Monaco and Malta

WHERE IS MONACO?
WHERE IS MONACO?

MONACO & MALTA

What do Monaco and Malta have in common? They both start with an "M." Seriously though, they have very little in common except that I visited both of them during a vacation a few years ago. Both places have long held a certain fascination for me as exotic locales. While Monaco is more glamorous as the playground for the rich and famous; Malta has an incredible history sitting as it does smack in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea. I didn't know anyone who had been to either so I made the trip to see what it was all about. I could not have had a better vacation. My Hub Pages AVATAR is a photograph of me in Monaco.


MALTA IS IN THAT LITTLE SQUARE IN THE CENTER
MALTA IS IN THAT LITTLE SQUARE IN THE CENTER
OLD MONACO
OLD MONACO

MONACO

Monaco is the most densely populated country in the world; and the smallest, save Vatican City. You can walk across it in about an hour. Only 33,000 people actually live there. Monaco is in the French Riviera, surrounded by France but only ten miles from Italy, on the shores of the Mediterranean. It is also home to the longest ruling family in Europe, The House of Grimaldi, which has ruled Monaco since 1297 from the same Royal Palace.

MONACO FROM THE SEA
MONACO FROM THE SEA
THE ROYAL PALACE OF MONACO
THE ROYAL PALACE OF MONACO
INSIDE THE MONTE CARLO CASINO
INSIDE THE MONTE CARLO CASINO

MONTE CARLO

Monte Carlo (Mount Charles) is a district of Monaco with 3,000 residents, widely known for its casino gambling.  Citizens of Monaco are forbidden from entering the casinos.  But I'm not.  I played blackjack in the Monte Carlo Casino; won a few hundred dollars in an hour or two; and walked away a winner! 

MONTE CARLO CASINO
MONTE CARLO CASINO
MONACO AT NIGHT
MONACO AT NIGHT
ST. NICHOLAS CATHEDRAL
ST. NICHOLAS CATHEDRAL

GRACE KELLY IS BURIED HERE

Besides the Casino  at Monte Carlo and the Royal Palace, I also visited Old Monaco and the St. Nicholas Cathedral.  The Cathedral only dates back to 1875. but sits on the site of  the old Monaco Church, built in 1252.  Most of the Grimaldi family are buried there including Grace Kelly.

MONACO
MONACO
VALLETTA
VALLETTA

MALTA

Malta (which means honey) is 58 miles from Sicily and has approximately 400,000 full time residents, densely packed onto about 100 square miles of three inhabited islands.   I first became intrigued by Malta when I read the accounts in the Acts of the Apostles that St. Paul had been shipwrecked there. Due to its obviously strategically important location, these tiny pieces of land have been fought over for millennia. 

MDINA
MDINA

HISTORY OF MALTA

The ancient Greeks settled on Malta 2700 years ago; followed by the Phoenicians about 100 years later; the Carthaginians 200 years after that; then the Romans another 200 years later. The Byzantines took control in the 4th Century A.D. and held on, despite brief conquests periodically by the Goths and Vandals, until the conquest of Malta by the Arabs in 909. Then it was the Normans turn in 1091; followed by the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation in 1194. The French took over for around 12 years in 1266 before finally, the Spanish settled in for a long reign. Then it gets really interesting.


CHAPEL ST JOHN'S CATHEDRAL
CHAPEL ST JOHN'S CATHEDRAL

KNIGHTS HOSPITALLER

In 1530 Spain gave Malta to the Knights Hospitaller. Also known as the Order of St. John, these knights were a Christian military organization founded in Jerusalem in 1080. The original purpose of the Knights Hospitaller was to protect Christian pilgrims who traveled on foot from Europe to the Holy Land, often coming under attack from Muslims (and especially to care for the poor, sick or injured—hence their name, Hospitallers). The Arabs had taken Jerusalem and The Holy Land from Christians in 638, and it long had been a dream in Europe to retake the Holy Land where Jesus Christ lived, died and was resurrected. When Jerusalem was conquered by Christians during the First Crusade in 1099, the Knights Hospitaller became the defenders of the Holy Land. Within 100 years they lost Jerusalem to the Muslims again, and within 200 years were driven completely out of the Holy Land. Given Malta by Spain as their new home, the Knights stayed for 268 years there, transforming what they called "merely a rock of soft sandstone" into a flourishing island with mighty defenses.


GRAND MASTER'S PALACE
GRAND MASTER'S PALACE

NAPOLEON COMETH

Napoleon, through legerdemain, captured Malta in 1798 but two years later the Maltese were rescued by the British.  Malta remained a British Dominion until 1964 when it became an independent nation. 

GRAND MASTER'S PALACE

After that lengthy history lesson, which I apologize for to the uninterested, let's proceed to my visit there, which encompassed four cities.  The main attraction is the capital city of Valletta.  I toured the 500-year-old Grand Master's Palace, which houses the President of Malta and its House of Representatives, as well as The Amoury, which displays the finest collection of weapons used by Knights.  The walls of the palace feature fabulous tapestries and frescos. 

FLOOR OF ST. JOHN'S CATHEDRAL
FLOOR OF ST. JOHN'S CATHEDRAL

ST JOHN'S CATHEDRAL

The ultimate experience for me though, was my visit to St. John's Cathedral.  The Knights built it in the 1570s.  The marble mosaic floor is inlaid with the tombs of 400 Knights.  The more important knights were placed closer to the front of the church. These tombstones, richly decorated the coats of arms of the knight buried below as well as images relevant to that knight, often telling a story of triumph in battle, form a rich visual panoply in the church. 

ASSUMPTION CHURCH
ASSUMPTION CHURCH
VITTORIOSA
VITTORIOSA

SIDE TRIPS IN MALTA

I also made side trips to the ancient capital of Mdina, where the Cathedral of St. Paul is a main attraction; to Mosta, to see the Assumption Church, which holds 12,000 people; and to Vittoriosa, a principle maritime Medieval town.  Enough talk—let's finish taking a look at the pictures.  

More by this Author

  • Detroit Michigan
    194

    Fifty years ago Detroit was among the richest cities in the world and offered perhaps the best quality of life of any city in America. Today, it is bankrupt, the most dangerous place in the country, boasts 78,000...

  • EDITOR'S CHOICE
    Lake Michigan Circle Tour
    117

    The Lake Michigan Circle Tour is a designated scenic road system that circumnavigates Lake Michigan: excellent roads, huge sand dunes, beautiful vistas, fabulous beaches, and 100 historic lighthouses.

  • Define Socialism
    202

    Socialism has new wind in its sails. Americans under the age of thirty appear to believe that Socialism is just as good a system as Capitalism. What is Socialism? Socialism is a fundamental reconstruction of society...


Comments 70 comments

Douglas 7 years ago

While I have not been to Monaco, I have in the last two years been to Malta twice. They make wonderfully colored glass both there and on the neighboring island of Gozo.

Thanks for the snapshot of history James.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Douglas— Thank you for being my first visitor. I did not visit Gozo. Next time. I appreciate your comments.


Gypsy Willow profile image

Gypsy Willow 7 years ago from Lake Tahoe Nevada USA , Wales UK and Taupo New Zealand

Wonderful hub, James. You should be a travel writer. I have been to Malta twice and didn't find out half the facts you unearthed. Monaco looks Marvellous but out of my league. Interesting place. You saved the best til last, Hercules, adorable! Thanks


Vladimir Uhri profile image

Vladimir Uhri 7 years ago from HubPages, FB

Beautiful places. Thanks.


Robert 7 years ago

James,

Loved the history lesson, perhaps a teaching career is what you need. Great photos. Can you climb Mt. Kilimanjaro and take some pics for us???


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Gypsy Willow— Thank you! Your travel Hubs are the best. Monaco is expensive. No doubt about that. A one time deal. Hercules is fine lad. You're welcome!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Vladimir Uhri— Always a good day when you stop by. You are welcome.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Robert— Thank you, sir.  I have thought about teaching, actually.  I have long thought that a noble profession.  haven't done any mountain climbing.  I will take that under advisement.  I appreciate your comments.


Frieda Babbley profile image

Frieda Babbley 7 years ago from Saint Louis, MO

I have a Maltese too! Seraphina. She's quite a best little friend. Hercules looks just like her. (More manly of course, well, not really.)

I'm in a bit of shock because the dome in St. Nicholas Cathedral where Grace Kelly is burried, has the exact same painting as in the dome at St. Nicholas here in St. Louis.

Well, I found the history very interesting, especially the passing of hands of Malta. Wonderful photos. Glad you shared.


TheMindlessBrute profile image

TheMindlessBrute 7 years ago from Orlando,Florida

It must be awesome to retrace the paths of so many in history.I think I'd be intimidated to walk along the floor of St. John's Cathedral though,as it is truly a work of art.

Do you have to sail into Malta,or is there an airport?


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Frieda Babbley— Seraphina is a lovely name.  We have something in common—again!  That is interesting about that church dome in St. Louis.  Thank you for your comments.  The pleasure was all mine.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

TheMindlessBrute— There is a modern airport in the capital city, Valletta. I went there by ship myself. That floor is something one never forgets. I wish I had a clearer photo of it. The coats of arms are fabulously done. And to think you are walking on the tombs of 400 Knights. It sticks with you. Thank you for visiting and leaving your comments.


ethel smith profile image

ethel smith 7 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

Monaco looks well worth a visit. Have been to Malta and loved it. They say you either love or hate Malta but that there is no happy medium. This hub is fascinating as the photos are brilliant.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

ethel smith— I loved Malta; and Monaco.  But in different ways.  In Monaco, the parade of the rich and beautiful was an amazing sight to behold.  A definite atmosphere I have experienced no where else on earth.  In Malta, the history of the place was unforgettable to witness.  Thank you for visiting and for your comments.


Betty Wilson 7 years ago

James,

Enjoyed all the pictures and information.

Have been to Monaco many years ago when Princess Grace was living.

My husband and I along with two other couples stayed in the Princess Hotel in Monte Carlo which was Princess Grace's favorite hotel.

One evening as we sat in the lobby of the Princess Hotel she and Prince Rainer walked within two feet of me. It was interesting to look at both of them that close - her jewelry and the way they both were dressed. She was beautiful and he was handsome - a stunning couple.

We, also, visited the Monte Carlo Casino. Some really high stakes gambling went on. My gambling was fun, but much more fun to watch a handsome Prince gamble that evening. We were told by the hotel that he lost over a million dollars that evening.

Monaco is a beautiful place.

Thanks for writing and posting the beautiful pictures.

Betty


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Betty— Thank you for a tremendous and fascinating contribution to this article! WOW! 2 feet from Princess Grace! Now that's a story to tell one's grandchildren! I appreciate you for taking the time to view this Hub and your comments are priceless!


Iðunn 7 years ago

Gorgeous hub and filled with all kinds of interesting information regarding Knights Hospitaller and the Church. I was fascinated.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Iðunn Why, thank you so much! The history of the Church is something I have spent a lot of hours studying. And Knights have always held a certain fascination for me, too. I am glad you liked it. Thanks for coming!


rosariomontenegro profile image

rosariomontenegro 7 years ago from NEW YORK

James, Thank you for the extraordinary picture of St. John's Cathedral's floor. It really makes me dream of going to visit the island. You might want to go deeper in the history of the Knights Hospitaller and the Order of Malta. They are still up and running, and very much devoted to their original mission to tend to the sick and the poor. One of their special missions I know they had during the XX century --and they still have but happily with new medical resources-- is the care of lepers. The name of the Order is Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of St. John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta.The names of places indicate the history of the Order's seats and displacements. Curiously it does not reflect that their present seat, now for a couple of centuries, is the city of Rome, where they have their Magisterial Palace, house of their Prince and religious Superior, who is also a Cardinal in the ranks of the Catholic Church. The Order of Malta is practically a state without a territory. It is a sovereign subject of international law, with military rights, its own government, laws and even mint. It has ambassadors to more than a hundred countries including the United States and to the main international institutions like the United Nations. But of course their military role is just a romantic memory, although it was quite formidable for several centuries. Anybody can become a volontary member of the Order. I don't know if they demand from volontaries the Catholic faith. The Knights and Dames of Malta have definitely to be very virtuous Catholics.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

rosariomontenegro— Thank you for the great addition to this thread!  I knew the Order still existed, but I thought it was largely ceremonial, for some reason.  I did not know any of the information you illumined me about here with these outstanding comments.  Thank you very much!


Drake's Compass profile image

Drake's Compass 7 years ago from Denver, Colorado

James, the only word on these locales is: wow. I find it hard to believe that there has only been one James Bond movie ("GoldenEye") filmed in Monaco! (Granted, the producers have to keep the locales varied, but...) The principality looks like paradise on Earth, and I have a little theory (nothing big) as to what may help make it that way...I'll present this in my next hub. Again, a most entertaining and informative job!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Drake's Compass— Thank you for your gracious words!  It is the nicest place I've ever been.  It takes a lot a chips to stay there for very long. 

I'll be on vacation for a week sans computer but when I get back I'm going to catch up on your Hubs. Getting packed to head to the airport now.  ciao!


Drake's Compass profile image

Drake's Compass 7 years ago from Denver, Colorado

Ciao, James - have a safe trip!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Drake's Compass— I just got home today. I have 1000 emails in my box. Not 1001 and not 999. 1000. Looks like I have some work to do.


Kebennett1 profile image

Kebennett1 7 years ago from San Bernardino County, California

James, I lived on the island of Malta. I loved it. I can not wait to go back! I want to take my husband and children there and introduce them to the wonderful History and architecture. It is truly one of the most beautiful places on earth! I was able to see what is left of the Roman Baths, the Monolithic Temples, where it is said that Paul was shipwrecked, the slave caves, and so much more.... I hope to return in 2011.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Kebennett1— You did!? That's amazing! I have never met anyone who actually lived there. I love Malta. What beauty and what history. A truly unique corner of the earth. Thanks for your comments.


Staci-Barbo7 profile image

Staci-Barbo7 7 years ago from North Carolina

James, don't you find it absolutely incredible that Monaco has had the same ruling family for over 700 years?  By the time we've had a president here in the US for 4 years - at the most 8 - we're ready for a 'change,' like a change of linen after wash day. 

Hercules is the most handsome boy!  We have a Maltese named Sissy in my family.  I'm her aunt - she actually belongs to my sister.  Sissy is thirteen years old and everybody's sweetheart!  (If you promise not to tell, I'll make an admission - Hercules looks much nicer in his picture than Sissy does most of the time.  Sissy, being a tomboy, likes wallowing outside a little too much).


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Staci-Barbo7— That is indeed incredible that Monaco has been ruled so long by the Grimaldis. 

Thank you for complimenting my boy.  He is a handsome lad, to be sure.  I am glad to hear you have Sissy in the family.  That's cool. 

Thank you for viewing my article and leaving word that you did.


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 7 years ago from Houston, Texas

I love armchair traveling with you James. I learned so much.

The citizens of Monaco can't enter the casinos? Who works in them?

That floor of St. John's Cathedral is amazing! All the photos were wonderful.

Loved reading the comments also.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Peggy,

That is a good question. The casino workers must come from nearby France or Italy. Unless . . . I am certain the citizens cannot gamble there, maybe they can work there?

That floor was the highlight of my trip. I actually found some better photos of Malta (and the floor) the other day by accident, when looking for other pics, but have been too lazy to change them. :-)

Thank you so much for the kudos. I appreciate it.


DeBorrah K. Ogans profile image

DeBorrah K. Ogans 7 years ago

Beautiful Pictures! My husband and I had a wonderful time visiting Monaco several years ago. We went to St. Nicholas Cathedral, Royal Palace as well as the Casino. The cruise down the Mediterranean Sea was absolutely gorgeous . We actually started out in Spain after visiting “The Montserrat.”

The architecture in Europe is simply beautiful! We have wonderful memories of our visit there. I am quite thankful for it was a beautiful vacation. By the way Hercules is beautiful as well or should I say handsome? Thanks for refreshing my memory. Blessings


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

DeBorrah K. Ogans— Thank you! :-)

I was on a Mediterranean cruise, too, that started in Barcelona and ended in Athens. The best vacation ever. I am glad you have been to Monaco. What a place! Hercules is a handsome lad and I appreciate you saying so. :)


Tina Irene 7 years ago

James,

All the places in your travel Hubs are of interest to me and these two are the first out of all of them. This similar interest stuff is getting weird. Anyway...one of my classmates was from Malta. Great people, a fascinating place and a most intriguing history.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Tina Irene— Your remarks have brought joy to me. I love to travel. Malta and Monaco were two of the more interesting places I have been. There is a Hubber who used to live in Malta "Kebennett1"

The history of Malta sitting as it does in the crossroads of the Mediterranean is engaging.

Thanks for your kind comments. :D


trimar7 profile image

trimar7 7 years ago from New York

Your photos are gorgeous. Thank you for sharing them. I would love to go visit one day.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

trimar7— Both of these places are very cool to visit. They are both interesting and unusual because of their histories. Thanks for the compliment. I hope you do get to go. :-)


stars439 profile image

stars439 6 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

Fascinating and noble places you have been too and seen. Thank you for sharing the beauty.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

stars439— I have never had such a loyal supporter. I am flattered. I will surely be coming by to read your Hubs later today after my expected company leaves. Thank you so much for your encouragement.


lawrence 6 years ago

Congratulations for your blog.

The more you know about your destination, the more you enjoy your holiday trips. Maximise your visit time in Malta. With the CityGuide you would be like having a car GPS device that will guide from one attraction to the next.

Enjoy every detail of history during your stay whilst you roam around like a local.

Get free ebooks from www cultel com

www cultel com explains it all


KellyEngaldo 6 years ago

Monaco is on my radar! I must refer back to this article when I plan my trip. Excellence photos and great puppy dog ending!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

lawrence— Thank you for that fine tip. I appreciate the visitation.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

KellyEnglando— That's my boy! :D

Monaco is fascinating and great fun. Thank yo so much for coming by to visit. I appreciate your comments, too.


donna bamford profile image

donna bamford 6 years ago from Canada

Interesting articles and so well presented. Have never been to Malta and was asleep on the train when we passed through Monaco but would love to visit both places. Thanks for the site.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

donna bamford— Welcome to the Hub Pages Community! You slept through Monaco!? Well, maybe next time. :) Thanks for visiting and commenting.


Don Bobbitt profile image

Don Bobbitt 6 years ago from Ruskin Florida

Excellent, Excellent, Excellent!

I was in Malta on the mid-60's when I was in the Navy, and your Hub and pictures brought back some VERY OLD memories.

Great work, and Thanks!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

Don Bobbitt— Hey Don! I've been meaning to get over and visit your work. I'll do that tomorrow at the latest. I've got one more Hub in the works and then I'm taking some time off for real life and to read a lot of Hubs.

That Malta is a fascinating place with an extraordinary history. I loved it there. Thanks for letting me know you enjoyed my Hub. :)


prettydarkhorse profile image

prettydarkhorse 6 years ago from US

oh beautiful James, I went to Malta 2003 and I love Gaza and Comino, I road a ferry and visited those places, I stayed in Valetta too, awesome indeed as it is like a tourist hub, many seamen dropped to that area before they go Africa too,,,

I like to go to Monaco, am not rich though,

Have a happy holiday even if times are hard, smile,

Keep on believing, Maita


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

prettydarkhorse— Maita! Always great to see your smiling face and read your optimistic words. I can see you are well traveled if you have been to Malta. Not many folks have had that pleasure.

Thank you for reading my Hubs and offering your encouragement.

Merry Christmas!


katyzzz profile image

katyzzz 6 years ago from Sydney, Australia

Are all the Maltese as delightful as your little friend there, a great travel tale and history lesson, and 'be a gambler winner, not a loser' really wonderful photos, well done.

You've taught me a lot just to-day.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

katyzzz— Hello my artsy friend! I doubt they are all as delightful as my Hercules. That would be impossible. :-)

I am glad you liked the photos and the article. Thanks for your kind comments.


Marie-Renee profile image

Marie-Renee 6 years ago

Wonderful photos...great writing too. The way you write makes me feel like am taking the trip too..thanks for that since I haven't been there..i certainly dream of doing that one of these days.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

Marie-Renee— You are quite welcome. These are two of my favorite places to visit. Thank you for complimenting my writing and my photos.


stephhicks68 profile image

stephhicks68 6 years ago from Bend, Oregon

I love Monaco - simply beautiful place! We've visited from the French Riviera. Never been to Malta, but we really love visiting Italy too. This will have to go to the top of my list of places to see next time we're in Europe.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

stephhicks68— I am honored to receive the Master Hubber here today. I adore Italy. Malta is cool. Monaco is top shelf. Thank you very much for coming to visit. I appreciate your warm words.


CoauthorU profile image

CoauthorU 5 years ago from Inland Northwest, USA

Mr. Watkins thank you so much for your "first contact" of me, without which I might not have ever encountered your offerings.

Monaco and Malta, is the first of your Hubs I have enjoyed and am piqued for the rest and I will "share" your Hubs on my Facebook.

Again thank you.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

CoauthorU— You are welcome. I look forward to reading your Hubs. I am honored and grateful that you would share my Hubs on your Facebook. Thank you very much! :-)


Sharon Leon 5 years ago

It was wonderful looking at your pictures. I visited Monaco and Malta a couple of years ago and am still in love with both places. In particular, I know this is odd, but on Rue de Caroline in Monaco we visited a little cafe and had a grilled cheese sandwich. It was made like none I've ever had and I've wished ever since I'd taken a picture or gotten the method, which cheeses etc. Your pics too me back. Thank you.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Sharon Leon— You are most welcome. It is good to hear from another traveler who has experienced these beautiful places. I didn't have a grilled cheese sandwich while I was in Monaco but from the sound of it I wished I had. I do love them! I just read yesterday that Monaco means "monk."

Thank you for visiting my Hub. I appreciate your nice comments.


Ruchira profile image

Ruchira 5 years ago from United States

An informative hub with beautiful pix is appealing for anybody who has not been there :)


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

Ruchira— Thank you for your kind words. I appreciate the visit and your comments. :D


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Wow! Gorgeous! I have travel envy:). I have not been here YET! You have made me want to now and I want to win some money in the casino! I am going to love reading so many of your writings! Thank you Mr. Watkins. I just finished polishing the hard wood floors and had a moment to rest. I feel like it was time spent well!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

RealHousewife— You are welcome. These two places were perhaps the most exciting places I have ever been. Completely worth the journey if you can make it.

I love hard wood floors. Cherry is my favorite.

Thank you for using your rest period to peruse my little Hub. I enjoyed reading your comments.


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Thank you! You provided the reading entertainment. You know, I clean my own house so I can save the money for trips such as this? Worth every blister!!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

RealHousewife— You're welcome. I am well pleased to provide the entertainment. Worth every blister!? :D You're funny.


stessily 4 years ago

James, I have long wanted to visit the two M's! When my sisters and I travelled from southern France to Italy by train, we passed through Monaco; I don't know why we didn't stop to visit; I've long been fascinated with the country, but I guess that we had stars in our eyes about Tuscan Italy and about Greece.

The mosaic floor inlaid with the tombs of 400 Knights Templar at St. John's must really be beautiful to behold in person and quite unique.

The photo of the Mediterranean around Vittoriosa captures the distinctive blueness of that grand sea.

Wonderful travelogue with spectacular photos. I'll wish upon Orion tonight --- if he's visible what with cloudiness of last few days --- for a protracted trip to M and M, both on the M.

Those incomparable seafarers of yore, the Phoenicians, devised their beautiful saying that "The gods do not deduct from a man's allotted life span, those days spent sailing" as a result of sailing and exploring the Mediterranean.

By the way, congrats on winning in Blackjack and then walking away. Two brilliant tax experts who trained me in taxes were intrigued by the mathematical aspects of Blackjack and were always injecting Blackjack strategies, out of the blue, into our tax discussions.

Hercules is adorable. Those Maltese fur angels will steal your heart, just as they did for Elizabeth Taylor!

All the votes. Superb. I'm wistful now for the Mediterranean.

Kind regards, Stessily


stessily 4 years ago

James, I've always felt that the water in the background of your avatar was the Mediterranean. I love that sea; I know its colors and moods. I always intended to ask you about it; thanks for settling the issue!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 4 years ago from Chicago Author

Stessily— Ah! The background in my avatar is indeed the Mediterranean. That little town behind me is Monaco. :-)


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 4 years ago from Chicago Author

Stessily— You are most welcome. I love the Mediterranean Sea too. It is beautiful. I took a two week cruise on it once which is probably the best two weeks I ever had on any vacation. Barcelona, Monaco, Malta, Rome, Florence, Capri, Naples, Sorrento, Pompeii, Venice, and Athens. Awesome!

I liked Greece and I love all of Italy but you should have stopped in Monaco. To me, it was the best stop I have ever made in Europe or anywhere. It is utterly fascinating. I could see myself living there.

As you say, "The mosaic floor inlaid with the tombs of 400 Knights Templar at St. John's must really be beautiful to behold in person and quite unique."

Indeed it is!

If you are in a casino and feel compelled to gamble a bit Blackjack offers you the best odds of any game in the house. And roulette the worst (but it is fun).

I am glad you enjoyed the travelogue and recognized the photography. Your comments never fail to be most interesting. Thank you for the visit, your compliments, and all the votes. :D

Bon Voyage!

James


Rina Pinto profile image

Rina Pinto 4 years ago from Dubai - UAE

Hello, James A. Watkins.. .. I felt i was in Monaco & Malta. Reality description! Enjoyed reading every bit of your write! .. Fantastic Travel Advise Hub to the unknown of such beautiful places around the world .. Thank you Sir! Voted up as Useful, Interesting, Beautiful & Awesome Write!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 4 years ago from Chicago Author

Rina Pinto— Hello! I am so glad that you enjoyed this travel Hub. Thank you ever much for the "Voted up as Useful, Interesting, Beautiful & Awesome Write!" :-)

This makes me happy. I appreciate the visit and your encouraging comments. And you are welcome.

James

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.


    Click to Rate This Article
    working