Malta Maritime Museum
The Maritime Museum is housed within the former Royal Naval bakery in Vittoriosa, which was constructed in the 1840s on the site of the arsenal of the navy of the Order of St John. Designed by architect William Scamp, with a façade reportedly inspired by Windsor Castle, the site was used as the main bakery for the Mediterranean Fleet, supplying naval personnel with food and drink.
The bakery was then converted into the headquarters of the Admiralty Constabulary after the Second World War, and remained in use until the British Forces left Malta in 1979. It was subsequently abandoned until its reopening as the Malta Maritime Museum in 1992.
The museum aims to illustrate Malta’s maritime history, highlighting different epochs from prehistory to the present, and now displays a collection of over 20,000 artefacts, namely models of ships, paintings, weapons, uniforms, documents and marine equipment. A noteworthy highlight in the museum’s collection is a model of a warship of the navy of the Order of St John, with this particular model dating back to the mid-18th century, probably having been used by the Order’s nautical school.
Other highlights include unique artefacts such as the largest known Roman anchor in the world, the earliest known ex-voto on the island, the largest collection of cannons on the island, the Georgian figurehead of the 110-gun ship HMS Hibernia and a 1950s functioning steam engine.