“Notte Bianca” comes from Italian and means White Night. Lately, it’s become synonymous with an initiative of many countries around the world. For one night, a city literally comes to life at night in an explosion of activities till the early hours.
The first “Notte Bianca” in Malta took place in 2006 in Valletta, and is one of the events of the year. In a capital city that, unlike others, tends to go quiet at night – Notte Bianca is the catalyst for all-night activities around the fortified city. Shops, churches and museums remain open till late. And every corner teems with music, opera, poetry readings, exhibitions, dance, street theatre and more. This year, the programme extends to the Valletta Waterfront, and also introduces Corto Maltese to the Maltese audience.
The extensive programme of events is downloadable from the dedicated website. What’s great fun about Notte Bianca is that the compact nature of Valletta means that you can catch a lot of what’s going on if you’re prepared to keep walking. Bring comfortable shoes and you can go from, say, an accordion band to a fashion show in Castille Place to the Rifffs in Freedom Square via an art exhibition at the National Museum of Fine Arts. Or take the kids to Hastings Garden for puppet theatre and animation and then head off to the Old Opera House for medieval re-enactments. And whenever you need to recharge your batteries, there are watering holes and food to be found in every street corner.
Notte Bianca is an opportunity to see Valletta like we rarely see it at night: vibrant, electric and with the doors of its cafes, restaurants, museums, palaces and courtyards open to kids of all ages.