The geographical location
Malta is only 95 km from Sicily and 320 km from the North African coast. Malta is in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea and therefore has a special strategic position. Malta is a small island, 316 km² big, just 27 km long and 14 km wide. The sister island Gozo is situated in the north-east and with 67 km², respectively small.
Repubblika ta 'Malta (Malta). Malta is an independent state since 1964, when Malta received independence from Great Britain. In the thousands of years of history Malta was never before an independent state.
The Maltese Islands are home to over 400,000 residents today, about 360,000 in Malta and 40,000 in Gozo. Malta has - within the EU - the largest population density of more than 1,250 people per square kilometer. Many cultures left their mark on Malta, there are so many last names from Italy, Spain, Arabia, etc. Names like Borg or Meli are common in Germany or Switzerland, but in Malta as well. The language is primarily influenced by an Arabic dialect, but which is written in Latin letters, many words from Italian and French. One senses the geographical proximity to Italy and the influence of the English during the colonial period. This is a very interesting mix. Thus, the Maltese are friendly and open as the Italians, friendly and courteous as the English.
93% of Maltese are Roman Catholic, and prove the 365 churches on Malta that the Maltese are industrious church-goers. The religion has more impact on everyday life than in Germany.
In addition to the Maltese language, English is the second official language. But Maltese determines every day life. Most Maltese communicate in Maltese. There are parts, mainly in the area of Sliema and St. Julian, where it is considered chic to speak English. Italian is very well understood in Malta.