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Address: St. Elmo Pl., Valletta, Island of Malta VLT 1741, Malta
Phone Number: +356 21 233088
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours

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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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 498 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 181
  • 113
    Very good
  • 34
  • 10
  • 7
Work in progress?

A beautiful restoration of the upper part of the fort, although it seems that it is work in progress, the WW II parts are still unrestored, rusting steel doors and crumbling... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed yesterday
Valletta, Malta
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498 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 345: English reviews
Cheltenham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
94 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

I have to admit it wasn't my choice to come here but I gave in and am glad I did. Very interesting with lots of films and exhibits. Malta played a big part in both WW1 and WW2 and there is also information about the original Siege of Malta. Favourite though is Room 7 with the films on the walls... More 

Thank cookiebiscuit_10
Valletta, Malta
Level Contributor
136 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed yesterday NEW

A beautiful restoration of the upper part of the fort, although it seems that it is work in progress, the WW II parts are still unrestored, rusting steel doors and crumbling masonry,these are a contrast to the superbly restored bastions and structures of the rst of upper st Elmo, looking down at the lower St Elmo this is still in... More 

Thank henryborgbarthet
Northampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
21 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

This is an interesting museum, with probably too much to take in in one visit as it covers a huge time frame. It looks as if it is still in the process of being renovated. This did not detract from our visit.

Thank Orland2014
Exeter, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

Another great place to visit while in Malta.Gives you the history of Malta through the ages.Some great items from the war on display.Again very well perserved ,a must for anyone who wants to see the history of WW 2 c

Thank mikelA156GN
Dronfield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 days ago NEW via mobile

Spent 4hrs in fort st Elmo great views from battlements good museum great to walk round very informative

Thank jeanmilnes
Grobbendonk, Belgium
Level Contributor
138 reviews
60 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

2 years ago when we were here, this was closed for renovations, so now we could visit. And it was worth it. Use your Malta discount card here, its -50%. The fort has a well indicated walkabout, so you can follow the start from the fort till the present day

Thank Gert C
Sidney, Canada
Level Contributor
37 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 5 days ago NEW

A lot of reading . Very informative and makes you appreciate what others have done for us. Good videos and displays.

Thank freedom552014
Sykkylven Municipality, Norway
Level Contributor
254 reviews
206 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

very Nice visit,and a lot of history towards malta so has been a very attractive island in many wars. Another good thing about this fort it has many fantastic view Points especially over to 3 cities

Thank Odd Lennart L
Level Contributor
47 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

I'd say this place is a must for anyone visiting the great city of Valletta. The whole place is steeped in history and the exhibits tell the story in great detail without getting bogged down in minute detail so it's ideal for history buffs & casual observers alike. The museum is well laid out in 5 sections and you are... More 

Thank avidtripper2
Cheltenham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
76 reviews
41 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

Fabulous visit to Fort St Elmo. Exhibits spread out over various rooms, really well displayed and interesting. Takes you through the amazing and varied history of Malta with lots of visual films as well which were perfect for the setting. So much to see and learn about the amazing Maltese people and their bravery and resilience through so many conflicts... More 

Thank Holibobs222

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