Early this morning, we docked in Valletta, Malta. Ancient Greeks originally arrived at this Mediterranean archipelago around 700 BC. In 1530, Charles I of Spain gave the islands to the Order of Knights of the Hospital of St. Jahn of Jerusalem in perpetual lease. These knights, a military religious order know known as the Knights of Malta, had been driven our of Rhodes by the Ottoman Empire in 1522. The country received official independence in 1964.
Valletta is the capital of Malta and a current Unesco World Heritage Site. The walled fortress city was completed in 1566 and is a fascinating place to visit today with cathedrals, museums and the Grand Masters Palace and Armoury. The walled city sits high above the harbor on the tip of a small peninsula. We hiked up (comfortable walking shoes are a must) and spent the day exploring this town and its numerous monuments and historical points of interest.
We found a great local pizzeria called Margo’s Authentic Neapolitan Pizza and shared a margherita pizza, which really “hit the spot,” after the gourmet cuisine we have been experiencing on the Silver Spirit.
Tomorrow is a day at sea en route to Florence and we will feature more about this fantastic ship.