Have you ever heard of Malta? It is an island country in the Mediterranean Sea, between Italy and Libya, and despite its small size, it is a very densely populated country, filled with interesting history… including postal history! The Little Mail Carriers begged us to go visit, and so we sent them on to meet Lara Bugeja, the museum’s curator. Here is their report!
Ħello everyone! 👋 We arrived in Valletta, Malta’s capital on a beautifully sunny day and made our way to the Malta Postal Museum. We stopped outside for a photo and to admire the Baroque facade of this converted Valletta home. Lara mentioned everyone at the museum was delighted to see us as they had never had anybody so small visit!
Our first stop was in one of the galleries where an exhibition of landscape paintings was being set up. Did you know that the Postal Museum also functions as a Art Hub? We were lucky to see this nice exhibition coming together, from our perch on a wonderful sunset.
But we came here to see stamps and letters, so Lara gave us a whistle-stop tour of the museum. It was so much fun deciphering the script on the archive of letters, and admiring the wax seals! Most letters were in French, but some were in Italian, English and a few were in Maltese. The earliest form of postal service in the island dates from the early 1530s, when business letters were carried by small sailing vessels between Malta and Sicily.
We then hopped up onto one of their old postal counters and played for a bit, pretending to buy and sell stamps. The Museum has a fully functional post office, which in the past few years even had special postmarks for the World Postcard Day!
On a screen there was a video playing about mail distribution during the times of the Malta plague epidemic, so we got to learn about the deadliest event in Maltese history, which took place between December 1675 and August 1676. At the time, it was thought that paper could transport the disease, so mail was quarantined and disinfected. Although the video was interesting, we were horrified by the sheer number of rats that poured out of the screen… quite scary for us, being so small!
For something lighter, we decided to climb to the top of one of the museum’s motorcycles! The James ‘Captain’ 200cc motorcycle was used in the 1960s by postmen delivering to the more rural and inaccessible areas of Malta and Gozo. We managed to get up there safely, but it took us a while… Then, since we were already at it, we did the same with the bicycle near the entrance – and once we made it to the top, we had a good rest and brought out a picnic lunch!
After all these activities, we were quite exhausted, so we left to have a very well-deserved rest. Everyone in the museum was super nice, and we were delighted to meet them!
Thank you Lara, for taking care of the little ones and showing them the Malta Postal Museum! Into their padded envelope they go, and who knows where they will land next… 😉
40 comments so far
Thanks for sharing.
Another highlight was an excursion to the Playmobile Fabric. Therefore the Little Mail Carriers should return one day, but I doubt if photographing is allowed.
Book well in advance. No postcards available.
I wish, I'd seen that museum and post office, not to mention the shop, when I was in Malta, a looong time ago!
I spend every year my holidays at Malta - it-s the best place in the world!
And of course I've visited the Museum, it's great, especially I loved the view from the rooftop....
Keep on travelling!
Malta Postal Museum!
Beautiful story Beautiful place!
Kudos to Little Mail Carriers!
If the little guys would find their way to me one day, they would join the local after school club which I run in a highschool in my town: the kids and I are doing Postcrossing together :) And we could make a tour around our town and share a lot of information about its old history and our area, which is an UNESCO world heritage region! :)
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