Walking in Malta and Gozo

£10.00

Landscapes of of MALTA, GOZO and COMINO: walks and car tours

by Douglas Lockhart

We used this book on a recent holiday in Gozo. Usually I go on holiday laden down with guide books, but this time I tried to limit the number by just taking the pdf of the Sunflower Guide for Malta, Gozo and Comino… It worked. [It] gave us a great introduction to the island and, on our last day, when we had 12 hours to kill in Malta before the flight home, the walking tour of Valetta and the tours of Malta by car meant that we were able to squeeze in some enjoyment right to the last minute. An indication that there were restaurants in Marsaxlokk led us to take a chance on this charming little bay near the airport. The relaxing meal we ate there was a fitting end to a very chilled week in the Maltese Islands. I didn’t miss the lack of other guides… (Lin, Amazon)

Invaluable. There are walks of all shapes and sizes… the guidance given for each walk is clear and concise. (RG, Amazon)

Click below to read walker’s reviews and use the ‘Look Inside’ feature on Amazon.co.uk (RRP £12.99)

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Description

MaltaThe Maltese landscape offers rich rewards for those who enjoy exploring: interests in ancient and modern history, military and ecclesiastical architecture, geology, and flora are all well catered for. If this will be your first visit to the Maltese Islands, this book will be a perfect introduction to the delights of walking in Malta and Gozo and touring the islands by car or with public transport This new 6th edition has been thoroughly revised, with completely new maps and details of the new bus services. If you are using one of the earlier editions, we strongly recommend replacing it with this new one.

Area covered: Exhaustive coverage of Malta and Gozo, as well as one walk on Comino

The best months for walking in Malta and Gozo are March, April, May, October and November.

Where to stay

If you are visiting primarily to go walking in Malta or Gozo, it’s best to stay in the north of Malta (for example Mellieha or Bugibba); there will be a wide choice of walks nearby, and you will be conveniently located for the Gozo ferry.

Edition/contents etc

3 car tours (2 on Malta, 1 on Gozo), 70 long and short walks, and 33 picnic suggestions
136 pages + 2 touring maps (Malta and Gozo); plans of Valletta, Cospicua, Senglea, Vittoriosa, Mdina/Rabat, Victoria (Gozo); large-scale (1:32,000) topo maps
6th ed, 2012; ISBN 978-1-85691-412-3; UK retail price £12.99 / USA retail price $17.99

Table of contents:

Preface 5
Acknowledgements; Useful books 6
Getting about 7
Picnicking 9 Picnic suggestions 10

TOURING
TOUR 1 MALTA: FROM TOURISM TO RURALITY AND BACK AGAIN! 17
Sliema · Salina Bay · Mellieha · Cirkewwa · Golden Bay · Mgarr · Bingemma Gap · Rabat · Mdina · Mosta · Naxxar · San Gwann · Sliema

TOUR 2 MALTA: ANTIQUITIES, FISHING VILLAGES AND GARDENS 21
Sliema · Hypogeum · Marsascala · Marsaxlokk · Wied iz-Zurrieq · Hagar Qim · Ghar Lapsi · Buskett Gardens · San Anton Gardens · Sliema

TOUR 3 GOZO: THE JEWEL IN THE CROWN 24
Mgarr · Ir-Ramla · Marsalforn · Victoria · Dwejra Bay · Xlendi · Mgarr
WALKING

Waymarking and maps 28
Walkers’ checklist 28
What to take 29
Weather 29
Photography 30
Where to stay 30
Maltese pronunciation and place names 31
Nuisances and hazards 32
Shooting and trapping 33
Country code for walkers and motorists 34
Organisation of the walks 35
TOWN WALKS, MALTA (with plans)
1 Valletta: capital and planned town 36
2 The Three Cities: Cospicua, Senglea and Vittoriosa 39
3 Mdina and Rabat 43

COUNTRYSIDE WALKS
Northern Malta – walks near Mellieha and St Paul’s Bay
4 Ghadira · Madonna statue · Armier Bay · Marfa 47
5 Armier Crossroads · Qammieh · Ic-Cumnija · Ghadira 50
6 Ghadira · Il-Prajjet · Ghajn Snuber · Golden Bay 56
7 Selmun Palace · Mgiebah Valley · Blata l-Bajda · Mistra Bay · Xemxija 56
8 Wied l-Arkata · Bidnija · Il-Qolla · Pwales Valley · Xemxija 60
9 Falka · Wied il-Ghajn Rihana · Ghallis Tower 62
10 St Julian’s · Madliena · Gharghur · Maghtab · Bahar ic-Caghaq 65

Western Malta – walks near Rabat, Dingli and Siggiewi
11 Bingemma Gap · Nadur Tower · Bingemma Fort · L-Iskorvit · Golden Bay 69
12 Rabat (Busugrilla) · Chadwick Lakes · Mtahleb · Il-Qlejgha · Bahrija · Gnejna Bay · Mgarr 72
13 Mosta · Qlejgha Valley · Chadwick Lakes · Dwejra Lines · Mosta 78
14 Rabat (Busugrilla) · Tal-Lunzjata Ridge · Dingli · Ta’ Baldu · Tat-Targa · Rabat (Busugrilla) 81
15 Rabat (Tal-Virtu) · Wied Ta’ l-Isqof · Gnien il-Kbir · Rabat (Saqqajja) 86
16 Buskett · Ghar il-Kbir · Laferla Cross · Verdala Palace 88
17 Buskett · Rdum Dikkiena · Ghar Lapsi · Hagar Qim · Blue Grotto 92 18 Siggiewi · Tal-Providenza · San Niklaw Chapel · Siggiewi 96
19 Siggiewi · Wied il-Hesri · Wied Qirda · Wied il-Kbir · Qormi 98

Southeastern Malta – walks from Marsaxlokk and Marsascala
20 Marsaxlokk · Borg in-Nadur · Gudja 101
21 Marsascala · St Thomas Bay · Il-Hofra · Fort Delimara · Tas-Silg · Marsaxlokk 104
22 Marsascala · Zonqor Point · San Leonardo · Xghajra · Marsascala 108

Gozo – walks from Victoria and Mgarr
23 Victoria · Zebbug · Xwieni Bay · Hekka Point · Gharb · Victoria 111
24 Victoria · Xlendi · Dwejra Bay · Santa Lucija · Victoria 115
25 Mgarr · Mellieha Point · Mgarr ix-Xini · Sannat · Victoria 119
26 Mgarr · Hondoq ir-Rummien · Qala · Dahlet Qorrot · San Blas Bay · Ir-Ramla · Ggantija · Xewkija 123

Comino
27 Walks from the Comino Hotel, San Niklaw Bay 128

Bus, helicopter and ferry timetables 131
Index of geographical names 134
Emergency telephone numbers 136
Fold-out maps inside back cover

Guidebook index

IMPORTANT: Maltese place names contain characters with unusual accents, several of which are not included in western European fonts. Accented characters such as these often appear incorrectly when viewed on the web and if used may be replaced by unrecognizable symbols when viewed on a different computer. Certain accented characters in the place names shown here (for example accented y, z , C, G and H) have therefore been replaced by characters without accents, to help avoid the risk of totally different characters or symbols appearing when you view the index ( though the more common accents appear as normal). On some computers, even these “common” accents may give unexpected results – this will be due to differing keyboard set-ups.

For the above reasons, many of the place names appear here with (strictly speaking) incorrect or incomplete spelling. However, we emphasise that in the book, the appropriate font has been used to ensure that all place names appear with correct spelling and with the correct accents.

(M) = Malta  (G) = Gozo  (C) = Comino

Ahrax Point (M) 46-47, 49
Armier Bay (M) 110, 18, 46-47, 48, 49, 131
Armier Crossroads (M) 10, 11, 46-47, 50
Bahar ic-Caghaq (M) 17, 64-65, 131
Bahrija (M) 72, 74-75, 76
Bidnija (M) 58-59, 60, 62-63, 74-75
Binemma Fort (M) 69, 70-71, 74-75
Binemma Gap (M) 12, 17, 19, 69, 70-71, 74-75, 78-79, 80
Birbuba (G) 111, 112-113, 114
Birkirkara (M) 23
Birzebbua (M) 102-103, 131
Blata l-Bajda (near Marsascala; M) 108, 109, 110
Blata l-Bajda (near St Paul’s Bay; M) 13, 56, 57, 58-59, 64-64
Blue Grotto (M) 22, 92, 94-95
Blue Lagoon (C) 9, 14, 128, 129
Bor in-Nadur (M) 22, 101, 102-103
Buibba (M) 62-63, 131, 132
Buskett (M) 13, 82-83, 88-89, 90, 92, 131
Gardens (M) 113, 21, 23, 82-83, 88-89, 92
Busugrilla (roundabout near Rabat; M) 19, 72, 74-75, 81, 82-83, 88-89
Chadwick Lakes (M) 19, 72, 73, 74-75, 78-79
Cirkewwa (M) 17, 18, 46-47, 49, 50, 131, 132, 133
Comino 128, 129, 130, 133
Tower (C) 129, 130, 130
Cospicua (M) 39, 40, 41, 42, 131, 132
Dahlet Qorrot (G) 14, 123, 126, 124-5
Delimara Fort (M) 13, 104, 105, 107
Dingli (and Dingli Cliffs; M) 23, 81, 82-83, 84, 131
Dwejra Bay (G) 1, 14, 24, 25, 26, 111, 115, 116-117, 118, 132
Dwejra Lines (M) 19, 69, 72, 74-75, 78-79, 80
Falka (M) 62-63, 78-79
Ferretti Battery (M) 22
Fiddien Bridge (M) 19, 72, 73, 74-75
Fomm ir-Rih (Bay) 70-71, 74-75, 77
Forna Point (G) 112-113, 112-113
Fort Campbell (M) 57, 58-59
Fort Chambray (G) 120-121
Fungus Rock (G) 25, 26, 116-117, 118
Gelmus Butte (hill; G) 112-113, 114, 116-117
Ggantija (G) 25, 123, 124-125, 127
Ghadira (M) 10, 18, 46-47, 48, 50, 52, 54, 131
Ghajn Hadid Tower (M) 57, 58-59
Ghajn Snuber Tower (M) 11, 19, 52, 54
Ghajn Tuffieha (M) 11, 19, 54, 70-71, 74-75
Bay (M) 71, 70-71, 74-75
Ghajnsielem (G) 119, 124-125, 133
Ghallis Point (M) 18, 62-63
Tower (M) 18, 62-3, 64
Ghar Dalam (M) 22, 101, 102-103
Ghar il-Kbir (M) 82-83, 88-89, 90-91
Ghar Lapsi (M) 13, 21, 23, 92, 93, 94-5, 132
Gharb (G) 25, 111, 112-113, 114, 133
Gharghur (M) 11, 64-65, 66-67, 68, 131
Ghasri (G) 111, 112-113, 133
Ghemieri (M) 72, 74-75
Gnejna Bay (M) 12, 19, 70-71, 72, 74-75, 77
Gnien l-Kbir (M) 86, 87, 88-89
Golden Bay (M) 11, 17, 19, 52, 54, 69, 70-71, 74-75, 131, 132
Gorf l-Abjad (M) 109, 110
Gudja (M) 101, 102-103, 131, cover
Hagar Qim (M) 21, 23, 92, 94-95
Hal Mula (M) 98-99
Hekka Point (G) 111, 112-113, 114
Hompesch Arch (M) 21
Hondoq ir-Rummien (G) 114, 123, 124-125, 126
Hypogeum (M) 21
Ic-Cumnija (M) 46-47, 50, 51, 52, 54
Il-Hofra (M) 104, 105, 107
Il-Kullana (M) 84
Il-Munxar (M) 104, 105
Il-Pellegrin (M) 70-71, 74-75, 77
Il-Prajjet (M) 52, 53, 54
Il-Qadi (M) 62-63, 64
Il-Qala t-Tawwalija (M) 13, 105, 107
Il-Qattara Ridge (M) 82-83, 85
Il-Qlejgha (M) 72, 74-75
Il-Qolla (near Bidnija; M) 58-59, 60
Il-Qolla (near the Chadwick Lakes; M) 78-79, 80
Il-Wardija ta’ San Gorg (M) 93
Inland Sea (G) 14, 25, 116-117, 118
Ir-Ramla (G) 14, 24, 33, 123, 124-125, 127
Kappara (M) 20
Kavallerizza (house; M) 101
Kercem (G) 112-113, 115, 116-117, 132
Knights’ Washhouse (G) 26
Kuncizzjoni (M) 70-71, 74-75, 76
Laferla Cross (M) 88-89, 91, 94-95
L-Imbordin (M) 58-59, 61
Lippija Tower (M) 12, 19, 70-71
L-Iskorvit (M) 69, 70-71, 72, 74-75
Madliena (M) 64-65, 67
Maghtab (M) 64-65, 68
Manikata (M) 19, 54, 55
Marfa (M) 46-47, 49
Ridge (M) 10, 11, 18, 46-47, 48, 49, 50-51
Marsalforn (G) 24, 25, 112-113, 132
Marsascala (M) 21, 23, 31, 104, 105, 108, 109, 131, 132
Marsaxlokk (M) 21, 22, 101, 102-103, 103, 104, 105, 131, 132
Mdina (M) 2, 17, 19, 43, 44, 45, 132
Mellieha (M) 111, 17, 18, 30, 54, 131
Bay (M) 10, 18, 48, 51, 54
Ridge (M) 18, 54, 58-59
Mellieha Point (G) 119, 120-121, 123, 124-125
Marr (G) 24, 25, 119, 120-121, 123, 124-125, 132, 133
Marr (M) 12, 17, 19, 20, 58-59, 69, 70-71, 72, 74-75, 131
Marr ix-Xini (G) 14, 119, 120-121, 122, 124-125
Miebah (Bay, Valley; M) 11, 12, 56, 58-59
Mistra Bay (Bay, Valley; M) 11, 18, 56, 57, 58-59
Mizieb (M) 52, 54
Mnajdra Temples (M) 94-95
Mosta (M) 12, 17, 19, 72, 78-79, 131
Msida (M) 23
Mtahleb (M) 72, 73, 74-75, 81, 82-83
Munxar (G) 116-117, 133
Nadur (M) 114, 24, 123, 124-125, 126, 133
Tower (G) 69, 70-71
Naxxar (M) 7, 17, 20, 62-63, 64-65, 131
Paradise Bay (M) 18
Peter’s Pool (M) 13, 105, 107
Pietà (M) 21
Pinto Redoubt (M) 58-59
Pretty Bay (M) 22
Pwales Valley (M) 58-59, 60, 61
Qala (G) 14, 24, 123, 124-125, 126, 133
Qammieh Cliffs (M) 46-47, 50, 51, 52, 54
Qawra Tower (G) 116-117, 118
Qlejgha Valley (M) 73, 74-75, 77, 78-79, 79
Qormi (M) 98-99
Qrendi (M) 92, 94-95
Rabat (M) 12, 17, 19, 43, 44, 45, 46, 72, 73, 74-75, 81, 82-83, 86, 88-89, 131, 132
Ramla Bay (M) 46-47, 49; see also Ir-Ramla (G)
Ramla tal-Qortin (M) 46-47, 49
Ramla tat-Torri (M) 46-47, 48, 49
Ras il-Minuna (M) 58-59
Ras il-Wahx (M) 54, 55
Ras in-Niexfa (M) 53, 54
Rdum Dikkiena (M) 92, 98-99
Rdum il-Bies (M) 58-59
Rdum l-Imdawwar (M) 70-71, 74-75, 77
Red Tower (M) 11, 18, 46-47, 50
St Andrew’s (M) 64-65, 131
St George’s Bay (M) 22, 64-65
St Julian’s (M) 16-17, 31, 64-65, 66, 131
St Paul’s Bay (M) 18, 30, 58-59, 62-63, 131
St Thomas Bay (M) 104, 105, 106
Tower (M) 104, 105, 109
Salina Bay (M) 17, 18, 62-63
Salvator (M) 82-83
San Anton Gardens (M) 21, 23
San Blas Bay (G) 14, 123, 124-125
San Blas Valley (G) 124-125, 126, 127
San Gwann (M) 17, 20
San Lawrenz (G) 25, 111, 112-113, 133
San Leonardo (Fort; M) 108, 109, 110
San Niklaw Bay (C) 128, 129
San Niklaw Chapel (M) 94-95, 96, 97
Sannat (G) 14, 119, 120-121, 122, 133
Santa Katerina (M) 82-83
Santa Lucija (G) 112-113, 115, 116-117, 118, 132
Santa Marija Bay (C) 129, 130
Santa Pietru (G) 111, 112-113
Selmun Palace (M) 52, 56, 58-59
Senglea (M) 39, 40, 41, 42, 131
Siiewi (M) 22, 23, 86, 88-89, 94-95, 96, 98-99, 131, 132
Sliema (M) 17, 21, 31, 131, 132
Ta’ Baldu (M) 81, 82-83, 85
Ta’ l-Imgharrqa (M) 46-47, 48
Ta’ Macca (M) 46-47, 49
Ta’ Pinu (church; G) 25, 133
Ta’ Qali (Craft Village and National Park; M) 23
Ta’ Saliba (M) 19, 58-59
Tafal Cliffs 122, 124-5
Tal-Lunzjata Ridge (M) 81, 82-83
Tal-Providenza (M) 88-89, 94-95, 96, 97
Tal-Virtu (Rabat; M) 12, 86, 88-89
Tara Gap (M) 12, 60, 62-63, 78-79, 80, 82
Public Gardens 12, 62-63, 78-79
Tas-Santi (M) 69, 70-71, 72, 74-75
Tas-Sil (Battery; M) 104, 105, 107
Tat-Tara (Gap; M) 74-75, 81, 82-83, 85
Tumbrell Point (M) 105, 107
Valletta (M) 36-37, 38, 42, 131
Verdala Palace (M) 23, 86, 88-89, 92, 96
Victoria (G) 24, 25, 26, 111, 112-113, 115, 116-117, 119, 120-121, 132
Victoria Lines (M) 11, 12, 58-59, 62-63, 64-65, 68, 69, 70-71, 74-75, 77, 78-79, 80
Vittoriosa (M) 39, 40, 41, 42, 131
Wied il-Ghajn Rihana (M) 62-63
Wied il-Ghasri (G) 111, 112-113, 114
Wied il-·esri (M) 98-99
Wied il-Kbir (M) 98-99, 100
Wied il-Luq (M) 88-89, 91
Wied il-Mielah (G) 112, 112-113, 114
Wied ir-Rum (M) 85
Wied iz-­urrieq (M) 13, 21, 22, 94-95, 131
Wied l’Arkata (M) 58-59, 60, 61, 62-63
Wied Qannotta (M) 58-59, 61
Wied Qirda (M) 98-99, 100
Wied ta’ l-Isqof (M) 86, 87, 98-99
Xaghra (G) 25, 124-125, 133
Xemxija (M) 18, 56, 58-59, 60, 62
Xewkija (G) 26, 119, 120-121, 123, 124-125, 133
Xghajra (M) 108, 109. 110, 131
Xlendi (G) 13, 24, 26, 115, 116-117, 133
Xlendi Bay and Tower (G) 13, 116-117
Xrobb il-Ghain (Peninsula; M) 105, 106
Xwieni Bay (G) 13, 111, 112-113, 113, 114
Xwieni­ebbu (G) 111, 112-113, 114, 133
Xwieni­ebbu (M) 88-89, 98-99
Zejtun (M) 21
Zejtun­onqor Point (M) 108, 109
Zejtun­urrieq (M) 22, 94-95, 131

Current update

Malta, Gozo & Comino, 6th edition (2012), updated 7/3/17

Updates for walks and car tours (drives) on on Malta and Gozo given below supplement those provided in the guidebook. It is vital that this Update is read in conjunction with the text of the book, but note that the Update applies only to the edition stated and not to any earlier editions. (If you have an older edition of this book you can “upgrade” to the latest edition at half price.)

Information has been forwarded to us by users of the book, and Sunflower Books offers the data in good faith but cannot be held responsible for any misleading or inaccurate content in the Update. Unless indicated otherwise, what appears here has not been verified by the author or publisher, so please allow due caution when new or amended routes are suggested. Each piece of information is dated; bear in mind that some of the older observations may have since been overtaken by events or further changes. If, during your holiday, you are using the current edition of the guide and are able to provide any additional updating to add to this page, we will be pleased to hear from you. Please send information, preferably by e-mail, to info@sunflowerbooks.co.uk.

Getting about: On page 8 I mention hiring motorcycles on Gozo, but I don’t think we should recommend visitors to hire these any longer.   The main roads have very heavy traffic and now resemble Malta – especially the Mgarr-Victoria road, but also the large daily flow of visitors from Malta mean traffic surges elsewhere. Most of the walking fortunately avoids these hotspots. (Author, 7/14)

Walk 6. Page 54: the concrete-surfaced track is now a tarmac/asphalt surfaced lane. (User, 3/13) + Further to the comment from user 3/13. A new well-made track has been constructed which runs parallel to this tarmac/asphalt surfaced lane at some 50 yards to its left. From the Popeye Village follow the road south and take the first small road on the left which leads onto the new track.  Follow the track up the hill for about 1km. The terraced fields soon give way to the barren slopes of the ridge. The track exits at a sharp bend on the Mellieha/Manikata Road (1h05min). Bear right across the junction onto a lesser track… (User, 2/17)

Walk 7: 45min: After rain the clay slopes become treacherous, so cross the fields on the right-hand side of the wall which borders the upper clay track. (User, 2/17)

Walk 16: How to get there: Bus route 107 no longer exists. However a new route, 56, runs from Valletta to Dingli via Rabat. The route contains an anticlockwise loop:  Rabat-Dingli-Baskett-Rabat. So you must stay on the bus when it reaches its terminus in Dingli and then alight at Baskett on the return journey. Departures every 60 minutes; journey time 50min.
To return: 56 from next to Verdala Palace gates to Valletta.
(User, 2/17)

Walk 17: How to get there: See amendments to Walk 16. + The approach to Mnajdra and Hagar Qim is now different. Mnajdra cannot be visited without a ticket – only available from ticket office beyond Hagar Qim. To reach the ticket office you can go through Hagar Qim (thereby visiting it before buying a ticket). Whether you buy a ticket depends on whether you want to go back to Mnajdra. The staff seem completely confused by people arriving from along the cliffs rather than from the road. One couple were berated for bringing a dog onto the site – which they hadn’t, but they’d found themselves forced to go through the exit without ever visiting the site!  This was in Feb 2017. They’ll probably sort themselves out, but that may make it even less convenient for people arriving from the “wrong” direction. (User, 3/17)

Walk 21: 1h12min: This track is now blocked (after 50m) with a high solid gate. So at 1h05min continue on the narrow road until reaching a T-junction on the minor road running from Marsaxlokk to Delimara Point. Turn left here to visit Fort Delimara… (User, 2/17)

New walk suggestion: I thought that an additional walk may be useful (visited October 2014): Malta: Falka. Wied l’Arkata. Bidnija. Falka. Circular walk using parts of walks 8 & 9. About 4 miles, fairly easy, 2 ascents/descents of 70 m and 80 m. Bus 44 Valletta to/from Golden Bay (Tuffieha) or bus 225 Siliema Ferries to/from Golden Bay. Bus stop Hzejjen. Use description for Walk 9 from Falka Pumping Station to road at Wied l’Arkata. (43 mins). Start of Walk 8 at turning just before the chapel, sign post Triq Ghajn Rihana (look out for the telegraph pole climbing monkey). Follow Walk 8 to Bidnija church. Take road sharp left after church and in 5 mins , at a road junction, bear right to take the concrete track straight ahead back down to the ford (20 min point on Walk 9). Return to Falka Pumping Station and bus stop. (User, 10/14)