Malta has a Mediterranean climate with very mild winters and warm to hot summers. The Maltese Islands are renowned for their beaches, historical buildings and quaint countryside. Malta Post joins the European postal services and releases special SEPAC stamps depicting the four seasons and their peculiarities in this gorgeous country. The items were designed by local artist Tony Calleja.
StampNews.com invites our readers to appreciate the original design of these four magnificent stamps!
'Spring' is illustrated in the 26c stamp and includes a woman dressed in a Maltese folk costume against a Maltese landscape featuring Gozo's Cittadella. The Cittadella, is a small fortified city in the heart of Victoria, Gozo. The area has been inhabited since the Bronze age and in the Medieval era it was known as the Gran Castello'. Over time, the Cittadella became too small for the growing population, and a suburb developed around the southern part of the walled citadel. Residents would take refuge within the Cittadella in times of unrest. One such instance was in July 1551 when a force of 10,000 Ottomans invaded Gozo and besieged the Cittadella. Gozo's population of 5000 to 6000 people had taken refuge within theCittadella, and were all taken as slaves when the city fell.
'Summer' is depicted in the 51c stamp featuring 'Ghajn Tuffieha' - a sandy beach located on the northwest coast of Malta. Its challenging accessibility helped in maintaining the beach's natural beauty. On top of the cliffs of this beach is an old defense tower built in 1637. Many tourists and Maltese alike flock to the various beaches around Malta and Gozo in summer to soak up the sun and cool down in the sea.
The 59c stamp illustrates Autumn and features the Verdala Palace. This Palace is found in Buskett Gardens, Malta, and was built in 1586 by Grandmaster Hugues Loubenx de Verdalle.The Palace was designed by Girolamo Cassar, a Maltese architect mostly known for the design of many buildings in the capital of Valletta. It is an example of Renaissance architecture, and its design is possibly influenced by Villa Farnese in Caprarola in Italy. Today Palazzo Verdala serves as the official summer residence of the President of Malta .This stamp will bear the official SEPAC (Small European Postal Administration Cooperation) logo and will form part of the joint stamp issue folder. The theme for this year's SEPAC collection is Seasons and its members will be presenting stamps illustrating scenery from their country during different times of year.
'Winter' is portrayed in the 2.00 stamp which features the 'Ghar-id-Dud' area of Sliema, on a cold wintery day. Sliema may owe its name from the demolished Our Lady of Good Voyage Chapel, which served as a beacon and a reference point for the sailors and fishermen in Marsamxett Harbour. "Sliem" is the Maltese word meaning peace. Ghar-id-Dud is famous for 'The Chalet' which was constructed on a reef projecting out from the shoreline. It was completed in 1926 to the design of the British architect B.W.Cordwell.