Offered at very short notice and costing nothing, Malta has blown many of my senses after embarking on a get-away without even knowing it’s location. (…a collection of isles in the Mediterranean, just off the foot of Italy/Sicily)
The best review of Malta?
A mixture of modern and old, ancient and glimmering, eclectic and abandoned… the architecture, infrastructure, cultural offerings and scenery categorically offer something for everyone.
If anyone reading this should take one thing away, it should be NOT to underestimate this country (…just choose your location wisely-or be prepared to travel around perhaps?!) Personally, I prefer to wander streets of old towns, chat to locals and explore deserted nature trails; but if you fancy shopping, bustling beaches, poolside antics and clubbing experiences (200 shots for £50 anyone?) then there really is no shortage of options! Hell we even stumbled across a limousine with a Jacuzzi on board in Paceville.
Generally speaking, my first (and lasting) impressions were of an idyllic, untouched, majorly non-commercialised country. The sixty minute transfer from the airport passed no McDonalds nor KFC’s, there were no Walmarts nor Euro-Garages; the closest I initially saw to a Starbucks was a rip off called something similar with an equally similar logo. The terrain is dry and rocky, the coast is made up of caves and rock… Graffiti on a crumbling wall near the airport read, ‘We spend money we don’t have to buy things we don’t need from people we don’t trust…’ A hint towards the changing tides on the isles perhaps? (… there seemed to be a car show room on every street corner in the big towns)
After exploring a mixture of towns & cities, tourist hot spots and excursions, it seemed there was no escaping the giants that are Burger King and Costa, Matalan and M&S… (As I say, something for everyone at least) Two things that stood out through all of the above experiences though, was the architecture (buildings still in use and completely deserted) and the aesthetic beauty of the islands; a true feast for the eyes… There were times when I felt I was back in Israel or Armenia, but, within moments, when I could have been back on London’s Park Lane or the Hoover Dam in Arizona. It’s made me want to explore Marrakesh and Istanbul, it’s excited me for India, and it’s enticed me back from day one; with a list already written of where I’d want to return… There’s a world out there people, and Malta is one piece on that ever expanding jigsaw of opportunity and excitement; a place I’d be more than happy to explore further – or even live.