St. John Bastion and the adjacent cavalier were built in the mid 1560’s to protect the main gate of what would become the capital city of Valletta. They overlook the neighboring town of Floriana. This photo demonstrates the massive size of these limestone walls. All of the 16th century fortifications were financed by Pope Pius V and designed by an architect named Francesco Laparelli da Cortona. Amazingly, the cavalier still houses the successor of the Knights of St. John. The embassy is called the Sovereign Military Order of Malta.