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Fort St Elmo - National War Museum

St. Elmo Pl., Valletta, Island of Malta VLT 1741, Malta
+356 2123 3088
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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
  • Excellent49%
  • Very good36%
  • Average12%
  • Poor2%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“fort st” (31 reviews)
“war museum” (38 reviews)
“parade ground” (8 reviews)
Suggested Duration: 2-3 hours
LOCATION
St. Elmo Pl., Valletta, Island of Malta VLT 1741, Malta
CONTACT
Website
+356 2123 3088
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JPMiles / Payback Arrow
Reviews (769)
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1 - 10 of 522 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago

We enjoyed the walking tour of this Fort, the displays were very well thought out & helped in the recounting the long history . Still, some of the area is undergoing restoration but most of it had been already restored to a pretty high level....More

Thank MrSmitcher
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Very interesting. The main part of the museum is housed in seven different buildings, and you walk through part of the fort to get to the "main attraction". This takes you from prehistory right up to Malta joining the EU via the Ottoman Siege, French...More

Thank Benjiboots
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We thought the way this museum was set was very good especially the pictorial timelines in each section. There was also novel use of ancient paintings to depict ancient invasions of Malta. There are great views from the walls of St. Elmo's Fort. There wasn't...More

Thank Steve B
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

Don’t go to the Parade ! You will be forced to watch it for 1 hour and you will not be allowed to visit the fort before the end of ‘show’ 😳

Thank JanBuermans
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

An impressive building with lots to see. Quite a lot of walking up and down stairs so not for elderly but there are appropriate facilities.

Thank grahamj641
Reviewed 5 weeks ago via mobile

visited one morning. very clean. lacks atmosphere. signage could be better, lots of areas closed to the public 2 areas of the museum closed even thoe they still changed the full amount

Thank s_gilchrist62
Reviewed 11 November 2017

This fort towers over the area and is very impressive.It houses the must see National War museum..Not far from Republic Street.

Thank wingate
Reviewed 11 November 2017

This museum was so much better than expected. I thought it would be about the WW II experience. But it started with the Middle Ages, and explained what was happening when. There were some short videos which were very well done and most informative. Most...More

Thank GloriaAnchio
Reviewed 9 November 2017

We found it a bit difficult to find the entrance, but it was well worth it. There are really good views of the harbour and surrounds, but the contents do not seem fully developed.

Thank John G
Reviewed 5 November 2017

Massive, well refurbished, structure, with still more to be restored if the look over the walls is anything to go by. Well laid out to display the part the fort has played in the history of Valletta and Malta. Well worth a visit if you...More

Thank sherlock1411
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Questions & Answers
MarkMahoney
21 February 2017|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from peter b | Reviewed this property |
Hi Mark. To get into the forts moat, do as follows. When you passed the duck area, follow the way up to the small gate, then you go down left towards to the officearea...follow the shore, it is a little bit rocky...but keep... More
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Mark B
1 July 2016|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from Badfeeling2015 | Reviewed this property |
I should point out that the granary is underground and these are the lids
1
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OggieDee
9 April 2015|
Answer
Response from Ryan V |
Yes it is open to the public all year round thanks
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