Barrakka Gardens and Other Sites in Valletta 2017

Even though we have the pleasure of staying 52 days on Malta, time still flies by and getting to see lots is always a challenge when running a business as location independent nomads. The life / business balance is challenging and sometimes frustrating.

Anyway… Today we chose to pop into Valletta. Why today of all days?

Day 1078 – February 12th, 2017

Today marks a special occurrence for us in that our first visit to the island of Malta and Valletta in particular, was when we arrived by cruise on MSC Magnifica in 2015. It just so happens that today this wonderful ship is visiting Valletta again.

Cruise ship MSC Magnifica in Valletta

Cruise ship MSC Magnifica in Valletta

 

The bus journey is easy and frequent from Bugibba station.

Valletta was busy, which was no surprise with an extra 2500 people in town. It didn’t bother us, we just wanted to see the ship.

Sounds crazy to you maybe but that is what excites us.

We had a coffee at the cafe in Barrakka gardens before walking around town for a while. Having lunch and then more coffee with cake, oh life’s hard.

Check out the sights we captured on the phones…

St. Publius - San Publiju in Valletta

St. Publius – San Publiju in Valletta

 

This is a church just in front of the Valletta bus station. Below you see the cruise ship docked in port.

MSC Magnifica in Valletta port

MSC Magnifica in Valletta port

 

The views from the upper Barrakka gardens are simply stunning and this is a must goto spot when in Valletta. Not only is it an ideal place to view the Grand Harbour but at 12 midday the guns of the saluting battery that you can see in the photo below are fired.

Upper Barrakka Gardens, Valletta

Upper Barrakka Gardens, Valletta

 

Just a short walk from the Barrakka gardens you’ll see one of the first buildings that probably stands out to you and that is the Auberge de Castille seen below.

Euro, Malta - Auberge de Castille - Il-Berġa ta' Kastilja

Euro, Malta – Auberge de Castille – Il-Berġa ta’ Kastilja

 

Auberge de Castille - Il-Berġa ta' Kastilja, Valletta

Auberge de Castille – Il-Berġa ta’ Kastilja, Valletta

 

Valletta is a perfect place to explore on foot. The streets are clean and many are just for pedestrians. February is carnival month on Malta and Gozo island. Some of the streets in the city were decorated ready for the main event towards the end of the month.

Valletta festival street decorations

Valletta festival street decorations

 

As you explore Valletta you can’t help but admire the wonderful architecture of the buildings.

Saint Dominic’s Church in Valletta

Saint Dominic's Church in Valletta

Saint Dominic’s Church in Valletta

 

St. Nicholas’ Church in Valletta

St. Nicholas' Church in Valletta

St. Nicholas’ Church in Valletta

 

The Maltese balcony

That’s those protruding structures at the front of many homes. The Maltese balcony is very popular in Valletta and all over Malta and Gozo as well.

Typical Maltese balcony's

Typical Maltese balcony’s

 

Even though it’s called a balcony, they actually are more like a bay window, considering that they are enclosed and attached to the main room of the house. They almost look like an after thought.

Valletta, Malta images

Valletta, Malta images

 

St George’s Square in Valletta

St George’s Square Misrah San Gorg

St George’s Square in Valletta – Misrah San Gorg

 

St George’s Square Misrah San Gorg, Palace Armoury

St George’s Square Misrah San Gorg, Palace Armoury

 

St George’s Square Misrah San Gorg, Valletta

St George’s Square Misrah San Gorg, Valletta

 

Teatru Manoel in Valletta

The theatre in Valletta is one of the oldest in Europe and you can take a tour during the daytime Monday through Friday and on Saturday till 12.30 for €5.

We enjoyed a coffee and cake just opposite the theatre.

Teatru Manoel, Valletta

Teatru Manoel in Valletta

 

St. Paul’s Anglican Pro-Cathedral in Valletta

Just down from the Teatru Manoel is Our Lady of Mount Carmel Carmelite Church – Madonna tal-Karmnu with a large dome roof. And right down towards the water at the bottom or this road is St Paul’s Anglican Pro-Cathedral.

The photo below shows St Paul’s in the foreground with the dome of Our Lady behind.

St. Paul's Anglican Pro-Cathedral in Valletta

St. Paul’s Anglican Pro-Cathedral in Valletta

 

Along the road adjacent to the water I captured this photo of more Maltese balcony’s.

Unique balcony style in Malta

Unique balcony style in Malta

 

You can walk from here towards the St Elmo fort just by following the road. At the fort you can see National War Museum, entry costs €10, but I suggest checking the Heritage Malta website for up-to-date information as sometimes it can be closed.

View from Fort St Elmo over to Sliema

View from Fort St Elmo over to Sliema

 

From here you can look across the water to Sliema and Manoel Island. From this angle it looks a lot closer than from when we looked over to here from Sliema in reverse.

Walking around to Fort St Elmo in Valletta

Walking around to Fort St Elmo in Valletta

 

Next door to the war museum you can find The Malta Experience and a cafe as well. Tickets for the Malta Experience cost €16 adults & €6 for kids.

Behind this cafe is a nice spot to watch the cruise ships leave Grand harbor.

MSC Magnifica leaving Valletta Grand Harbour

MSC Magnifica leaving Valletta Grand Harbour

MSC Magnifica leaving Valletta Grand Harbour

 

After watching the cruise ship sail out of Grand Harbour here in Valletta we made our way back to Qawra. The walk to Valletta bus station from the Fort St Elmo took around 3o minutes. You can look over at Fort Ricasoli at the harbour entrance, Bighi, Birgu, Fort St Angelo over on the three cities side of Valletta.

View over to the three cities, Valletta

View over to the three cities, Valletta

What you have seen in this post is just a glimpse of Valletta. There are many more sites to see and delve into deeper. Be sure to check out some of the links in this post to our other visits to Valletta.

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