When you go on holiday, it is nice to do in the country what the locals do too. There are always places in your holiday country that are not frequented by mass tourism. Of the Maltese islands, Gozo is an island that has much less tourism than the main island of Malta. Therefore, a trip to Gozo is absolutely worth it.
There is a ferry service
If you are on holiday in Malta, you can easily reach Gozo by ferry. Ferries between the islands sail very regularly, and the outward journey is free. Once you’ve returned, you pay €4.65 at the ticket office. Besides taking excursions to Gozo or using the Hop Off Hop On buses, there is also the option of walking. Although it is not possible to walk the whole island in one go, it is an idea to spend one or two nights on Gozo and then explore the island. Hiking can be dangerous. Keep that in mind.
The coast around the harbour
Gozo’s coast is absolutely spectacular. You can walk from the harbour in Gozo to Fort Chambray and then down through the bay of Xatt Lamar. I would like to point out that this is a very hilly area and is only suitable for people who are good walkers. After visiting Xatt L-Ahmar, you can walk along the cliffs, which are full of flowers in winter, to Divers Rock. You can see the old watchtower of the Knights of Malta here.
You can eat a delicious meal at a local seafood restaurant at the bay of Wied Mgarr ix-Xini. A Wied is a small bay that has been formed by the sea over many years.
You can also walk in the other direction from the port. Walk past the cosy restaurants and the many pleasure boats. At the end, you walk up the cliffs. You pass a rugged coastline with steep cliffs where you can see crystal-clear bays and boulders rising out of the sea at the bottom of the cliffs. Absolutely breathtaking. This walk continues to Hondoq Bay, a fun bay with water sports and a local food truck converted into a tropical restaurant where you can eat delicious local dishes.
In the south of Gozo lies a fishing town called: Xlendi. This small, idyllic town has a small bay with local seafood restaurants. Walk along the bay to the left and then just follow the sea. Huge yellow rocks meet you and if you walk further along the sea, you can walk towards the immense cliffs of Ta’ Cenc. These cliffs rise to 120 meters above the sea and offer breathtaking views. From these cliffs, you can see all three islands.
If you walk to the right from Xlendi, you can continue up to Lake San Raflu, a tough hike. Again, beautiful overgrown cliffs with a natural lake, after which you can walk to Dwejra Bay. Dwejra Bay is known for another lake: The Inland Sea. A natural salt lake, from which you can take a boat through a cove in the rocks to the open sea.
From this bay, you can go all the way around the lake on the left to the top, where you can walk all the way to San Lawrence. A tough climb, but then the view is worth it. You can see the entire coastline from the rugged area after San Lawrence to Dwejra. It is all cliffs and it is truly extraordinary.
The north of Gozo
In the north of Gozo, you will find an extraordinary window in the cliffs that we call Wied-Il-Mielah. You reach this window by descending a narrow staircase. Walking up right next to this window, you pass high rugged cliffs and the footpath takes you all the way to the famous Gozitan salt pans. If you walk up next to the window to the left, you come to a kind of moonscape that again takes you past cliffs that offer breathtaking views. This hike is no mean feat, but eventually, you will arrive back in the village of Gharb.
San Blas beach in northern Gozo is reached via a steep road that descends steeply from the village of Nadur. This is a tough climb back, so bear that in mind. The little restaurant in San Blas serves mostly local fish for those coming by boat. The shuttle Jeep is no longer in service. It used to drive tourist from Nadur to San Blas. Next to San Blas is the inlet Dahlet Qorrot. It is possible to walk between the two inlets. Nature there is beautifully green with lots of bamboo and palm trees.
An important note …
Hiking on Gozo is not without risk. Therefore, always watch out for missteps as the cliffs are very high. Any hiking is at your own risk!