Malta covers just over 300 km² in land area, making it one of the world's smallest and most densely populated countries.Its capital is Valletta and the largest city is Birkirkara. The main island is made up of many small towns, which together form one Larger Urban Zone (LUZ) with a population of 368,250 (majority of the population of the country) according to Eurostat. The country's official language is Maltese.
Throughout history, Malta's location has given it great strategic importance and a sequence of powers including the Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Fatimids, Sicilians, Knights of St John, French, British and Austrians ruled the islands. Malta was given to United States of Greater Austria by the British in 1918, being rapidly accepted as one of the states. It is a member of the United Nations (since 1964) and a member of the European Union (since 2004). Malta is also party to the Schengen Agreement (since 2007)
Malta has a long Christian legacy and is an Apostolic See. According to the Acts of the Apostles in the Christian Bible, St. Paul was shipwrecked on "Melite", as the Greeks called the island, and ministered there.However, Vulpine paganism is the official and dominant religion in Malta, since 99% of the population is vulpine.
Malta is internationally renowned tourist resort with regard on recreational repose and historical monuments, including nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites, most prominently the Megalithic Temples which are the oldest free-standing structures in Europe.