Malta; Gem of the Med

Malta; Gem of the Med

Recently I've discovered #Malta which is a tiny yet stunning island that neighbours its sister islands of Gozo and Comino. Malta has become a popular tourist location for sun seekers, #culture vultures and #party goers alike. Hit the #beach, dine in style, discover the #history and enjoy it!


Straight in from a night out on the town, I had roughly one hour to scramble all my crap into a tiny suitcase. “Mum can I take the hair straighteners and your pink beach thingy?” I caused much panic at 3am as my poor mother realized I was taking nearly the entire contents of her wardrobe. Organisation has never and will never be my 'thing,' I prefer panic and fear to prelude my holiday, it allows me to fully appreciate the relaxed Mediterranean lifestyle.

I caused much panic at 3am as my poor mother realized I was taking nearly the entire contents of her wardrobe

Pre-flight jitters combined with excitement for a week of sun set in as I boarded the aircraft. I did my usual routine of ensuring the wings of the plane were definitely on (they were) and “in the event that the aircraft lands on water” I quadruple checked that my life-jacket was securely under my seat.

A few stale sandwiches and several cups of teas later (god bless economy class), my friend Emily and I arrived in Malta. The humidity was glorious and I did not long to be back in rainy, old England. After an easy, problem free transfer, we arrived at the Westin Dragonara Resort, which is wonderfully located in the heart of St Julian’s Bay. 

The resort is truly magnificent and a grand entrance leads you inside. Out of the corner of my eye, I could see the huge casino, fabulous seafront area and swimming pool. 

Out of the corner of my eye, I could see the huge casino, fabulous seafront area and swimming pool

Seriously, is there anything this hotel doesn’t have?

from  $173

Hotel Westin Dragonara Palace Resort

 Dragra Road, St.Julian S, Malta
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On entering the room, my attention was grabbed by the free chocolates, I’d wolfed them down before you could say “bikini body” and my answer to the previous question was a resounding NO! The hotel staff were attentive, kind and helpful; Emily and I were very insistent on finding out the gossip on the best wine bars and discount designer shops, and they answered every question the best they could, without a hint of annoyance - which is rare for us.

St Julian’s Bay itself is fabulous, with a vast array of restaurants, bars and shops, it was the perfect 'base camp.' 

Paceville, the nightlife hotspot, was also just a two minute walk away – not so close that you could hear every glass clink, but close enough so we could walk to and from without collapsing in a heap.

Crazy coffee night at St Julian’s Bay

Instead of spending the first day by the pool with a cultural copy of Grazia, we decided to book ourselves onto a tour! The multi-lingual help desk lady almost had me booking onto every single tour imaginable. I’m a sucker for a good sales pitch, but guided by my sensible friend we booked ourselves onto the Captain Morgan Cruise to Comino – the home of the Blue Lagoon. We took a short bus ride into the lovely Sliema and hopped aboard the cruise. 

The journey was just amazing, Malta looked magnificent, with the vivid blue sea and Malta’s incredible coastline acting as its frame, we had the perfect postcard view. 

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 Gozo Marina, Ghajnsielem, Malta
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We stopped briefly at some caves, which were so stunning it was hard to imagine they were natural. I took some pictures with one hand whilst holding a chilled beer in the other #touristlife. 

After a leisurely two-hour trip we arrived at the Blue Lagoon. Living up to its name – I have never seen such crystal coloured waters in my life. 

I have never seen such crystal coloured waters in my life

The cruise would leave in four hours, leaving us a good amount of time to explore and take a dip or two. 

The stunning Blue Lagoon 

My friend and I clambered up some rocks and followed a short trail to the beach area. We swam for god knows how long in the glorious waters, the water was so crystal clear and cool – perfect for a 30+ °C day. Cornetto ice-creams in hand, we ran back to the cruise with an hour to spare and the awesome crew let us jump off the boat into the sea. I decided I couldn’t wait for them to put down the stairs, so I did my most elegant dive (belly-flop) and swam in the deep waters until it was time to leave. The journey back was equally magnificent, Emily and I sat right at the front – the sea breeze and picturesque surroundings were nothing short of idyllic.

With the vivid blue sea and Malta’s incredible coastline acting as its frame, we had the perfect postcard view

After a tiring, but wonderful few days exploring our area of St Julian’s, and Malta’s historic capital of Valletta, we decided it was time for a day dedicated to our one true love – wine. 

Emily spreading her wings in Valletta

We booked ourselves onto the Three Cities & Wine Tasting Tour, which takes you through the three fortified cities of Cospicua, Vittoriosa and Senglea. 

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The history of these cities dates back hundreds of years and it was so interesting to hear all the stories behind them. After a fantastic few hours and with an in-depth appreciation of Maltese history acquired, we finally arrived at the Marsovin cellars in Marsa. 

The tour guide told us exactly how the wine was made, from the pressing of the grapes to the fermenting. My friend and I took notes and are convinced we have a successful wine empire in our midst. The moment we’d all been waiting for arrived and it was time to taste the wines, complemented by fresh bread and delicious cheeses – it was the most perfect day imaginable! With the pre-game in mind, we bought a bottle of Malta’s finest each and even had a cheeky few sips on the coach – who doesn’t love a Brit abroad?*

It was time to taste the wines, complemented by fresh bread and delicious cheeses- it was the most perfect day imaginable!

My week in Malta is a week I’ll never forget. The locals, the hotel, the tours – just everything was perfect. For such a small island, the history and culture it has garnered over the years is impressive to say the least.

Me in Valletta - capital of Malta

I long to go back already, and would thoroughly recommend it as the perfect Mediterranean location. For weather, culture, fun and relaxation – think Malta!

*Answer = everyone

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