Malta is an island country in the Mediterranean Sea, between Italy and the North African countries Libya and Tunisia. The Maltese archipelago consists of three inhabited islands (Malta, Gozo and Comino) and a number of small, uninhabited islets (Cominotto, Filfla, Fungus Rock, the St.Paul’s Islands and others).
There are no big cities in Malta and the capital city Valletta has a population of only approx. 6500 people. The largest town, Birkirkara, is no megacity, either and has a population of approx. 22,000 people. Surprisingly enough, Malta is one of the most densely populated countries in the world. Despite the lack of large cities, about 95% of the country is urbanized and can be considered a single agglomeration consisting of many small towns.
Many of these small towns are very beautiful and contain numerous architectural treasures. The capital Valletta is the country’s jewel and was included in UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites in 1980. Malta’s has two more World Heritage Sites: the Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum and the Megalithic Temples built approximately between 3600 BC and 700 BC. Three World Heritage Sites – that is something that most countries of this size and even larger cannot boast. And there are even more sites on the tentative list, for example: the beautiful former capital Mdina, the Citadel in Victoria on Gozo or the cliffed coastline in various parts of the archipelago.
Malta is a very popular tourist destination, especially among tourists from colder parts of Europe. The climate is very hot and humid. If you want to spend a lot of time lying on a beach, there are many better destinations than Malta. But if you also enjoy picturesque old towns and a very rich cultural heritage I can heartily recommend spending a few days on the Maltese islands to you.
Have a look at some of my photos taken in Malta:
Personally, I find these wooden Maltese balconies really cool. Truly Maltese style. They are ubiquitous in Valletta and many other places in Malta. Since they are closed, I wasn’t even sure at first, if ‘balconies’ was the correct word. But they are indeed balconies. They are not verandas, because verandas must be open. […]
This is another photo of the Valletta skyline at dawn. It is one of my favourite skylines around the world and I don’t quite know why. […]
When I was a little kid I saw a postcard from Malta. Back then I was a small boy living behind the iron curtain and this postcard kind of fascinated me, as I was pretty good in geography but I didn’t know much about the mysterious place named Malta. Where exactly is this place? I had to look it up in an encyclopedia.