Nowadays Saint Elmo`s fort is not been used according to its original function but offers some interest tourist sights. Among them is the National War museum that can be visited by every guest of Malta who is interested in war theme and wants to learn something new about the history of the country.
The museum was founded in 1975 by several enthusiasts interested in war theme. Originally the its location was the gunpowder store of Saint Elmo`s fort. Later, in 1853 this place was rearranged and the armory was organized here. During the World War II the shells for the air defense system were kept here. At the beginning of the 21st century the fort was closed for restoration and the museum also survived some modernizations: the exhibitions were rearranged and numerous new exponents were added – now the visitors can get acquainted with war equipment and weapon of different times, beginning with prehistoric ones.
Main specialization of the museum is the history of Malta during the World War I and World War II. The exhibitions of museum present numerous photographs of the war times, different war honors of these periods. For example, George`s Cross given to Malta by the British King George IV for heroism during the war actions is also exhibited here. Besides, here the tourists can see the military uniform and equipment of these times. The weapon is also presented and you can see German and Italian torpedoes, anti-tank guns, gas masks. In separate halls the visitors can get acquainted with biographies of the defendants of Malta.
Not only the exhibitions attract the tourists: probably the most interesting thing of the museum are numerous historical reconstructions of the most prominent battles in the country`s history. Besides, several times in the month “La Guardia”, the theatrical performance reconstructing the knight parade is being held. The knights are dressed according the rules of the medieval epoch; they are perfectly proficient with swords, spears and firing from guns. In the adjacent building, where the hospital previously had been located, the guests can see the documentary dedicated to Maltese history.