Culture & History
Valletta Church

Malta – which is made up of the islands of Malta, Gozo and tiny Comino – is certainly beautiful. Clusters of golden stone houses form towns and villages above the deep blue sea, while the coastline rises up from picturesque coves and inlets to form rugged cliffs. The influence of the many different civilisations that have made Malta their home over the millennia is evident all over the country, with prehistoric temples, baroque and renaissance churches, and the medieval capital, Mdina, to name just a few of its historical treasures. Megaliths, medieval dungeons and Calypso's Cave – The Maltese Islands are positively mythic. As the countryside is dotted with the oldest known human structures in the world, the Islands have rightly been described as an open-air museum.

An archipelago at the centre of the Mediterranean with a wealth of heritage. Home once to ancient civilisations and Europe’s nobles, Malta’s location at the heart of the Mediterranean is the key to its rich history. At the crossroads of maritime routes, the Islands have been a home, stronghold, trading post and refuge over 7,000 years of history. From temple builders, seafaring Phoenicians and the traveller Apostle Paul, to the Knights of St John, Napoleon and British royalty - all have set foot here leaving their imprint for you to discover.

Hagar Qim Temples – around 3000BC

There are open-air museums and indoor museums for every era, and every visitor, from prehistory to the story of Malta in World War II. The Islands have several UNESCO World Heritage sites, including the Hypogeum, the enigmatic prehistoric temples, Malta’s baroque capital Valletta founded by the Knights, and the walled medieval capital Mdina where descendants of Norman families still live today. With the Knights of St John, patrons of the arts for over 250 years, you’ll find cultural masterpieces in museums, palaces and churches across the Islands.

Abbatija Tad-Dejr Catacombs

In a day, you can travel from the mysteries of the temple builders to the living history of picturesque fishing villages - a journey of several millennia in time, but a couple of kilometres apart.

Typical Village Scene

Gozo - Wander around the sister Island Gozo and explore gems of a rural life largely untouched by time and hike across a rugged, terraced landscape fashioned by man over a millennium ago. Historically, the Island has always been distinct from mainland Malta; different milestones, traditions, happenings and topography have distinguished the Island both on a national scale and as a travel destination. Wherever you look, the sea is never more than a stone’s throw away. It is Gozo’s remarkable coastline consisting of beaches of red sand, turquoise bays and majestic high cliffs that stimulates the imagination so strongly. Many prehistoric sites are also available in Gozo. But the most fascinating is Ggantija – the oldest freestanding temples in the world (around 3600 BC), which makes them well worth visiting.

Comino - The Island is tiny in size, with just one small hotel, and inhabited by just two families. It is surrounded by the most scintillating and clear waters in the Mediterranean with a natural swimming pool and a unique anchorage site. In winter, Comino is great for hikers and photographers. Without urban areas or cars, there is no pollution or noise – just quiet and serenity.

Tour Guides - For those who also want to learn about and see some of the history and unique architecture of the islands, tours can be arranged with a licensed tour guide. These can be tailored to individual requirements and interest.

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