Date: 31/12/2014 – 04/01/2015
Location: Malta – , )
Description: Come and join EGEA Malta and celebrate the start of a New Year with us!
Wednesday 31st – Day 1
pm: Ice breakers, introduction to Maltese Islands’ Geography and History
Excursion: Walk around Buskett
New Year’s Party! Theme: Mad Hatter!
Thursday 1st – Day 2
Open kitchen brunch – help yourself to breakfast whenever you want for a slow start and chilling time
Excursion: Walk to Rabat and Mdina
Dinner in Mdina
Friday 2nd – Day 3
Excursion: Day in Valletta
Saturday 3rd – Day 4
Excursion: Hike along Dingli cliffs and down to Wied iz-Zurrieq)
Sunday 4th – Day 5
pm: Departures and free hugs
We will explore the accommodation’s surroundings. Buskett is practically the only forested area on the Island and is situated in a valley. The word Buskett comes from the diminutive of the word for forest in Maltese: “Bosk”, therefore its name literally means “little forest”. It is classified as “semi-natural” as it was planted in the Middle Ages by the Knights of St. John to be used as hunting grounds. However it is no longer heavily managed and has largely established itself in the area. It is the location of one of the few permanent water sources in the island (a small stream) and there are even some small farms in the area – mostly citrus orchards.
Mdina is Malta’s ancient capital city and is within walking distance from our accommodation (see “Mdina Excursion” route on the map). Located on high ground in the heart of the island, this mediaeval “city” doiminates its surroundings with its distinctive fortifications and cathedral silhouette. Also known as “The Silent City” its narrow, winding streets have long charmed people by day and by night. Its vantage point also offers spectacular views of Malta.
Valletta and the Three Cities
Valletta (Maltese: Il-Belt) sits on top of the Scebarras Peninsula with Marsamxett Harbour on one side and the Grand Harbour on the other. Throughout history the harbours have become heavily fortified. This is especially true of the Grand Harbour, which also houses the three fortified “cities” – Cospicua, Vittoriosa, and Senglea (Maltese: Bormla, Birgu and Isla). These mediaeval cities have recently become the subject of much gentrification, rejuvenation and historical character.
Dingli Cliffs/Wied iz-Zurrieq
Dingli Cliffs are the highest point in Malta and located on the West Coast of the Island. This hike will take us along the cliffs and through some of the most agricultural area on the Island. We will end in “Wied iz-Zurrieq”, a drowned valley where you can partake in the Matese tradition of the “New Year Swim” if you dare… This hike will highlight Malta’s interesting geomorphology as well as the typically Mediterranean biogeography. You can find the route that we will take on the map.
Spend the new year with us immersed in nature!
The accommodation belongs to the Malta Scouts Association and is nestled in Buskett – Malta’s (only) tiny forest. See the map here.
It is very important that you bring your slippers (houseshoes) and sleeping bag with you!
Getting to Malta
Low cost carriers that service Malta are Ryanair, Easyjet.
However Easyjet only flies to the UK and Italy from Malta – Ryanair has a much more extensive range of destinations, however Italy is still one of the best bets.
Additionally, Vueling flies between Malta and Spain and there is also a Wizzair service between Malta, Bucharest and Budapest. Norwegian Air flies from Scandinavia and Niki flies from Vienna.
Other airlines that service Malta International Airport (sometimes worth checking as they might have a special offer): Air Baltic, Air Berlin, Air France, Air Malta, Air Serbia, Alitalia, British Airways, Brussels Airlines, Emirates, Jet2.com, Jettime, Libyan Airlines, Lufthansa, Luxair, maltafly, Monarch, Norwegian Air Shuttle, Scandanavian SAS, Thomas Cook, Thompson Airways, transavia.com, Tunisair Express and Turkish Airlines.
Malta International Airport Website: http://www.maltairport.com/en/home.htm
If you are a bit more adventurous there is a catamaran that runs from Pozzallo and Catania (Sicily) to Valletta (Malta).
More information can be found at the Virtu Ferries website: http://www.virtuferries.com/
If you decide to use this option let us know and we will give you further details about arriving at the accommodation.
Once you get to Malta
There is a bus terminus exactly outside the main Entrance/Exit of the airport. From there you will have to catch either:
Bus X3 or X5 to Rabat and then take bus 52 to Dingli.
To be on the safe side, buy a day ticket which costs €1.50 and can be bought directly from the bus driver, however, small change is strongly encouraged (they will NOT give you change for anything above €5)!
Public Transport Website: http://www.publictransport.com.mt/
Map of location and excursions
If your flight arrives at some ungodly hour and there are no longer buses running, let us know and we will sort you out with a cheap taxi or one of us will pick you up.
NB: If groups of you are arriving around the same time we will try to coordinate picking you up ourselves
Currency in Malta is Euros. There is an exchange office in the arrivals lounge of the airport. Otherwise you can exchange money at banks. Banks will be closed on the 31st December and the 1st of January.
Let us know if you will be arriving to Malta earlier, as we should be able to sort out staying at the accommodation from a day before.
What to bring:
- Sleeping bag (very important!)
- Warm clothes and socks (Yes it even gets cold in Malta!)
- Slippers (AKA “houseshoes”)
- If you are adventurous: Swimsuit
- Waterproof and windproof jacket
- Comfortable shoes for hiking (not necessarily hiking boots as we will not be using very difficult roads however it is beneficial if they are waterproof)
- A funny hat for the New Year’s party!
- A drink from your country
- Music on a pen drive if you like
- European Health Insurance Card (if you have one)
Contact & Organisers
James, Tarah, Michaela, Rachel and Colette
In order to secure yourself a fixed place you need to send us a deposit of €40 (payment details will be sent to each participant when they register).
This will confirm your place and enable you to go ahead and book your flight ticket.
Places will be given on a first come-first serve basis according to the time of receipt of the deposit.
The rest of the participation fee (€38) will be payable to the organisers in cash upon arrival.