Our Lady Of Victory Church is said to be the oldest church in Valletta and was rebuilt in its Baroque architectural style in the mid/ 18th century . It was dedicated to the Virgin Mother as a child ' Il-Bambina". The feast is celebrated on the 8th of September, the same date of the Knights's victory from the Great Seige in 1565.
The city is a delight to shop in: narrow side streets are full of tiny shops selling antiques, maps, books, prints and jewellery. For good quality fashion though quite pricey, music and much more try Valletta's main streets - Republic Street and Merchants Street.
Walking around Valletta, you'll come across an intriguing historical site around every corner: votive statues, niches, fountains and coats of arms high up on parapets. And when you need to stop and take it all in, the city yields up squares, courtyards, gardens and any number of cafés, right on cue.
Ok Valletta has many fine churches but I just want to show you one more.....
St Paul is considered to be the spiritual father of the maltese and many churches in Malta are named after St Paul. The Shipwreck of St Paul is a great event in the history of Malta and thus St Paul's Collegiate Church (Shipwreck Church) in Valletta is one of the most important in Malta. We were glad to be here when it was the festa day and the church was lit up like Blackpool illuminations!
The large white dome of this church is a landmark on the Valletta skyline. This was Valletta's first functional church and opened its doors to the public in 1570. It has obviously undergone several transformnations since then and greatly rebuilt after severe damage in WW2.
Normally the festa of St Paul's Shipwreck is Feb 10th but was brought forward due to Lent being early. The banners and decorations in the streets were all out and a party atmsosphere ensued - the actual processsion of the statue didn't take place though as possibility of rain meant the treasured staute that is normally paraded through the streets could be damaged. Even so it was a colourful expeience and if you are around for a festa - there are so many then go and enjoy the fun.
This was the first building to be erected in Valletta, around 1566. It commemorates the lifting of the first Great Siege and used to contain the body of Valletta's founder - Jean De La Vallette (he's now in the Co-Cathedral).
It's just one of several fine looking buildings clustered around the ruins of The Royal Opera House
The Carmelite Church is the name more frequently given to "Our Lady Of Mount Carmel", the huge domed church that stands near Valletta's northern waterfront. This dome and the spire of St. Paul's Anglican make up part of the most famous view of Valletta, and perhaps of Malta.
The church is huge - it's almost impossible to get a better shot than this too, as it is hemmed in by buildings making it almost impossible to get a shot from nearby.
It is said (true or not?) that the church was built with the intention of overshadowing the Anglican Cathedral, something that it doesn't quite do - they simply complement one another (IMO).
St Paul's Anglican Cathedral is huge, with a neoclassical facade and a tall spire, which forms part of Valletta's most famous aspect as seen from Sliema. The cathedral dates from 1839 and is little used these days as the number of anglicans on the island dwindles.
Inside the cathedral is clean and simple, bright and airy. We spent a nice half hour or so in conversation there with a Maltese/Canadian who now tends the cathedral.
This building is close to the entrance of the Upper Barakka Gardens. It is the Garrison Church, once the church of the British garrison stationed in Valletta (no sh*t sherlock) and it is now the Maltese Stock Exchange.
The interior of the shipwreck church was richly decorated with red drapes - whether this was just for the festa or normal I'm not sure as the church had such a wealth of treasures inside - never seen so much on display in a church - and the paintings were really colourful. Certianly seemed a popular church to visit so put it on your must see list.
The most prized, and most protected treasure in the Shipwreck Church is this claimed relic of the right wrist bone of St Paul and part of the column on which he was beheaded. Sometimes it is covered up and not for public viewing - this was the case of the festa day when so many people were milling around the church and outside on the streets - we quicklly popped in on another day and managed to see it.
This church is built on a neo-classical style on the site of the former Auberge d'Allemagne - home of the German Knights of Malta. Its it spire though, rising over 200 feet which along with the dome of the Carmelite Chuch forms the classical view of Valletta.
This classical view (seen in page intro pic) is best appreciated from the water on a harbour cruise or from Sliema.
Its giant dome is one of the most impressive points in Valletta's skyline. Originally, a church built in 1570 stood here, but it was destroyed in the second world war and this church was erected in its palce in the 1950s.
daily 6.00-12.00 and 16.00-19.00
Be sure to see the church right off the main square as you enter the city gates.
Just gorgeous with marble, tile work, and lovely paintings.