The group of islands of the Maltese archipelago is located in the very center of the Mediterranean Sea. The largest inhabited islands of the archipelago are Malta, Gozo and Comino. Officially, the islands are united by the name: the Republic of Malta.
According to historians, the first settlers in Malta appeared about 7,000 years ago. Malta was ruled by different countries in different eras and times, the struggle for ownership of the archipelago lasted for centuries due to its attractive strategic position and pleasant climate.
Modern Malta gained the status of independence in 1964, and in December 1974 it was proclaimed a republic. But for more than 200 years, since the reign of the English crown in Malta, the language of “foggy Albion” – English, has become one of the main spoken languages of the Maltese along with Maltese and Italian.
Since May 1, 2004, Malta has been a member of the European Union and is the smallest member state of the European Union in terms of population and area. The population of Malta is about 400,000 and includes foreigners living in Malta for more than a year. The citizens of Malta are the only nation in the world to have been awarded the George Cross by the world community for their unprecedented courage and courage shown during the Second World War; the symbolic image of this award is reflected on the flag of the Republic of Malta.
The Roman Catholic Church has a great influence on the traditions and way of life of the Maltese, it is this affiliation that allows turning almost every day off into a holiday in the summer: hundreds of fireworks in all the villages of the country illuminate the skies, “festivals” are held everywhere – in this way the Maltese express their respect for religious traditions, celebrating the day of a particular saint. The Maltese are notable for their unprecedented cheerfulness and democracy in their culinary preferences: in the Maltese cuisine, motifs of both European, Mediterranean and fine oriental cuisine can be traced. In numerous cafes and restaurants in Malta, you can order both Italian pasta (spaghetti) and crumbly oriental couscous. The national dish of the Maltese is the so-called “rabbit with sauce”.
The geography of Malta is just as original and original as its culture: being an island, Malta is surrounded on all sides by the sea and, despite the fact that most of the coastline of the Maltese archipelago is rocky, along with rocky ones there are also quite a few beautiful sandy beaches, fully equipped for a good rest of tourists and residents of Malta. The sandy beaches of Mellieha Bay and Golden Bay are especially popular among guests and residents of Malta.
The comfortable climate of Malta attracts tourists throughout the year, because the air temperature in Malta rises to an average of + 30 ° C in summer, and drops only to + 13 ° C + 15 ° C in winter.
And although in winter the water in the sea is cold enough for swimming, a huge number of tourists visit Malta, because. it is a real pearl for studying the country in terms of historical sights: Neolithic temples in the south of the country, underground mystical Hypogeum catacombs, fortifications of Valletta in the Great Harbor, a city with the symbolic name “city of silence” and the former capital of Malta – Mdina, fishing villages, numerous cathedrals, churches, museums – all these and many other attractions of the island are waiting for their visitors to amaze them with their unexpected originality.
The mention of the first settlers of the second largest island of the Maltese archipelago – Gozo dates back to the 5th century BC, as evidenced by the megalithic structures found in the town of Ġgantija. The history of Gozo is closely intertwined with the history of Malta. Gozo has always been ruled by its nearest neighbour. And only during the invasion of Napoleon on Malta, in a short period from the end of October 1798 to September 1800, Gozo was an autonomous state.
Tourists and residents of the country can visit Gozo using the services of regular ferries. Gozo is the most picturesque island of the entire Maltese archipelago and is famous for its original, unique character of nature and inhabitants, as well as for its amazing churches, one of which is the small church of Ta-Pinu, where people were often healed of serious illnesses.
The capital of Gozo is Rabat, also known as Victoria, where about a fifth of the inhabitants of the entire island live.
The third largest island – about. Comino got its name from a plant that once grew on its territory – cumin (according to the English “cumin”). It is distinguished by extraordinary peace and tranquility. The island is inhabited, although there are 4 permanent residents plus 1 priest and 1 policeman, they come from the neighboring island of Gozo to provide their services to local residents and tourists visiting Comino in the summer.
In the 16th and 17th centuries, the island served as a place of exile for wandering knights. Comino is now a natural reserve.
And against the backdrop of all this original splendor of all the islands of the Maltese Archipelago – the very friendly, hospitable Maltese nation, open to communication with citizens of the entire globe!