Valletta

So here we are in the land of my birth and enjoying it very much so far.  From our marina berth we can see some of the wonderful fortifications built by the Knights of St John in the 16th and 17th centuries which give Valletta such a dramatic setting.  On our first full day here we criss-crossed the old city (it’s not very big!), taking in the incredible views from dozens of different vantage points.  Today we headed along the waterside in the opposite direction to take in some of the bays that attract the tourists to the area and that I remember swimming at on an earlier visit 44 years ago.  (I left originally when still only 2 so went back as a teenager to check it out.)  The sea is a welcoming 20+C so no excuses for not swimming soon this time around and the locals are in there already, swimming off the rocks even in the main harbour itself.

 

At this time of the year there aren’t so many tourists to overwhelm you, although it’s pretty busy around the main attractions.  In our marina there is a multinational community and many overwintering liveaboards who haven’t quite got moving yet this spring.  They have been quite surprised that we have already been sailing for 6 weeks this season!  Mind you, I can see the attractions of the easy, laidback lifestyle here and Malta itself shares top position (along with Denmark and Switzerland) in a ‘Happiness in Nations’ survey of 90 countries around the world!

 

A view across Grand Harbour from Valletta & typical street scenes: