The main reason for visiting this part of Malta is to visit the San Anton Gardens. Balzan itself is also worth a visit. It is a quiet village with a lovely centre, and some lovely residential properties. This is a good way to see where the well off Maltese live.
One of the best views of the Maltese countryside is from the terrace of the Fontanella Cafe. Another good view ids from the Tarja Hill near Mosta. If you have time take a walk between 2 villages and watch farmers working in the fields. Gharghur has excellent views of countryside. It is surprising how much open space there is in Malta considering the relatively large population. Gozo is even less crowded!
I don´t know why, but we saw lots of funny registration plates at Malta. Maybe they are cheap, or maybe it´s easier to get one in so small country. Who knows, but keep your eyes open, you might have parked next to a "spyderman" or a princess ;)
The Chinese Garden of Serenity (Gnien is Serenità) is located on the outskirts of Santa Lucija. It was built in the 1996-97.
Things which makes a Chinese garden symbolize something. In this garden there is a winding corridor that represents the windings and challenges of life; there are rocks; a pond where water means birth. There is a bamboo garden meaning contemplation. A visit to this garden is like walking through the phases of life. From birth to death.
It is a little garden, but very beautiful. Its only facilities are a picnic area and the toilets.
To get to the garden you can take buses 15 or 115 from Valletta; pass by Sta. Lucija; stop at the playing field. The garden is parallel to the main road leading from the roundabout just outside of Sta. Lucija to Luqa.
Erected around 3600 – 3200 BC, it is one of the earliest temples but still in a very good condition.The pottery of earlier date found at this site suggest that this was built on top of an earlier village. Finds from this site include a small limestone model of a building.The larger temple is set in the middle of a large semicircular forecourt. Two steps lead up to the main entrance and a corridor flanked by huge uprights of coralline limestone; three on each side, which support large hard-stone slabs. The corridor beyond the entrance is paved with large stone blocks placed with great accuracy. The corridor leads into a central court with three semi-circular rooms around it. .
Opened only on Tuesdays from 0930 till 1100. Just in case you're there on a different day you can still take some good pics ( like mine) from outside the fence. Skorba Temples are just 10 minutes walk away. See respective tip for details and opening times. Definately worth a visit as well.Please click on the pic to see more photos.
Skorba Temples lie in fields near Mgarr. At Skorba, a typical three-apsed temple was built in the Ggantija phase (3600 – 3200 BC), replacing a village that had been inhabited since the Ghar Dalam phase (5000 – 4300 BC). Remains include the stone paving of the entrance passage, with perforations to carry libation offerings, the torba floors of the apses, a 3.90 metre high slab of coralline limestone, and a step covered with pitted decoration.
Skorba was occupied long before the temples were built.
Skorba Temple is open for the public every Tuesday from 11.30 to 13.00. Just in case you're there on a different day you still can take some good pics from outside the fence. Less than a Km away lies another temple named 'Ta Hagrat'. It's closer to the Mgarr church and should be visited before Skorba as it's closed at 1100. Click on pic to see more photos.
If you're planning to cycle off the beaten track in Malta, here are some sources you could use:
The Visit Malta page - http://www.visitmalta.com/cycling?l=1 - is helpful, as it provides the general background on Malta.
The Malta By Bike page - http://www.maltabybike.com is useful to book bike adventures which, importantly, include free transportation from your hotel. This is handy if you're keen to cycle off the beaten track, but not too keen about cycling all the way there from your hotel!
Finally, the Wikipedia article on cycling in Malta may also come in handy - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cycling_in_Malta
If you've been to the Play Mobil in Nuremburg, you will be very disappointed. This is definitely more of a Play Mobil plant, then a kids play area. They do have a small area in the front where kids can play, but it is not really a place to spend an afternoon.
The coastline of Malta is beautiful. It is worth driving around the perimeter of the island, just to see the views along the coast. If you don't have a car, think about paying a taxi driver to take you for an island tour. We got a taxi to take us to Play Mobil, and then just paid him to drive us around the island for a few hours and had a great afternoon.
Although the dome of Mgarr's Church of the Assumption does indeed look a bit like an egg, that's not the reason why it is known as the Egg Church. The reason for its strange nickname is that the church was built in the 1930s with money raised by local people from the sale of eggs.
There isn't much else to see in the village of Mgarr apart from the church, which, along with its location, is why it is off the beaten path, but you can combine a trip here with a visit to two of the oldest megalithic temples in Malta: Ta'Hagrat and Skorba, which are both nearby. This is one a of the few places in Malta where you get the impression the locals are not used to seeing many foreign visitors and so it gives you a glimpse into what Malta would be like without the tourists: even more laid back.
Mgarr is in the north-west of Malta and the church stands in the village square. You can take bus no. 47 from Valletta or walk up here from Golden Bay.
Me and Ian wanded into this cinema in Valletta but we left because it looked dark and had no film posters we both thought it was a porn cinema but in Malta it probably isn't.
Has anyone been to City Lights Cinema?
Does anyone know what Kinemastik means?
Today I visited the Classic Car Collection Museum. I was so impressed with the museum that I decided to set up a VT tip about it. It's worthwhile visiting the museum if you are interested in classic cars. There is also a large collection of model cars on display. The classic cars are spread out on two floors and a few of them are actually for sale.
The museum is privately owned by Carol Galea who has been collecting cars for most of his life, starting off as a little boy with tiny model cars. Apart from classic cars and models, the museum has a large collection of photos which date back to the 1950s. The museum also has a small cinema, a gift shop and a cafeteria.
If you have extra time and are interested, don't miss out, you will NOT be disappointed! The museum is very impressive.
Monday to Friday: 9am to 6pm
Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays: 9 am to 1.30 pm.
Adults: Eur 6.40 / Children: Eur 4.08
Price includes a 10% discount on food and drink ordered at the museum's cafeteria.
(The weblink below contains a map)
South of Marsaxlokk you will see a small, isolated fort. This is Fort St Lucian, which was built by the Knights of St John in 1610 to protect the south-east coast of Malta from attacks by the Ottoman Turks. Today it houses a naval college.
This is not to be missed. You can tie this in with your trip to Rabat as it is very close. Take bus #81 from Valletta. Buses run every half an hour. There is a restaurant at the cliffs, but it is closed on Mondays. It is just a wonderful place to go and reflect. The air is crisp and clean and it is very relaxing and truly romantic.
Usually around the Maltese Island when you go off the beaten path you always find something nice to see and what I like is that Malta and Gozo are so safe that you never feel insecure I mean unless its at night !!! However, Malta the streets and the area is quite safe.
In this section I am going to try and create a tip dedicate to the foliage around the Maltese islands.
Park Lane Aparthotel is a nice place to stay in the north side of the island. The neighborhood is...more
Xlendi Promenade, Xlendi, Island of Gozo, Malta
Good for: Families
I did not stay in this hotel, but I passed by it, when walking through the old town of Mdina. b.t.w....more