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Address: St. Elmo Pl., Valletta, Island of Malta VLT1741, Malta
Phone Number: 35622481300
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Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Description: Fort St Elmo - National War Museum The National War Museum houses a superb...
Fort St Elmo - National War Museum The National War Museum houses a superb collection of items which takes us back to prehistoric times. The items are displayed in chronological order and start with the early phases of the Bronze Age around 2,500 B.C. During the second Punic war Malta changed hands and became part of the mighty Roman Empire. The disintegration of the latter led to a period of unrest where it is speculated that Malta was subject to vandal attacks. The Eastern Roman Empire officially recognised as the Byzantines, reconquered Malta in 535AD. Little is unfortunately known about life on the islands during Byzantine times as Malta is rarely mentioned in historic documents. Malta changed hands again in 870AD following a fierce battle between the Arabs and the Byzantines. For the next 221years Malta was ruled by the Arabs and once again the culture changed to reflect these new rulers. The Normans, a rising power of the time, won Malta in 1090. These were succeeded by other European rulers that also governed the Kingdom of Sicily, namely the Swabians, Angevins, Aragon/Catalans and finally the Spanish. Malta's Middle Ages ends in 1530 with the arrival of the Knights of the Order of St. John. Medieval armour and other equipment displayed highlights the complex power struggle emerging in the Mediterranean and in Europe between Christians and Muslims with prominence being given to the Great Siege of Malta in 1565. The post-Great Siege period saw the building of Valletta, numerous fortresses, fortification works and coastal fortifications throughout the 17th and 18th centuries. The Order of St. John's rule in Malta was brought to an end by arrival of the French in Malta led by none other than Napoleon Bonaparte. The rule of the French did not last long however. Just three months after their arrival the Maltese rebelled and with the assistance of the British, Malta got rid of the French invaders. The British took over Malta and transformed it into one of their many colonies. Two halls are dedicated to Malta's important role in WW I, the Inter-War Period and Malta's historical role in the Second World War. Displayed in these halls one can find perhaps the three most important icons of this museum: the Gloster Sea Gladiator N5520 FAITH, Roosevelt's Jeep 'Husky' and Malta award for gallantry, the George Cross. Concluding the walk through Malta's military role in history are displays dedicated to Malta's Independence, becoming a Republic, Freedom Day and Malta joining the European Union
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Worth the walk

A great few hours wandering around and understanding a bit more of the history of the island with great views. Seeing the area about WW2 explains a lot about how the island is... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed August 27, 2015
FionaC1968
,
Lichfield, United Kingdom

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209 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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English first
Lichfield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
28 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2015 NEW

A great few hours wandering around and understanding a bit more of the history of the island with great views. Seeing the area about WW2 explains a lot about how the island is today and in a way it's amazing any of the historic buildings still exist. I wasn't that bothered about going to the fort but I'm glad I... More 

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Nelson, South Wales
Level Contributor
13 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2015

This was a very comprehensive journey in several stages through Malta's varied and colourful history. The last stage is a little claustrophobic as there were a lot of people crammed into a small space to watch a short film. All in all, worth a vist. Lovely views from the roof of the fort.

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Burnaby, Canada
Level Contributor
122 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 20, 2015

There is a free short film/slide show that will orient you to what is close by and the history of Malta. Further, you can walk around the outer walls which afford wonderful views of the Ricasoli Lighthouse and the riparian action. From here head over to the Siege Bell War Memorial.

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Level Contributor
42 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2015

Before you go read up on the history and stories. When that`s done head to a cafè/bar close by, drink some beers or wine til your feeling tipsy. Be sure to bring some more beers and some water. Now you can enter Fort Elmo an have really great day. Let your mind go back to the days of the knights... More 

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Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2015

The Fort offers some incredible views even without paying admission to the war museum. Just as a tip to other tourists, we took the bus to Valetta and were unsure of how far the walk was from the bus terminal. We asked for a cab and they said it would be 20 Euro to go to the Fort. We thought... More 

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Chelmsford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
37 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2015

The fort was good, you follow a numbered route around it, there were lots of things to look at along the way and there are some good views in various places out across the water. Interesting history lessons and presented in lots of different ways so not boring.

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Ayr, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
251 reviews
110 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 99 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2015

The entire city has fantastic defences, and given the siege by the Turks in 1565 proved their effectiveness. Well worth a visit and a walk through.

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Adelaide, Australia
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2015

I thought this was honestly going to be a historically interesting attraction, but nothing more. We got there an from the outside it looks deserted and there are not many signs up. Once we got there we ummed and ahhed about actually entering the museum because the ticket office and gift shop was again nothing special. Once we started our... More 

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Herndon, Virginia
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2015

The combination of modern technology with the incorporation of parts of the fort made this such a worthwhile tour! Great information!

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Leeds, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
72 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2015

Find out about the history of Malta at this attraction. Nice and cool inside and lots of videos to watch as well as exhibitions to see. A great day out when the weather is hot as most of the attractions are indoors

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