situated within walking distance to Valletta and offer stunning views of the harbour.

malta3St John’s Cathedral epitomises the role of its original patron, the Knights of St John. The Cathedral also houses one of Europe’s most impressive and famous art works – Caravaggio’s Beheading of St John the Baptist.

From here we visited the Grandmaster’s Palace a beautiful building which is the seat of the President of the Republic of Malta and also houses the Parliament.

The highlight of the Grandmaster’s Palace are the Chamber rooms. The Throne Room shows all of Malta’s Governors to date and the Tapestry Chamber is adorned by the Gobelen Tapestries. Before a short boat trip around the harbour, we had lunch at Ta’ Nenu Bakery, a Maltese bakery specialising in ftiras. Ftira is like a ciabatta, and is the base then you can have a variety of toppings like a pizza.

 

Before leaving Malta, we visited the Corinthia Palace Hotel & Spa in San Anton. Nestled amid lush greenery and landscaped gardens, this property is a secluded haven. This hotel, centrally located on the island, means everywhere is within easy reach and it offers complimentary courtesy transport daily to Valletta, Sliema, St Julian’s and the Royal Malta Golf Course. Malta has something to offer everyone and with a flight time of approximately three hours, makes it an ideal destination for a short break.