MALTA (The Hidden Treasures) Upper Barakka Gardens.



Valletta has many other must-see features and unique attractions. Top of the list for me is the wonderful Upper Barrakka Gardens, a magical spot to spend an hour or three.  It is the highest point of the city and has one of the greatest harbour views in all the world. High up on the bastions, this wonderful vantage point is a place so full of beauty, wonder, and visual adventure, that I can never leave Valletta without savouring its magic, and I know the same applies to thousands of other tourists, because it is always crowded with equally enthusiastic sightseers.


They come like me, for the wonderful view that sweeps over, not only the harbour, but the rest of Valletta, as well as the great urban sprawl that is Floriana. Directly in front, I can see the massive fortifications of Fort St. Angelo, and the three cities – jutting out like long tongues into the harbour – with the exotic names: Vittoriosa, Senglea and Cospicua. I have walked every street of these mysterious ‘cities’ and I can tell you, they always give me a weird feeling that I’m taking a step back in time, and a stroll through ancient history. Also straight in front of me is the massive shipyards, with their huge dry-docks and gigantic cranes, reminding me that Malta is much more than historic monuments and Baroque architecture. They have important heavy industry too, and these internationally recognised shipyards are a prime example.

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Looking down beneath my balcony, I can see a saluting battery of three large nineteenth-century guns, restored and ready to fire. Every day, at the stroke of twelve, uniformed members of a heritage society ceremoniously fire the guns, and if you happen to be close by and unaware of it, the explosion and shattering bang would frighten you, but most enjoy it, and it is another unique feature of the exquisite Upper Barrakka Gardens.


From ‘IN LOVE WITH MALTA (The Hidden Treasures)

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