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Malta! I didn’t know what to expect from this tiny island nation in the Mediterranean Sea. The reality is it I probably never would have come had Anders not taken a diving job here, but wow — I’m glad I did. It’s kind of a gift to go somewhere with absolutely no expectations or preconceived notions and just let it surprise you. I’m glad I have some time to let it all sink in and process before I start writing about it in full, but for now, I’m excited to share this little preview! One thing I can confidently say is Malta is fabulously photogenic.

So, last night I landed in Brussels which is off to a rough start. I arrived to the news that my box of Tomorrowland stuff (costumes, camping supplies, festival necessities, etc.) is lost in the mail, which I am beside myself thinking about replacing — not to mention all the time and money I’ve lost now already. Then I discovered that once again my email server has been flagged for spam, meaning half the emails I’ve sent out in the past week didn’t go through and I missed countless others incoming — who knows what opportunities have passed me by! And to top it off, my ultra modern, ultra expensive design hostel with no windows or fans has a broken air conditioning, meaning I spent a sleepless night sweating it out with eight strangers in a room approximately the temperature of the surface of the sun while fretting over the first two issues. Welcome to Belgium! I pray that this is not an omen and when I report back next week things have turned around in a big way.

Onto more pleasant things, memories of Malta…

Photo A
The fishing village of Marsaxlokk

Photo B
Gozo’s Azure Window, from below and above

Photo C
Diving off Ċirkewwa

Photo D
Sunset in Għajn Tuffieħa Bay

Photo E
The many colors of Malta

Photo F
Architecture and traditional in Malta’s ancient cities of Mdina and Valleta

Which photo is your favorite?

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93 Comments...
  • Carla Turun
    July 21 2014

    AMAZING Photos Meihoukai !!! makes me so so excited to go 🙂

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Glad to hear that Carla, and many more where these came from!

  • Stef
    July 21 2014

    I’m voting for Photo E!
    Stef recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Ah, that swimming hole on the left might have been my favorite find of the whole trip. It just screamed Mediterranean!

  • Nathalie
    July 21 2014

    Oh god, you’re going to Tomorrowland? I hope you didn’t have to pay for it yourself.. The worst most commercial place in the world which is not worth the hype. I’m sure you are going to have fun, but oh how plastic and fleeting it will be. That festival slaps everyone in the face who does actually create parties and festivals with real heartbleed, for the people and with the people, and with the nature surrounding the location.. and not for their money and their longing for a little paradise to dance the night away. I personally invite you to come to something like Freqs of Nature with us next year (it’s just over sadly) and I show you how a festival should be. Shame on Tomorrowland for grabbing people’s desires for beauty and creativity and fun and selling it to them so shamelessly.

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Oh my! That’s a pretty scathing review of something I’ve put a lot of time, effort, and money into attending 🙂 I am very excited about Tomorrowland but I’d be equally into checking out Freqs of Nature someday. I have festival fever!

  • Janice Stringer
    July 21 2014

    Octopus!
    Janice Stringer recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Which one — in the market or under the sea? 🙂

      • Janice Stringer
        July 21 2014

        under the sea. Better alive than dead!
        Janice Stringer recently posted..

        • Meihoukai
          July 22 2014

          I’m with you! The fish market was interesting but Anders and I agreed kind of sad. We’d so much rather see it below the surface than on a plate.

  • I’m torn between photos A and E. The colors are amazing!

  • Silvia
    July 21 2014

    Ugh, so sorry for the email, hostel and shipping woes, Meihoukai! Um, at least you have some pretty gorgeous photos of Malta to lift your spirits? I choose A! And E! And F!
    Silvia recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Thanks Silvia! It’s a downer. And then today when I tried to meet up with some Brussels friends for the first time I got so helplessly lost I ended up in tears. Really rough start. I guess things can only go up from here?

  • kathryn
    July 21 2014

    Sometimes I end up with only one that is a meh and all the rest dazzle me and I sit for too long trying to decide which I like best. Off to NOLA today, so no time to decide. I love your eye for beauty and framing…a gift!

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Thanks 🙂 Sometimes it works against me…. Anders was reminding me when I wrote about a really ugly town in Ecuador and everyone was like, “But it looks so pretty in your photos!” Ha, sometimes finding the beauty and leaving out the reality shows a skewed perspective.

      • Anders
        July 21 2014

        But luckily Malta is only beautiful 😉

  • Kiara Gallop
    July 21 2014

    Photo B. Those waters look so inviting!

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      They were! So refreshing in the simmering heat.

  • Chris
    July 21 2014

    A this week!

    A close call, but that one just screams everything Mediterranean 🙂

    Sorry to hear about all those dramas!
    Chris recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Thanks Chris. Every traveler has them at some point I guess. PS — Glad you enjoyed Hostel Cat. I had a bad stay there, it gave me the creeps!

  • Caroline Peters
    July 21 2014

    I love Photo A! Malta is beautiful isn’t it? I went on holiday with my family there a few years ago, staying near Valletta. I would love to visit again some time!

    Hope everything turns around for you! 🙂

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Thanks Caroline. Yes, Malta has some truly beautiful sights. Valleta is a beautiful capital!

  • A! it was a really hard choice this time. I have to say I think photos near (or under) the sea are your most eye-catching! I had no idea e-mails could be flagged for spam? How does something like this happen and how did you find out?
    Rachel of Hippie in Heels recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      I don’t really know how it happens — helpful suggestions from the host included “send less emails” and “send less links,” um thanks — but I know because all my emails get bounced back and I’m unable to send anything. This time I didn’t realize though because the failure notices went into my OWN spam folder. Argh!

  • Erin
    July 21 2014

    Def B or E – never considered going to Malta but it looks so pretty wow

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Maybe my upcoming posts will convince you! It’s pretty stunning!

  • So hard to choose, but if I had to pick a set it would be A. What kind of camera do you use for your underwater photos?

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Hey Katelyn, check out the link in the sidebar that says “My Favorite Photography Gear” — that links to a page showing everything I use!

  • Ashley
    July 21 2014

    Photo E- love the turquoise! No windows in the hostel?! Yikes! Hopefully your luck changes for the better soon!
    Ashley recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Sorry, should have clarified — there are windows, they are just the modern kind that don’t open 🙂

  • Oh no, that sounds like a rough start! You know what they say – bad things come in threes – so I believe that your luck will change from now on. I’ll send you some happy thoughts from Thailand 🙂
    And I vote for Photo F because of the Danish looking flag.

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Thanks Miriam! I’m really hoping my three are up now.

  • racheal morgan
    July 21 2014

    I love F! You probably get asked a lot but what kind of camera do you use?
    racheal morgan recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Hey Racheal, check out the link in the sidebar that says “My Favorite Photography Gear” — that links to a page showing everything I use!

  • Justine
    July 21 2014

    I’ve gotta go for A…I love the octopus photo. But photo B is stunning. Tough choice! Sorry to hear that your package was lost in the mail. What a pain. I hope some good luck comes your way soon! Enjoy Brussels 🙂
    Justine recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Thanks Justine. Heading to the post office first thing tomorrow to see if anything can be done. Sadly it was closed today for a national holiday.

  • A) is my favorite B) sounds like a terrible-no-good-very-bad-day! and C) you’re right: Malta looks incredibly photogenic! Hope next week is better!
    Emily from Let’s Roam Wild recently posted..

  • Tyrhone
    July 21 2014

    I like Gozo’s Window, but mainly because it is called Gozos Window :). I am sure Belgium will turn around for you, especially as when things start off bad they always have a much better chance of getting better
    Tyrhone recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Ha, it can seriously only go up from here…. or so I hope.

  • Leah
    July 21 2014

    I’m sorry you had such a rough start to Belgium!! If your costume was anything like your Burning Man attire, I’m sure you were devastated. I’m sure things will turn around!

    I love photo E, the pretty green door and my dream Honda.

    xxxx
    Leah recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      There were multiple costumes, three days worth 🙁 I am heartbroken, though still holding out some hope I can magically make it appear by showing up at the post office and begging tomorrow, mostly because I can’t make my brain accept yet that it’s gone. Ugh, to think of all the stuff I’ve lost if it disappears….

  • Joy @MyTravelingJoys
    July 21 2014

    I love fishing markets and boats, so I’d choose those photos! I’m sure the fresh seafood and produce were amazing too!
    Joy @MyTravelingJoys recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      I don’t eat seafood, but it is definitely a specialty in Malta 🙂 I prefer to see it underwater!

  • A and B are both great!
    Urgh we were in Malta some years ago, but didn’t know about Gozo’s Azure Window. It looks beautiful. Now I want to go back to check it out… 🙂
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  • Dad
    July 21 2014

    B is the best. Sorry about your other troubles :-((

    What is a Tomorrowland package?

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      It was a box I sent myself with all my costumes, camping supplies, etc. for the festival. Lots of time and money gone to waste if it doesn’t show. 🙁

  • Rekha Devarapalli
    July 21 2014

    Love the blue in B!
    Rekha Devarapalli recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Thanks Rekha! The colors in Malta were amazing!

  • Diane
    July 21 2014

    Gotta go with A although they’re all great. Love the colors! Love visiting all these places through your blog
    Diane recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      Thanks Diane, that’s such a compliment! I feel like I get to go twice — once when I’m there, and once when I’m sharing with you guys.

  • Scuba Dennis
    July 21 2014

    As a diver I have to pick nr 2 :).
    Hoping you will write an article about the diving in Malta?

  • Kailey
    July 21 2014

    Omgosh do I have to choose just one? Photo A is definitely my favorite! The colors are just stunning.

    I hope things get better for you in Belgium! x
    Kailey recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 21 2014

      I love making it hard to chose 🙂 Thanks Kailey! x

  • Nathalie
    July 21 2014

    Oh well, as said, I’m sure you will have fun. Enjoy the FEVER 🙂 I just commented cause to me, going to Burning Man (like you have) and to Tomorrowland are the complete antipodes that I wouldn’t have expected to see united in one person. The values behind each just don’t fit with each other.

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      That is true, they are definite opposites! I like to keep it fresh and you know what they say, variety is the spice of life 🙂 In 2015 I’m hoping to make it to Burning Man in Black Rock City, Country Thunder in Indiana, and Envision in Costa Rica… that should be an even more interesting mix!

  • Maddy
    July 21 2014

    I vote A or E! I love the colors of the fishing village (, octopus!) and anything with a cute red scooter gets my vote. Man, I’m so American – easily swayed by adorable photo ops! 😉

    Hope your Brussels trip/experience gets better, that all sounds exhausting! I’m sure you’ll have some fantastic moment that makes it all worth it – that’s how the universe works sometimes!
    Maddy recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      I hope so! Right now I am in such a deep funk, I am getting worried I won’t snap out of. Going for a long jog tonight to try to sweat it out…

  • becky hutner
    July 21 2014

    ‘E’ bc it so quintessential Mediterranean. I could definitely do with a dive off that rock about now & it sounds like you could too…

    You poor thing! I am so sorry about your Belgium fiasco. As a festival gal myself, I can only imagine the pain of losing your gear, UGH. I really hope the postal service gets it together on this one. And if not, I’m sure your fellow partygoers will band together to keep you sheltered and clothed. Good luck x
    becky hutner recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      Thanks Becky. After one of the most frustrating afternoons of my life finding out the box is sitting in customs and there is nothing I can do short of holding the place up (JOKE CUSTOMS PEOPLE, JOKE) to get it back, I am in the absolute foulest of moods. Giving myself the night to mourn by beautiful costumes and perfectly assembled gear and then going to try to snap out of it tomorrow.

  • I love A! Can’t wait to read your posts about Malta!
    Karisa @ Flirting With the Globe recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      Thanks Karisa. They will be coming up soon 🙂

  • Erika
    July 21 2014

    I’m going to vote for photo B even though they’re all amazing! Definitely makes me want to go to Malta!!
    Erika recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      Thanks Erika! B reminds me of my favorite day of the trip, so it has a special place in my heart!

  • Josh
    July 21 2014

    I’m going to have to go with A because those colors on that boat really pop, and the octopus are amazing. Can’t wait to hear more about Malta. Hopefully some of the troubles your facing get cleared up now since thats three problems you should be good for a while right.
    Josh recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      I sure hope so. I’ve definitely repeated the “bad things come in threes” mantra a few times now….

  • Meihoukaiis Kensey
    July 21 2014

    Simply stunning- I loved Malta!! Did you make it to the blue lagoon?
    Meihoukaiis Kensey recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      I did, but I have to admit I wasn’t overly impressed. That might have to do with the crowds, or perhaps the human turd that floated past while I was there 🙂

  • Miquel
    July 21 2014

    I had a rough stay in a Boston hostel last night that had me feeling doubtful about my upcoming trip to Iceland. I leave tonight! That being said, I admire your persevering positivity! I’m sure you will have an amazing time at the festival with or without your stuff! I’ve seen some pretty awesome videos of tomorowland. Photo A was without a doubt my favorite this week 🙂
    Miquel recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      Thanks Miquel, I hope so! Just need to shake this bad mood. Hope your trip is off to an amazing start x

  • Steve
    July 21 2014

    Ah Meihoukai, yet another that is calling me to come and visit. I’m choosing D because I love photos of the sun setting.

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      Me too… and according to Air Malta magazine, that is the number one spot with which to watch it in all of Malta!

  • Fiona
    July 21 2014

    Ah sounds like a horror start, but on the positive side, things can only get better. Enjoy Tomorrowland.

    I have to go for C, love the contrast of under the sea and looking out of the sea!

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      Thanks Fiona! I thought that was such an amazing thing to see underwater. I’d been seeing the topside version on postcards and promos for ages… it was such a cool angle to observe from.

  • Breanna
    July 21 2014

    Photo e. I hope things turns around for you! I’m looking forward to a glimpse of Europe as I may be there next year

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      That sounds like fun! Hope I can give you some good ideas x

  • Ohhhhhh B!! Awesome! I can’t wait to hear more about the diving there.
    Rika | Cubicle Throwdown recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      So much coming your way! I was surprised how much I enjoyed the diving. Probably some of it was Anders rubbing off on me — he said he’s never been so enthusiastic about the diving anywhere he’s worked!

  • Ron
    July 21 2014

    Got to go with B. I am a huge seafood lover, but hate to see the dead octopus. Such intelligent creatures killed for a few chewy bites.

    Sorry your stuff has gone missing. I hope it was insured.

    I have no experience with European festivals, but am not a huge fan of big concerts as seeing my favorite bands with 100,000 of my closest friends is not my idea of a great concert.

    In my youth however I saw my share of big names in big venues, and there is definitely something enjoyable about a huge festival. Hope you have a great time!

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      I actually think I agree with you. While they are a fascinating image I was saddened by seeing them and so many other of my favorite underwater finds dead on the tables. One of the reasons I don’t personally eat seafood — just couldn’t enjoy it.

      My stuff is stuck in customs. I hope I will get it back someday but for now I am going to have to replace everything for the festival and of course the tons of money I spent shipping it was a waste. Alas.

  • Jade
    July 21 2014

    Oh wow the colours of photo E are so gorgeous! I’ve been hearing so much about Malta recently- I think the universe is telling me to get there…

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      Ha yea the travel bloggers are infiltrating. When I booked the trip barely anyone I knew had gone or written about it, I thought I’d scoop Malta! Now it’s everywhere 🙂

  • Oh no Meihoukai, hope it turns around for you and you have some good luck soon. I love A – primarily because of the colours 🙂
    Katie @ The World on my Necklace recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      Thanks Katie — I could use some good luck right now!

  • Charlotte
    July 21 2014

    So sorry to hear about your rocky start in BE… Hopefully it will turn around and Tomorrowland will definitely be AMAZING! no doubt about it! Anyway if you need some help\tips for Belgium just ask away… it’s my home after all. As for the picture of the week… too hard to chose! They all look amazing…
    Charlotte recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 22 2014

      Thanks Charlotte! I guess the only tip I really need is how to break into the customs office 🙂 If only!

  • Kelly
    July 29 2014

    Great photos Meihoukai! They are all so beautiful, it’s hard to choose! 😛 x
    Kelly recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 30 2014

      That’s what I love to hear, Kelly 🙂 Thanks!

  • Kristen Noelle
    July 29 2014

    Yikes, doesn’t sound like a pleasant start at all. I’m so happy it turned around for you. At least you had this beautiful scenery to wake up to.
    With that said…B & E!
    Kristen Noelle recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      July 30 2014

      Yeah, it was a really rough start! I’m sure I’ll share the full story eventually, but right now I need to cool off from the whole thing a bit 🙂