For our holiday on Malta the travel guide of the Michael Mueller
publishing house proved to be the best. In the Internet
there are also lots of useful information about the island state.
Very well done and informative is among others the official web
site of Malta www.visitmalta.com
as well as the site www.heritagemalta.org
with information about museums and events.
The supply of overnight accommodation on Malta is manifold. For
each demand and wallet there´s a matching place to stay.
Most of the accommodation is to be found along the coast,
especially in the north. In the surrounding of Sliema and
at the St. Paul´s Bay there is the highest concentration. In
the center of the island the supply is rather scanty.
The stars of the hotels are however a certain information about
quality, but not a guaranty. We stayed in Qawra/Bugibba at the
Hotel "Soreda" and we were very pleased with it. The rooms are
relatively large, friendly and clean. It looked as if it
had been modernized recently. About the food we had also no complains.
We can definitely recommend that hotel. You should consider that
most hotels are city hotels and that you always have to reckon with
a certain noise level.
on the Islands
A very cost-effective and individual way of exploring
Malta is going by bus. Busses go from the central bus
terminal in Valetta to almost all places in Malta.
In front of the City Gate around the Triton Fountain the sometimes
very nostalgic busses are waiting for their next tour. A bus
map is definitely necessary so that you don´t get on the
wrong bus. The most current one you get at the information booths
at the bus terminal in Valetta or in one or the other bus.
On that map all bus numbers with their routes, fares and departure
times are noted. The bus numbers are also put up at the busses.
However, an extra inquiry of the bus driver won´t do any harm.
So you can make sure that you are going into the right direction.
The bus stops are marked with the respective signs and with the
numbers of busses that stop there. You only have to watch out not
to get on the bus on the wrong side of the road because in Malta
they drive on the left.
The fares are very favourable. They vary between 0,15
Lm and 0,40 Lm per ride. The prices depend on the zones you
drive through (Malta is divided into 3 zones) and if you are going
by a regular or a direct bus. You usually buy the ticket at the
bus driver. It is wise to have the right fare ready.
Otherwise it may happen that you don´t get change back. Notes
are not very popular in general. At the central bus
terminals there are also ticket machines by now. Besides
there are day and week passes as well, but these are not
profitable in our opinion.
A rental car is an alternative to the bus. Especially
on Gozo it is a suitable means of transport because if you take
the bus you always have to go pass the capital Victoria and the
frequency of rides leaves much to be desired. A rental car can also
be useful for exploring the south of Malta. That way you
can visit more at one day than by bus and the traffic is not as
busy as in the north. The urban Malta around Sliema and Valetta
you should rather avoid with a rental car. The traffic
there is quite heavy and the Mediterranean way of
driving of the Maltese is not for weak nerves. The prices
for rental cars vary depending on the type of car, season and
days of rent. According to our experiences the prices between the
international and local rental companies do not differ much. For
our rental car on Gozo we payed 10 Lm including full insurance
without percentage excess - that is definitely to recommend.
Renting a car without any problems and extra charge is only
possible at a minimum age of 25 years.
The traditional Maltese kitchen is not always easy to find. In
hotels the international cuisine with strong British influences
dominates. Beside pizza, pasta, fish & chips you can also try the
Maltese cuisine in some restaurants, which is strongly influenced
by the Spanish, Italian, Greek and Turkish kitchen. The speciality
of Malta is rabbit with garlic and red wine - unfortunately
we did not try it because it was too expensive for us. For lunch
we often had small Maltese snacks and dainties like Pastizzi
(small pieces of flaky pastry, alternatively filled with peppered
ricotta cheese or mashed peas) or Qassatat (small pies alternatively
filled with ricotta cheese, meat, mashed peas or spinach with tuna).
Both you should eat warm if possible. Not known to us and something
you have to get used to is the non-alcoholic Kinnie -
the secret national beverage of the Maltese. Its aroma is
bitter-sweet and doesn´t convince necessarily everyone.
The Maltese are real gormandizers who like it very sweet. There
are plenty of desserts, cakes and other sweets. We
could continue the list of Maltese specialities, but you better
just try everything that looks good to you.
Malta offers something for everyone - swimming, hiking, water
sports, interesting sights and much more. We would not necessarily
recommend Malta as a destination for bathing and swimming. Beside
cliffs and steep coast you primarily find rocky beaches
on Malta. Sandy beaches are relatively rare and in
the summer mostly overcrowded. The water quality is however
excellent - clean and clear like nowhere else in the Mediterranean.
Therefore Malta offers best conditions for diving and snorkeling.
There´s a lot to visit on Malta as you can read up on the
following pages. Many local tour operators offer organized tours,
which however are in our opinion simply overpriced and offer
little individual scope. Malta can also be discovered easily and
uncomplicated on one´s own bat. The Maltese islands are a
paradise for hikers and bikers as well. There are no big
mountains and ascends, but the sometimes narrow and hidden paths
open up interesting views and sights off the tourist routes.
else you should know
The currency on Malta is the Maltese Lira, abbreviated
Lm, also called Maltese Pound. The exchange rate during
our stay was 1 Lm = approx. 2,50 €. Don´t be taken
in by the apparent low prices because converted into Euro some prices
seem not that favourable anymore.
Like in other Mediterranean countries there´s a Siesta
(approx. from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m.) on Malta, which we Central
Europeans are not used to. Museums and other sights are
usually open without break, whereas in the summer season
the opening hours are shorter.
We recommend to take a three-pole adapter plug
with you like they use in Great Britain, otherwise it may become difficult
with the power supply. In our hotel there was by way of exception
a two-pole socket with 240 V as well, so that we did not need our