Happy 450th Birthday Valletta!
After the battle of the Great Siege of Malta in 1565, Grand Master Jean De La Valette realised that if the Order wanted to preserve its hold on Malta, it had to provide adequate defences. As a result of this realization, La Valette drew up a plan to build a new fortified city on the Mount Sceberras peninsula and obtained financial support from Pope Pius V and Philip II of Spain. And so, in March 1566, work started – first on the bastions, and then on the other, more important buildings. It was decided that the new city was to be called Valletta, in honour of La Valette.
|Fireworks Festival in Valletta|
Flash forward to modern times, Valletta is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has been so since 1980! It plays host to a number of cultural events throughout the year including the International Baroque Festival in January, Carnival festivities in February, the International Fireworks in April, Isle of MTV in June and Notte Bianca in October amongst many others.
In 2017 Malta hosts the presidency of the European Union, and Valletta will play an important role as the President’s office will be housed at the Grand Master’s Palace.
2018 will be another important year for Valletta, as it will be given the title of European Capital of Culture. This initiative, organised by the European Union, aims to highlight and celebrate the richness and diversity of cultures in Europe. The Valletta 2018 Foundation is the organisation who piloted Malta’s successful bid for this title. They have created an ambitious vision for Valletta, a vision based on four thematic elements: Generations, Routes, Cities and Islands. Therefore, throughout 2018, Valletta will be organising a number of events based on these elements, which will aim to be a source of inspiration to other cities, both in Europe and further afield.
If you would any more information about any of the above mentioned events, or if you would simply like to book a holiday to Valletta please feel free to drop us a line by clicking here.