During the night the wind becomes variable, which means that we regularly have to change the sails. The sea was calm, the shipping traffic however was quite dense. Especially fishermen ‘racing’ from left to right, but there is also a lot of cargo traffic in the waters between Sicily and Malta.
Shortly after my watch starts at 0300 we see the first lights of Malta at the horizon. Anticipation grows as we come closer. We even decide to let the next watch sleep: we want to bring the ship in ourselves. The approach to Malta is gorgeous: the old castles, fortresses and churches with their lights are visible from miles away.
Several miles from the harbour we call Valletta Port Control via VHF to announce our arrival. They give us information regarding the current movements of other (bigger) boats, which helps us to stay clear. Around 0530 we glide between the breakwaters of Valletta’s eastern harbour. Instantly the waves stop, and a serene tranquillity comes over our ship. The rolling stops as we glide slowly into this harbour. It has a rich history, and we see the places where the ships of the Knights of St. John were moored when they were not fighting the Ottomans.
We moor our ship in Grand Harbour Marina in Vittoriosa, across the bay from Valletta and with a great view on the city and the Fortress San Angelo. After mooring, the boat becomes very quiet except for the snoring of people trying to catch up on their sleep…
Showers (private bathrooms!), laundry, cleaning the boat, a well-deserved beer, lunch… Time flies when you are having fun.