Ever visited the archaic and attractive city of Vittoriosa located in the Grand Harbour of Malta? If you haven’t, I think it is about time you should! Vittoriosa is one of the most historic cities across the Maltese islands, packed with a myriad of historical attractions and appealing buildings.
Yet, that is just the beginning. Vittoriosa even has a wide commercial space situated in the well-known Vittoriosa Waterfront, and it’s surrounded by the majestic Mediterranean Sea, evoking beauty and a spot to swim in too! But if these descriptions haven’t sparked your interest, maybe the following 10 reasons will!
Vittoriosa is referred to as the maritime city of Malta. However, it stands out more because of a prominent event that occurred in the Great Siege, since it is acknowledged for its win against the Turks. In commemoration, the city was renamed Vittoriosa as “victorious”. Due to its abundant history, the city is encompassed with historical attractions.
Historical Attractions (Auberges & Museums)
Looking at the entrance, beauty stands before you… Stones, ramparts, and flags that engross you. A true enchantment. An archaic and old city. However, this is what spellbinds you. Oh, and we cannot forget the vast range of auberges and museums that scatter throughout!
Birgu has a few wonderful churches, two of which are Saint Dominic and Saint Lawrence’s! The locals surely love their feasts as August is bombarded with festivities, decorations, and lights which radiates unity and passion towards their religious figures.
The Waterfront or ‘ix-xatt tal-Birgu’ is the place to go if you’re looking to dine out – an aesthetically striking area with enormous yachts moored in the harbour. And we can’t forget about the exception view of the adjoined city of Senglea! The main square is also congested with restaurants and tranquillity, so it makes for the perfect area to wind down, have a cup of coffee, and relish the open square.
Fort Saint Angelo
Moving on, we can’t help but mention Fort St. Angelo, a place restored by the Knights of the Order of St. John. An impeccable and fascinating fort that gives clear evidence of the city’s victory. More recently, the fort was restored and conserved; enabling its accessibility; highlighting its history through the ages; and catering for cultural events and educational programmes.
We can’t help but mention the astonishing exteriors of the city. Thousands of tourists visit this hidden treasure every year, due to its typical Maltese architecture and façade. Also, Birgu has a history of being crowned as the most beautiful city in the world, beating Bibury in England and Tuscany in Italy, as per a survey by Homedit.
Couvre Porte is one of the initial areas a person views when entering this majestic city. It is a defensive structure with its primary aim being to protect the main gateway beside it. This Birgu Counterguard underwent numerous alterations over time, one of which being “il-Foss tal-Birgu”, getting more and more pleasurable to visit and see.
The Famous ‘It-Toqba’
Now, that I mentioned the fortresses, buildings, and rich history of the city, let’s move on to the sea surrounding it… Apart from the extended shore full of grand and beautiful boats next to each other within the waterfront, there is another gem hiding in Vittoriosa. An area that is famous for every “Ġirbi”, “It-Toqba”! An area that was changed repeatedly, yet it is always kept in mind of the natives as their place to swim a little.
If there’s anything Birgu can pride itself on, it’s the cleanliness and neatness. The city and the local mayor highlight the importance of safeguarding the environment surrounding and within the city, promoting waste separation and recycling.
Fun fact: there’s also an initiative which aims to convert Birgu into Malta’s inaugural zero-waste city!
Although Birgu is a tiny city, it has several unique traditions. For instance, the famous “Ġirja tal-Irxoxt u l-Beggiga”. The former is self-explanatory, where the statue of Jesus is carried around the city. In the latter, the natives roam around the streets with drums and anything that can be noisy, and march, a night before Easter Sunday. Finally, there is the well-known, and Guinness World Records holder, the Candlelight. On a singular night in October, the city is lit up with thousands of flickering candles, as folk bands create a miraculous and lively aesthetic.
If there is something that you admire about this city and we haven’t mentioned it, list it in the comments below!