Watching the latest series of Below Deck Med has got us all dreaming about a lavish trip out on the gorgeous Mediterranean waters of Malta. Well, the SamBoat crew has decided to bring you the ultimate itinerary for a Below Deck-inspired stay in Malta – minus the drama, of course!
First, head to picturesque Valletta, the smallest capital city in Europe, with influences from its parent cultures of Africa and the Middle East. Valletta combines all the redeeming qualities of a buzzy city (the vibrancy, diversity, and pace of life) with the best parts of a more rural experience – including a warm breeze that offers some respite from the beating sun, and the sense of a potential off-the-beaten-track adventure in the air. We recommend spending the morning in the Old Town – the heart of the city’s culture and history.
In the afternoon, set sail along the coast in a boat like the Dufour 460 Grand Large towards the Kalkara Creek, which can be found opposite Malta’s large harbour. On your journey along the calming blue sea, take in the sight of the majestic Valletta bastions, Vittoriosa’s Fort St Angelo and Ricasoli – all historical monuments key to defining the island’s character.
As you arrive at Kalkara Marina, you might feel ready for lunch – try Marea. The lively restaurant overlooks the Grand Harbour and offers a blend of Asian and Mediterranean cuisine, which they refer to as ‘Mediterrasian’. Think sushi, seafood, sashimi platters and pasta: colourful, cooked with care and packed with flavour. Or, speaking of fish, nearby is the traditional fishing village Marsaxlokk, and it might be time to trade in the Bavaria Cruiser for a Luzzu – a traditional Maltese fishing boat. These brightly coloured vessels can be spotted from the pier, and bob along the sea creating a wonderful rainbow. Make sure to look out for a pair of eyes painted on the bow: a practice dating back to Phoenician times; this is a way of protecting the fisherman from the ‘evil eye’.
Head to the area’s fish market, which is popular with tourists and locals, and make like Chef David haggling for some fresh fish. If this doesn’t tickle your fancy, you can still experience all that Marsaxlokk has to offer by heading to a seafood restaurant by the seafront, feasting on fresh fish and fantastic food whilst the sun sets.
Besides the demanding, super-wealthy guests, one of the highlights of Below Deck Med is seeing the beautiful sandy beaches. If you’re looking to splash out in true Below Deck fashion, jump on a seductive sunseeker yacht, sail from Marsaxlokk to Golden Bay, a blue flag certified beach, and prepare for a day of water sports activities. However, the bay is super popular during high season – So plan ahead.
From one Maltese beauty spot to another, head down to Comino – an island admired by tourists and locals alike. The peaceful island is home to just a handful of people, so you’re sure to feel like a VIP. Tune out the noise of everyday life as you lay on the deck of a Sunseeker Predator – a yacht that boasts a seamless entertaining space with uninterrupted views – and look up in awe of the azure skies. After a spot of relaxation, it’s time to get snorkelling and dive into the famous Blue Lagoon.
The next day, leave the glamourous Hollywood-esque hills behind for the island of Gozo – covered with jaw-dropping cliffs, bays and caves. Time to get your sweat on as you embark on a breathtaking hike across the island, taking in the natural beauty. After a rewarding session, grab a Ħobż Biż-żejt, a native sandwich made with tomato paste, capers, tuna chunks and olive oil, from kiosk Simenta. Wash down the sandwich with Cisk, a local lager – now that’s what we call fine dining!After spending the last few days living the Below Deck experience, it’s time to return to Valletta in style in your sleek and sporty Predator Mamy yacht.
Oh, how the other half lives!
For more fun check these alternative Malta sailing routes