Where to Stay in Malta - Suggestions for Every Budget / Traveller

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Malta (MLA)
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Although only a small island, Malta’s different areas are very different from each other, and knowing where to stay in Malta, where to book and when you should visit can make your holiday a lot better.



While it’s easy to get around the island with the public transport system or a rental car, consider the days where you might want to stay and explore your chosen location instead. It’s important to know what each different area of Malta offers so that your visit can be tailored to your exact likes, dislikes and specific plans.

Popular Areas of Malta and Gozo

Let’s start by identifying the most crowded locations first; these are the hotspots, where tourists automatically gravitate towards and which are a little more popular than the rest for their offerings. 

While these places might be more popular, it automatically means that they cater better for tourist needs, such as more places where to eat, more hotels and accomodation choices, more tours and where visitors will be better served.


The capital city, Valletta is popular with both locals and visitors. A 500-year-old citadel on the island, Valletta’s place in Maltese history has been cemented by serving as the location where the Knights of Malta resided, and is therefore a unique place to stay if you’re interested in history. 

Traditional Maltese balconies in Valletta

You should stay there if: You’re interested in a cultural or foodie holiday. 

You should stay elsewhere if: you’re looking for more active nightlife or you struggle with mobility (there are many many stairs in Valletta and the area is not 100% accessible). 


Valletta Factsheet: 

  • A huge concentration of museums dedicated to all aspects of Maltese history, including the Toy Museum, the working historical house Casa Rocca Piccola, and the newly-opened art gallery Muza. 

  • No proper beaches, however with stunning views of the water. 

  • An overwhelming choice of cuisines and restaurants to take advantage of, with more opening every day and bringing new dining choices to the island. 

  • Good for all budgets as you can easily find accomodation and food for very cheap prices. 

  • The central hub for all of the Maltese buses, and therefore easy to get around with. 

  • Very difficult to find parking in so avoid renting a car as you will find it difficult to find a location to park in in the city. 

  • It can get crowded during the summer and the lines for some of the exhibits can become quite long. 

  • Accommodation might be scarce to come across in peak-times. 

  • Good for people who are in Malta for a limited amount of time and want to experience the most with minimal travel. 

If you'd like to get more details about Valletta - you might want to visit our full Valletta Travel Guide.

Sliema, Gzira, and Ta’ Xbiex

Sliema Seafront

Located only a few kilometres away from Valletta, Malta’s premiere shopping district is popular all year round, and might be less crowded than Valletta during peak times. 


You should stay here if: You want to be close to shopping and nightlife. 

You should stay elsewhere if: You’re a light sleeper or you’re looking for more out of your holiday.  


Sliema, Gzira, and Ta’ Xbiex Factsheet

  • Known for its shopping districts in Bisazza Street and Tigne Point. 

  • A wide variety of restaurants and different cuisines to choose from. Most restaurants also have a happy hour or other offer throughout the week. 

  • Rocky beaches available with prime sunbathing territory. 

  • Close to Manoel Island, a recently reopened historical centre. 

  • Can cater for a wide range of budgets. 

  • Accomodation is far more flexible than in other parts of the island. 

  • Easy to get to Valletta using the ferry, as well as to get to St. Julian’s and the northern part of the island. 

  • Difficult to find parking unless you budget for paying for parking; we would not recommend renting a car. 

  • Interesting blend of modern buildings and old-fashioned charm. 

  • Beautiful promenade to walk along in summer. 

  • Very notorious for traffic congestion and issues. 

  • Very little cultural centres. 

Once again, it you want to get the full information about travelling to Sliema - check out our full Sliema Travel guide.

St. Julian’s and Paceville

Malta’s nightlife and party district, St. Julian’s and Paceville always has a party going on, and is popular with a younger crowd for precisely this reason. 

Entertainment areas in Paceville

You should stay here if: You want to be right at the heart of the nightlife and want to walk everywhere. 

You should stay elsewhere if: You’re a light sleeper, have young children or are looking for a generally quieter and relaxed trip.  


St. Julian’s and Paceville Factsheet: 

  • Easy to find budget accomodation. 

  • Modern part of Malta with all the amenities. 

  • Beautiful artificial beach at St. George’s bay, although this will get crowded in the summer. 

  • Exceptional nightlife with a wide choice of bars even outside of Paceville. 

  • Easy to get to the north of the island due to frequent buses and taxi hubs who have their main location here. 

  • Very well serviced with takeaways. 

  • Wide selection of cheap food choices. 


Qawra, Bugibba, and St. Paul’s Bay

The northern nightlife option, Qawra, Bugibba and its surrounding areas are renowned for the wide choice of beaches available and cheap all-inclusive accomodation.

They are also close to several family-friendly activity centres. 

Bugibba Seafront and Beach

You should stay here if: you have young children and want to travel as a family, are looking for great value accomodation or are looking for a popular area that is well served for visitors. 

You should stay elsewhere if: you want to visit museums and don’t fancy spending much time on public transport. 


Qawra, Bugibba, and St. Paul’s Bay Factsheet: 

  • A northern-bound tourist town with multiple resorts. 

  • Beautiful, wide variety of beaches. 

  • Several budget accomodations to choose from. 

  • Busy in summer as many Maltese also have holiday apartments here. 

  • Some museums available, but not many. 

  • Many child-friendly exhibits and family-friendly locations to spend an afternoon in. 

  • Close proximity to Gozo and Comino. 

  • Few local dining establishments available here; mostly foreign food. 

  • Very few cultural experiences. 

We've discussed Qawra, Bugibba and St. Paul's Bay extensively in our travel guide here.

Quiet Areas, Towns and Villages


Characterised by low, sweeping vistas and wild nature, Mellieha is a remote location close to one of Malta’s largest beaches, and as a result can get very busy in the summer.

Mellieha Bay Beach also known locally as Ghadira Bay

More cultural than St. Paul’s Bay, Mellieha is a beautiful location to spend a few days in provided you’re not travelling elsewhere. 


You should stay there if: you’re a nature lover who wants to explore the north of Malta. 

You should stay elsewhere if: you’re interested in nightlife or cultural experiences. 


Mellieha Factsheet: 

  • Popular holiday destination in the summer. 

  • Beautiful sandy beach. 

  • Quiet and peaceful local village. 

  • Wide selection of 3-star and 4-star hotels. 

  • Budget accommodation can also be available, but as apartment rentals. 

  • Less popular with tourists than other locations in the north.

  • Easy to explore the north of the island from. 

  • Close proximity to Gozo. 

  • Many nature-focused activities such as horse-riding and scuba-diving. 

  • Good choice of dining options. 

  • Limited nightlife. 

  • Might be difficult to get around without a car. 


Malta’s smaller sister island, Gozo is a fraction of the size but has enough activities to keep you occupied during your stay, with everything from natural exploration to museums to choose from. 

Ta' Pinu - famous Church in Gozo

You should stay here if: you want a quiet holiday in natural surroundings. 

You should stay elsewhere if: you suffer from mobility issues or if you’re looking for nightlife. 


Gozo Factsheet

  • Stunning natural surroundings and many nature walks to choose from.

  • Beautiful beaches, typically less-crowded than Malta.

  • Easy to pick a time to visit the island when it’s less crowded. 

  • Usually cheaper accommodation, even for five-star stays. 

  • Good option for returning travellers. 

  • No airport on the island, so you are in for a long trip to get from the Malta International Airport to the island. 

  • Quieter than Malta at almost every time of the year (except possibly Carnival and mid-August). 

  • Many cultural events to attend, usually free. 

  • Good location for diving and snorkelling holidays. 

Check out our full Gozo Travel guide to get a better understanding of what the island has to offer.

Mdina and Rabat

For a taste of authentic village life, you can’t really go wrong with Mdina and Rabat, tiny, tucked-away villages with a lot of historic relevance to them, and a unique position in the Maltese islands. 

Rabat Malta Alleyways

You should stay here if: you are looking for a cultural holiday. 

You should stay elsewhere if: you prefer a lively area with plenty of good nightlife rather than peace and quiet


Mdina and Rabat Factsheet

  • Accommodation might be limited, so book early. 

  • Many historic sites to visit. 

  • Mostly local restaurants. 

  • Well serviced by public transport, but buses may be full. 

  • Crowded nearly year-round, particularly Mdina. 

  • Unique experience and location to visit in Malta. 

  • Quiet location. 

  • No family-friendly activities. 

  • Beautiful nature walks to go on. 

  • Difficult to find parking, so avoid renting a car. 

  • Might be difficult to find budget accomodation

Once again, if you'd like the full details about travelling to Rabat and Mdina, don't miss our travel guide for this location.



A blend of modernity and historical locations, Naxxar is a quiet village tucked away between Gharghur and Mosta, and definitely worth a visit if you’re looking for a romantic getaway or simply a small place to temporarily call home. 

The village core of Naxxar has plenty of beautiful alleys such as the one below, perfect place to lose yourself in:

Naxxar alleys and houses of character

You should stay here if: you are a young couple not interested in doing much other exploring. 

You should stay elsewhere if: you want to travel to see other areas of Malta or you suffer from mobility issues. 


Naxxar Factsheet

  • Historic town centre and slow-paced local living. 

  • Few cultural attractions or things to see. 

  • Easy to get around on foot. 

  • Close to some lovely natural walks. 

  • Not many family-friendly activities to do. 

  • Good for slow-paced holidays. 

  • Boutique hotel accommodations to choose from, mostly mid-range. 

  • Small, but decent, selection of restaurants to choose from. 


Marsaxlokk (Fishing Village)

One of Malta’s last-remaining fishing villages, Marsaxlokk is popular for its daily open-air market, its relatively untouched village centre, and its Sunday fish market. 

Marsaxlokk Harbour

You should stay here if: you are interested in a peaceful holiday in a historic centre. 

You should stay elsewhere if: you want to explore the cultural centres or want to do more than swimming and relaxing. 


Marsaxlokk Factsheet: 

  • Daily local market to browse. 

  • Some of the island’s best fish and seafood restaurants. 

  • Quiet place to stay. 

  • Easy to explore the rest of the south. 

  • Limited nightlife.

  • Less crowded beaches to use, although summertime could change that. 

  • Limited accommodation. 

  • Cheap, fresh food. 

  • Easy to get around both by car and public transport. 

  • Close to Malta International Airport. 

  • Boat tours available to some local natural hotspots. 

You might want to check out our detailed guide to Marsaxlokk here.


Mostly a farmer’s village, Mgarr is tucked away on the north of the island, surrounded by beautiful countryside, and a good place to stay in if you want a taste of village life in Malta with relatively peaceful surroundings.

Check out the beautiful Gnejna Bay in Mgarr, which is very close to Golden Bay.

Gnejna Bay in Mgarr

You should stay here if: you want a quiet holiday as close to nature as you can get. 

You should stay elsewhere if: you are looking for nightlife or you don’t fancy hiking.


Mgarr Factsheet 

  • Located close to Ghajn Tuffieha and Golden Bay. 

  • Quiet surroundings. 

  • Accomodation is limited but cheap. 

  • Well serviced by takeaways. 

  • Difficult to get to. 

  • Beautiful countryside walks. 

  • Good local food restaurants. 



One of the oldest towns in Malta, Zebbug is known for its amazing festas and Easter traditions, as well as the dizzying variety of historical remains found there, and the incredible architecture. 

Zebbug Square in Easter

You should stay here if: you want a calm, slow-paced, holiday, or enjoy Easter traditions or the local village feast (early June). 

You should stay elsewhere if: you want to be in a busy area with plenty of nightlife.


Zebbug Factsheet: 

  • No museums or cultural sites close by. 

  • The three band-clubs offer cheap local snacks and food. 

  • Beautiful architecture. 

  • Good choice of cheap food. 

  • Easy to get around or to closeby districts. 

  • Budget to mid-range accommodation. 

  • Well-serviced by takeaways. 

  • No beaches close by - closest beach about 10km away

Three cities (Birgu, Senglea, Bormla)

Largely untouched, the Three Cities are packed full of history and stand as a testament to traditional village living. 

Birgu Panoramic View of Yacht Marina

You should stay here if: you want to live like a local in one of the most untouched cities in Malta. 

You should stay elsewhere if: you’re looking for nightlife or suffer from mobility issues. 


Three Cities Factsheet: 

  • Untouched by mass tourism. 

  • Incredible historical sights to look at. 

  • Local cuisine is heavily emphasised here. 

  • Cheaper accomodation than in the rest of the island. 

  • Very few child-friendly exhibits. 

  • Daily cheap ferry service to Valletta. 

  • Frequent buses. 

  • Close to the airport. 

  • Difficult to get to the other side of the island without travelling extensively. 

  • Very few luxury accomodations. 

  • Might be difficult to get around if you suffer from mobility issues. 

We have a full guide to the Three Cities which you can check out here.

Best Places to Stay


Xara Palace Relais & Chateaux, Mdina

Xara Palace

Located in Mdina, one of the most romantic cities in Malta, this all-inclusive holidaying resort is luxury on top of luxury. With stunning views and incredible cuisine, not to mention the time-tested beauty of Mdina to keep you company, there’s no better way to rekindle the romance than here.

Go for a sunset walk in the surrounding countryside, stop for a glass of wine at a lovely hotel, and call it a night to spend time with the ones you love most. 

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Hotel Juliani, St. Julian’s

Close to the nightlife, but not in the heart of it, young couples will enjoy this tiny boutique hotel as it gives them plenty of access to nightclubs, but none of the travelling that you need to take to get there. Choose the all-inclusive breakfast for lazy days in bed, and let your worries float away. 

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Kempinski Hotel, Gozo

We can’t mention any romantic getaway without mentioning the Kempinski Hotel, Gozo. Tucked away in sprawling countryside, Gozo might be an extra ferry ride on your trip, but it’s well worth it for spending some time with the Kempinski Hotel’s carefully tended gardens and endless sea views. 

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Senior Couples

Fisherman’s Cove, Marsaxlokk

Serviced with a lift, terrace, and outdoor swimming pool, Fisherman’s Cove is a guesthouse that offers continental and breakfast buffet, as well as a paid airport shuttle service. The surrounding areas are easy to get around in, and it’s easy to find something to do in Marsaxlokk, or sit at a cafe and people-watch, making it ideal for senior couples with mobility issues who want a slow-paced holiday. 


Dolmen Hotel, Qawra

With beautiful views and over 488 lovely rooms and suites to choose from, the Dolmen Hotel is a resort that prides itself on comfort and all=inclusivity. Featuring on-site restaurants, a casino, a bar and lounge, and a number of outdoor and indoor pools and a spa, you never really need to leave the Dolmen unless you want to. 

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Domus Zamittello, Valletta

Although it has plenty of sloping streets, Valletta is an ideal place to stay in for culture vultures who want to get a taste of Maltese city living. Most museums have discounted tickets for seniors, and you can definitely find plenty of things to do in the main thoroughfare of Valletta, Republic Street, without straying up the steep hills. The hotel is located near the city gate, and has an internal courtyard, outdoor terrace, and is well-serviced with lift access to all four floors. 

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Families with Kids

AX Sunny Coast Resort and Spa, St Paul’s Bay

Close to Splash and Fun Water Park and the National Aquarium, among others, AX Sunny Coast Resort also provides babysitting services for an extra charge, and free baby beds, cots and highchairs for your use. You can also rent a Wii console and games to keep your young ones occupied while you’re all at the resort. Furthermore, it also has its own private beach! 

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Luna Holiday Complex, Mellieha

Easy to get around and popular with holidaying families, the Luna Holiday Complex is five minutes away from Popeye Village, close to the Ghadira Nature reserve, and also has an onsite games room and family pool ideal for parents with little children. It also offers daily horse riding for all ages, as well as a number of restaurants good for picky eaters or sensitive stomachs. 

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Db Seabank Resort and Spa, Mellieha

db Seabank

This is a resort specifically and uniquely marketed towards kids, with a kid’s club, live entertainment, and even an onsite bowling alley and private sandy beach with shallow water to use. Furthermore, the db Seabank Resort and Spa also has six casual restaurants with a variety of cuisines, and its own childcare and babysitting services at an extra charge. 

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Nightlife Lovers, Youngsters and Singles

Marina Hotel Corinthia Beach Resort, St. Julian’s

Less than five minutes away from the packed party district of St. Julian’s, the Marina Hotel also offers plenty of activities in itself. Try their watersports, take part in their diving activities, or rent a free go-pro to take with you around the island while you explore, and then finish up with a drink in the hotel’s own bar, the Pearl Lounge. 

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Be.Hotel, St. Julian’s

You can’t get much closer to the action than this, as the be.hotel is located right in the thumping heart of St. Julian’s. Touted towards travellers who want a budget stay without budget accomodations, the be.hotel is an ideal location to spend your holiday in, provided that you’re a heavy enough sleeper you don’t mind the sounds of the party! 

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The Waterfront Hotel, Sliema

Looking for nightlife but not ready to give up your good night’s sleep? For an easy compromise, you should look at the Waterfront Hotel: it boasts stunning views of the Sliema promenade, and nightlife and parties are only a quick bus ride away. During the day, you can do some hardcore shopping or laze in the pool, or sample some of the many international restaurants located around the hotel - most of which have happy hour offers!

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Beaches, Sun and Sea Lovers

Radisson Blu Resort & Spa Hotel, Mellieha

Radisson Blu Golden Sands

Right in the heart of the Golden Bay Beach in Mellieha, this 5-star resort doesn’t skimp on the beachfront; lean out of your window in the morning, and the Mediterranean sea is the only thing you’ll see stretching out in front of you. Spend your days lazing on the beach-front, lapping up sunlight, or take part in some of the numerous activities Golden Bay offers, such as kite-surfing and diving, to make the most of your seaside holiday. 

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Preluna Hotel and Spa, Sliema

With one of the only private beaches in Sliema, the Preluna Hotel and Spa is an ideal choice if you want to be close to the shopping district and the airport without venturing towards the north of the island. The Preluna Hotel and Spa also features an indoor and outdoor pool, a diving school, and a kid’s pool, but the crowning glory is the private beach with its own bar and grill and a saltwater pool and sun-loungers - no sea-weed whatsoever!

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Grand Hotel Excelsior, Valletta

Interested in both culture and sea? Book at the Grand Hotel Excelsior, featuring the only beach resort in the capital city. Bask on one of the sunloungers and watch the horizon with a refreshing drink, and when you’ve had your fill of sunbathing and swimming, make your way into the capital city for a quick look around the city’s numerous museums, and a coffee at one of the cafes. 

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Topaz Hotel, St. Paul’s Bay

Popular with many travellers for a good reason, the Topaz is a 3-star hotel with over 326 non-smoking rooms available, tucked away in St. Paul’s Bay and close to local amenities such as multiple restaurants. All rooms come with a bath or a shower, a fridge, safe, and kettle, and also air-conditioning and wi-fi. On-site, there is also a 24/7 reception desk, a hairdresser, restaurant, and souvenir shop. 

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Pebbles Boutique Aparthotel, Sliema

With amazing views over Valletta’s harbour, Pebbles Boutique Aparthotel has been recently renovated, and offers studio apartments, apartments, suites and double rooms for a low price. Each room comes with free Wifi, LCD TV, and air-conditioning, and is located close to the Sliema promenade and a bus stop. Guests can also make use of the Rooftop Terrace with sea views and a jacuzzi. 

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Spinola Hotel, St. Julian’s

If you just want a place to sleep and you’re not planning on spending so much time in your room, the Spinola Hotel is a good choice for you to lay your head.  It’s located right in the heart of St. Julian’s, close to all the night-life spots, and features an on-site baggage storage, free-wifi throughout, and offers car-hire and children’s activities. Anything else you need you might be able to get in the surrounding areas, and it’s well worth looking into if you don’t want to blow your budget on a room to sleep in. 

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Palazzo Paolina Boutique Hotel, Valletta

For a romantic setting, easy access to multiple dining establishments, and never being short of things to do, you need to stay in Valletta, and if you’re staying in Valletta, you need to look at Palazzo Paolina. This tiny, intimate boutique hotel has beautifully decorated rooms with free high-speed internet and breakfast included in the room-rate, as well as laundry service and a concierge to guide you where to go. 

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Casa Gemelli, Gozo

What it lacks in amenities, it makes up for in character: this family-run bed and breakfast is located in the heart of Victoria, Gozo’s capital city, and gives you a good home-base to stay in while you’re exploring the Citadel and the old town. Quiet and peaceful, Casa Gemelli is Maltese living turned up to eleven, and if you’re interested in living local, there’s no better place to try. 

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Casa Birmula Boutique Hotel, Bormla

Have you ever wanted to stay in a historic capital city? With Casa Birmula, tucked away in the heart of Cospicua, you can - and you can do it in style with a pool and free breakfast for guests, a rooftop terrace to sit and lounge in, and even airport transportation which is offered at an extra charge. Rent a car, and you might even manage to find street parking outside the hotel. 

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Hotel Ta’ Cenc and Spa, Gozo 

Sample elegance with this resort offering private beach access, an indoor and outdoor pool, and three restaurants to choose from to make your holiday as peaceful and uninterrupted as possible. Offering a beautiful, airy spa, and a stunning view of Gozo, Hotel Ta’ Cenc is high-life living designed to smooth away your stresses. 

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Cugo Gran Macina Grand Harbour, Senglea

Built in 1554, this beautiful property has been renovated into a 21-room hotel, offering a taste of historical elegance with some stunning views to accompany it. The Macina comes well-equipped with its own pool, bicycle rental, babysitting services, and bar and lounge, and has one of Malta’s most renowned restaurants on-site, so you never really need to leave your hotel unless you want to. 

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The Westin Dragonara Resort, St Julian’s

Designed for holidayers looking for high-end adventure, the Westin Dragonara Resort has two private beach lidos, outdoor pools, a casino, and a spa on-site. Want to make the most of the water? The resort also offers lessons in watersports, such as diving, and being located close to St. Julian’s means that you don’t have far to go if you want to try a night on the town on for size. 


How to Get Around Malta

By Car

Renting a car is definitely a choice available to you, and prices shouldn’t range very high - however bear in mind that parking is a constant struggle in some areas, and that you might get stuck in traffic more times than you would like. 

By Public Transport

The island is well-serviced by public transport, and if you’re worried about parking, it’s a good alternative to driving. In some built-up locations, the buses might get very crowded, so keep that in mind when you’re making your decisions. 

Day Trips / Hop-On, Hop-off

Hop-on, hop-off bus tours frequently tour the island - they’re a good way of getting both your history and your sight-seeing in at a low rate!


Getting around using taxis might get a bit pricey, but with more providers in Malta, prices have been getting cheaper and cheaper. For shorter trips and for getting to and from the airport, it’s worth grabbing a cab.



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