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The Battle of Malta is an amazing poker tournament but the experience goes way beyond the action on the felt. Before the battle began PokerListings and the Malta Tourism Authority sponsored a day trip for poker pros and journalists to the capital city of Valletta, just minutes away from the Portomaso Casino where BOM plays out. Battle of Malta host Maria Ho led the charge as the group explored one of the most culturally rich cities in the world. Valletta is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, brimming with amazing architecture and a long and tumultuous history of military conflict. We checked out the unbelievable St. John's Co-Cathedral, the Upper Barrakka Gardens which boast an incredible view of the harbor, and finished up by sampling the traditional Maltese snack pastizzi and of course a few local adult beverages. Check out the video for your own tour of Valletta and stay tuned for tons more video from the 2015 Battle of Malta.
Darrell Azzopardi: Welcome to Valletta. We are now officially entering into our capital. The island is a living museum. So wherever you go, it is an attraction in itself. Maria Ho: Growing up in North America we don't have a lot of historical landmarks so going out to places like this and actually stepping out of the casino is such a great way to see the city and you finally get to absorb a little more of that culture. Sad to say but I didn't make it out of the casino much last time but I love cathedrals and historical landmarks. I grew up Catholic so I feel a very strong connection every time I go into a church. Chris Costigan: This is my first time in Malta. It's a very important spot for our industry, one of the most important places. So I'm happy to be covering the Battle of Malta. Noah Vaillancourt: Normally when I travel on poker trips I don't get a chance to see the city that much and I always leave and regret it a little bit so it's nice to walk around and see the city of Valletta. It's pretty incredible. With a tournament coming up it's always nice to take like a day or two before to relax and get your mind set because you know that for the next few days you're going to be in there grinding all day. It takes a lot out of you so it's nice to have a little time to relax.