Malta: Holidays and Events
There are a number of public holidays that do not have a fixed date, but are based on the time of Easter. Easter falls on the first Sunday following the first full moon after the beginning of spring. Lent, which lasts 46 days, begins on Ash Wednesday and ends on Holy Saturday. Pentecost is 50 days after Easter. The Corpus Christi festival is celebrated on the 2nd Thursday after Pentecost. All Saints’ Day is celebrated for Orthodox Christians on the 1st Sunday after Pentecost, but for Catholic Christians the date is fixed on November 1st. On October 31, Protestants celebrate Reformation Day. The Halloween festival also takes place on this day.
|January 1||New Year|
|February 10||Shipwreck of Saint Paul|
|19th March||Saint Joseph’s Day|
|March 31||“National Day” (withdrawal of the last British troops)|
|March April||Good Friday|
|1st of May||Labor Day|
|June 7||“Sette Giugno” (workers’ uprising)|
|June 29||Peter and Paul|
|15th of August||Assumption Day|
|September 8||Victory day|
|21st September||Independence day|
|December 8||Immaculate Conception|
|13th December||Republic Day (Maltese becomes Head of State)|
Source: Countryaah – Malta Holidays
(Easter Monday, Whit Monday and Christmas Day are not official holidays in Malta.)
The Maltese Islands are strictly Catholic and celebrate the festivities of the church year very solemnly. Then there are the festas, the traditional village festivals in honor of the patron saints of the respective communities.
During Holy Week from the Friday before Good Friday, the statue of “Our Lady of Sorrows” is carried in processions with hundreds of people through the streets of Valletta and many other towns and villages. On Good Friday (Il-Gimgha I-Kbira), another large procession follows in the early evening with life-size statues and costumed participants depicting scenes from the Passion of Christ. During the processions on Easter Sunday, the statue of the risen Christ is sometimes carried through the streets.
The feast of San Grigor is celebrated on the Wednesday after Easter Sunday, with another procession that begins at the tiny chapel of St. Clement on the outskirts of Zejtun. This ceremony was originally a day of remembrance for the redemption from the bubonic plague that raged in Malta in 1675/76.
L’Imnarja (the festival of lights) in honor of Saints Peter and Paul on June 29 is a traditional harvest and folklore festival and a religious holiday at the same time.
September 8th is both a religious holiday (the birth of the Blessed Virgin) and a historical day of remembrance in two ways. On the one hand, the Turkish siege was ended on this day in 1565, and on the other, it commemorates the surrender of the Italian Navy to the British, which brought about the end of the Second World War in Malta.
The following events take place every year in Malta:
|February||Carnival (masked parades, floats and dances), especially in Valletta|
|March||Festival of Mediterranean Food in Valletta|
|April May||Fireworks festival over the Grand Harbor near Valletta|
|Weekend before June 29||L’Imnarja Festival of Lights in the Buskett Gardens near Rabat|
|Every third weekend in July||Malta International Jazz Festival in Valletta|
|September||International Air Show (Malta International Airport)|
|October||Festival of the Historic Cities of Malta (Festival of culture and parades in the major historic cities of Malta)|
|November||International Choir Festival in Valletta|
In addition, history games are held on Sundays almost all year round at Fort St. Elmo in Valletta.
Every year on September 8th there is a rowing regatta at Grand Harbor. In this sports competition, traditional rowing boats from the six towns at the port drive the one-mile route from Marsa to the customs house below Valletta. International water polo competitions are held in Malta in summer. Horse races are held on Sunday afternoons between October and May. The Rolex Yacht Regatta at the Royal Malta Yacht Club is held every October.
Bird hunting is a traditional folk sport in Malta.
Malta has a Mediterranean (subtropical) climate with hot and dry summers. The precipitation falls mainly in the mild, but often stormy winter months, whereby abrupt weather changes are common, so that one finds oneself in the stormiest rain and a few minutes later in glorious sunshine.
The ideas of what is meant by a particularly favorable travel climate depend on a number of factors. Pure cultural travelers certainly see the climate differently than people who want to spend a pure beach holiday, for example. The state of health or age can also play an important role. Therefore, our travel time recommendations are divided into the following two categories:
people who like to enjoy a lot of sun and for whom higher temperatures do not cause any complaints, the following months are particularly recommended for a stay in Malta: May to October.
For people who prefer temperate climates
People who prefer a moderate climate and lower temperatures should better use the following time to stay in Malta: April and November.
The following table shows climate data for Malta. It should be noted that the climatic conditions in different regions of the country can differ from each other and therefore also from the values shown. In addition, the monthly temperature averages have little informative value with regard to the minimum or maximum temperatures. It is possible that at average temperatures of around 20 ° C maximum values of 30 °C or more occur. The table therefore only provides a general overview of the climatic conditions in Malta.
|Month||Average number of rainy days||Mean maximum temperatures in (°C)||Mean minimum temperatures in (°C)|
UNESCO World Heritage Sites
- Abbreviationfinder.org: Presents the way that MT stands for the nation of Malta as a two-letter acronym.
Founded in the middle of the 16th century by Jean Parisot de la Valette, a Grand Master of the Order of St. John, it is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Italian architect Francesco Laparelli developed the blueprint for the geometrical layout of the fortification walls and the rectangular road network. Unfortunately, a large part of Valletta was destroyed in World War II. “Il-Belt”, as Valletta is colloquially called in Maltese, is today the smallest capital of an EU member state in terms of area. It spreads on the north-east coast of Malta on the headland of Monte Sciberras and is bordered on both sides by the Grand and Marsamxett Harbor, the largest natural harbors in the Mediterranean. Valletta is the EU’s smallest capital in terms of area.
Valletta was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1980.
You can find a detailed description of Valletta at Goruma here >>>
Temple of Gigantija (Ggantija) and others
The Ġigantija temples are located on the island of Gozo and, with an age of around 5,800 years (8 to 3,600 BC), are among the oldest semi-preserved, free-standing structures in the world.
The temple complex consists of two connected temples, the smaller one being around 150 years younger than the larger one. The temples were in use until around 2,500 BC. used for religious purposes.
The temple complex was added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 1980 and expanded in 1992 to include the temples of Ħaġar Qim, Mnajdra, Ta ‘Ħaġrat, Skorba and the Temple of Tarxien.
Cities and towns
The Malta Achipelago
The archipelago of Malta or the Republic of Malta consists essentially of the 246 km² main island of Malta, the 3 km² island of Comino located a few kilometers to the north and the 67 km² island of Gozo to the north.
This beautiful little fishing town on the southeast coast of Malta – around 8 km south of Valletta – is particularly popular with its fish and food market, which opens its doors to tourists and locals every day of the week.
Furthermore, the picturesque fishing village is structured by numerous good restaurants and the typical narrow Maltese alleys.
Mdina was the former capital of the Order of Malta before the Order of Malta moved it to Valletta.
It rises picturesquely on a rocky plateau on the island of Malta and impresses with the fascinating Church of St. Peter and Paul and the impressive Cathedral Museum.
Nowadays the city has around 250 residents
Sliema, St. Julians and Paceville
Sliema, St. Julians and Paceville are the tourist strongholds of the island and attract with the kilometer-long promenade “The Strand”.
Especially St. Julians and Paceville are the center of Malta’s nightlife.
Furthermore, there is the greatest concentration of hotels in all price ranges in all three villages, which, by the way, merge seamlessly.
In the deeply cut Anchor Bay lies the fishing village of Popeye Village, which was built as a film set for the film “Popeye” made by Robert Altman.
The small, sympathetic gem, in which Robin Williams acted as a sailor eating spinach, can be visited and is one of the main attractions in Malta, not only for children.
Among many other things, there is a small film museum and a fairground in the wooden village.
The Grand Harbor of Valletta is surrounded by urban branches, which have become known as the “Three Cities”. These three cities are Cospicua, Vittoriosa and Senglea, which merge almost seamlessly.
Founded in the middle of the 16th century by Jean Parisot de la Valette, a Grand Master of the Order of St. John, it is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Italian architect Francesco Laparelli developed the blueprint for the geometrical layout of the fortification walls and the rectangular road network. Unfortunately, a large part of Valletta was destroyed in World War II. “Il-Belt”, as Valletta is colloquially called in Maltese, is today the smallest capital of an EU member state in terms of area.
You can get a comprehensive description of the city from goruma, here >>>
Special buildings and structures
Old Town Hall (Banca Giuratale)
Valletta’s Town Hall, also known as Banca Giuratale, dates back to 1720. During the reign of the order it was the only political institution that came close to a “bourgeois” city government.
Auberge de Castille
The Auberge de Castille is a magnificent limestone building in Valletta and is now the seat of the Prime Minister of Malta.
The first Auberge de Castille was built in 1573-74 based on designs by the Maltese architect Girolamo Cassar (1520-1592).
However, the building was dismantled and rebuilt in the Spanish Baroque style between 1741 and 1744 under the Grand Master of the Order of Malta Manuel Pinto da Fonseca (1681-1773) according to designs by the Maltese architect Andrea Belli (1703-1772) and renovated in 1791.
The Auberge is located on Castile Square
Fortifications of Valletta
The immense number of observation posts and watchtowers of Valletta’s city fortifications are often wrongly overlooked. If there was a Phoenician tower before the city was founded by de la Valete, most of today’s towers go back to the knights of the Order of Malta.
Although they differ considerably in their architecture, they all have a round basic shape and ornaments that emphasize military elements. The most commonly used symbol is the eye.
The black ship, built in Sweden in 1909 in the yacht harbor of Ta ‘Xbiex (near Valletta), is one of the last surviving trading schooners in the world. The ship, which was modernized after fifty years, was a luxury cruise ship in all parts of the world from 1973, but sank in the Marsamxett port of Valletta due to worm infestation. The Black Pearl was subsequently restored and used in the film Popeye before sank again during a storm in 1981. Since 1987, the newly restored ship has housed the quality restaurant “Mare Nostrum”.
Constructed in 1760 on Merchant’s Street in Valletta, this structure was once home to the criminal and civil courts. It was created under the rule of the Grand Master di Pinto and inspires with its ornamentation and the captivating column elements.
The Castellania was designed by the Maltese architect Francesco Zerafa, who died in 1758 and thus before the completion of his work and was replaced by Giuseppe Bonnici.
Nowadays the health ministry is housed in the imposing building.
Fort St. Elmo
Fort St. Elmo in Valletta was built during the reign of the Order of St. John between 1670 and 1693 – based on modified old plans.
The fort lies on a peninsula between the Marsamxett and the Grand Harbor and formed the northern end of the fortifications of Valletta. These two ports are the only protected deep water ports on the east coast of Malta.
During the siege of Malta by the Ottomans in 1565, the defenders managed to hold the fortress for over a month. As a result of the siege, the fort was almost completely destroyed.
However, it was rebuilt quite quickly afterwards. In 1763 a lighthouse was built in the fort and the inner courtyard was converted into a parade ground.
After the islands were occupied by Great Britain in 1814/1815 and converted into a British colony, the fort was initially used more or less unchanged.
Around 1860 a large number of guns with different calibers were set up here. And in 1866 the fort was additionally strengthened
At the beginning of the Second World War, the bastions in front of the fort were strengthened with six QF 6 inch (= 15.24 cm) naval artillery and, in addition, towering fire control stations made of reinforced concrete were built, which allowed a wide view of the sea.
The fort’s crew was involved in successfully repelling an attack by Italian speedboats that had tried to break through the harbor barriers in June 1940.
In addition, the fort had a decisive role in the defense of the Operazione Malta Due (Operation Malta Two) on July 26, 1941. The attack had ended for the Italians with a total defeat and heavy losses.
After independence in 1964 and the withdrawal of the last British troops on March 31, 1979, large parts of the fort remained unused.
Now parts of the fortress are home to the Police Academy and the National War Museum.
The fort’s facilities outside the museum are closed to visitors.
House of Catalonia
Nowadays the building in Valletta is the seat of the Ministry of Economy of the Government of Malta.
It was built with other baroque buildings between 1691 and 1694 under the Grand Master of the Order of Malta Adrien de Wignacourt (1618-1697).
The building complex was initially used to house the knights of the Priory of Catalonia, as befits their standing.
The building is separated from the Auberge of Aragon by a narrow alley.
This little street or alley is a picturesque entrance to the city center of Mdina. Such narrow streets offer shade and thus protection from the hot sun, especially in summer.
They are also a kind of wind tunnel through which a cool breeze often blows.
Palazzo Falzan in Mdina
The medieval building in the Norman style houses a collection of old weapons and ceramics, a cathedral and a museum with an excellent art collection.
The House of Parliament of Malta (Parliament House) in Valletta was built between 2011 and 2015 based on plans by the Italian architect Renzo Piano (born 1935).
The modern building was initially the subject of heated discussions. The Parliament of Malta is a unicameral parliament and is re-elected every five years.
It’s located on Republic Street near the City Gate, the gateway to Valletta.
It is adjacent to the Saint James Cavalier.
Sacra Imfermeria (Mediterranean Conference Center)
The former Sacra Imfermeria, now known as the Mediterranean Conference Center, is certainly one of the most impressive buildings in Valletta.
It is located near Fort St. Elmo on Grand Harbor. The foundation stone was laid in 1574. After that, it was expanded several times.
The most important part of the huge building is the Great Ward, which with its length of 155 m was one of the longest halls in Europe at the time.
The Sacra Infermeria was also considered one of the best hospitals in Europe and was able to accept more than 900 patients. In 1676 the School of Anatomy and Surgery was founded there under Grand Master Nicholas Cotoner.
After the hospital kept its function long after the French occupation, but was later transformed into a children’s theater, it has been the Mediterranean Conference Center since 1978.
Saint Anton’s Palace in Attard
The magnificent baroque building from 1623 in Attarf used to be the seat of the British governors. Today it serves as the residence of the Maltese President and is used for state events.
St. Anton’s Palace can only be viewed from the outside.
City gate of Mdina
This city gate, called “Mdina gate”, is the main entrance to the city.
The gate was commissioned by the Grand Master of the Order of Malta Antonio Manoel de Vilhena (1663-1736) in 1724 by the French architect and fortress builder Charles François de Mondion (1681-1733) built.
Siege Bell Memorial
The Siege Bell Memorial, which always rings out of cast-iron bells at lunchtime and can be seen from the Lower Barakka Gardens, is a memorial.
It was built on the site of an artillery post and is a reminder of the Maltese who lost their lives during World War II.
City Gate (Bieb il-Belt)
The current city gate of Valletta had three predecessors. The first, Porta San Giorgio, was built by Francesco Laparelli de Carotona between 1566 and 1569. In 1632 it was replaced by a more magnificent gate designed by Tommaso Dingli.
In 1853 the third gate took its place. This gate, built by the English and known as Porta Reale (or Kingsway or painted Putirjal), was finally replaced by the current one between 1964 and 1968.
It has a very modern design and was therefore not undisputed.
St Agatha’s Tower, Red Tower
The St Agatha’s Tower is also known as the Red Tower because of its color. The fortress was built during the reign of the Order of St. John under the Grand Master Jean de Lascaris-Castellar (1560-1657) in 1649.
The tower stands on the Marfa Ridge in the north of the island near the town of Mellieħa, which has around 9,000 residents.
The tower or fortress was used to monitor Mellieħa Bay. This was necessary because in the bays in the north of the island pirates had repeatedly attacked the villages on the island and dragged the population into slavery.
The walls of the complex are over 3 m thick. Only one storage room was created in the basement.
A document shows that in 1722, for example, the fortress was armed with five cannons and only four soldiers were stationed here in peacetime. The crew could, however, be increased to around 30 soldiers if necessary.
At the beginning of British colonial rule, the tower was initially continued to be used. But in 1832 all towers, redoubts and batteries built by the Knights of the Order were demolished, with the exception of St Agatha’s Tower.
During the two world wars the tower was used by the British military. After the withdrawal of the British troops from the Maltese archipelago, the tower served for a time as a radar station for the Armed Forces of Malta.
The facility was restored between 1999 and 2001. The tower is currently owned by the non-profit company Dín l-Art Ħelwa and can be visited.
Saint James Cavalier
Saint James Cavalier in Valletta is a 16th century fortress. It was built by the Order of St. John.
The structure was designed by the Italian military engineer and builder Francesco Laparelli (1521-1570).
Interestingly, the fortress was never involved in any armed conflict.
However, the fortress played a role in the rebellion of a number of clerics against the Order of St. John on September 8, 1775, as the rebellious clerics were able to occupy the fortress for a short time.
The uprising was put down by the order within a few hours and the rebels were captured and later banished, imprisoned or executed.
The building is located on Castile Square – near the Auberge de Castille and the parliament building
The Villa Alhambra was built by the famous Maltese architect Emmanuel Luigi Galizia (1830-1906) in the 15,000-resident city of Sliema in the northeast of Malta.
The house from the late 19th century is also known as the Moorish (= Moorish) House because of its external architectural style.
Galizia had built the building for herself as a summer residence.
The building is on Rudolph Street.
Citadel (Gran Castello) on Gozo
The building dates back to the 15th century and now also houses an ethnographic museum.
Archaeological Museum on Gozo
The museum in Palazzo Bondi on the island of Gozo shows Roman objects such as coins, jewelry and everyday objects as well as excavations from the temple of Ggantija.
National Library in Valletta
Unfortunately, the old library in Republic Square is only open to the public to a very limited extent. And even this small area is not allowed to enter without valid identification documents with a photo.
All the archives of the Order of Malta are housed in the library. They include documents from the 11th century to 1798, the year Napoléon occupied Malta.
Cathedral Museum (St. Johns Museum)
The Cathedral Museum is adjacent to St. John’s Co-Cathedral (see below) and exhibits, among other things, valuable paintings showing various grand masters.
National Museum of Fine Arts
The Cathedral Museum in Valletta is adjacent to St. John’s Co-Cathedral and exhibits valuable paintings showing various grandmasters.
National Museum of Natural History
This national natural history museum is located in Mdina in the Vilhena Palace.
Palazzo Vilhena was built in 1726 in the French Baroque style for the Portuguese nobleman and Grand Master of the Order of St. John Antonio Manoel de Vilhena (1663-1736) according to plans by the French architect Charles François de Mondion (1681-1733).
The museum opened its doors to the public in 1973. Visitors get a good overview of the Maltese ecosystem, both on the islands and in the water.
You can find minerals, fossils, insects, reptiles, mammals, birds, fish and information about the local geology and palaeontology.
The focus is on endemic (= only occurring here) plants and birds
National Museum of Archeology
This museum was housed in the Auberge de Provence. It shows finds that were made in stone age temples in Malta. You can see numerous excavation finds from the early history of the islands from the megalithic culture to Roman times.
The famous Neolithic sculpture of the “Sleeping Lady” found in Hal Saflieni’s hypogeum is also kept here.
Brochtorff Circle near Xaghra on Gozo
Near the Ggantija temple, a megalithic stone circle with a diameter of about 45 m was laid on a table mountain. The hypogeum (rock grave) below is still in the excavation phase and is therefore not accessible to visitors.
Ghar Dalam near Birzebuggia on Malta
The “Dark Cave” is the oldest evidence of human and animal life on Malta. As early as the 19th century, large amounts of bones from long-extinct animals were found there. They can still be viewed today in the small museum on site.
In the 145 m long cave, the oldest remains of Malta’s settlements were discovered, which are believed to date from around 7,200 BC. Come from BC.
Ħaġar Qim on the southeast coast of Malta
On a rocky hill are the remains of four temples, which were built between 3600 and 2500 BC. Were built from limestone. In one of them, two altar blocks adorned with fern relief and the “Venus of Malta” were found.
Next to the eastern outer temple is the largest monolith that has ever been used in a Maltese temple facade, it is 3 m high, over 6 m long and weighs about 10 tons.
Megalithic site Borg in-Nadur near Birzebbuga on Malta
The temple complex was built around 2500 BC. Built and built over during the Bronze Age.
Remains of the Neolithic temple complex Skorba on Malta
Here researchers found the remains of buildings from the early phase of the megalithic culture (approx. 5000 years BC). The fenced area is not accessible to visitors, but can be seen from all sides.
Remains of the aquaduct near Kercem on Gozo
The building was built between 1839 and 1843 under British rule and served to convey water from the source “Ghar Ilma” to the reservoir in Victoria.
Roman villa in Rabat
The remains of this former villla in Rabat testify to the time of Roman rule between 218 BC. BC and AD 870 in Malta.
Temple of Mnajdra on Malta
The construction of the complex at the foot of the hill of Ħaġar Qim is believed to have occurred between 3,600 and 2,500 BC. Dated. It consists of three separate temples.
Temple complex of Ta’Hagrat on Malta
The remains of two temple districts were found here, which were built between 3,600 and 2,500 BC. Were erected. Finds, however, indicate a settlement of the place as early as 5,000 BC. Chr.
Temple of Tarxien near Paola on Malta
Six temples, three of which are connected, were built here between 3,000 and 2,500 BC. Built from mighty stone blocks. In addition to artistic wall reliefs, the remains of a large woman statue can be viewed.
Opera and theater
Manoel Theater in Valletta
The theater was built in 1731 by the Grand Master of the Order of Malta Antonio Manoel de Vilhena (1663-1736) “For the honorable edification of the people”. With the tragedy “Merope” by Scipione Maffei (1675-1755) from Verona the theater became Opened on January 9, 1732
The building was used as a dance hall in the late 19th century and a cinema in the 20th century, and was used as a shelter during World War II, and
after extensive renovation, reopened in 1960 as the Maltese National Theater.
The theater specializes in the classical performing arts – but there are also jazz, folk and rock concerts.
Legend has it that the apostle Paul came to the island by shipwreck in AD 60 and began to spread Christianity in Malta. Several relics and catacombs from this period can be found in Rabat and the former capital Mdina.
The three islands of the Republic of Malta have a total of more than 365 churches. The often magnificent village parish churches are equipped with votive statues and other art and church treasures. There are also numerous chapels along the wayside, some of which have been carved into rocks or cliffs.
St. Gregory´s old parish church in Zeitun
The former medieval chapel was rebuilt by the crusaders and has the oldest domed roof constructed in Malta.
Church of Gesu ‘
This church once belonged to the old University of Malta. It was constructed between 1592 and 1600 by Francesco Bonamici and was later added to the university building, of which it now represents more than half.
The baroque design of the entrance is particularly striking about the building.
The Carmelite Church is a Roman Catholic church in the capital Valletta and, together with the city of Valletta, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
A previous church was built until around 1573 and was the first church in Valletta at the time. This church was built according to plans by Gerolamo Cassar (around 1550–1592).
The facade was redesigned from 1852 under Giuseppe Bonavia (1821-1885) and in May 1895 it was replaced by Pope Leo XIII. (1810-1903) raised to a minor basilica.
As a result of its severe damage during the course of the Second World War, the church was rebuilt between 1958 and 1981, enlarged and crowned with a 42 m high oval dome.
In the picture in front of her is the tower of the neighboring Anglican Pro-Cathedral of St. Paul’s.
Old Theater Street in Valletta
Catacombs of St. Paul and St. Agatha in Rabat
These early Christian monuments date from the 4th century AD, when Christianity had increasingly established and spread as the dominant religion in Europe.
Cathedral of St. Peter and Paul
In 1298 the first cathedral was built in Mdina, dedicated to the apostle, who in 59 had lived in Malta for three months. However, this church was completely destroyed by the 1693 earthquake.
The current baroque style church was built according to plans by the Maltese architect Lorenzo Gafà (1630-1703) and consecrated on October 8, 1702 by Bishop Davide Cocco Palmieri.
The grave slabs of the nobles and clergy buried here are striking with their colored marble inlays that cover the floor.
The vaulted ceiling was painted with scenes from the lives of the apostles Peter and Paul.
Mon-Sat: 9:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Sun.: 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Cathedral of the Assumption on Gozo
The Cathedral of the Assumption is the episcopal church of the Diocese of Gozo, which includes the islands of Gozo and Comino.
It was built from limestone in the Baroque style between 1697 and 1711 according to designs by the Maltese master builder Lorenzo Gafà (1638-1704) and was consecrated on October 11, 1716.
The church has a large, free-standing bell tower on its northeast side. It stands inside the local citadel.
Pope Pius IX (1792-1878) had appointed the church on September 16, 1864 the cathedral of the newly established diocese of Gozo and Comino.
The cathedral is the third church to be built on this site. The previous church was a victim of the earthquake of 1693, which made a new building necessary, it is today’s cathedral.
Two large bronze statues have stood in front of the cathedral since 2006, they are Pope Pius IX. on the left and Pope John Paul II (1920-2005) – who visited the cathedral in 1992 – on the right.
The statues were designed by A. Camilleri-Cauchis. The church is very ornate and colorful and of course with a statue of the Virgin Mary.
On the ceiling there is a trompe l’oeil painting (= fool the eye), which makes the flat ceiling appear like a dome.
Collegiate Church of St. Paul
The Collegiate Church of St. Paul is a baroque church in Rabat. The church was built between 1664 and 1683 according to plans by Lorenzo Gafà (1630-1703) in place of a previous medieval church.
The church is a three-aisled, cruciform basilica with a high crossing dome, decorated with altars, statues and paintings by important artists of the 18th century.
The Paulus grotto is located below the church. It is one of the places on the island that commemorate the shipwreck of Paul and his companions on the crossing to Rome and his three-month stay in Malta. The apostle is said to have lived, taught and celebrated services here.
In the center of the grotto with its rough rock walls is a large sculpture of the Apostle Paul, which was made by Melchiorre Cafà.
A marble plaque in front of it commemorates the visit of Pope John Paul II (), who said a prayer here when he visited Malta in 1990.
Church of the Assumption of Mary in Mosta
The Church of the Assumption of Mary, also known as the Rotunda of Mosta or Cathedral of Mosta, is located on the site of an earlier church.
The plans for today’s church – based on the model of the Pantheon in Rome – come from the Maltese architect Giorgio Grognet de Vassé (1774-1862).
The church was consecrated on March 11, 1860 by the then Bishop Gaetano Pace Formo (1809-1874) of Malta.
After that of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, the Cathedral of Florence and that of the Roman Pantheon, the dome is the world’s largest self-supporting church dome with an inner diameter of around 36 m. The church is around 56.40 meters high.
Parish Church of St Mary’s in Attard
Probably the most beautiful Renaissance church in Malta was built in 1613 by Tumas Dingli.
Parish Church of St. Joseph in Msida
The parish church of St. Joseph in Msida was built in the 19th century in the neo-baroque style. The church is located in the immediate vicinity of the pleasure boat harbor.
In front of the church, the city’s mostly younger people like to gather to chat or flirt. The churches are also a wonderful sight for the crews of the pleasure craft.
St. John’s Co-Cathedral
The St. John’s Co-Cathedral, consecrated to St. John, owes its strange name to the fact that it is the second seat of the Maltese Archbishop, who of course continues to use it for church services and whose actual seat is St. Paul’s Cathedral in Mdina is.
The fantastic structure was built between 1573 and 1578 on behalf of the then Grand Master Jean de la Cassière. The church, originally conceived as a monastery church, was designed by Gerolamo Cassar and its external appearance was completed very quickly.
But the interior design took more than 100 years to complete. Pope Pius VII (1742-1823) elevated the church to the rank of co-cathedral in 1820. His intention was to underline their importance to the Maltese after the order was expelled from Malta by Napoléon in 1798.
What is striking about the limestone church is the strict design that seems to be in continuity with military buildings. In contrast, the baroque interior of the Christian sacred work of art shines, making it one of the most beautiful churches in the Mediterranean.
In addition to the grave monument of the Grand Master of the Order of Malta Marc′Antonio Zondadari (1658-1722), the marble tombstones of important knights, the precious tapestries and the impressive chapels, St. John particularly impresses with the masterpiece “The Beheading of St. John”.
The 1608 by Caravaggio (1571-1610) is the only painting in the world to contain a signature by the Italian artist.
In the adjoining museum of the cathedral – described above – you can visit other impressive and important works of art.
St. Paul’s Pro-Cathedral
The Anglican Pro-Cathedral on Independence Square in Valletta is often confused with the St John’s Co-Cathedral, with which it has nothing in common.
Because a pro-cathedral only has the status of a diocese cathedral for a limited time. St. Paul’s was built in the 19th century when Queen Adelheid commissioned it after visiting Malta.
The reason for this pious wish was the lack of an Anglican church in Malta. The church, built in the neoclassical style, was completed in 1844 after only 5 years.
Important elements of the church are the more than 60 m high tower and the portal with Corinthian columns.
St. Paul’s Shipwreck Church
The great architect Gerolamo Cassar was the builder of this church in Valletta, which, however, underwent some changes in shape in 1629 based on designs by Lornzo Gafas (1630-1704). The baroque work of art can be entered from St. Lucia Street.
University of Malta
The University of Malta was founded in 1592 as the Collegium Millitense by Bishop Garagallo. However, it was administered by the Jesuits. When these were expelled from Malta in 1768, the university was continued by the state.
Around 10,000 students from over 80 countries are currently studying here, with lectures and seminars being held in English. The university is divided into the following 11 departments or faculties:
Architecture & Environmental Technology
Sciences Human Sciences/Psychology
Information and Communication Technology IT
Medicine & Surgery
Economics, Management and Tax Law
Msida MSD 2080
Tel: +356 – 2340 2340
Fax: +356 – 2340 2342
Natural beauty and parks
Blue Grotto on the southwest coast of Malta
Probably the most impressive of the four caves on the island can only be reached by boat (from Marsaskala). The light reflections and orange-colored algae create the varied play of colors in the caves, the largest of which is 30 m high and 90 m wide.
Blue lagoon on the island of Comino
The sheltered inlet with aquamarine blue water on white sand is a popular destination.
This spectacular rock gate on the island of Gozo is called Azure Window in the local language
On the over 200 m high cliffs are the so-called “carts” or “grinding marks”, for which Erich von Däniken had developed his well-known theories.
At the Ta ‘Dmejrek mountain they rise up to 253 m above the Mediterranean Sea. A British radar station was located here.
Ghar Hassan south of Birzebuggia on Malta
The cave used to be a pirate refuge. A small, dark corridor leads to a balcony in the middle of a steep rock wall, which offers an impressive view of the sea.
Inland lake near Dweijra on Gozo
The shallow seawater lake is connected to the sea by a tunnel in the rock.
The islands are ideal for diving into the open sea as well as for cave diving. There are different underwater worlds with an amazing biodiversity as well as several wrecks of warships to explore.
In the particularly clear sea water, visibility is excellent down to a depth of about 30 m.
The diving areas of Gozo are particularly attractive with their magnificent underwater landscape, the wrecks and caves and the clear view of the best in the entire Mediterranean area.
The most famous dive sites are Xwejni Bay, Double Arch, Reqqa Point, Inland Sea, Blue Hole, Billinghurst Cave and Azure Window.
Valletta’s Barracca Gardens are the largest parks in the Maltese capital. They offer generous views of the Grand Harbor and are divided into the Upper and Lower Barracca Gardens. While the latter includes a neoclassical temple and many smaller areas for lounging, the Upper Barrakka Gardens impress with fountains, old statues and really colorful flora.
Buskett Gardens near Rabat
This is the only park in the country with a significant tree population. The small grove of pine and citrus trees is below the Verdala Palace.
Saint Anton’s Gardens
The garden is located in the immediate vicinity of Saint Anton’s Palace and is a masterpiece of baroque horticulture from the end of the 17th century. Various exotic plants thrive here, fountains and small lakes invite you to linger.
In addition to a number of ferry ports, the following two ports are particularly worth mentioning: <br />
The Grand Harbor is next to the Marsamxett Harbor the largest natural harbor in the Mediterranean. The widely branched bay breaks a swath of about three kilometers into the northeast coast of Malta, on the northern side of which lies Valletta. The importance of the port was already recognized in antiquity.
The (next to the Grand Habour) largest natural harbor in the Mediterranean, which is located north of the larger harbor Grand Harbor. It is a landing stage for tourist excursion boats and ferries.
Thanks to the Lazzaretto and Msida Creek, there is also a well-protected berth for pleasure craft.
Manoel Island is located in Marsamxett Harbor. The island can be reached via a fairly small bridge from Gżira. There are berths and berths for sports boats as well as some yacht yards. Fort Manoel from the 18th century is also located here.
The illustration shows pleasure boats in front of the parish church of St. Joseph in Msida in the city of Msida.
The Malta Archipelago or the Republic of Malta is located in the Mediterranean Sea, which was formed around 5 million years ago.
It covers an area of around 3.02 million km² and is connected to the Strait of Gibraltar, which is around 15 km wide at its narrowest point.