Malta’s capital city is known for its scenic harbor and 16th-century buildings. It’s a beauty that’s packed with history and interesting sites but can often be overshadowed by other European cities. However, Valletta is certainly worth a visit, because there are plenty of fun things to do. If you’re visiting Valletta – Malta and looking for the best things to see and do, check out our top picks below.
Wander The Grand Harbour
The harbor is the focal point of Valletta – Malta because of its beauty and historical significance. Much of the country’s military success can be attributed to this well-placed harbor which still features cannons and artifacts. While wandering, make sure to check out the defensive towers, bastions, and historic fortifications that dot the scene. As you take in the view, notice the small villages, historic monuments, military forts, and Baroque churches that surround it.
Take a Grand Harbour Cruise
After wandering the harbor on foot, take to the water to see the harbor from a new perspective. Most tours run for about two hours and offer historical commentary along the way. Take in sights of the harbor, gardens, and creeks that connect this beautiful body of water to the land.
Saint John’s Co-Cathedral
This cathedral was built to preserve the spirit of Christianity in the 16th century. It’s considered one of the most beautiful cathedrals in Europe and is a noteworthy example of Baroque architecture. Pay careful attention to the ceiling paintings, created by the famous painter, Mattia Preti. The cathedral is filled with various chapels that are dedicated to important Saints. After touring the cathedrals, make sure to visit the Oratory, a lavish room full of historically significant decorations.
Visit The National Museum of Archaeology
The archaeology museum is housed in a regal building that dates back to 1571 and is a beautiful example of Baroque architecture. Through its collection of ancient artifacts, the museum tells Malta’s story in an intriguing way. Visitors can view more than 100 objects that tell Malta’s story over the past 85 million years. Check out the artifacts from prehistoric times, megalithic times, and the Roman era. Their pottery exhibits are some of the most impressive so don’t forget to check them out.
Visit The Casa Rocca Piccola
Art and architecture fans will love visiting this luxurious site. The Casa Rocca Piccola is the home of an aristocratic Maltese family. It was built in the 16th century and has 12 rooms open for visitors to explore. Wander through the elegant rooms and pay special attention to the family heirlooms which decorate the home. One of the most interesting parts of a tour here are the underground tunnels that were built as air raid shelters during WWII. Don’t miss them!
See a Performance at Manoel Theatre
This theatre is one of the oldest in all of Europe. It was commissioned in the 1700s by Grand Master of the Knights of Malta, António Manoel de Vilhena, to accommodate the need for opera and theatre performances. Expect plenty of old-world charm with plush velvet seating, luxurious decorations, and elegant box seating. The shows available depend on the dates you’re visiting. However, you can expect a line-up of dramatic theatre, visual arts, classical music performances, and traditional opera.
You’ll never be bored when visiting Valletta – Malta. Between the history, culture, and scenery, you’ll always find something interesting to see and explore.