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Standing on the Sciberras Peninsula, Fort Saint Elmo is one of the best fort in Valletta. It is housed the National War Museum, Vendome Bastion and the place to host In Guardia Contest.
The Historical Experience at Fort Saint Elmo
National War Museum housed the fort since 1975. Visiting this museum is the best thing to do at Fort Saint Elmo if you are interesting about the history of World War. Not only does it provide the history of World War, the museum is also displaying the military equipment and the other things related to the First and Second World War. The replica of George's cross that was awarded to Malta by King George VI is featured in this museum. Since it is opened again in 2015 after the restoration, the museum has larger collections than before. Today, the museum features the audiovisual displays which bring alive history and draw the war condition such us the fighting to get the islands under the German's Bombardment. Faith is the artefact of Gloster Gladiator plane that safe from the bomb.
Vendome Bastion was built in 1614 and it was added to the Fort Saint Elmo. Further changes and additions were done during the British period. The alteration is made so that the fort can adapt to the advance military technology. This vendome was also made to link the French curtain to the Fort Saint Elmo. Today, Vendome Bastion is the part of National War Museum.
Watching the 'In Guardia' which is the popular contest in Valletta is the best thing to do at Fort Saint Elmo. In this contest you will see more than 50 actors are dressed like a soldier from time to time. The soldiers will show their skill in the military exercise and try to convince the Grand Bailiff that they are the best and powerful soldiers who are ready to defend Fort Saint Elmo. The show's entrance tickets is not included into the Fort Saint Elmo tickets and it can be purchased at tickets booth.
How to Get Tickets?
Fort Saint Elmo tickets can be purchased at the tickets office in the entrance. After purchasing your tickets, you can take pictures with the view of the Grand Harbour as the background. On Sunday, you do not have to buy the Fort Saint Elmo tickets since it will be free for all visitors to get into the fort. This is the best thing to do to save your budget while visiting Malta.
How To Get Around?
You can take a stroll to get aroud the fort. You can walk down in the Republic Street to discover the other attractions in Valletta. Horse drawn carriage and bicycle are also available to help you getting around this place.
What Should I Wear?
Wearing comfortable shoes is a must since you will walk to reach this place and also get around the fort. There is no dress code in Fort Saint Elmo, during summer you can wear cool clothes and bring suncreen. While in winter, coat or sweater can be the good option to wear.
Best Time to Visit
Fort Saint Elmo can be visited all year round. If you are interesting to watch the In Guardia contest, you can visit this fort between October and June.
Will I Need a Guide?
You do not need a guide since all things to do at Fort Saint Elmo can be done on your own. Also, this fort is easy to find from the Valletta city center. You only have to walk through the Republic Street or Merchant Street toward the sea, then you wil arrive to the fort.
How To Get There?
If you are in the heart of Valletta, you can get into the fort only by walking for few minutes. Follow the Repulic street toward the sea, then you will find the Fort Saint Elmo, opposite the Mediterranean Conference Center (MCC). Public transports are also available to take you there. You can also park your car in the parking areas that are provided and take a short walk to the fort.
Since the weather in Malta is rapidly changing, the In Guardia Contest can be cancelled without any notice. To make sure that the show is held, you have to phone the Valletta's Tourist Information Center.