Malta days 3 & 4

I’m writing this at the end of another couple of busy days here but again they’ve been really good.

Yesterday, we set out to spend the morning visiting first the walled city of Mdina. That was a really peaceful place and we enjoyed just walking around seeing the excellent views. We stopped off to see the Mdina Dungeons which charted torture and punishment used in Malta over the years. Interesting more than fun shall we say!

After a bit of shopping and a stop for a drink we went to find the Mdina Glass factory, for a bit more shopping. But also we could stop and watch the glass blowers at work. That was absolutely fascinating really and we just stood and watched them making item after item for a good ten to fifteen minutes. That was excellent.

After an unscheduled visit to the petting zoo next door we eventually found the craft village in Ta’Qali. This is the sort of place that was good fun just wandering round for a little while, although we had a great time and spent probably a good couple of hours there, including another lovely and very cheap lunch.

We also stopped off briefly in Mosta and visited the Mosta Dome where a wartime bomb went through the roof during a service but never exploded.

We came back to the hotel, relaxed for a bit and then went out for a meal, this time at a Chinese restaurant up the road from the place we visited yesterday. It was a long day in the end and I think everyone was very much ready for sleep!

So today we had a slightly earlier start to catch a ferry to Gozo. The smaller neighbour is much greener than Malta but no more/less lovely for that – it’s just different. And the roads are generally worse too. Anyway, we raced around the island today visiting Xewkija Rotunda Church, the Citadella, the Azure Window, a craft village (at the second attempt after missing it originally), a rock shaped like a tortoise and Xlendi Bay.

Just picking out the highlights here but the ferry was lovely and Condor Ferries could really learn a thing or two about how to run a frequent, slick and efficient service.

The best bit was probably the Rotunda Church. We were looking for it but ended up finding it by accident because we couldn’t find what the satnav called it. The church itself has a wonderful story behind it but for me the best bit was climbing the very high tower, complete with narrow spiral staircase, with awesome views at the very top.

Xlendi Bay was a treat at the end of the day. A beautiful bay with wonderful clear water, lots of lively fish in the water, and great friendly looking bars and restaurants right on the seafront (including the very lovely Churchill’s where we stopped). The only downside of Xlendi really is that it’s in the middle of nowhere so you’d really struggle to spend more than a couple of days there at most. But they’d be great days.

Then it was back on the ferry again to return to Malta. We ate out again tonight but energy levels are down I think from all the traveling. Having an earlier night tonight and get back on it tomorrow.

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