The Three Cities of Malta Day Tour

Just a few kilometres from the capital, The ‘Three Cities’ once known the defensive centre of Malta are now a tourist enclave. The "3 Cities of Malta", Senglea, Vittoriosa & Cospicua, are must see attractions if you want to learn about the history of the Island of Malta.

Where does the name "The Three Cities" come from?
To visit Malta is to go back at least as far as the 15th century to learn about the work of the Order of the Knights of Malta on the island. The Knights of the Order of Malta themselves were responsible for the creation of the 3 fortified towns of Senglea, Vittoriosa and Cospicua, which have served the Maltese over the centuries as a defensive refuge and home.

The "Three Cities of Malta" are located a short distance from Valletta, the island's capital, in a historic site known as La Cottonera. They are so named because of their particular layout, close to each other, forming a unique urban cordon in Valletta Bay, due to its geographical characteristics, La Cottonera was a strategic enclave in the defence of the island. 
Visit  Senglea, Vittoriosa and Cospicua
This excursion in Malta is ideal as the three fortified towns are so close that it’s possible to visit their most representative sites and monuments in just a day's journey.

  • Senglea

The heavy bombing raids during the Second World War did not put an end to the historical and cultural beauty of the first of the "Three Cities of Malta". A stroll along Settembru Street, is enough to appreciate the great treasures that this small mid-16th century town still boasts. 

If you are looking for things to do in Malta, Senglea, la città invicta, is a charming town, home to the magnificent tower of St. Michael's Fort which has eyes & ears carved into its structure as it looks over the Grand Harbour.

  • Vittoriosa

Vittoriosa survived the Great Siege of Malta in 1565 with important monuments such as the Church of San Lorenzo, the former Palace of the General of the Galleys and the Order of the Treasury of St. John, the Palace of the Grand Inquisitor and Fort Ricasoli. The latter has been the setting for such famous films as Troy and Gladiator, making it an obligatory stop for film lovers. 

Vittoriosa, also known as Birgu, was once the residence of nobles and knights from Castile, which justifies its being considered the most elegant and stately of the "Three Islands of Malta". Part of this nobility is due to the fact that it was the Maltese capital until 1565, when it was transferred to Valletta. 

  • Cospicua

Cospicua also known as Bormla is the newest of the three fortified towns. Its historical essence is still intact in places. The Church of the Immaculate Conception, whose interior houses one of the most important art collections in the country, and the St Margaret's Lines, the stepped buildings that mark the town's second line of defence is still largely intact.

However, the largest of the "Three Cities of Malta" was also one of the worst affected by the bombings of the Second World War and part of its historical heritage had to be reinvented after the conflict. Nevertheless, this maze of steep streets still has a special charm that stretches from the Grand Harbour walls to the upper town. 

Stay with us at Mercure St. Julian’s Malta. Our 4 Star hotel, located in St. Julian is equipped with a roof top pool with 360 degree view of the city, walking distance from the beach & promenade, and near the main restaurants, bars and casinos.

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