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 Editor's Review
Malta has a long history – St Paul was shipwrecked there – and a long association with Britain. Its history includes centuries as the home of the Knights of St John’s Hospital after the crusades and the Grand Master’s Palace is a central feature of Valletta, Malta’s capital. Malta has long had great strategic importance in the Mediterranean, and after capture by Napoleon, became part of the British Empire on his defeat. A remaining section of Valletta’s ancient wall is known as the ‘English Curtain’ and the Maltese still drive on the left. During World War II, its heroic resistance to air siege and bombardment led to the award of the George Cross, now part of the name and flag. Valletta’s Grand Harbour has always been a vital naval base and is an impressive busy port today. The two other islands in the group, Gozo and the much smaller Comino, can be reached by ferry, seaplane or helicopter. Each boasts a large selection of splendid beaches, including Gozo’s red sand Ramla Bay. Comino, named for the cumin plant that grows profusely there, also has the much-filmed sapphire waters of the Blue Lagoon as a major attraction.

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