The harbor City of Valletta treasures its history, and much of its 16th Century architecture is preserved. The Port of Valletta has a rich history with a "modern" city built by the Knights of St. John. Ruled in turn by the great empires of the Mediterranean region, it is one of the most concentrated historic sites in the world. It has a timeless and classical atmosphere, but it is a busy modern city with an exciting nightlife.
Visitors will find Europe's best palaces, churches, and artwork in the Port of Valletta. The narrow side streets have many small quaint shops and local cafes. The Port of Valletta's main streets offer international brands in fashion, music, jewelry and many other goods that tourists hope to find. To find detailed information on the many things to see and do in the Port of Valletta, please visit Malta's tourism website.
The Port of Valletta has a typical Mediterranean climate. Its summers are hot and dry, and its winters are mild. Although it can get hot, the sea breeze brings relief. A hot wind called the Xlokk can make even spring and autumn days hot and humid. What little rain that falls comes in the winter. Temperatures in the Port of Valletta range from an average high of 30 °C (86 °F) in July and August to an average low of 9 °C (48 °F) in January and February.
Visitors to the Port of Valletta who are interested in history and culture and who are willing to spend the money should try The Malta Experience. If you haven't studied the country's history, this is a great way to immerse yourself in all things Malta. Meant for first-time visitors and only half an hour long, The Malta Experience involves visual and narrative story-telling in a Port of Valletta auditorium of the island's seven-thousand-year history. The audio-visual experience has thrilled more than four million visitors since it started in the 1980s. Presented in 15 languages, the show is always being improved and updated.
One true gem of the Port of Valletta is St. John's Co-Cathedral. The earliest example of the high Baroque style, it captures the spirit of its builders. Mattia Preti carved the intricate stone wall designs and painted scenes from St. John's life on the vaulted ceiling and altars. The Cathedral is also home to the famous Caravaggio painting of St. John's beheading. The Cathedral holds over 300 marble tomb slabs, and it is the burial place of several European princes. While it does look like much from the outside, the inside of the Cathedral is very ornate. Each nationality of knight has its own chapel along the nave, and the knights competed to have the most splendid chapel. The floor covers knights' graves covered in different marble colors. While it is not one of the most famous cathedrals, it is certainly one of the most impressive.
The National Museum of Archaeology is located in the Port of Valletta's Auberge de Provence, one of the first buildings to rise after the late 16th Century great siege. Its collections include the first inhabitants of Malta (from about 5200 BC) to the Tarxien phase in about 2500 BC. The museum contains many artifacts from the island's prehistory from the first settlements to the temple-building periods. Visitors will find obsidian cores and figurines, temple carvings as well as pottery, tools, beads, and other ornaments discovered on the Island of Malta.
Travelers who want to visit the Port of Valletta and the island of Malta by sea can find a long list of scheduled cruises on the Cruise Compete website.