Valletta
The joy of independent stores: trawl the streets for these unique discoveries in Valletta
Must-visit boutiques!

Nicole Parnis

Valletta is Malta's capital, and home to some of the best shops on the island. From high street favourites to high-end brands, there's definitely something for everyone. Here's a hand-picked selection of all the quirky and original independent boutiques that are not to be missed! 

Rio Bazaar - St Zachary Street

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More of a museum of curiosities, Rio Bazaar is a sort of accidental vintage shop, in the sense that you’ll find stock from the '70s mixed in with newer wares. You might come across a vintage bangle or beaded necklace that catches your eye, but, if not, it’s still nice to visit such a time capsule!

Wembley Store - Republic Street 

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Wembley Store is a Valletta institution! Well known for its forest-green corner shop frontage, this mini-market, established in 1924, is the perfect place to stock up on all the Twistees, galletti, bigilla and gbejna to take back home from your travels.

Mint Sparrow - St John's Street

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Mint Sparrow is a charming little boutique which will transport you to the pastel-fronted shops of Paris. Stocking a selection of pretty tea dresses, vintage earrings and handmade jewelry, you’re bound to find something that will remind you of Valletta every time you wear it!

D'Amato Records - St John's Street

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A hipster's dream! Thought to be the world's oldest surviving record store, music lovers of all ages shouldn't need much convincing to visit this one-of-a-kind establishment. Stocking vinyl records from past and present, D'Amato, thought to be established in 1885, (yep, you read that right!) is as known for its stock as it is for its Instagram opportunities. It's seriously vintage.

Tal-Hwawar - St John's Street

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Tal-Hwawar is an old traditional shop dedicated to every herb and spice you can imagine. Maltese people flock here to get their Christmas cake dried fruit and cinnamon from the old-fashioned glass jars. Stock up on chamomile and mint to make tea infusions or let the friendly owner Johann mix you up one of his secret recipe spice mixes.

Kir Royal - St Paul's Street

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Kir Royal is a menswear and accessories shop with a difference. Stock is hand-picked for the discerning gentleman who knows how to have fun with fashion. Choose from colourful bow ties, paisley shirts and original handcrafted cufflinks which you can wear with pride and flair. Suits you, Sir!

Charles & Ron - Republic Street 

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Charles & Ron is Malta’s leading fashion house, and their flagship store is located in Valletta, of course! Known for their sumptuous prints of baroque palazzos and luxe, Malta-inspired accessories, you can treat yourself to one of their signature scarves or iconic national-animal print handbags.

Various Jewellery Shops - St Lucy Street

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Maltese filigree is famous the world-over, and handmade silver filigree is what we, Maltese, specialize in. St Lucy street is full of little jewellery shops, so much so that it’s nicknamed it-triq ta’ d-deheb, translated to the street of gold! Take your time browsing each shop window and you might find a filigree Maltese cross that takes your fancy. Layered necklaces and pendants are so in right now!

Victor Galea Haberdashery - St John's Street 

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Stocked to the rafters with all the trimming, beading and appliqué embroidered patches your heart desires, this well-established shop has been catering for dressmakers for decades. The Maltese take carnival celebrations very seriously, so you’ll find all sorts of wacky colours and tassely-bits here! A must-visit for every fashionista.

Meli Bookshop - St Lucy Street

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A small old bookshop containing all sorts of the Malta-based publications - from Maltese cook-books to beautiful hardback coffee table books. Get immersed in the pages of Malta’s vibrant history, its classical fine art by the Italian master Caravaggio, or read up on Valletta’s past when it was the stomping ground for everyone from the Knights of Malta to the US Marines during Wartime.

Babancu - St Lucy Street

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Babancu is a concept store stocking beautiful things. Everything in Babancu is specifically chosen for it’s quality, from bespoke chocolate to aged distilled rum to luxury scents and designer accessories. Look out for scarves by one of Malta’s leading fashion and print designers, Sef Farrugia. Her stylish Maltese tile print silk squares are bound to make you think of Valletta long after your visit!

18th March 2019


Nicole Parnis
Written by
Nicole Parnis
Nicole Parnis is a writer and lifestyle blogger with a passion for music and a penchant for anything retro. She loves nothing more than rummaging for new vinyl records on a Sunday with her chihuahua Frankie.

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