In a country as blindingly bright and scorching hot as Malta, a place of coolness, quiet, and retreat is essential.
I found such a spot at the Knights of Malta Bed and Breakfast in the small town of Naxxar.
Stepping from the oven-like streets into the shady courtyard of this 17th century property was pure bliss. The noise and dust of the drive from the airport were quickly forgotten as we were welcomed with cold drinks and a good visit with our friendly, English-speaking hosts John, Dee and their Maltese Terrier, Daisy.
All of the rooms at Knights of Malta are spacious and cool with thick limestone walls and tiled floors. Fans are provided and air-conditioning is available for a nominal fee. Beds are comfortable and the shared bathrooms are clean and tidy. I especially loved my room with its iron bedstead and cheery yellow shutters that opened out above the courtyard. It was a beautiful place to wake up in each morning.
Room rates range from about $37 US to $56 US per night and include a hearty breakfast downstairs each morning. Guests also have access to the Maltese courtyard, Sun Terrace, Jacuzzi, and a cozy indoor lounge area with a television, DVD player and free movies. Free wi-fi and free parking are also included. Dee is a qualified physio-therapist and guests can enjoy her range of spa treatments and holistic therapies at discounted prices.
Naxxar is an ideal home base for anyone wanting to explore Malta yet experience the life of a small town. It is a lovely spot with narrow streets that run between tall stone walls hiding traditional Maltese homes with their private courtyards and fountains. It has numerous excellent restaurants that serve fabulous Mediterranean food and good wine, and several interesting historical sites including the lavishly beautiful Palazzo Parisio and the Mini Versaille Gardens, old chapels and fortifications. The thing I like best is that all these spots are within easy walking distance.
While often quiet during the day, Naxxar comes to life at night when the sun-baked streets cool and everyone spills out of their homes to meet their neighbors for drinks, dinner and a bit of harmless gossip. It’s a great time to go for a stroll and participate in the festive atmosphere.
Naxxar is only a short bus ride away from tourist hotspots such as Sliema, Mdina and Valletta. For a minimal fee you can be picked up by shuttle at the church steps each morning and taken to Sliema where you can easily catch tour buses or boat tours or simply spend the day exploring the shops and restaurants of the waterfront.
John and Dee are wonderful hosts who cooked us a hot breakfast each morning and always reminded us to carry enough water to keep hydrated. They happily sat down to help us plot out the best places to visit and arranged for tours and shuttle pick-ups. They made our stay painless and easy.
- Address: 138 Triq St Lucija, Naxxar, Island of Malta, Malta
- Rooms: 5
- Reservations: +356-21432636
- Price: $
All photos courtesy of RamblingTart.com.
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