Introduction to Malta with Dr. Dane Munro

Introduction to Malta with Dr. Dane Munro


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Malta packs a large range into its small archipelago. From sparkling waters to prehistoric temples and intricate churches, there’s a remarkable variety. This presentation will show participants a wide array of aspects concerning the Maltese archipelago, its Mediterranean world view, and the human condition in a sun-soaked and culture-rich environment.

Together, we will touch upon the landscape, food, nature, built-up environment, religion, 'Malteseness' and cultural-historical aspects relevant for understanding a small island surrounded by big neighbors, illustrated by many photographs, as colorful as the Mediterranean itself. We’ll virtually visit locations such as Gozo, Valletta, and Mdina as we admire beautiful honey-colored buildings and soak up their history. We’ll hear tales of the centuries-old tradition of the Knights of Malta and we’ll escape to secret coves nestled in the fossil-studded cliffs.

Led by a historian and expert tour guide, Dr. Dane Munro, this interactive seminar will take participants on a journey to a tiny but mighty Mediterranean island. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants, this presentation will help travelers to decide on their itinerary, 'to do' lists, and where to spend moments of careless leisure to enjoy the moment of being in Malta.

Dane Munro is a cultural anthropologist of pilgrimage, a historian specialised in the Order of Malta, and a Neo-Latinist specialised in the sepulchral art of the Knights of the Order of Malta. Besides being a university lecturer and researcher, he has spent over 25 years as a tour guide in Malta, making it a habit of explaining difficult matters in simple language. He aims to make culture available to everyone.

This conversation is suitable for all ages

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

Customer Reviews

Based on 9 reviews
22%
(2)
22%
(2)
33%
(3)
11%
(1)
11%
(1)
c
c.W.
Wonderful!

My favorite Context Conversation so far. Dr. Munro did an excellent job. He is extremely knowledgeable, obviously loves Malta, and chose lots of great photos to give an overview of various areas of Malta and the little neighboring island of Gozo. It was very interesting to learn more about the Order of St. John, an integral part of Maltese history, and who helped the Maltese people. repel invaders and have built hospitals. I appreciated the personal touch he added with a photo of himself being inducted into the Order of St. John. I learned so much, and I am now very excited to plan a trip to Malta. Thank you for this clearly understandable, varied, and enthusiastic presentation.

B
B.
Need more history and context

The slides and stories were great and interesting to know about the Knights of St. John and see the sights on the 2 main islands. However, I think this speaker needed to give a short history of Malta itself: for example, which countries colonized it and when, so that the attendees would have some context to put all the other detailed info he was presenting.

P
P.
informative commentary, well illustrated, but missing some important sites

Dr. Munro gave an overview of many sites in Malta, particularly focussing on those related to his speciality, the Order of Malta. I was disappointed to see no mention of the gardens, protected from the wind, which have been made inside the old limestone quarries. Also very fleetingly mentioned were the megalithic temple complexes such as Hagar Qim, one of the most ancient religious sites on earth.

C
C.H.

Guest did not leave comment

M
M.Z.
Not what I had hoped for

This was my first experience with Context; I had been referred to it by a friend who has travelled with context and speaks highly of both her travel and virtual experiences with you. Based on that, I had invited friends over to watch who are Interested in visiting Malta and hoped this would entice them. Wrong. Disappointed on several points:

1). Not the lecturer featured, and no explanation of the substitute.

2) While knowledgeable about Malta, he spent more time discussing the Knights of Malta and his association with them (commendable to be sure) than giving an actual tour of the islands. He also discussed his trip to Lourdes with the Knights, which had little relevance to Malta.

3) As a Maltese-American, I have led tours to Malta myself. He never truly discussed Mdina, other than to show the outside of a private home and NOT the co-cathedral. He never mentioned or showed photos of Victoria, Gozo, and its citadel, nor did he give background info on the Mosta Dome (3rd largest dome in Europe) or the Manoel Theatre in Valletta (2nd oldest, continuously operated in Europe) while discussing them, nor any tour or photos of the Hypogeum. More like watching someone’s home photos than an actual tour of Malta.

4) Discussing traditional foods and sweets, he chose Baked Alaska and a chocolate cake, neither of which are traditional. I could pick 10 others that are true Maltese desserts. (Almonds are basic to Maltese desserts; the others, while now popular, are imports.)

5) Never mentioned a major tourist go-to in Valletta that my groups have always enjoyed: the Casa Rocca Piccolla.

6). In a question about the traditional wooden balconies and their origin, he attributed it to the Sicilians rather than the Arabs. I’ve traveled extensively throughout the Middle East, and wooden balconies are traditional Arab architecture.

6). Overall, while clearly knowledgeable, the speaker didn’t make Malta come to life in a compelling manner. Not sure how many people would be convinced this would be a place of interest. In fact, my Irish-American husband left the talk early, rather bored by it.

Customer Reviews

Based on 9 reviews
22%
(2)
22%
(2)
33%
(3)
11%
(1)
11%
(1)
c
c.W.
Wonderful!

My favorite Context Conversation so far. Dr. Munro did an excellent job. He is extremely knowledgeable, obviously loves Malta, and chose lots of great photos to give an overview of various areas of Malta and the little neighboring island of Gozo. It was very interesting to learn more about the Order of St. John, an integral part of Maltese history, and who helped the Maltese people. repel invaders and have built hospitals. I appreciated the personal touch he added with a photo of himself being inducted into the Order of St. John. I learned so much, and I am now very excited to plan a trip to Malta. Thank you for this clearly understandable, varied, and enthusiastic presentation.

B
B.
Need more history and context

The slides and stories were great and interesting to know about the Knights of St. John and see the sights on the 2 main islands. However, I think this speaker needed to give a short history of Malta itself: for example, which countries colonized it and when, so that the attendees would have some context to put all the other detailed info he was presenting.

P
P.
informative commentary, well illustrated, but missing some important sites

Dr. Munro gave an overview of many sites in Malta, particularly focussing on those related to his speciality, the Order of Malta. I was disappointed to see no mention of the gardens, protected from the wind, which have been made inside the old limestone quarries. Also very fleetingly mentioned were the megalithic temple complexes such as Hagar Qim, one of the most ancient religious sites on earth.

C
C.H.

Guest did not leave comment

M
M.Z.
Not what I had hoped for

This was my first experience with Context; I had been referred to it by a friend who has travelled with context and speaks highly of both her travel and virtual experiences with you. Based on that, I had invited friends over to watch who are Interested in visiting Malta and hoped this would entice them. Wrong. Disappointed on several points:

1). Not the lecturer featured, and no explanation of the substitute.

2) While knowledgeable about Malta, he spent more time discussing the Knights of Malta and his association with them (commendable to be sure) than giving an actual tour of the islands. He also discussed his trip to Lourdes with the Knights, which had little relevance to Malta.

3) As a Maltese-American, I have led tours to Malta myself. He never truly discussed Mdina, other than to show the outside of a private home and NOT the co-cathedral. He never mentioned or showed photos of Victoria, Gozo, and its citadel, nor did he give background info on the Mosta Dome (3rd largest dome in Europe) or the Manoel Theatre in Valletta (2nd oldest, continuously operated in Europe) while discussing them, nor any tour or photos of the Hypogeum. More like watching someone’s home photos than an actual tour of Malta.

4) Discussing traditional foods and sweets, he chose Baked Alaska and a chocolate cake, neither of which are traditional. I could pick 10 others that are true Maltese desserts. (Almonds are basic to Maltese desserts; the others, while now popular, are imports.)

5) Never mentioned a major tourist go-to in Valletta that my groups have always enjoyed: the Casa Rocca Piccolla.

6). In a question about the traditional wooden balconies and their origin, he attributed it to the Sicilians rather than the Arabs. I’ve traveled extensively throughout the Middle East, and wooden balconies are traditional Arab architecture.

6). Overall, while clearly knowledgeable, the speaker didn’t make Malta come to life in a compelling manner. Not sure how many people would be convinced this would be a place of interest. In fact, my Irish-American husband left the talk early, rather bored by it.