The ancient city of Mdina is a magical place from the minute you enter its 18th century gate. The bridge over the now dried moat leads you to another time, a time when real knights ruled the land and ladies embroidered their woes away!
Mdina was likely first settled by the Phoenicians about 700 years before Christ and has played a vital role in history due to its strategic position as one of Malta’s highest points. During the city’s Roman occupation, the ancient governor built his palace in Mdina. It’s also believed that Saint Paul lived here following his shipwreck on the island.
This UNESCO world heritage site has been dubbed the “Silent City” with good reason – it is charmingly tranquil as you enter its main gate and leave the modern day hustle and bustle behind. The din of the 21st century is locked out as horse drawn carriages clop their way across cobbled streets. Touring the walled Mdina by horse and buggy just adds to its magic and it’s at once romantic and alluring.
The 17th century Cathedral of St. Paul and Palazzo Falson are highlights of a visit to Mdina. However, what I enjoyed most was just walking its enchanting narrow byways, getting lost in the shadows and alleys, and absorbing the serenity offered to its visitors.
During midday, even with tourists milling about, the streets of Mdina are quiet. Maybe it’s the fortified walls which block the sound, or maybe it’s the tranquility you feel when you allow your mind to escape to another era.