Tuesday, September 07, 2010
Let's Go For A Walk
Valletta, which is the capital of Malta, has the charm of an Italian city with its many Baroque palaces set on narrow steep streets that form a grid pattern. The city was carefully planned by its founder, Grand Master Fra Jean de la Vallette and the Knights of the Order of St John. The city was 'built by gentlemen for gentlemen' with the first stone being ceremonially laid in 1566 after Ottoman forces withdrew their siege of the Maltese Islands and the Knights of St John took over. The purpose of the city, built in a short span of 15 years on a plateau between two harbours on Malta's northeast coast, was primarily to fortify the island and secondly to provide palaces, Auberges (lodgings) for the eight Knight's groupings (Langues), churches for worship and gardens for recreation. The remnants of the Knight's occupation today characterise Valletta in the form of some splendid Baroque buildings and fortifications, but the majestic architecture manages not to overwhelm the island's carefree personality. [source]
Valletta is rich in history, I am just reading up on this wonderfully delightful little city that has earned the status of World Heritage Site. Visiting Valletta is as one website pus it, nothing short of visiting an open air museum. So true so true. I hope the next couple or so posts I will be able to show you exactly how beautiful this city really is.
"A dramatic presentation that illustrates the history of Malta, from Neolithic to modern times, can be enjoyed at the Mediterranean Conference Centre at St. Elmo's bastion in Valletta. This building itself has been impressively restored, having been built by the Knights in the 1500s as a hospital. The wards, which are great sweeping halls with vaulted ceilings and marble floors, now serve as exhibition areas. A modern theatre has been added where the Malta Experience audio-visual show is offered in 10 languages"
I didn't go to see the Malta experience. I don't want to see a film showing - that's what I understood it was from a fellow shipmate who went to see it - when I can walk it's streets and feel the warmth of that November sun.
I appreciate all your comments. I will try to reply as much as my sched would allow.