A Cultural Tour of Malta

A Cultural Tour of Malta

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A Cultural Tour of Malta

5 Days Starting and ending in London, UK

Visiting: Malta, Valletta, St. John's Co-Cathedral, Casa Rocca Piccola, The Malta Experience, Gozo, it-Tempji tal-Ġgantija, Victoria, Bay of Xlendi, Gozo, Malta, Birgu, Marsaxlokk, Mdina, Dingli, Ħaġar Qim, Palazzo Parisio, London

Tour operator:

Brightwater Holidays

Tour code:

BMAC

Guide Type:

Fully Guided

Group size:

6 - 25

Physical rating:

Low, Light

Age range:

1-99

Special diets catered:

Vegetarians, Vegans, Meat, Please contact Brightwater with any specific dietary requirements

Tour operated in:

English

Activities:

Boat/Cruise Excursion

This tour is no longer available

Tour Overview

Nowhere on earth concentrates as much turbulent past into such as small land mass as Malta, so if you want to learn as much as possible about the complex history and rich cultural heritage of the Mediterranean region in just five days, at a time of year when the weather offers a pleasant winter escape (or a late spring break), this is the tour for you! The island has been inhabited since 5,900BC and ruled by a succession of powers, so it is little wonder it presents such a captivating tapestry. Arriving in Malta, with its golden limestone-cliff coasts, lucid seas, beautiful laid-back towns and heart-stirring views, you could be forgiven for thinking that you’ve already seen all there is to see. But take a peek beneath the surface, and no doubt you’ll be astounded by the wealth of wonders to be found there. Venture inside the walled citadel of Mdina, enjoy sweeping views of the harbour from the Barrakka Gardens and take to the waves for a boat trip around the spectacular cliffs and caverns of the famed Blue Grotto; explore the ancient megaliths of Hagar Qim and enjoy afternoon tea in the opulent surroundings of the Palazzo Parisio. Excursions Optional Gozo Excursion: £85.00 Optional Southern Malta Excursion: £55.00.

Highlights

  • The Dolmen Hotel, built around an authentic Neolithic temple

  • Priceless art treasures at St John’s Cathedral

  • The walled citadel of Mdina

  • Boat trip to the Blue Grotto

  • A splendid afternoon tea in the most opulent surroundings

  • 5000 year old temple of Hagar Qim

Places You'll See

A Cultural Tour Of Malta

A Cultural Tour Of Malta

A Cultural Tour Of Malta

A Cultural Tour Of Malta

Itinerary

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Day 1

Location: Malta

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Dolmen Hotel Malta, St Paul's Bay

Meals Included: Dinner

We depart on a flight from London to Malta, where on arrival we will be met by our local coach and travel to our hotel, the 4-star Dolmen Hotel at St Paul’s Bay in the north of the island. Overlooking the sea, the hotel is built on a site which incorporates an authentic Neolithic temple, and is within easy walking distance of shops and entertainment. All bedrooms are fully air-conditioned, centrally heated and have their own private bathroom, safe deposit box, satellite TV, direct dial telephone, radio, mini-bar and hair dryers. Four outdoor swimming pools are located within the hotel together with a newly designed Spa which incorporates state of the art Therapy rooms with the latest equipment as well as a fitness room and an indoor pool with hydro massage and sauna.

Day 2

Location: Valletta, St. John's Co-Cathedral, Casa Rocca Piccola, The Malta Experience

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Dolmen Hotel Malta, St Paul's Bay

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

This morning following breakfast we tour Malta’s capital city of Valletta. The tour will take us through the bustling streets of Valetta allowing us to view the Upper Barakka Gardens that command a breathtaking panorama of the Grand Harbour and then to St. John’s Cathedral, adorned in riches that date back to the Knights of Malta including the world famous Caravaggio painting that is on display in the Oratory. Also included is a visit to the Casa Rocca Palace, a 16th century private residence palazzo. The value of Casa Rocca Piccola lies in its ability to provide unique historical evidence into the customs and traditions of the Maltese nobility over the last 400 years. There is also a collection of furniture, silver and paintings to view that add to the aesthetic riches of this little country. Finally we visit the Malta Experience, where a sensational visual presentation and a gripping commentary bring 7000 years of island history to life in a purpose-built auditorium. The 40 minute show is continuously updated using state of the art technology to ensure that the production stays up to the minute.

Day 3

Location: Gozo, it-Tempji tal-Ġgantija, Victoria, Bay of Xlendi, Gozo, Malta, Birgu, Marsaxlokk

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Dolmen Hotel Malta, St Paul's Bay

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Following breakfast the day is free to spend at leisure. Alternatively, we have two optional excursions to offer:

Malta’s neighbouring island of Gozo

15 minutes away by ferry, Gozo has a character of its own, noticeably more peaceful and rural with greener landscapes and quiet beaches. Our first visit will be to the Ggantija Temples, prehistoric, free-standing Megalithic temples dating from 3600-3000BC. The setting is spectacular, with a glorious panorama over a wide sweep of Gozo.  We continue to the capital city of Victoria and visit the Citadel, which dominates Gozo from its position on a flat-topped hill. The bastions date from the early 17th century, funded by King Philip II of Spain and the Gozitans by means of a levy on wine, oil and other comestibles. At one time the entire population of Gozo could shelter within its walls. Later we will explore the coast, visiting the picturesque Bay of Xlendi and Dwejra with its dramatic coastal formations.

Tour of Southern Malta

The tour starts with a visit to Vittoriosa for a walking tour through the narrow streets in the shade of historic buildings, including the first auberges of the Order of St John. At the Vittoriosa waterfront we board a Dgħajsa (typical harbour boat) for a tour of the colourful harbour. Views of the fortifications from the seaward side are unique and a provide a memorable experience.
From here we will proceed to the picturesque fishing village of Marsaxlokk, the largest in Malta. Marsaxlokk Bay was the venue in 1989 of the Bush/Gorbachev summit that symbolised the end of the Cold War – for security reasons the venue was transferred from Malta to a warship moored in the bay and the sea was so rough it was nicknamed the ‘seasick summit’!

Day 4

Location: Mdina, Dingli, Ħaġar Qim, Palazzo Parisio

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Dolmen Hotel Malta, St Paul's Bay

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

After breakfast we depart on a full day excursion beginning with the walled citadel of Mdina, Malta’s former capital city. Here we will have a short walk in the ‘silent city’, so called because Mdina has a very small population, with little sign of commerce, admiring the imposing bastions that command a magnificent view and give a panorama over most of the island. It is hard to believe that the earthquake of 1693 destroyed the majority of Mdina’s medieval and Sicilian-Norman buildings, but thanks to expert restoration, this gem of a city gives every impression of having survived the ravages of time.
We continue to the impressive Dingli Cliffs, which drop 250m to the sea, and on to Ħaġar Qim which dates to the Tarxien phases of around 3000 – 2500BC. Ħaġar Qim means ‘standing stones’ and despite some erosion this complex and irregular site still retains megaliths of huge proportions. When the site was excavated in the 19th century it yielded seven statuettes, also with the ample proportions of those found at Tarxien.
In the afternoon we visit Palazzo Parisio, a stately home with a history, architecture and interior unique in Malta. Described as a ‘miniature Versailles’, this opulent house, which has been carefully restored by the family who own it, is a showcase of Maltese craftsmanship at the turn of the 19th century and houses the most ornate ballroom on the island; lavishly decorated ceilings and frescoes, magnificent antique furniture, paintings and bronzes. We will be privileged to enjoy afternoon tea in these beautiful surroundings. There will also be time to explore the gardens, which originally stretched for half a mile and today are still an impressive example of classic baroque formality.

Day 5

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Location: London

This morning after breakfast we will check out of the hotel and transfer to the airport in time for our return flight to London, where on arrival the group will disperse or make onward connections.

What's Included

  • Accommodation

  • Comfortable coach travel throughout

  • Services of a professional tour manager

  • Meals - as per the itinerary - wine, beer or soft drinks is included with evening meals

  • All Domestic Transportation (including internal flights)

  • Drinks with Meals

  • Entrance Fees

  • Meals - as per the itinerary

What's Not Included

Check out our Q&As

  • Are the local guides on the tour English speaking?

    Yes

  • Are flights included in this tour?

    Yes

  • Are children permitted to take part in the tour?

    Yes

  • Are airport transfers included in this tour?

    Yes

  • Are all entrance fees included in the price?

    Yes

  • Will I receive more details of the holiday before I travel?

    You will receive detailed joining instructions around 10 days prior to you departure, but you are of course welcome to contact us at any time should you have any queries.

  • What facilities do your coaches have?

    Generally, our coaches have reclining seats, air-conditioning and toilets, however this cannot always be guaranteed as sometimes we have to use smaller vehicles. Toilets are recommended for emergency use only and regular comfort stops will be made throughout your holiday while travelling around.

  • Do I have to go on the included excursions?

    Absolutely not. You are more than welcome to spend the day at your hotel or exploring independently should you wish. All we ask is that you inform your Tour Manager, so they are not left waiting for you to join the group.

  • Is there time to relax?

    Although our itineraries may seem jam-packed, boasting access to some of the most exclusive sites across the UK and beyond, a Brightwater Holiday is just that: a holiday. Each trip will counter in more than enough free-time for you to explore places at your own leisure. And with most nights and the majority of meals being included in our tour prices, you can relax in hand-picked accommodation.

  • Do I need to be an expert?

    Absolutely not! Although some of our tours are specifically focused on one thing, all you need to enjoy a Brightwater holiday is interest and bags of enthusiasm! Even on our most specialist tours, we take travellers from all skill levels, from experts to beginners.

  • How fit or active do I need to be for one of your holidays?

    You need to be able to get on and off the coach unassisted, and most – but not all – coaches have a kneel facility that lowers the front step for ease of boarding

  • Do you have self-drive holidays?

    Yes, we do – tailored to your exact requirements!

  • What’s the luggage allowance on your coaches?

    There’s no fixed limit, but we generally say one large suitcase to go in the luggage compartment and a smaller bag that you can take onto the coach with you. For flight-inclusive holidays, we include a luggage allowance of at least 20kg.

  • Where are your departure points?

    UK garden holidays generally depart from London, with additional pick-ups depending on the route of the coach, while holidays to Scotland depart from Glasgow, Edinburgh and Perth, with Dundee, Inverness and Aberdeen sometimes included. All Eurostar holidays depart from London St. Pancras and flight-inclusive holidays depart from one or more of the main London airports, with regional flights .

  • What about the company that will be kept?

    For single travellers, those with a companion or even those travelling in a larger group, you'll find that the signature of any Brightwater Holiday is the company. You won't ever be travelling with a group of strangers, instead, you'll find yourself surrounded by like-minded people with a strong shared interest who will soon become your firm friends.

  • What is a Brightwater Holiday?

    Bursting with enthralling, educational and enlightening itineraries, a Brightwater Holiday, by its very nature, is packed with bucket-list-worthy destinations, behind the scenes passes and expert-led experiences. From creating bespoke quality garden and special interest tours for groups and individuals alike, we have made it our business to make our guests' travel dreams come true.

  • Why is there a single supplement?

    Unfortunately, single room supplements are charges that are often imposed on us as a company when we book rooms for group holidays. However, most hotels do charge less for single occupancy, and we always pass this saving on to our solo travellers in the form of a modest single supplement.

  • How much are your optional excursions?

    Prices start from as little as £20, but please contact our friendly team for questions about specific itineraries or excursions.

  • Can I pre-book my coach seats?

    Yes, you can. In the case of front seats, guests with limited mobility are given priority. Please get in touch with our friendly team to discuss any requirements you may have.

  • How to get there? Easy!

    With a Brightwater Holiday, the journey is just as important as the destination and we make getting you to your tour start point easy. From organising group flights and individual travel plans, to offering accessible local departure and pick-up points, we go out of our way to ensure that your journey is as convenient and hassle-free as it can be.

  • Do I need to have travel insurance?

    Travel insurance is required for all overseas holidays and is also strongly recommended for UK holidays – primarily to protect yourself against cancellation charges should you be unable to travel.

Reviews of this operator

Trusted Customer  

Brightwater Holidays offers great value

28-Nov-2019

I would highly recommend Brightwater Holidays. It offers excellent service and value for money. This was my first tour as I normally arrange holidays myself, but this tour - which was to the gardens of Kent and Sussex - was a very pleasant change of pace.

Feefo Trusted Reviews
Brightwater Holidays Customer  

My experience with Brightwater Holidays

08-Aug-2019

The tour was well managed, the sites visited were all interesting and linked to the theme of the Picts and their place in history, the hotel was comfortable and the coach journeys were well paced. I have been with Brightwater before and will certainly travel with them again

Feefo Trusted Reviews
Alan Hawkes (Google Reviewer)  

We were on the Tour...

28-Aug-2022

We were on the Tour of the Outer Hebrides. We had a great experience, in no small part due to the excellence of the tour manager and driver.

Brightwater Holidays Custome  

Wonderful experience with brilliant information

31-Jul-2019

The most important factor was an amazing guide in Alastair Walker whose knowledge and care for clients was fantastic. The whole trips are superbly organised

Feefo Trusted Reviews
David MacLennan (Google Reviewer)  

Noted a comment on taking...

23-Aug-2023

Noted a comment on taking coaches on A814 by a local person who didn't know the facts: When the A82 was blocked and the POLICE divert you onto that road you do as instructed not what a you know are tight roads but they only way to your destination as intructed by officials. We know this route is not suitable for large vehicles but the driver does as instructed by someone in authority.

Eric Webb (Google Reviewer)  

Recent (September 2023) Scottish holiday...

07-Oct-2023

Recent (September 2023) Scottish holiday not so good. Various 'issues' to do with scheduling and organisation. I'm happy to report however that - after an interval - a letter expressing disappointment brought a full response - including a generous refund. So - with fingers slightly crossed - we'll be booking with Brightwater again in due course.

Kevin Barrett (Google Reviewer)  

The recent tour in Northumberland...

30-Sep-2023

The recent tour in Northumberland turned out to be a shambles. Our South London driver took us to Newcastle, but no guide to meet us. Next day still no guide and the bus driver attempted to salvage the tour the best he could despite having no knowledge of the attractions. Fortunately one of the passengers Googled the tides for Holy Island. No holiday guide ever showed up. Coach and hotel were fine. Do these people only offer self guided tours? Take Shearings next time.

ALEXANDRA MCQUEEN (Google Reviewer)  

Been trying to get a...

17-Oct-2023

Been trying to get a reply from them for over a week. Booked Xmas tour, confirmation said pick up subject to numbers, they never said anything when booking and theyve been paid in full. Would not recommend!

Dp Green (Google Reviewer)  

I had heard this company...

20-Feb-2024

I had heard this company was a nightmare to deal with, but thought I'd give it a go. Signed up for a tour, then emailed them about how to pay off the balance. No response to 3 emails. I've never encountered a tour company that ignored questions on how to pay off a balance. Looked into other reviews and found many complaints about cancelled tours and refusals to refund deposits.

Kieran Thompson (Google Reviewer)  

Two of your tour busses...

26-Jul-2021

Two of your tour busses used the A814 from Garelochhead to Arrochar on 24th July 2021. This route is not suitable for large vehicles and your drivers should not have taken the huge coaches that way. There are clear signs at both ends of the road indicating it is not suitable for HGV's. Our car had to go off into the soft verge to allow your coaches to pass. Please amend your routes to avoid this road in future.

Book with Confidence

  • Transfer as credit to Future Tours

    Brightwater Holidays allows you to transfer existing payments to a future tour to avoid cancellation fees if you can't travel and inform brightwater holidays, 25 days before departure.

  • Low Deposit

    Brightwater Holidays requires a minimum deposit of 15% or the full booking value, whichever is less, with the final balance not due until 70 days before departure.

  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of brightwater holidays charges.

    At 40 days before tour starts: Forfeit 50% of booking price.

    At 7 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

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