No matter what time of year you choose to visit Malta, any trip to this Mediterranean hotspot is incomplete without spending at least one day exploring our sister island. Gozo (Maltese: Għawdex) is just a 30-minute ferry ride away from the northernmost part of the island, with return tickets costing €4.65 for adults, €1.15 for children (kids under 3 travel for free) and €15.70 for a car plus its driver (for more information, check out the Gozo Channel website). Now that we’ve got the basics covered, let’s take a look at some things you absolutely must see and do if you’re spending one day in Gozo!
1. Take in the scenery at Dwejra
We may have lost the legendary Azure Window, but Dwejra offers some truly breath-taking views nonetheless. This one’s located at the other end of the island, roughly an hour away by bus and 30 minutes away if you’re driving – but trust us when we say that it’s worth it. Besides, every stop on this little one-day tour will take you closer back to the harbour for your return to Malta!
2. See the shrine at Ta’ Pinu
This minor Basilica is located Għarb, around 23 minutes away from Mgarr by car and approximately 45 minutes by bus. Ta’ Pinu is arguably the most famous church in Gozo, and was built in the neo-Romanesque style between 1920 and 1931 on the site of what used to be a 16th century chapel. The structure itself is stunning both inside and out, but the shrine is something else entirely. Every year, thousands of people visit the shrine to offer thanks, pray for good health or a speedy recovery, or simply to stand in awe at the collection of curious artefacts people have left there in thanks following their own miracles – no matter how big or small.
3. Have a bite to eat in Xlendi
Xlendi is one of our favourite places to hit when we want to feast on some fresh fish or simply have a drink while enjoying the gorgeous sea views this place has to offer. After seeing the sights at Dwejra and Ta’ Pinu, it’s time for a well-deserved pit stop so that you can rest and refuel for the next part of your day! If you’re here during the warmer months, we recommend treating yourself to some ice cream and taking a relaxing walk along the little promenade before heading to your next spot.
4. Step back in time at Ggantija Temples
Located in Xagħra, these megalithic temples are some of the most significant archeological sites on the Maltese Islands, and have even obtained UNESCO World Heritage Site status. Dating back to around 3600 – 3200 BC, these temples get their name from the Maltese word ‘ġgant’, meaning ‘giant’ – when you see the size of each individual stone slab, you’ll see why it’s been given that name!
5. See the Cittadella and round off the day with dinner
After you’ve seen the temples, you might just have a bit of time to do some shopping in Victoria, but we recommend spending some time seeing the majestic Cittadella! You can’t miss it – this walled city is located on a hill overlooking the city, and looks glorious when it’s all lit up at night.
You’ll soon start to feel peckish, though! If you’re in the mood for some cheap, authentic Gozitan-style pizza, then grab a take-away box of deliciousness from Maxokk Bakery in Nadur – it’s a local favourite! If, however, you’re looking to have a sit-down meal, then here are just a few of our favourite eateries in the Mgarr area:
- Xerri Il-Bukkett
- Country Terrace
- Ta’ Tona
6. Get the ferry back to Malta!
You’ve done a lot today – we know you’ll probably walk through the door and keep walking until you hit the bed. Sweet dreams!
This is just one way to spend your day in Gozo, of course! If you want to see as much of this gorgeous island as possible, then check out our Gozo quad bike tour, jeep tour, or Round Gozo cruise for more information.