Gone Gozo!

riding-through-malta

So Gozo is this whole ‘nother island in the mediterranean right next to Malta that is GORGEOUS and absolutely worth a day trip from the big island (HA!) I truly have gone Gozo over this little area of the world. Last week, when I wrote Adventures in Malta, I knew I would have to do a part two, because there was so much to share. Here is another blog from our day trip to the tiny island of Gozo. This pre-historic, ancient isle has enchanted movie stars, royalty and Europeans. The island is super old and dates back to about 3200 BC. 

blue-azure-window
Blue Azure Window – San Lawrenz

How to get there

After breakfast at the Corinthia Palace, we enjoyed another great ride through the island of Malta with James from Platinum Cabs on our short trip to the coast.  

We had to take a ferry boat ride from Cirkewwa . Here are the details on how to hop over to Gozo for the day.

Ferry Tickets – €4.95 Round trip ticket (same day)

  • Boat has a seasonal schedule – the ferry ran in February every 45 minutes, so not a very long wait. 
  • We were actually scooted onto the boat without paying for a ticket to be told we would pay for both on our return.
  • green-girlIt’s first come, first serve.
  • If you would like to take pictures, head to the top deck
  • Quite windy, maybe just this time of year (February)
  • Snacks and treats are available
  • Quick trip
coming-into-gozo-harbor
Coming into port – Gozo

Seeing the Island

With only a day to see the island we decided to utilize a “red bus” or a Hop-on/Hop-off busThe bus was €18 per person for the whole day, but we got them for €15/person from a gentleman selling outside the ferry terminal. There were over 15 stops and after looking at the map, I knew we would see what I came to see. Although next time we come back, I plan to explore on my own, this trip was just an introduction. I definitely plan to get to know Gozo better.

The bus picks up right outside the ferry terminal and you can’t miss it.

tww-stop-sign-girlSeasonal schedules will vary but our bus came quite often, and we didn’t mind waiting as we saw amazing architecture.

  1. Victoria (Ir-Rabat) – is a major city of the island and also where the (Citadel) is located. It was too much hussle and bussle here for Jon and I in this walled in little city and I love nature, so we continued on to Dwerja to see the infamous blue azure window.

2. Craft stores in Ta’Dbiegi – definitely a tourist spot, the bus stops here as well, but with it being not too far from Victoria, it would make for a nice visit on your way out of town.

3. Dwerja – blue azure window

Made famous for the wedding scene in Kaleesi’s (Game of Throne) episode, this stunning natural geological wonder is unforgettable.

tww-snail4. Xlendi – one of our favorite stops for the day was stopping for lunch in the fishing village of Xlendi 

coming-into-xlendi

~ Our lunch was unbelievable and so was our view ~ 

We ate at Moby Dick’s where the service and food were exceptional, right on the water, I am sure they are use to lots of tourists.

  • Diving – if it were only warmer, I would have tried to go for a dive! The waters look beautiful and I think the colors would have been amazing.

green-girl5. Ggantija Temples – UNESCO World Heritage site and museum. These temples were my husband’s favorite stop on the tour. After a brief walk through the museum and artifacts you will be taken to where the actual temples reside. The Ggantija temples and the prehistoric artifacts, considered to be the oldest free standing monuments – preceding Stonehenge and the pyramids.

parts-of-the-ggantija-neolithic-temples

Walking through the temples of Ggantija was astounding and Hypogeum and Catacombs are suppose to be unforgettable and incredible. However, they were closed for the season, due to open again in April. Everyone we talked to locally and here in Germany say this is a “must-see.” I am excited to hear this, because I will make it one of ours when we return.

Tickets are only €6/person but if you’d like to visit the nearby windmill a combination ticket is €9.

one-of-the-oldest-windmills-on-the-island-of-gozo

Architectural wonders

One of the most beautiful parts of visiting this area is the incredible architecture. Yellow and brown stone from local quarries used in making row upon row houses with majestic balconies dot every town on Gozo. 

The balconies of the homes in Gozo look regal and royal like Roman architecture,  our tour of Gozo on the bus said there is an effort to restore the balconies to the traditional wooden balconies of the past. Some homeowners have decided to choose a modern wrought-iron or metal design. However, if you choose to redecorate in the Maltese fashion, you can apply for grant money from the island for your restoration. Pretty cool I think!

Between the churches, small towns and houses it is hard to choose which structures were my favorites. As we rode the open bus throughout the island, I was mesmerized by the fields of green and the tan homes that dot the landscape transporting you to another place and time. 

fields-of-tan-and-green-gozo

After a day spent on Gozo, I truly felt like I could live there full-time or at least have a summer house. You can walk the quiet streets of Xaghra (temples) or visit the beach and dive town of Xlendi, choose any one and you will absolutely fall head over heels for Gozo, you too, will have “Gone Gozo!”

churches-of-lovely-gozo

tww-stop-sign-girl

P.S. the Maltese LOVE their cats… there are a LOT of cats all over the islands, we were laughing by our fourth day at the amount of kittys we saw on our short stay. I’m an animal lover, love me the kitty cats, puppies too, however, I will warn you, especially if you have allergies, they tend to be unruly and are everywhere, from restaurants to parks, on every street. They are so common I couldn’t stop snapping pictures.

kittys-of-malta

tww-stop-sign-girlAnother FYI – not a caution – some public restrooms have the toilet paper on the outside of the bathroom, although these are free, they are not what we have come to know and love in Germany. 

Amri and James told us Malta and Gozo have become a “hot spot” with mainland Europeans and is just now becoming an worldwide destination. I guess it’s just the “small” in me that stirs my heart, “small-town girl, small-island girl.” Yup, sounds good to me.

It’s always an adventure when you ©Travel with Wendy

 

 

 

 

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