a VirtualTourist member asked on Oct 24, 2016
Hello everyone. I will be coming to Malta for a conference and it seems that I will have one morning free (from 9am-1pm) and one afternoon (after 4pm). I will be staying in Valetta.
Do you believe there is any point of trying to visit Mdina (by bus) during the morning and seeing Valetta in the afternoon? It seems to take around 30' by bus to get from Valetta to Mdina, so that leaves around 2,5 h to explore the town. Is it enough to see the main attractions or should I not even bother and leave for another time (if any)?
And one more thing: any good tips on budget restaurants at Valetta (or at Il--Furjana etc)?
Thank you all!
Im my opinion 2.5 hour isn't enough, we spent the whole afternoon in Mdina, there are so much to admire in this beautiful medieval town.....as for Valetta you can see it in an afternoon..............Save Mdina in your next trip when you have more time
A taxi to M'dina would not be very expensive (ask before leaving) and would give more time. It is lovely.
A Taxi to Mdina will take about 20 minutes, so you wouldn't save much time over taking the bus.
If you are travelling during the Summer, then an evening trip to Mdina can be worthwhile as the city is very quiet then. However if you visit is in the next few months then you need to go in the morning, as it starts getting dark at about 6pm.
I would focus on Valletta and come back to do more site seeing later. I went to Valletta for 2 full days on the ground in August got home and loved it so much, we have booked back for May 2017. We were in St. Julian's but I have opted to book a smaller hotel right in Valletta this time as it was such an interesting little area. You may want to do the opposite and book in St. Julian's next time for something different. Bus service is great in Malta, very civilised with proper line ups to get on the bus, and clean and comfortable, so if you do find time to explore check out the bus routes. There is also a movie you can watch, Malta 5d which should give you a back ground on the events in Malta. You may wish to do that during your time there, I didn't get a chance to see that, but I will be seeing it when we go back.
Thank you all for your answers! I did go to Mdina after all, by bus and I visited it in one afternoon (I had a little more time than I thought so I gave it a try).
There are a couple of things I'd like to say about it for future use: Mdina is a lovely place, but it is really small. It is actually a village. So you can walk through it and around it and practically take every little backstreet in less than 2 hours. That is if you are walking slowly.
I didn't feel like doing much sighseeing - I only visited St Paul's cathedral, which is quite beuatiful both from the inside and the outside. Also the view to the north of the island is breathtaking. There were some museums and some other typical tourist attractions that I skipped.
Bus lines are a good way to explore this island because they are very cheap (1,5 euros for a ticket, no matter where you are going) and distances are small - Mdina is about 20 min. away. However, bus drivers are incredibly rude. They'd rather start an argument with you than answer a simple question - they do the same with locals as well. Apart from that, they drive like crazy and the schedules seem to serve only decorative purposes - they are never kept.
Valletta is not very big as well. It is a lovely place the way it is preserved, but unless you want to be thorough and not leave a stone unturned, it is fair to say that you can explore it in a good 5 hours walking expediton. That is if you don't visit all the museums. I only visited St John, I think I would have liked to visit the fort San Elmo as well, but not so much the palace for example. The views of the harbour both from above and by the seaside are great and the city is full of nice (or extremely nice) restaurants and bars. Overall, worth a visit, if you have other business in the island or if you want to have your vacation in a seaside hotel.