Valletta is the capital city of Malta, and, as you may know by now, was awarded the prestigious title of European Capital of Culture for 2018. Not only is Valletta rich in culture, it is a city with a storied past. Indeed, for history, entertainment, and breathtaking scenery, you’ve come to the right place. So make sure you fully charge your phones and take an extra battery or two for your cameras, as we promise that you won’t stop snapping and filling your Instagram feed with stunning shots!
These are the pictures that some of our students took during their stay in this magnificent city. No wonder Valletta is officially recognized as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO!
Take a look at our top 5 picks of what to do during your stay in Valletta.
St. John’s Co-Cathedral
At the very center of this majestic city lies St John's Co-Cathedral, Malta's most impressive church. Considered an example of High Baroque architecture, this cathedral is a must-visit! Did you know that within the cathedral walls resides a painting by the famed Caravaggio himself? Yes, in this cathedral you’ll find the original and signed version of Caravaggio’s “The Beheading of John the Baptist,” a seminal work in the history of Western art.
Upper Barrakka Gardens
If panoramic views are your jam, this is the place to go, as there simply is no better vantage point for admiring the bustling Grand Harbour. Not only that, but the Upper Barrakka Gardens boast a magnificent, panoptic view of the Three Cities located at the other end of the inlet.
P.S. Make sure you linger until noon so as to see the cannon being fired from the terrace below!
If you want to buy local souvenirs or other small knick-knacks, then you must check out the Maltese Monti (Maltese flea market). This is where hawkers set up stands close to the New Parliament building and sell all sorts of goods. The market is open from Monday to Saturday during morning hours.
Sharpen your haggling skills and get the best bargain!
The Valletta Waterfront
The Waterfront mainly consists of a variety of restaurants and bars lined up side-by-side in old buildings that were previously boathouses, stores, and warehouses. The fine selection of cuisine guarantees that regardless of what tickles your fancy, you'll find something that suits your palate. And as you enjoy the fine weather along with the dish and beverage of your choice in the open air, you might also catch sight of a cruise liner berthing in the Grand Harbour.
Just kick back and take in this outstanding view!
The National Library of Malta
Also known as the Bibliotheca, this building is a reference library in Valletta. The National Library hosts one of the largest collections of literature relating to the Maltese Islands (books, journals, newspapers, maps) in the world, and has served as a legal deposit since 1925. The multitude of publications on its shelves has earned the library a good deal of prestige, and is of importance for any wide-ranging understanding of Maltese as well as European and Mediterranean history. Whether you're a student carrying out research for your academic studies or simply someone curious about days of yore in Malta, the Bibliotheca's your go-to point of reference.
Let the Experience of a Lifetime Begin!
Malta's capital city is home to countless additional attractions, more than we can possibly list here. Would you like to find out about them? Enroll at the American University of Malta and request information about our beautiful capital city; we will duly provide you with all the information you’ll need to sample the myriad cultural treasures of Valletta and other towns and villages while you study at AUM.