The history of these small islands is one of conquest and colonizers. In prehistoric times, Malta was connected by land to Africa and in some locations you can see remnants of prehistoric creatures preserved in caves.
There are also archeological remains of prehistoric temples, deities and villages. At various points in time, Malta has been occupied and controlled by Arabs as well as different European countries. The Order of St. John (with its crusading knights) ruled supreme here for nearly 270 years - hence the "Maltese Cross". They left towering fortifications, stately palazzos and noble baroque churches and cathedrals, which are fascinating to visit!
Just about every major player in European history has squabbled over this isolated, but valuable piece of real estate and left a mark in some corner.
The only visitors who came in peace were St. Luke and St. Paul, who brought Christianity here.