Family fun in the Maltese Islands—our group of nine just returned from a weeklong Spring break trip to Malta organized by Damon. The trip included grandparents, children and grandchildren ages 16 to 10. The trip was exceptionally well organized due to the time Damon spent prior to the trip determining what our interests were and how to maximize time spent making memories with our grandchildren. The itinerary was heavy in outdoor activities and we spent minimal time indoors to keep the grandkids engaged. Our activities included an all-morning quad biking experience on Gozo, a multi-course picnic lunch with wine on a secluded bay, followed by bocci ball with local players. The next day we toured the ruins of Hagar Qim and Mnajdra temples and then spent an amazing afternoon with the local falconer who brought an owl, Harris hawk and Maltese falcon to share with the entire group. His enthusiasm was contagious and for a large portion of our group, this event was the highlight of the trip. The next day we took a private tour of underground Valletta, and that afternoon we took a private dghajsa boat ride across the Valletta harbor for more exploration. The next day we started by visiting a baker and his wife where we made a local pastry called pastizzi, spent time with a local artisan who made musical instruments, visited a honey farm and ended the day with a visit to a sheep farm where we sampled some delicious cheeses. The last night of the trip we had Chef Carl come to our lodging and prepare a meal with the four grandkids. I’m not sure if Carl or the grandkids had more fun. The entire itinerary was wonderful, but two things made this trip exceptional: the lodging and our driver. We stayed at a beautiful villa in Gozo that was very well appointed and included a heated indoor swimming pool! You can imagine how excited the grandkids were when they walked in the front door and saw an indoor pool. Our lodging in Valletta was equally impressive but in a different way. It was a castle-like structure built in the late 1500s that had been updated to include all the amenities of the current day. There was an outdoor pool, but since it was not heated it saw very limited use. Our driver throughout our adventure was Super Mario. He was absolutely delightful! Always on time, always helpful, and always attentive to everyone’s needs, which were often a challenge. The entire experience was exceptional. If you ever think about going to Malta, contact Damon…he’ll craft an amazing trip for you.
The nine-day itinerary Jason created for us to Malta and Sardinia in March was crammed with memorable experiences: entrance to the 4000 BC Hypogeum underground burial complex (tickets difficult to come by); a fascinating visit with a sixth-generation gilder; the tastiest private tour of a food market I’ve ever been on; a walk in the Sardinian countryside to see the island’s wild four-foot-tall horses; and—my favorite—a fabulous multi-course lunch set up just for us on an isolated cliff in Gozo above the crashing waves. Jason’s ground teams were as interesting as the sights and scenery—our Malta guide, Martin, is a practicing Knight of Malta whose title goes back generations, as well as a professional photographer and former coach of Australia’s Olympic bobsled team (go figure); our driver there, Mario, is a former comptroller and auditor in addition to being an all-around great guy; guide Paola got her start translating for Tony Ryan when he was setting up his Ryanair empire in Sardinia; Marcello, our driver in Sardinia, had recently returned from the Polish border as a volunteer transporting Ukrainian orphans by bus to safety. And if you ever want to feel like Bill Gates, now is your moment: Thanks to the VIP service Jason arranges at the airport, you wait in a private lounge before being escorted past the frenzied crowds to a town car on the tarmac that drives you to your plane, all before boarding officially begins.
My girlfriend and I travelled to Malta for eight days from after Christmas 2022 through the New Year. Quite simply the trip was extraordinary, and we cannot recommend Malta, and Damon and his team, more highly. Malta is an extraordinary place, with magnificent history, art, culture, food, scenery and people. To start with, Damon spent a significant amount of time prior to the trip working iteratively with us to plan the itinerary based on various ideas he proposed and what we wanted to do. He really distinguished himself with his ability to figure out from our conversations exactly the kind of experiences and touring we wanted to do. He gave equal time, thought and care to the choice of lodging and restaurants. Our guide executed the plan wonderfully, making it even better as we got to know one another. Her knowledge of the history and culture of Malta gave us a real window into the lives of the Maltese people past and present. We had a number of truly extraordinary experiences, such as making a local delicacy and having lunch at an olive grove, a private tour of St. John’s Cathedral including viewing the stunning Caravaggio by ourselves, meeting a restorer of 18th-century organs and 16th-century art and seeing their work, dinner with some of the current Knights of Malta, touring a private home in the magical walled city of Mdina and an ATV tour followed by a private seaside picnic in Gozo. The highlight of the trip for me was exploring World War II in Malta, including a private visit with a remarkable local collector of World War II artifacts, a private tour of the Lascaris War Rooms and seeing the tunnels and chambers in which the Maltese sheltered during the Axis bombings. Our guide also spent time showing us and providing us with valuable perspective on other Maltese sights such as the Hypogeum and megalithic temples, which are older than Stonehenge and the Pyramids. The island itself was gorgeous, with dramatic views, romantic vistas and stunning architecture. We were particularly glad to be there during the bustling holiday season where many Maltese were celebrating and even saw the local Eurovision winner perform on New Year’s Eve.
Our recent trip to Malta in February 2023 exceeded our expectations. Even though the trip was planned at the last minute, every detail was handled perfectly. Jason and his team did a great job of putting together a great itinerary, recommending a fabulous hotel, and providing excellent restaurant recommendations (right down to handling all the reservations). Our guide, Martin, and driver, Mario, were two of the most delightful and knowledgeable individuals. They went above and beyond to ensure that our time in Malta was memorable. We would not hesitate to recommend Jason and his team to anyone thinking of visiting this beautiful country.
We had the most amazing time in Malta! We had never been to this island nation and did not have enough time to do research on our own, so we reached out to Jason Allan, a travel expert for Malta. He planned an amazing weeklong itinerary for us with just 2 months’ notice. I appreciated the quick back and forth during the planning stage via e-mail and WhatsApp. He presented us with lots of different activities, hotel and restaurant options. After making final decisions, the itinerary was given in great detail.
Everything was seamless from the minute we landed in Valletta. We loved our VIP meet and greet! So wonderful to have someone escort you through the airport and pick up your baggage while you sit in the VIP lounge. This was also helpful on the return, as the VIP escort walks you through check-in and fast-lane security. The Iniala Harbour was a perfect luxury boutique hotel with the most incredible view of the Grand Harbor. We also appreciated having the same driver for the week for all the outings around the island.
Some of the highlights of the trip: 1) Katherine, our guide for the Valletta food and culture tour. She was wonderful, friendly and extremely knowledgeable. She also led us on our visit to the Hypogeum, a subterranean temple thought to be 5000+ years old. 2) Gozo island exploration on ATV. This was something new for us, to explore an entire island on ATVs. We loved it! The guide took great care in terms of safety, having helmets and taking less busy roads, etc. We saw incredible sites, salt pans, small bays for a quick swim, and a secret spot for an incredible view of Ramla Bay. It was a great way to spend the day. 3) A day on a beautiful yacht with a wonderful captain. 4) Visiting the enchanting medieval city of Mdina during sunset, incredible! 5) Visit with local sheep farmers, who somehow cultivated acres of olive trees on arid landscape, sampling the fruits of their labor with olive oil tasting and a picnic lunch of local Maltese foods. 6) Private falconry experience with Lawrence. We had a great time as he explained the history of his owls and falcons. Then we were able to handle each one and watching them fly! 7) Enjoying our final day relaxing at the Beefbar beach club, with a stunning view of the Mediterranean Sea.
It has been a couple of months since we left Malta. We miss our incredible view of the Grand Harbor from our hotel room, the delicious food and the warm hospitality of everyone we came across.
My wife and I just returned from a month long holiday – traveling to Portugal, Sicily and Malta in Sept 2022. We worked with Jason to plan the Malta portion for the last week of our trip Sept 22-29 and he did an outstanding job – from the moment of our arrival being greeted at the plane by a private car and driver to the WOW Moment he organized for us and several other special surprises…it was orchestrated to perfection.
We knew we were in good hands from that first moment, and it continued for our entire stay. Given we had already been touring for about 3 weeks, Jason was right to have us start in Gozo…where it is a bit slower and not as busy. It was a long day though – flight to Malta, then a drive to the ferry, ferry over to Gozo and then another drive to the hotel. However, at every stop there was someone waiting for us and helping us with our bags. The hotel (Cesca Lodge) was a beautifully converted ancient stone building. We were tempted not to go out to dinner, but we pushed ourselves to go out to where Jason had booked us and are we glad we did!! The owner was amazing…treated us like old friends, and the food was delicious too! It was such a fun night. The next day we had an amazing tour with our private guide of Gozo which included some stunning views of the turquoise water from a hidden cave. Later that evening we had our WOW Moment, which was truly spectacular!! We had an incredibly beautiful picnic on the water with a solo musician playing guitar…some songs which Jason had personally requested that he knew we would like! We watched the sunset while drinking champagne, sitting on blankets and pillows, surrounded by twinkle lights.
The next day we took a private boat transfer to Malta. Along the way we passed Comino Island and the gorgeous waters of the blue lagoon. Jason arranged a picnic basket of food for us on the boat which was such a thoughtful touch…although the water was too rough for us to eat, once we got to the hotel we were certainly grateful to have some food. Our driver had been waiting for us…everything was organized perfectly. The hotel Jason recommended (Iniala) was beautiful and right on the Grand Harbour – an amazing location with a fabulous view. That afternoon we went exploring on our own and had dinner on an incredible rooftop terrace where an opera soloist was singing. Once again, the owner treated us like royalty, as we were guests of Jason’s.
The next day we were met again by our guide and driver, who showed us the most ancient ruins of Malta as well as an old fishing village that had a market going on. Our guide was extremely knowledgeable, we asked him to join us for lunch which he did. After that we were on our own…it was a perfect balance of touring with a guide and then exploring Valleta by ourselves – which is safe and very easy to do.
The next day we had no plans which was great…we explored on our own and found our own restaurants, although Jason had provided us with tons of choices should we have needed help or wanted advice on where to go.
After a great free day, we were back to touring with our same excellent guide and very personable and helpful driver. We walked around the main city of Valletta and had a surprise visit with a 6th-generation clock maker/gilder. That was an amazing opportunity that Jason arranged for us. After that we made it to hear the famous cannon go off at noon…another highlight. We then took a boat across to the 3 cities and walked around there. Everything was organized to a tee and we never waited more than a minute for a boat or the car…it was seamless.
What we also greatly appreciated beyond the precisely organized days was that Jason took the time to check in numerous times during our time in Malta. He really cared about us and our experience…and he took the time to make sure that all was well. It was that and the other personal touches that really took our experience using Jason as our agent to the next level.
On our last day we were booked with the “father of all tour guides” and it was a fabulous way to end our trip. He took us on an amazing tour with numerous special surprises, including being able to visit a noblewoman’s private home with an incredible art and antique collection. She showed us around and was very clear that she does not do that for just anyone, but she is friends with Jason (and his brother) and so she was willing to open her home to us. It was a true highlight of our monthlong vacation. In addition, we gained access to the private summer home of the President of Malta…and we very much appreciated that Jason was able to arrange this opportunity for us.
We absolutely loved our time in Malta and are very grateful for the amazing trip that Jason organized for us. We really treasured our time there. Most of our friends have never been to Malta and many have never even heard of it…but after traveling there we are telling all of our friends that they must go and they must talk to Jason!!
PANDEMIC TRAVEL We (Marsha Gold and two of my friends) wanted to see Malta on our way to Crete and weren’t sure how long to stay or how to arrange things. I and a different friend had previously had good luck with advisors recommended by Wendy Perrin for Southeast Asia and for Africa so we looked to her recommendations again. Our experience with Damon and Jason on our week long trip to Malta the end of April 2022 was everything we hoped. They helped us figure out that we could stay 5 nights in an apartment in Valetta to see Malta and 3 in Gozo in a B and B and through a combination of drivers/guides and time on our own see the diversity of the country. They also were able to add some exclusive visits not generally available to the general tourist and we enjoyed them alot. My friends were more interested in Malta than me originally but it was a highlight of our trip and I loved the Gozo stay. Wouldn’t change anything. With apartments or a b and b and a private car/driver we felt quite safe in terms of covid. But hotels would be ok. In Malta they were careful and folks were masked and we were offseason so no few crowds. They also arranged for one of us who was returning to the US to get the required Covid test easily and on time.
PANDEMIC TRAVEL We completed a very enjoyable trip to Malta in late March 2022. We had originally conceived of a short trip to Malta being part of a cruise. But we then changed our minds and decided to add Malta to our trip to the UK. Malta can be easily accessed from the UK via Air Malta (the carrier we used) or British Airways or Ryanair.
We worked exclusively with Jason to set up the trip having identified his company through The WOW List. It turned out that we had a lot in common having both grown up in southern Ontario. We had an initial call to set some of the parameters e.g. number of nights (in the end 6 nights), hotel in Malta (he proposed and we agreed on Domus Zamitello – superb location in the center of Malta from where you can walk to dinner and local attractions), whether Sicily should be included (there is a ferry which makes daily trips but we opted not to add this and instead focus on just Malta) and then Jason developed a proposed trip. His initial proposal exceeded my budget and so we worked together to refine his proposal. The final itinerary included a combination of, on various days, a guide, a car, a guide and a car and self-guiding. On the days we had a guide we picked the experiences we wanted from Jason’s vast catalogue of options. We were very satisfied with all of our choices but one – what ended up as a public tour of the Manoel Theatre as they would not permit our guide to host our visit. We met many local residents and had ample opportunity to get to know them and learn about their life in Malta. For example, at our farm lunch, we met our host for the day, the farmer and his wife and her helper as well as a local maker of musical instruments and music all in a country-like setting. We sampled tasty local red and white wines and tapas. We have no doubt that we would not have had these sorts of experiences had we not worked with Jason. We had several excellent meals in and around Valetta.
Covid concerns were greatly reduced by March as we were past the Omicron peak. But we were happy that we postponed our trip from February as originally scheduled. We did not have any Covid issues at any time during our trip.
Malta is very safe to visit. We had hoped for warmer weather but temperatures were moderate and it was after all early spring. There was very little cruise traffic in Valetta which also contributed to the “local” experience. We had no issues during our trip which necessitated contacting Jason but were we confident that he / his team would be there if we needed them.
Robert was our local guide and Mario was our local driver and Mario also handled our airport transfers. Both were very experienced in taking care of travelers like us. We were well taken care of and enjoyed engaging with them throughout.
PANDEMIC TRAVEL Jason was spectacular. Highlights were:
Meeting Fra John and Loizzetta, visiting the Caravaggio collection
Meeting the gilder
Trip to Gozo
Dinner reservations at great places
Jason came and met us with a bottle of champagne our last night in Malta
Everything ran perfectly with COVID testing.
Jason and Damon made our trip extraordinary!!!! Every tour and recommendation was beyond our expectations… we had a fabulous day cooking with Chef George Borg in Gozo, private palace tours with warm and welcoming royalty, delicious meals and knowledge, personable guides!
Our WOW Moment was a private tour of St Johns Cathedral…… breathtaking decor and up close viewing of the Caravaggios! Every detail was perfect and we were treated like VIPs. I can not recommend them highly enough!! Delightful to deal with!! Can’t wait to return!
From the moment our flight landed my husband and I felt like Royalty. Jason had a car waiting for us on the runway! Every detail was well planned. Both our driver and our guide were warm and wonderful. Our experiences were extraordinary. Our private access to sights was incredible. Despite the hoards arriving by cruises, we never experienced a crowd. One day, it suddenly started to rain, within minutes Damon was there with umbrellas for all of us. Jason reached out constantly during our trip. I can honestly say I have never worked with anyone so thorough or thoughtful. He left nothing to chance. He is beyond WOW. He is perfection.
Original hotel, Su 29, was ridiculously poor, arranged a transfer seamlessly
Robert the guide was great and the driver, Mark was wonderful
Damion met us to review any issues and the itinerary and contacts were extraordinary
Couldn’t ask for a better experience
Highly recommended from frequent travelers
There was nothing we asked for that they didn’t make happen. No request was impossible and they took care of us like family
Every detail was wonderful
Our two days in Malta arranged by Jason Allan were exceptionally thoughtfully planned and executed. We experienced off-the-beaten-path opportunities, with a private visit and fascinating interactive experience with the island’s falconer, a private tour and visit with Knight Resident Fra. John at Upper Fort St. Angelo, and a private tour of the Museum of Archaeology with the Curator.
Our guide, Dane, was terrific: knowledgeable, adaptable, easy going.
Definitely recommend using this tour company.
We spent 3 days in Malta on a tour organized by Jason and Damon Camilleri-Allan. The itinerary was very full and offered real insight into the country and its history. We really enjoyed our experience in the countryside visiting a farm and walking amongst pomegranate trees ( amazing) and then enjoying an authentic farm-to-table lunch. We had a great walking tour of Valletta and had a very special tour of a private Palazzo with the descendants of the original family which was outstanding. Athe restaurant recommendations were great and the boutique hotel was equally fine. The guide and driver were fabulous. Highly recommend.
Jason and Damon organized for us a 4 day trip to Malta in November when it is one of the warmer places in Europe. Jason listened carefully to our requests (wine tasting, some hiking, boutique hotel in the center of Valetta, food experiences and one on one encounters) and incorporated them all and provided us with a great and flexible guide and driver. Some of the special experiences were a private palazzo visit with a marchioness, a private wine tasting at the best vineyard on Gozo, a private visit to sample some of the bounties of the Maltese countryside, a private tour of the National Library, where amongst other things we saw the original certificate that President Roosevelt signed and sent to the Maltese people in 1943 to honor their valor in WWII, a private visit with the knight resident of Fort St Angelo and the head of the Knights of St John in Malta, a private tour of the cathedral and the Caravaggios after all the tourists had left and tickets to the hypogeum which only allows 10 visitors an hour. Finally, he recommended and booked great restaurants within walking distance of our hotel. Malta is a great place for a visit while one is in Europe and Jason and Damon are the ones to organize it!
Jason and Damon were fantastic from our initial conversation until the tour ended. Jason and Damon were incredibly responsive to all concerns and planned several exclusive events for us which were memorable. They included a private visit with The Knight of Malta, a private visit with a Marquis whose house had an incredible history, a day with a private chef that was truly memorable. They were instantly available to reorganize days if the weather hindered our plans and made sure that we would get to do everything we planned. The chef told us that he did this day for us because of Damon– otherwise, he was totally busy. Our guide and driver for the entire tour were so knowledgeable about history — and were wonderful companions for the entire tour. I would absolutely recommend them to anyone planning a trip to Malta.
My husband and I spent 5 days in Malta with another couple in September, 2018, on a trip organized by Jason and Damon. There is a lot to see in Malta, covering 1000s of years of history. Jason did an excellent job of listening to our interests over several conversations prior to the trip. We were very happy that we had an organized schedule. Although Malta is small, roads are also small and travel is slow. To see as much as we did, you need a well planned, well executed schedule. Each day in Malta, we had private visits, but our favorites were the private after-hours visit to St. Johns Cathedral, the Ta Frenc Shopping, Cooking & Lunch on Gozo, the Palazzo Falzon in Mdina with Curator Caroline & also in Mdina, a tour by Contessa Manduca of her private home, and Hagar Qim, a megalithic temple complex older than Stonehenge. Unbelievably, there were still several “experiences” that couldn’t be arranged due to our timing. Well have to go back! If we go back, however, we’ll be staying in Mdina which is far more charming and less crowded than Valletta.