Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Malta

Malta was an interesting destination. In winter, the city losses all the sun-seeking tourist hordes and only local people and a few tourist remain in the islands. That makes the feeling of Malta is different from what you can read in the internet or people have told you. Malta looks very rural, with a few small cities and lots of countryside, and with a lot of history for such a tiny island. Malta has megalithic ruins older than the pyramids in Egypt, medieval buildings and all the buildings left by St Paul's Order, which defended Christianity in the Crusades and against Turkish. All this in an island which can be crossed by bus in around 1 hour.

Valletta, the capital city, looks ancient and beautiful. All the buldings in Malta have been built using calcium-rich rocks, which are yellow colored. The result is everything is yellow.



The legacy of St Paul's Order warriors can be better seen in St Paul's Co-cathedral, where most of the order's masters are buried.



Valletta area is full of bays which have cities with different names. Everything is just a big city, but it looks like Maltese prefer just dividing them for historical reasons. In these photos, views of Vittoriosa and Senglea.





And this is a typical image of Valletta or any Maltese town, narrow yellow streets packed with cars and signs of profound Christianity in the Saints in the corners.



Prehistorical sites are interesting but so old that little can be really seen. However, the few remaining structures are surprising. Tarxien temples have several of those. Have a look to the following photos. The Hypogeum is the best place in Malta, and only around 50 people can visit it each day. I do not have any photos because it is not allowed to use cameras. It is an underground temple where dead people were kept and many rituals took place. It is simply amazing! Do not miss it if you go to Malta!!





And then, the seaside, full of beautiful geological structures and with a perfectly clean Mediterranean sea that takes many colors near the coast. This is called the Blue Grotto.



Near the Blue Grotto, there were two of the best prehistorical temples in Malta and there we went. However, they were closed!! Some structures were being built on top of them to preserve them against wind and rain... or at least that is what we were told.




This is a typical street in Vittoriosa. This little town is really beautiful and is more charming than Valletta. It is worth a visit.



This is the vedette in L'isola (Senglea). You can see the eye watching you ;)



In central Malta, the island keeps a beautiful jewel: Mdina and Rabat. The first is the traditional capital city before St John warriors came to the island and it is really medieval and beautiful. It is so peaceful and full of amazing houses and churches!! Rabat houses Malta catacumbs and many places where St Paul lived when he became Christian. The catacumbs of St Agatha are specially interesting!! Such a labyrinth!



Sliema is Malta's party and commercial city (or district). However, it still has some nice areas, and nice views over Valletta. Have a look at these colorful balconies.



And this is Mosta Dome, such a big dome in such a small town!!! The church looks as big as a whole neighborhood!! It is the second biggest dome in the world!!



And finally, the beautiful boats in Marsaxlokk. Can you see the eyes in their front?! Interesting, isn't it? That is Phoenician legacy :)


2 comments:

luiSete almansa said...

a ver cuando pones fotos de tu pueblo, que mucho viajar por el mundo pero tu castillo y tu casa grande no se ve por ningún lao.
Namás que quieres el blog pa tus amigos los extranjeros y no les enseñas tu Almansa natal.

Lo podría escribir en inglés pa que me entendiese tol mundo.... pero estoy perro hoy.

Espero que lo pasarais bien en La Calle.

Un abrazo

Alvaro said...

Cierto... jeje... no eres el unico que me lo ha dicho ultimamente... asi que pronto habra que poner algo sobre Almansa ;)