I’ve been in Malta for a week and my boyfriend and I will remain here until late April.
Being in a new country, even for just a short while, fills you with impressions as you explore and adjust to a new place.
Already it is clear that Malta is unique. Though I believe most places are, which is what makes travelling amazing.
Malta is a collection of small islands south of Italy. Currently the population is less than 500.000. Despite the relative small size, you can find more or less everything you would elsewhere, except that all is miniature.
This is my take on 3 great things about staying in Malta, and 3 less great things. Lets start with the latter and finish on a happy note.
The 3 cons
1. Drivers are crazy and the roads are scary and dangerous.
There are speed limits, but everybody seems to think they’re optional.
Barely noon the first day, and I had already almost been run over by a bus. Friday evening at a crossing, we barely escaped getting hit by a black car going at least 70 km/h in a street crowded with people going to the cinema.
Also they drive on the left side of the road, so I always look in the wrong direction. By the end of our stay I’ll have nervous ticks approaching roads for sure!
2. Concrete and crumble
This might be nit-picking, but being in a city area such as Sliema you’re almost constantly surrounded by tightly packed buildings.
Malta is very dense in population, which is felt.
In Mediterranean style, neglect is just as common as a clear, blue sky.
I’m not looking for postcard pretty, but it’s somehow disheartening to see things left to fall to pieces.
3. Poor drinking water
I might be a bit spoiled seeing as the drinking water in Denmark is excellent, and in Malta it is really ..not.
Malta lacks underground sources of water, and instead has to recycle sea water, which deeply affects the taste. So it’s recommended that you buy water, even for cooking.
This is a minor discomfort, but it really gets to me when I have to consider if I really want to drink from the tap.
The 3 pros
1. The food is cheap and delicious
Malta being this close to Italy basically means that whatever you could desire of Italian food has been imported and is sold at great prices. Coming from Denmark, it is bliss to be able to buy newly sliced ham!
We even found our favourite store bought Italian ice cream <3
2. It’s warm and the weather is almost always nice
It’s bloody February and it’s not snowing. Need I say more?
I could get used to 16-20 degrees Celsius this time of year, and what’s better is: I have to!
It rains less than a 100 days a year, whereas it rains twice as much in Denmark. It’s awesome not having to worry about rain in a month such as February, where it’s just as likely to snow.
The only thing to watch out for is how strong the wind is, as there can be very little to block it, when coming in from the ocean. Also not getting too much sun.
3. Deep culture and beautiful nature
Malta has a long history and a rich culture, which is expressed in plentiful temples, churches and fortresses.
British and Arab invaders has affected a lot of things for instance the language, the food and even the driving. The result is unique!
Just to be clear: I really enjoy staying in Malta.
The pros definitely out-weights the cons, and to be honest I had a hard time coming up with the last con.
Expect more travel posts in the future, though the focus remains writing