Explore the Island with These 4 Wonderful Hikes on Gozo

Gebel Ben Gorg Coast, Hikes on Gozo

There’s a lot to love about the Maltese island of Gozo. Whereas the island of Malta has seen a great deal of development, Gozo remains vastly untouched. Look around Gozo and you don’t see apartment towers, but quaint little villages and stunning rural landscapes. What’s more, this serene countryside is peppered with remarkable geological features begging to be explored. Thanks to nearly year-round good weather and the island’s small size, sightseeing is almost always on the cards. All of this means that the beautiful island of Gozo presents perfect conditions for lacing up your walking shoes and going out for a hike. With plenty of towns and villages to base yourself in, here are 4 options for wonderful hikes on Gozo.

 

Gebel Ben Gorg Cliffs and Dwejra Bay

Xlendi Tower, Hikes on Gozo

Before I get to this hike, I have to address what’s changed since I visited. When I visited Gozo in February the most popular sight in Gozo, the Azure Window, was still standing. This was a month before its unfortunate collapse. As the focal point of this hike, you obviously are unable no longer able to see it. However, it wasn’t the only attraction in the region and I still very much recommend this Gozo hike.

Setting out from the island’s main city of Victoria, you first head out to the west through the neighbourhoods of Kercem and Santa Lucija. Not before long, you’ll find yourself among the typical Maltese countryside, with stone fences and plenty of green about. Continue along the roadside until you near San Raflu Lake.

San Raflu Lake, Hikes on Gozo

To walk along the Gebel Ben Gorg Cliffs, you have a choice of two trails, one by the cliffs edge and one higher up. Roughly 150 metres before you reach San Raflu Lake, there is a path down to the cliffs that will take you to the cliff trail. For the higher trail, simply turn off at the lake itself. From there it’s onto narrow trails through farmland, admiring the view to the Mediterranean.

Gebel Ben Gorg Trail, Hikes on Gozo

Eventually the two trails converge on the remains of the ancient Wardija Punic temple. At the site there’s little context to its importance but it definitely looks primitive. What’s great is that from the temple, you can see right along Gozo’s west coast beyond the Azure Window. Note that you do have to climb over a few stones to reach the temple from the higher path, but also to continue on around the point.

Wardija Punic Temple View, Hikes on Gozo

Once you’ve head up the hill, things start to become a bit murky. Despite what the Gozo website says, I found no obvious path through to Dwejra Bay from there without trespassing on private property (If you can find the path it saves you 1 kilometre but looks to take you over a large hill). Now if you too can’t find the direct path, there is a track that will bring you back to the main road.

After not long on the road, turn off onto a minor road that will lead towards a stone quarry. At the first guard hut of the quarry, turn off to the north and follow the trail down to Dwejra Bay.

Dwejra Bay, Hikes on Gozo

From Dwejra Bay, simply follow the trail along to Dwejra Tower and you can easily find your way to where the Azure Window once stood. Despite its loss, there are still some beautiful rocky coast there, not to mention the inland sea.

Rocky Coast Azure Window, Hikes on Gozo

Once you’ve finished up at the Azure Window site, it’s time to make your way back. Simply follow the main road leading up the hill that heads into the San Lawrence countryside. As you climb up the hill, there’ll be a small road that will let you cut across to Triq Wied Junu Road, which you soon turn off to return back through Santa Lucija to Victoria.

San Lawrence Road, Hikes on Gozo

Starting Point: Victoria

Time: 3 – 4 hours / 14 km

Difficulty: Mostly Easy (small obstructions, multiple trails)

The Island of Gozo in Malta is blessed with beautiful rural landscapes and striking geological features, ideal for those looking to hike. Here are just 4 wonderful Hikes on Gozo including Gebel Ben Gorg and Dwejra Bay via @travelsewhere

 

 

Valley of Nadur and Ramla Bay

View to Ramla Bay, Hikes on Gozo

Definitely the simplest of these hikes on Gozo, the walk from Nadur to Ramla Bay is easy but nonetheless rewarding. The beach at Ramla Bay has to be the best beach that I came across in Malta hands down. Also, while I’m describing the walk from Nadur, you could also reach Ramla Bay from nearby Xaghra.

Starting from the centre of Nadur, head west until you find the main road leaving town which heads north. From this point onward, simply stick with the main road. Along the way there should be signs to Ramla Beach but they’re not really crucial.

Nadur, Hikes on Gozo

As you walk along the main road, you’ll be treated with great views down and across the deep valley that separates Nadur and Xaghra. This is pure, unadulterated Gozo countryside, complete with staggered terraces lined with stone fences. If you’re looking for the rustic side to Malta, you’ll find it here. You’ll even come across the odd vineyard here.

Gozo Countryside, Hikes on Gozo

The road will gradually lead you to walk down into the valley. Once at the bottom, you just head north towards the coast. The other direction is the road that runs up into Xaghra, the other starting point I mentioned. I should mention that walking isn’t the only way to see this part of the country, as you can also rent bicycles or even take a quad bike tour around Gozo.

Nadur Road, Hikes on Gozo

Anyway, the road should soon bring you down to the vibrant sands of Ramla Beach. As the beach is a decent size, it’s a nice place to take off your shoes and put your feet in the sand. Of course if the weather is good and you have your swimming gear, you can go for a dip in the Mediterranean here. While nearly deserted in winter, I imagine it’s a different story in summer.

Ramla Beach, Hikes on Gozo

At either end of the beach there are trails that lead to scenic viewpoints overlooking the beach. The access you have on these trails will be weather dependent as the ones on the western-end had become thick mud and too treacherous when I visited in winter.

Ramla Bay, Hikes on Gozo

Once you’re finished with the beach and side trails, you simply turn around and retrace your steps. Unfortunately, this time it’s all up hill. If you don’t have the energy you can wait for the Gozo Hop-On Hop-Off Bus that will you take you back into Nadur, but it’s expensive for only one ride. Optional side detours from Ramla Bay include the viewpoint over the Calypso Cave and Tal-Mixta Cave, both which would likely add an hour to the hike.

Starting Point: Nadur

Time: 1.5 – 2 hours / 7 km

Difficulty: Easy

The Island of Gozo in Malta is blessed with beautiful rural landscapes and striking geological features, ideal for those looking to hike. Here are just 4 wonderful Hikes on Gozo including from Nadur to Ramla Bay, via @travelsewhere

 

 

Xlendi Tower to the Ta’ Ċenċ Cliffs

Gozo Cliffs, Hikes on Gozo

Visit Malta and you’re bound to see some stunning cliffs, especially if you head for Gozo’s south coast. This part of the island is probably the most underrated of Gozo, with its long stretches of jaw dropping cliffs. That the hiking trails run right by the cliffs’ edge make me wonder why it’s one of the most overlooked Gozo hikes.

Setting out once again from Victoria, you first head southwest out of the city to the small town of Xlendi. This walk along the roadside is really straightforward and well signposted. Beside the road you can look down into a rural valley with the odd rusty windmill, known as Wied Il-Xlendi. This gentle downhill walk brings you into the centre of Xlendi.

Xlendi Outskirts, Hikes on Gozo

Unless you want a quick break in Xlendi, walk along the waterfront and follow the path past the restaurants to the cliffs to the south. The pedestrian path leads you to a nice viewpoint just outside of town, before taking you across an old stone bridge to Xlendi Tower. A typical Maltese watchtower, Xlendi Tower sits on a point with fantastic views across the bay to imposing cliffs to the west.

Xlendi Tower, Hikes on Gozo

After you’ve done admiring the view up the coastline, take the trails heading southeast parallel to the cliffs edge. While they start inland a bit, you’ll soon find yourself right by the edge of the Sanap Cliffs walking along with spectacular views. Although it doesn’t feel like you climb up much, there will soon be a big drop to the sea below. From here, simply follow the cliff trail and admire the jaw dropping views as you go.

Sanap Cliffs, Hikes on Gozo

Eventually the trail will flatten out and bring you to the next set of cliffs, the Ta’ Cenc Cliffs. As if it was even possible, you seem to be able to get even closer to the edge. You might notice your pace drops off as you let the view distract you. Nevermind the view to the other side of you, as you pass several dairy farms. Much less exciting!

Ta' Cenc Cliffs, Hikes on Gozo

If you’re still feeling adventurous you can continue along the cliffs, but you’ll soon notice you’re close to a road and can begin to make your way back. Just pop over the small fence and the country lane will bring you into nearby Sannat town. From there, just keep following the road north back into Victoria.

Ta' Cenc Trail, Hikes on Gozo

Starting Point: Victoria

Time: 2 – 3 hours / 10 km

Difficulty: Mostly Easy (Narrow trails)

The Island of Gozo in Malta is blessed with beautiful rural landscapes and striking geological features, ideal for those looking to hike. Here are just 4 wonderful Hikes on Gozo including from Xlendi to the Ta Cenc Cliffs, via @travelsewhere

 

 

Countryside of Zebbug to Wied Il-Ghasri

Ghasri Gorge, Hikes on Gozo

Throughout my time there, this may well be my favourite of my hikes on Gozo. Full of beautiful natural scenery, this hike was fantastic given how spur of the moment it was. Taking you through some of the island’s best spots, it’s hard to believe how much you can see in just a few hours.

From the coastal town of Marsalforn, follow the country road west out of town into the countryside. Walking along the country lanes, you can admire the giant clusters of cacti sporting from the old stone walls.

Marsalforn Outskirts, Hikes on Gozo

After a while you’ll turn off to the right down a minor road into the valley, and cross a bridge over the small stream at the bottom of the valley. There’s some stunning views up the valley, even if it gets a bit steep as you near town. As you walk up the other side into town of Zebbug, make sure to look back at the magnificent view behind you.

Zebbug Valley, Hikes on Gozo

Once you’ve entered Zebbug town, take the main road northwest out of town, down towards the coast. This road may have the longest views I found on Gozo, going as far as the distant Gordon Lighthouse. Yet again, you’ll find yourself among increasingly rural surrounds.

Ghasri Coast, Hikes on Gozo

The walk down from Zebbug is worth it once you get down to the coast. Take the small track off the main road to Wied Il-Ghasri gorge. This gorge runs right off the sea and when the waves are high, they surge down the gorge to a mighty roar. Walking along the gorge’s edge, you reach the ancient salt pans that are carved into the coast. You can also watch the waves of the Mediterranean crash against the cliffs here.

Wied Il-Ghasri, Hikes on Gozo

Once you’ve finished watching the sea, make your way back to the road that hugs the coast. As you journey back to Marsalforn, you’re treated to some striking stretches of the Xwejni Coast. Here you can also find the traditional Xwejni Salt Pans between the little coves that run back into Marsalforn. The coast is particularly great at sunset with the vivid dusk sky stretching to the horizon. Soon, you’ll find yourself re-entering Marsalforn.

Xwejni Salt Pans, Hikes on Gozo

Starting Point: Marsalforn

Time: 1.5 – 2.5 hours / 7 km

Difficulty: Moderately Easy (Hills)

The Island of Gozo in Malta is blessed with beautiful rural landscapes and striking geological features, ideal for those looking to hike. Here are just 4 wonderful Hikes on Gozo including Zebbug and Wied Il-Ghasri via @travelsewhere

 

 

Tips:

  • Bring food/water and make other general hiking preparations and precautions;
  • Have a look at maps beforehand, and consult the Gozo website which while mostly helpful had a few inaccuracies;
  • Make sure to take sunscreen, even in winter;
  • Don’t forget your camera!

 


Have you ventured to Malta and done any of these Gozo hikes? Are there other day hikes on Gozo you’d recommend? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you click on one and make a purchase, I may make a small commission, but at no extra cost to you. 

Why Not Pin It for Later

The Island of Gozo in Malta is blessed with beautiful rural landscapes and striking geological features, ideal for those looking to hike. Here are just 4 wonderful Hikes on Gozo you can do when visiting, via @travelsewhere The Island of Gozo in Malta is blessed with beautiful rural landscapes and striking geological features, ideal for those looking to hike. Here are just 4 wonderful Hikes on Gozo you can do when visiting, via @travelsewhere

 


This post is part of Wanderful Wednesday at SnowinTromso and The Weekly Postcardat Caliglobetrotter. Please head on over for more great posts.

 

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11 Comment

  1. So much to see here in Malta. I remember the photos of the Azure Window site, when my cousin visited Malta a few years back. Just gorgeous. 🙂

  2. Esther says: Reply

    This post couldn’t come at a better time, as husband and I are leaving for Malta in Sept, and we’ll be staying on Gozo for a week. We’re also thinking about renting some bikes. Seems like a great outdoor destination!!
    #WanderfulWednesday

  3. I love that you included maps which detail where to start! I definitely want to go several of these, if not all during the time we hope to go one day!! #WanderfulWednesday

  4. I definitely recommend Xlendi and Zebbug (in both Malta and Gozo). Thanks for this hike down memory lane! Gozo is so beautiful and quiet, it makes me smile whenever I go back there. #wanderfulwednesday

  5. We did a terrible tour of Gozo – we should have just done it on our own. Your photos look lovely…

  6. Ruth says: Reply

    These walks are so lovely! The last two ones are my favorites. I would like to see those cliffs and the salt pans! So sad the Azure Window is gone but that is how nature works. #wanderfulwednesday

  7. I have not been yet, but these look like great hikes. So sad that the window collapsed, and lucky you were able to see it. I am pinning for future reference. Thanks for sharing on #TheWeeklyPostcard.

  8. Your pictures are great, but I wouldn’t be able to hike for so long. On the other hand I’ve never try it! Do you do this activity in all your trips? #TheWeeklyPostcard fan

  9. Beautiful pictures! Love how it looks so wild and untouched 🙂

  10. oneadventuretraveler says: Reply

    You have found some great hikes on Gozo Malta. Those look like my kind of hikes. You photos are stunning and captured amazing views. Good information. Thanks for sharing! #TheWeeklyPostcard

  11. Wow, those cliff views are amazing! And you say that’s not the most popular area? Crazy! All of the scenery is pretty gorgeous though – can’t go wrong with any of these hikes! We don’t know a whole lot about Malta, so seeing the countryside and some of the natural beauty is a treat for us. Thanks for sharing on #TheWeeklyPostcard!

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