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Fort St Elmo - National War Museum

St. Elmo Pl. | Fort St Elmo, 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
  • Excellent54%
  • Very good34%
  • Average10%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“great siege” (36 reviews)
“fort st” (31 reviews)
“war museum” (39 reviews)
Open Now
All hours
Hours Today: 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Suggested Duration: 2-3 hours
LOCATION
St. Elmo Pl. | Fort St Elmo, Valletta, Island of Malta VLT 1741, Malta
CONTACT
Website
+356 2123 3088
Write a ReviewReviews (2,036)
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"great siege"
in 36 reviews
"fort st"
in 31 reviews
"war museum"
in 39 reviews
"parade ground"
in 8 reviews
"well worth a visit"
in 39 reviews
"re enactment"
in 13 reviews
"george cross"
in 24 reviews
"three hours"
in 8 reviews
"heritage malta"
in 7 reviews
"on display"
in 16 reviews
"per adult"
in 6 reviews
"grand harbour"
in 25 reviews
"malta experience"
in 13 reviews
"elmo"
in 48 reviews
"exhibits"
in 59 reviews
"information"
in 43 reviews
"timeline"
in 19 reviews
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1 - 10 of 1,502 reviews

Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

Great views from here, reasonable price, not as organized as some of the other sites we visited but very interesting

Thank Anna D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 days ago

This is a great museum which tells the story of Malta's interesting military history, the exhibits are modern, varied and informative without bogging you down in too much pointless info. The story of Malta in WWII is fascinating and well presented here. Aswell as the...More

Thank Baronation
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

Due to the weather, access was not complete (but we got a reduction of the entrance fee). But we could walk through the Fort and relive the history of Malta (Valletta) through the centuries. Evidently, a lot is about WWII

Thank Johan C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 1 week ago

The staff here was so very helpful. They went beyond their normal job description to help me with some private research concerning an ancestor. The museum itself was very interesting and definitely worth the time.

Thank Harry B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

This is a rather obvious tourist trap now, but apart from the fact that you have the feeling that it has been slightly overcommercialised, the views from the top are breathtaking. This has al the architecture of another impregnable fort guarding Malta waterways. Available tickets...More

Thank DemoDave
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

This museum is a must visit if you have any interest in history and especially the history of Malta during the Second World War. It covers Malta's military history including the Great Siege and the island's role in WW2. Exhibits include the Gloster Gladiator biplane...More

Thank MikeWells90
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Learn about the history of Malta. Lots to see and read. The church chapel was amazing built in 1556.

Thank Scotts62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

If you like history, if you love views, this is worth a visit. The history is well presented from earliest to more recent times; filled with artifacts from each successive ,,invasion,, and battle. Check out the suits of armour! Sea views are lovely. Take a...More

Thank Leembruggen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

This museum is a must visit if you want to understand the history of Malta. It does a wonderful job telling the island’s history through the lens of military events. The museum feels unfinished in some respects. The first room examining Malta’s ancient history felt...More

Thank MrGaucho1987
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Renovated fort with great views over the harbour, The National war Museum is a very interesting overview of the way Malta has been involved in various wars over the years, due to its strategic location.

Thank PotterMoose
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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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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