Saturday, June 23, 2018

Malta, 15: Valletta And The Three Cities

Mostly Valletta, the capital, a gorgeous city, despite the widespread destruction of the air raids of 1941-1943.
As this picture (someone else's) amply shows, the old city is literally an
enormous star fort, perhaps the biggest we have seen

The Triton Fountain, at the main gate to Valletta

Note: a) creamy limestone blocks, and b) enclosed balconies

Parliament building

Not Roman ruins: these are the remains of the national theater, Valletta's architectural
gem, destroyed in the bombings of 1942, never rebuilt; but now re-designed and
re-used for outdoor concerts

Main street view, Saturday morning

Probably the only Amorino's we have ever walked by without
having an ice cream (we were distracted by the closing of the
cathedral...another story)

Historic old government building

With important historical plaques

The light bulb thing, not just a Gozo thing

In all my travels, I have never, ever, seen a double-reed
busker, but here, in Valletta, Malta, is a street oboist (my
instrument); he was good, too, and I tipped generously

Another Knightly abode


Interesting bench

More grand old buildings

Street scene, looking down to the sea

So to get from the city, that is, the wall-girt fortress (to
employ Homer's expression), you can walk, or take this
10-story elevator down to the harbor

Saluting guns

Grand Harbor

Iconic view, across the Grand Harbor to the Three Cities; Birgu dates from
medieval times, but Senglea and Cospicua were originally fortresses built by
the Knights in the 16th and 17th centuries; yes, this will be on the quiz; for
more information on the Knights and Charles V's gift of Malta to them watch
The Maltese Falcon; never mind the Knights are mistakenly referred to as
the "Knights Templar" in the movie's opening; OK, the movie is one of the
greatest ever but really has nothing to do with Malta

Us, there

Top of elevator

View from below

On the ferry, crossing the Grand Harbor

And about to disembark in the Three Cities, to visit the Malta At War museum

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