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Adventures in a country I never heard of

Adventures in a country I never heard of


Since the start of studying abroad, I’ve tried to travel and visit new places as much as possible. Prior to last weekend, I had been to the Luzern area twice and to Konstanz, a German town close to the Swiss border. Despite every single trip being memorable and unique, none of them had been to places far away or much different than the Zurich area. So, last weekend I decided to finally experience a country with an atmosphere and culture distinct from Switzerland.

When planning last weekend’s getaway, my friend and I were looking at various places like Spain, Greece, and the United Kingdom. However, we quickly discovered that all of these places were going to have poor weather the entire weekend. Despite that normally not being the biggest issue, there have only been about two sunny days in Switzerland so far and we needed to escape the cloudy weather. Finally, after considering nearly every country in Europe, we found a great deal to go to Malta. The only problem was that I had no idea what Malta was or where it was. After only about 10 minutes of research, which mainly consisted of looking at beaches, we decided to take a risk and book the trip.

As soon as we got off the plane and felt the warm air and sun, we knew we made the right choice. For the majority of our trip, except for some cold winds Saturday that came from Sahara, we were accompanied by the amazing weather that was missing in Switzerland. I took advantage of that as much as possible by walking around in a tank top and shorts, while also trying to visit as many beautiful beaches and bays as possible in two days. At all of the nature attractions we visited we took in the spectacular views for as long as possible, all while getting a much needed tan.

The Blue Lagoon
Golden Bay in the West part of the country
St Julian’s Bay, a two minute walk from our hotel








Aside from the warm weather and beaches, Malta also features wonderful cities and a rich history. When we weren’t tanning, we were visiting some of the famous cathedrals in the country or walking around the streets. My favorite city in the country, Valletta, was a place that I never wanted to leave. The atmosphere and streets were similar to what I imagine Italy to have, mixed with influences of Arabic and the traditional Maltese culture.

The funniest part of the entire trip came in Valletta when we went to the most famous cathedral in all of Malta, the St John’s Cathedral. The security in the front wouldn’t let me in because I was wearing a tank top and you can’t have exposed shoulders inside. They did eventually let me go inside, but I had to wear a cape to cover my shoulders. Along with all the looks and laughs I got inside the Cathedral, I got to keep the cape after so it makes for a nice souvenir. It also didn’t hurt that the Cathedral had stunning paintings all over and a captivating history to it. 

The last, and possibly best, part of Malta was the delicious and cheap food and drinks. The hardest decisions we had to make the whole weekend was where to eat because every single place looked amazing. The first night we chose to go to a traditional Maltese restaurant that our taxi driver suggested. I got a big ribeye steak that would cost four times as much in Switzerland. To make it even better, we got free appetizers and desert to go along with our meals.The next night we went to another Maltese restaurant but this time I got one of the most unique meals in Malta; rabbit. Even though I was a bit scared at first, it ended up tasting amazing and I would have it again. In between those two dinners, I had as many sweets and coffees as possible. Not a single thing I had disappointed and I’m hoping that all the walking we did burned at least some of the calories that were consumed over the weekend.

           Maltese Rabbit

Looking back on the trip now, it’s crazy to me how I can be in a place so different from Switzerland in just a two hour plane ride. Malta was a country unlike any that I’ve ever been too and I’m beyond happy that I made the spontaneous choice to go there.



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