Valletta is the capital city of Malta, colloquially known as Il-Belt in Maltese. Geographically, it is located in the South Eastern Region, in the central-eastern portion of the main island of Malta having its western coast with access to the Marsamxett Harbour and its eastern coast in the Grand Harbour. The historical city has a population of 6,444 while the metropolitan area around it has a population of 393,938.
Valletta is named after its founder, the respected Grand Master of the Order of St. John, Jean Parisot de la Valettea. The magnificent fortress city grew on the arid rock of Mount Sceberras peninsula, which rises steeply from two deep natural harbours, Marsamxett and Grand Harbour (is Malta's major port). Started in 1566, Valletta was completed, with its impressive bastions, forts and cathedral, in the astonishingly short time of 15 years, even more remarkable is considering the fact that mechanical tools did not exist at the time and the whole city was built entirely by hand.
Its streets were aligned in a grid-like layout, being wide and straight, which is said to have been chosen to allow the sea breeze to provide respite from Malta’s hot summer weather.
Valletta is Malta’s administrative and commercial hub, with several government departments occupying some of its historical buildings and several financial and logistics companies having their offices here.