I hope you are well and had a wonderful weekend 🙂 It has been personally a stressful week and I have been struggling with quite a lot of different emotions. It isn’t an excuse but ultimately this has meant I could not keep with the posting schedule I set out at the beginning of the year.
I had such high hopes that I would be able to stick to a bi-weekly post, but I think Christine Rai (@yeahitschill) summarised it perfectly with her Instagram post. I am going to forgive myself and I think I will discuss the topic of resilience later on, as part of my self-discovery this year.
Alas! You are not here to read about all the above, I am very excited to share my weekend trip with my boyfriend to Malta! For those who have been following my blog, would know that I did not travel out this Christmas so we decided that we would start the year with a BANG and go away.
Where we stayed
I did some prior research to the trip and many different blogs recommend St. Julian’s as a place to stay rather than the old town of Valetta. I wanted to stay somewhere I could enjoy the sea, so it seemed like a good choice. It is a resort area rather than the cultural UNESCO town of Valetta. Luckily, St Julian’s is only around a 20-minute car ride away from the city centre, so I thought that wasn’t too bad in terms of distance/getting around. We stay at the Westin Dragonara Resort; my initial reaction was it was a huge hotel and had a Wes Anderson feel to it. It was painted this wonderful pink and white on the outside – which I LOVED!
Ignore the baby cot in the picture, they just put it in our room by mistake!
Tip: When booking hotels I always request a higher room because normally the more expensive rooms (such as suites) are located on the top or penultimate floors. If you want to enjoy the “same view”/amenities but not the price, asking for higher floors is a great way to do this.
This time it really worked out because the hotel was in the process of renovation and we ended up with a newly decorated room and floor. The most basic rooms are HUGE!!! With a super king size bed, desk and sofa space; a massive closet and a good size bathroom. Perfect for a resort type of holiday, where you might be spending more time in your bedroom relaxing. The choice suited us because we wanted to use this weekend to recover from the festive period with family. This is distinctively a different kind of holiday than my usual where I pack it full of stuff to do and exhaust myself. The hotel has an indoor heated pool and a big gym as well (but I can’t tell you whether it was amazing or not because we didn’t manage to get to see it…too busy relaxing hehe).
What we did
Admittedly, we didn’t have that much time in Malta, so we had to try and make the best of it for the only one full day we were there. We didn’t hire a car but we did see the double-decker sightseeing buses, so I thought that would be a good idea for an introduction to the island. There are three companies in Malta, but we chose Citysightseeing because our hotel was a stop on their route, which made it very convenient. We purchase the €20 day pass each, which is pretty reasonable, especially compared to London transport.
This is not my usual way of travelling but given my limited time and I didn’t want to do too much planning, this was a nice in between. There is a North & South route which the ticket allowed us to travel on. We opted for the South route which stopped in Valetta and also to travelled to Marsaxlokk fishing village and the Blue Grotto.
- Valetta – We stopped at the Valetta waterfront, which was beautiful! I highly recommend stopping there to look at the sea and the beautiful Barrakka gardens.
- Marsaxlokk fishing village – We only drove past this on the bus but I regret not stopping off. It is super picturesque! If I was to go back, I would definitely have an ice-cream by the sea and watch the beautiful fishing boats bob in the water.
- Blue Grotto – Learn from our mistake, go early in the morning and preferably not in the middle of winter. By the time we arrived at 14:30, the last fishing boat was departing. I was unable to convince my boyfriend to join because of the choppy waters, which was a shame. It will have wait until next time.
Where we ate
- For a really cosy Italian restaurant with great seafood, I highly recommend Storie e Sapori. We had fresh lobster linguine with clams and it was so delicious! The people are wonderfully friendly and I think was reasonably price given the quality of food.
- We also tried Palio’s restaurant at the Westin. Again, the food was amazing quality and fresh. Though casual and probably not a usual place for date night, I think it is worth trying. Highly recommend the ribs.
Short but sweet
I was sad to leave on Sunday morning back to London. Malta did have a bit of everything, culture, nature, friendly people and good food. It was a short trip but a very sweet one. Next time, I will visit when it is warmer and for longer.
I hope you found this guide helpful. Have you ever been to Malta before? Would you recommend anything I should try next time I go? As always, would love to hear from you, so leave a comment below. For more pictures, do check out my Instagram!
Sweet & Sour Love,
Pineapple Chicken x