Huffington Post 19/05/2014: The eight points on a Maltese cross stand for the eight original "langues" or foreign origins of the care-giving Knights Hospitaller of St. John who were gifted the islands of Malta in the early 1500s. They can also stand for eight good reasons to travel to the richly historical country. Add in glorious Mediterranean weather, the compact terrain, the convenient euro currency, the common English language and the appeal of the island mini-republic just 60 miles from Sicily, should be irresistible.
After a small band of St. John Knights and native Maltese survived the Turkish onslaught of 1565, Grand Master Jean Parisot de Valette
engaged architects to design the first city built on a grid plan, easy
to defend and allowing sea breeze ventilation. Heavily bombed during
World War II, that namesake city Valetta has been rebuilt, lined with
residences bearing charming galleria balconies. Currently, noted
architect Renzo Piano is erecting a new Parliament Building and...read on.