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Malta is a small archipelago with about 375,000 inhabitants in the middle of Mediteranean. Apart from the main island of Malta, there is another inhabited island, with the name of Gozo. Some 29,000 people live there. In between Malta and Gozo is the small island of Comino, where only one family lives permanently, but the island is much visited by tourists because of the Blue Lagoon, a sheltered bay with crystal clear water. It is even possible to stay on Comino for a holiday, since there is a hotel complex. Furthermore there are some uninhabited islands, like St. Paul's Island in the north and Filfla in the south.

Map of Malta and Gozo


The history of these small islands is one of conquest and colonizers. It's strategic position in the Mediterranean, in between Europe and Africa, half way Gibraltar and the Middle East made it a perfect stronghold for the consecutive colonizers. The Phoenicians, the Romans, the Arabs, the Angevins, the Aragonese, the Knights of Saint John and the British were amongst them - all with just one goal: to control the middle of the Mediterranean.
Traces of these cultures can still be found in Malta. Phoenician tombs are still quite numerous throughout the island. The Roman Villa and several Roman and early Christian catacombs in Rabat can be visited. The ancient city of Mdina bears traces of its Arab past (as does the place name itself). The capital city of Valletta is an open history book on the era of the Knights of St. John. And the British influence is obvious as well: left hand driving, British phone booths, it's all there!
But there is more! Dating back to 3600 BC are the megalithic temples, huge stone structures, built for the veneration of the Goddess of Fertility. These stone structures are considered to be the oldest free standing buildings in the world.

Dingli Cliffs, the highest point of Malta The Blue Lagoon (Comino) with Gozo in the background

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