Grand Hotel Excelsior

Our 3.30 am alarm call allowed us to get to the airport at 5am in time for our 7.05am flight. We encountered a slight hiccup when the in-car SatNav directed us to a blocked road which, too late we remembered had happened last time we flew from Manchester airport. It was four years ago so we can forgive ourselves for repeating the same mistake.

Once at the airport, we booked into the meet and greet parking leaving the car keys before making our way to check in where we found we had to weigh our own bags and print the labels before we could check in through ‘fast track’ which we had pre-booked. Our hand luggage passed through the scanner with no problems but for some reason I set off the personal scan alarm which meant I had to go through the electronic body scanner station. This was an odd experience. After a few questions about what might have set off the alarm I had to stand in a particular way as indicated by a silhouette on the wall facing me whilst the machine scanned my body.

After passing this test we had breakfast which for me was pain au chocolate and fruit juice. By the time we had finished eating, the boarding gate had opened and on checking in we found that we were sharing our flight with a large group of English and Welsh pool players on their way to an international tournament.

We left rainy, cold and dark Manchester on time arriving in Malta 3.5 hours later in glorious 80-degree sunshine. We had booked a private transfer which meant we would arrive at our hotel sooner than if we had waited for a bus. As our driver took us to our hotel, he pointed out various things on our journey and when we arrived in Valletta, he gave us several tips on how to get around.

As we checked into the hotel, we were greeted by the concierge who gave us a refreshing drink. Our room was ready but needed to be checked off by house keeping before we could get the keys. This allowed us to enjoy our refreshing drink looking at the view of the hotel pool and the harbour beyond.

Grand Hotel Excelsior

Our room was fantastic with a sea view and balcony looking out over a small harbour and in the bathroom, there was a small vase with a carnation. We left our bags in our room and walked up the 88 steps towards the city gate to Valletta. It was time for lunch so we purchased a snack from one of the kiosks near to the city gate before heading into the city.

Parliament Building

Photo taken by Mr C

Lower Barrakka Gardens

Photo taken by Mr C

We walked around the city taking in some of the lovely coastal views whilst orientating ourselves for future excursions. I spent a while sitting, cooling off enjoying Lower Barrakka Gardens whilst Mr C went exploring. I was treated to the sound of birdsong and lizards peeping out from the undergrowth.

A Rooom with a View

Photo taken by Mr C

Explorations, complete we headed back to the hotel where we had a drink in the bar before heading to our room to unpack and freshen up before dining in the hotel. In the dining room there was a bit of miscommunication, we had intended dine from the Al a Carte menu but we ended up sampling the Indian Style buffet instead. After dining, we finished our drinks in the hotel bar before retiring for the evening.

4 Comments CherryPie on Nov 16th 2023

4 Responses to “Malta – Day Two”

  1. Hels says:

    In the 1950s, Melbourne became the biggest population of Maltese outside Malta. The primary schools were filled with Mifsuds, Camilleris and Fenechs. So by the time I lived in Europe much later, I couldn’t wait to visit Malta. No wonder those families felt so at home in Australia… you must have loved Malta’s coastal views, small boats and beaches.

  2. So, is Malta more Italian or more British? ;)
    I mean, do they serve fish and pasta instead of chips. ;)
    But you know me, I might have a fish pizza instead.