Why Valletta Is Europe’s Prettiest Capital City in 32 Photos

A UNESCO World Heritage site, this city exudes history from every square inch of its narrow cobblestoned streets, from every ornate Baroque building and imposing rampart, gently lapped by the blue Mediterranean Sea.

But, within the ancient walls of this glorious fortress, life bubbles in sunny piazzas lined with elegant outdoor cafés, around honey-colored limestone palazzi, and beneath enclosed wooden balconies painted in bright colors.

Old buildings in Malta
Old street in Europe
Alley in Valletta Old Town

Though small, the capital is home to the largest concentration of art in Europe, and the beautifully restored centuries-old townhouses dotted throughout play host to some of Valletta’s best boutique accommodations.

Founded in 1565 by the Order of St John, Valletta is a delightful mélange of Arabic, British, and Italian influences, all of which shine in its majestic architecture, delectable cuisine, and vibrant cultural life. And speaking of culture, some major infrastructural projects and over 400 events have been planned in the city and various locations across Malta in preparation for its function as European Capital of Culture 2018.

Throw some excellent Mediterranean restaurants, outstanding scuba diving, and a constellation of art galleries into the mix, and you’ve got one of Europe’s most alluring coastal cities – These images prove it in spades:

European Capital of Culture 2018
Colorful wood balconies
Street festival in Valletta
Medieval street
Majestic architecture in Malta
Lower Barrakka Gardens
Upper Barrakka Gardens
Watch tower in Valletta
Beautiful park with ancient architecture
Red British telephone cabin
Popeye village
Rooftops and the sea
The Grand Harbour
Small colored boats
Street carriage
Valletta skyline
Upper Barrakka lift
Lift in the old town
Auberge de Castille
Church of Saint Catherine of Italy
Jean de Valette Square
National Library of Malta
Seaside city in Malta
Sunset in Valletta
Most beautiful city in Europe
Maltese architecture
Port of Valletta
Blue hour in Valletta

Images licensed by Ingram Image