SS. Peter and Paul Bastion and Castile Curtain

SS. Peter and Paul Bastion is a large, two-tiered bulwark which anchored Valletta’s enceinte on the Grand Harbour side of the land front. The bastion was largely carved out of the bedrock forming the main land front ditch. The bastion originally contained a low piazza bassa in its right flank before this was roofed over and converted into a gunpowder magazine by the British military in the course of the 19th century. The bastions flank is protected by a massive rounded orillion believed to have been grafted onto the shoulder of the bastion around 1582. A sally-port opening in the face of the bastion provided a means of communication, via an arched bridge, to the tiered counterguard built to protect the bastion in 1640. This bastion had a very heavily consumed masonry fabric and fissured bedrock, requiring various types of interventions to repair the damaged stonework and to remove the rampant spread of vegetation. The restoration task was made more difficult owing to the extreme height of the bastion walls, which exceeded 50m along the Grand Harbour side of the ditch. The bastion terrace is a popular public garden and scenic viewing point for the Grand Harbour.