Malta and Tunis

If you've discovered a wonderful eaterie in the foothills of the Himalayas or want to know the hip place to eat during your forthcoming trip to Cape Town, here's the place to post!

 
 
 

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Chazza

Malta and Tunis

In Malta, specifically La Valletta:

I'm going to these places in May, do any of you know of any brilliant restaurants in either port?

Having boogled about in North Africa already, I'm pretty sure that couscous is the same thing that my guinea-pigs slept in so that's not quite what I'm looking for. Got to go, the apple pie smells like it's just there.

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Fifi La BonBon

Malta and Tunis

Hi Chazzer, just picked up your posting (been away to sunny shores myself). Had a great meal in Malta, in a village called Melllehia (?) Bay, along the coast from Valetta. This is some years ago, but ate some truly great fish at a restaurant called The Arches. In the village itself, up the hill, not on the seashore. Wonder if it's still there? I remember the Maltese white wine was o.k. too. Have a good time. I love North African food, so enjoy.

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JAMES

Malta.

I love Malta. I spent my first birthday there, and my 21st birthday.

Been to both the places you mention Fifi.

Beautiful place, beautiful people. When I was there last time, they had snow! The first time for many years, people were in the street all confused because they had never seen it before.

My only problem ever was being hit! Some bloke chatted me up, and I declined to go home with him, which I did nicely, but he still punched me!

Tunis, I was not keen on at all, only spent a day there though, well, even less really. We were on a cruise ship a couple of years ago, and it stopped off for a day. We were hassled by people so much that I asked Marc to take me back to the ship. Did not enjoy the hard sell pressure.

Im normally a very calm person but after the 70th person in two minutes asks you if you want to use their taxi I lost it.............

Enjoyed every other stop on the route, just not that one!

XXXX

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Bazzer

Malta and Tunis

Can't comment on Tunis but here's a regulars take on Malta & Gozo.
You will either fall in love with it and be planning your next visit before you've left or you will vow never to set foot in the place again. I not found anyone yet who is a maybe.
Rabbit is eaten a lot as it's the only thing that breeds quicker than the Maltese can shoot.
Cuisine does reflect both the location and the many occupiers over the years.
Hopleaf and Blue are two beers that are brewed British, lots of pasta dishes and fresh fish. Then you'd find pork chops or roast beef, 3 veg. and yorkies.

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Nenna

Malta

I agree, you either love Malta or don't! I don't, it was alright but I wouldn't go there again, apart form the people who are very friendly and seem sincere, and the history of the place, it had no outstanding attractions for me. In fact the whole place seemed like a building site, huge overhead cranes everywhere! And there were a lot of flies, but that could have been our bad luck because of the situation of the hotel, I don't know.

But we met people at the airport who went there every year and I know others who have apartments there so obviously the place has its attractions for some.

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Chazza

Malta and Tunis

Hi Fifi, hope you had a great time in the sun. I found The Arches on the net where you said, about 16 km up coast (by water) and still getting great reviews. For everyone's info, it's not open on Sundays, apparently. And yes, I love North African food too.

James, hope I can avoid being hit - as far as the hard sell to the westerner in N.Africa goes, it's unavoidable and seems to be culturally completely acceptable. But apparently a refusal doesn't offend. I agree though, it's a bit relentless.

Bazzer, I've never heard of either beer, will look out for them. Also the rabbit if I see some.

Nenna, thanks for the warning about insects, I loath flies and mozzies.

Thanks to everyone for your advice. I'll let you know how it went in a few weeks.

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Fifi La BonBon

Malta and Tunis

Thanks for bringing The Arches website to my attention Chazza. I didn't realise it was quite so posh when we visited! I think it's gone upmarket since our visit, as it was just a little hole in the wall restaurant, although the food was great. We really enjoyed Malta - the scenery is a bit like a moonscape, but the fantastic history and beautiful Valetta more than made up for it's barren-ness. We hired a car, very cheaply, and explored for a week, then lazed in Meleiha Bay for the second week. People were extremely helpful, welcoming and friendly. I'd love to go again, you've whetted my appetite.

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Bazzer

Malta and Tunis

Fifi, you hired a car, how brave.

Few rules about Malta and cars.

Check that there is a wheel on each corner.
Malta is drive on the left or the shady side.
Right of way on roundabouts? Who got there first.
Be prepared to wait behind two locals who have stopped for a chat and blocked the road. Conversations seldom last longer than 30min's.

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Merrie

Malta

Am also going to Malta in May Chazza, so this thread is interesting for me too as never been before. Going with my cousin, we may hire a car, or use the buses which are supposed to be good.
Merrie

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Fifi La BonBon

Malta and Tunis

Bazzer, you've made me feel very brave, but I didn't encounter those hazards at all in Malta. Either we were just lucky, or having lived and driven in French West Africa, I had already had a baptism of fire. Rule one was drive in the centre of the road, two, ignore all rules regarding red traffic lights, three, create the biggest car-jam possible at roundabouts, and four, drive without lights at night to save your battery. Malta was a gentle doddle!

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Bazzer

Merrie/Malta

The buses are a real treat to see. Used to have religious symbols, Madonna etc. on the top of the dash by the driver. You will also see cars in pristine condition that have been scrapped over here many moons ago. A real step back in time if you're into old cars. In Valetta, running paralell to the main road is Straight St. known by the British Armed Services as The Gut. If you walk along it don't look at ground level but above the shop fronts and a few of the old bits still remain; It used to be full of bars, eateries and houses of ill repute and the local "ladies" would wait for The Fleet to come into harbour.

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Chazza

Malta and Tunis

What a long weekend it's been - there was a complex translation to get done by an impossible deadline ... anyway tis finished.

It's so nice to come back to find all these interesting posts. I think our host will be expecting us to provide admiration for his fine boat and assorted beach and water based activities so I'll not get the chance to explore as much as I'd like, but hey, how can we complain?

Does anyone have experience of the taxi services? And are there any museums?

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Bazzer

Malta and Tunis/Taxi's

Plentiful. Be brave or close your eyes.
Negotiate a rate and good deals are to be had.
In fact if you can find a good driver (most are) you can negotiate a rate for Island Tours that will be much cheaper and more fun than Capt. Morgan organised tours and the drivers know the good places to eat. Usually "My Cousin/Brother/Aunt. Get the gist?

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Pauline W

Malta

Remember a few years ago we stayed at Golden Bay. Caught the bus to wherever and it broke down at top of road. The driver looked, got back on bus and got off again--with a broom. How do you mend a bus with a broom. Answer -you don't- you use it to prop the engine cover up. We had a great time, walked miles and really enjoyed it all apart from the cages to catch birds. Also went across to Gozo. The citadel is a must if you can. I have my daffs in vaser from Mdina at this very mo.
Not been to Tunis but did do Tangier from Gibraltar. Did not like it. Might be different now as we have travelled more but the begging and constant asking for money was not nice.

Enjoy your trip.
Pauline xx

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Expat Badger

Malta and tunis

OH felt the same about Tangiers (or was it marrakesh??) Still he got a nice rug in exchange for a book, bag of sweets and a pair of wet shorts....

 
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