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Top 10 Attractions on Gozo Island

If you dream of an unforgettable vacation, you are in the right place. Well, for now, you’re probably on the couch or in a chair, but with a little organization and desire you’ll soon visit one of the most beautiful places on earth: Gozo, Malta. This beautiful island is packed with attractions, from stunning beaches and historic sites to ancient architecture. This blog post will provide you with a list of the top 10 attractions on Gozo Island, Malta. 

Keep reading to find out what sights are a must-see during your visit!

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1)  Victoria: A Medieval Hilltop City – Top 10 Attractions on Gozo Island

Victoria, also known as Ir-Rabat, is the capital city of Gozo, and it’s situated on a hilltop that overlooks the island. This medieval city has a rich history, and it’s packed with cultural and historical attractions that are sure to fascinate any traveler. 

The most notable attraction in Victoria is the Citadel, a fortified city within a city that has served as a shelter and defense for the island’s inhabitants for centuries.

The Citadel is a maze of narrow streets, high walls, and stunning vistas, and it’s the perfect place to take a stroll and soak up the history of Gozo. Cultural attractions in the Citadel include the Folklore Museum, which presents traditional costumes and crafts of Gozo Island, and the Old Prison used by the Knights of Saint John in the 16th century. The prison cells are covered in prisoner’s graffiti, which offers a unique insight into the harsh realities of life for prisoners in the past.

Another fascinating attraction in the Citadel is the Gozo Museum of Archaeology, housed behind the gateway of a 17th-century townhouse. The museum displays an exceptional collection of ancient art, tools, and architectural elements dating from 4100 BC to 2500 BC found at Neolithic sites on Gozo Island. Highlights include the prehistoric statuettes from the Ggantija Temples and the ix-Xaghra Stone Circle.

The modern area of Victoria

Outside the citadel, in the more modern area of Victoria, you’ll find Independence Square, a bustling hub of street vendors and shops. This square is the perfect place to stop for a quick bite to eat or to pick up some souvenirs to take home with you.

A short walk from Independence Square is St. George’s Basilica, a 17th-century Baroque church known as the “Marble Basilica” because the interior is covered with marble inlays and columns. The church is an architectural masterpiece, and it’s worth a visit if you’re interested in art and history. A short walk from the Basilica is the Baroque Church of Saint Francis. The exquisite interior features a charming ceiling fresco that depicts a multitude of pudgy winged cherubs.

Overall, Victoria is an excellent destination for anyone looking to experience the history and culture of Gozo. With its medieval streets, stunning vistas, and wealth of cultural attractions, this city is sure to leave a lasting impression on any traveler.

2) Ggantija Temples: A UNESCO World Heritage Site

If you’re interested in history and archaeology, the Ggantija Temples are a must-visit destination on your trip to Gozo. This site is so important that it was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, recognized for its incredible cultural and historical significance.

Built between 3600 BC and 3200 BC during the Copper Age, the Ggantija Temples are among the oldest man-made structures in the world. The name of the site is derived from the Maltese word for “giant,” as it was once believed that these massive structures were built by giants.

To get to the Ggantija Temples, visitors can take a pathway that offers breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. The site is also home to a modern Interpretation Center that provides insight into the lives of Neolithic people, displaying artifacts from prehistoric archaeological sites on Gozo Island.

Located just outside the village of Ix-Xaghra, visitors can enjoy the charming countryside and explore the local 19th-century church and outdoor cafes in the main square. It’s an excellent destination for those looking to delve into history while enjoying the beauty of Gozo’s natural landscape.

Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to step back in time and experience one of the most ancient and fascinating cultural sites in the world. The Ggantija Temples are a must-see for anyone traveling to Gozo.

3)  Gozo’s Best Beach: Ir-Ramla il-Hamra – Top 10 Attractions on Gozo Island

Ir-Ramla il-Hamra, also known as Ramla Bay, is undoubtedly one of the most popular and beautiful beaches on the Island of Gozo. Nestled along a protected bay surrounded by cliffs, it boasts a wide shore covered in fine reddish sand. Unlike most beaches in Malta, Ramla Bay has almost no pebbles, making it a great spot to relax and soak in the sun.

The gentle sea at Ramla Bay is shallow and calm, ideal for swimming and snorkeling. It’s an excellent location for families with children and those who prefer a tranquil beach day. The beach is equipped with well-maintained facilities, including public bathrooms, showers, changing areas, umbrella and lounge chair rentals, snack kiosks, and ice cream stands.

Ramla Bay is a perfect destination for a scenic hike too. The eight-kilometer walking path from Marsalforn provides a more scenic route, albeit moderately difficult, traversing hillsides and clifftops, offering superb seaside views along the way. The route continues through rural valleys, past the village of Ix-Xaghra until reaching the coastline at Ramla Bay.

For those looking to add some cultural touch, there’s a large statue devoted to the Virgin Mary known as Our Lady of Hope at the center of the beach. 

Overall, Ramla Bay is an ideal destination for a relaxing day trip, and its natural beauty will leave you spellbound.

4)  The Seaside Resort of Marsalforn

If you’re looking for a vibrant and lively spot on the island of Gozo, Marsalforn is the place to be. Once a quaint fishing village, Marsalforn is now a bustling seaside resort that draws in a mix of Gozitan locals, Maltese families, and European tourists, especially during the summer months. Despite the crowds, however, the town maintains a relaxing, laid-back vibe perfect for a seaside getaway.

One of the main draws of Marsalforn is its pebble beach, which offers a great spot for sunbathing, swimming, and playing with the kids. The beach is safe enough for children to wade and offers plenty of colorful parasols for shade on hot summer days. It’s a great place to soak up the sun and enjoy the Mediterranean views.

If you’re looking for a more adventurous activity, Marsalforn’s tiny harbor is also a popular starting point for scuba diving expeditions. Some of the most popular dive sites include the Blue Hole and the Inland Sea on the Island of Gozo, Cirwkewa on Malta Island, and the Comino Caves on the Island of Comino. Whether you’re a seasoned diver or just starting, Marsalforn offers plenty of options for exploring the underwater world.

In addition to its beach and diving opportunities, Marsalforn is a charming and convenient place to stay on the island of Gozo. There are plenty of hotels, restaurants, and cafes in the area, making it easy to find everything you need for a comfortable vacation. And if you’re looking for a little evening entertainment, you won’t be disappointed – throughout the summer, local festivals and outdoor music concerts provide a great way to enjoy the balmy nights in Marsalforn.

Overall, Marsalforn is a fantastic spot to visit on the island of Gozo. 

5)  Spectacular Sea Views and the Baroque Church of Nadur – Top 10 Attractions on Gozo Island

Located on the northeastern part of the island, the village of Nadur derives its name from the Maltese word that means “to keep guard.” And it’s no surprise that it got its name from its strategic location as it offers some of the most stunning views of the Gozo countryside and beyond.

One of the best ways to enjoy the sweeping views of the landscape is by visiting the Ta’ Kenuna Tower, situated at the highest point of Nadur. Built in 1848 as a telegraph station, the tower today offers panoramic views of the surrounding islands of Comino and Malta. The Ta’ Isopu Tower, constructed in 1667 by the Knights as a watchtower, is another attraction located just outside the village.

Another gem in Nadur is the Baroque Parish Church dedicated to Saints Peter and Paul. The ornate interior features exquisite ceiling paintings, gilded Corinthian columns, and an airy dome with stained-glass windows. The church’s architecture and decorations are the result of the devotion and dedication of the local population, who helped build it over 200 years ago.

Beaches of Nadur

Nadur also boasts three picturesque bays along the nearby coastline with excellent beaches. Ramla Bay, Gozo’s most popular sandy beach, is just a little over three kilometers away from Nadur. It has a vast expanse of red-gold sand, making it the perfect place for swimming, sunbathing, and relaxing.

For a more secluded and unspoiled beach experience, visit San Blas Bay, located just 2.5 kilometers away from Nadur. The fine red sand beach is accessible only by a narrow road and steep steps, making it an idyllic getaway for those who seek peace and tranquility.

Another beach to visit is the pebbly beach of Dahlet Qorrot Bay, just three kilometers away from Nadur. It’s a popular spot among swimmers, and you’ll also find local fishermen using the cove to haul their boats in and out of the sea.

Overall, Nadur is a picturesque village that has something for everyone, from the stunning panoramic views to the impressive Baroque church and the serene beaches nearby. It’s no wonder that it’s one of the top tourist attractions on the island of Gozo.

6)  Swimming and Diving at Dwejra Bay

Dwejra Bay is a top attraction on the Island of Gozo and for good reason. Despite the famous Azure Window collapsing during a storm in 2017, the area still boasts some of the most stunning natural beauty and diverse sea life in the Mediterranean.

At the beginning of the bay lies the Inland Sea (Il-Qawra), a natural lagoon of shallow water that provides the perfect spot for swimming and snorkeling. Here, visitors can take a refreshing dip in the crystal-clear waters and explore the unique marine life that inhabits the area.

For those seeking a more adventurous underwater experience, the Blue Hole is an unmissable diving spot. Connected to the Inland Sea by an inlet, the Blue Hole is a 10-meter-wide sea pool that boasts a spectacular array of rock formations and marine life. Divers can swim through an underwater rock arch and tunnel before descending into the deep blue sea. Here, they will be met with a kaleidoscope of sea creatures, including octopus, lobster, parrot fish, sea bream, and many other species of fish.

Another highlight of Dwejra Bay is Fungus Rock, a 65-meter-high rock at the entrance of the bay. The rock takes its name from a flowering parasitic plant found in the area that was once praised by the Knights of Saint John for its medicinal properties. The waters surrounding Fungus Rock are home to a diverse range of fish, making it a prime location for scuba diving (accessible by boat). 

Visitors can also take a boat ride from the Inland Sea to Fungus Rock, operated by local fishermen.

Overall, Dwejra Bay offers an unforgettable experience for both swimmers and divers. Its unique rock formations, diverse marine life, and stunning natural beauty make it one of the most breathtaking spots in Gozo.

7)  The Basilica of Ta’ Pinu: A National Shrine and Pilgrimage Church – Top 10 Attractions on Gozo Island

Located in a remote valley between the villages of Ghammar and Gharb on the island of Gozo, the Basilica of Ta’ Pinu is an essential pilgrimage church dedicated to the Virgin Mary. This awe-inspiring basilica has a 47-meter-high campanile that stands tall and solitary, guiding visitors through the rough terrain of Gozo to this symbol of faith.

The construction of the Basilica of Ta’ Pinu was inspired by several miraculous events that took place on the site of a 16th-century chapel. In the 20th century, the church was built to honor these miracles, and it has since become a prominent landmark in Gozo. The Romanesque design of the basilica is both beautiful and stark, making it an unusual yet captivating destination for tourists.

Once inside, visitors can witness exceptional Maltese craftsmanship with inspiring religious artifacts and beautiful frescoes on display. The interior is a surprisingly spiritual space with a simple but moving ambiance that fills visitors with a sense of peace and reverence.

Incorporated into the basilica is a part of the original 16th-century church that housed the shrine of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It is a deeply significant and religious location that draws countless pilgrims to this basilica every year.

Visitors to the basilica can also explore the Sanctuary Museum which features an exhibition of the history of the Ta’ Pinu Basilica and showcases the works of Maltese painters Giuseppe Briffa and Emvin Cremona. However, visitors must dress appropriately before entering this holy space.

The Basilica of Ta’ Pinu is a moving and powerful pilgrimage destination for travelers seeking a religious experience or an opportunity to marvel at Maltese art and architecture.

8)  Ix-Xewkija Rotunda: Gozo’s Largest Church

If you’re interested in architecture, history, or religion, a visit to Ix-Xewkija Rotunda on the island of Gozo should be on your itinerary. This stunning parish church is a testament to the skill and determination of the island’s builders and craftsmen.

Ix-Xewkija village is the oldest on the island and is situated about three kilometers from the beautiful Mgarr ix-Xini beach. The Rotunda is the village’s centerpiece, a majestic dome rising above the surrounding countryside.

The dome is the third largest in the world, surpassed only by Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome and the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul. Its impressive dimensions of 74 meters in height and 27 meters in diameter make it a true wonder of engineering. The dome weighs an incredible 45,000 tons and is a masterpiece of construction and design.

The spacious white limestone interior of the church is simply decorated, with beautiful marble floors from Italy and modern paintings adorning the walls. The main altar is also carved from precious marble, adding to the overall feeling of elegance and refinement.

Ix-Xewkija Rotunda has another claim to fame: it is the seat of the present-day Knights of the Order of Saint John (Knights of Malta). This historic organization has a long and illustrious history, dating back to the Crusades, and continues to operate today in a variety of humanitarian and charitable capacities.

If you’re looking for a fascinating and awe-inspiring place to visit on Gozo, Ix-Xewkija Rotunda should be at the top of your list. With its stunning dome, rich history, and elegant design, this church is a must-see for anyone who appreciates the finer things in life.

9)  A Heritage of Handcrafted Lace in Sannat – Top 10 Attractions on Gozo Island

One of the most remarkable features of the island of Gozo is the tradition of handcrafted lace. The village of Sannat, situated in the southern part of the island, has been the center of the Gozitan lace-making industry for many centuries. Even today, visitors can witness the intricate process of lace-making as they pass by the women sitting on chairs in the shade of the 18th-century Parish Church of Saint Margaret, creating lace tablecloths and other crafts.

The Maltese lace industry has its roots in the 17th century, with lacemaking coming from Italy. The Maltese craft evolved to become the easily recognizable type known as “Maltese Lace.” Gozo’s lace industry grew steadily in the 19th century, with many people finding work in the production of lace items, which became a primary export to various European countries.

Sannat celebrates the Feast of Saint Margaret on July 27th, and the village Festa (religious festival) is held during the entire third week of July every year. The highlight of the festival is the traditional procession, where the statue of Saint Margaret is carried through the village accompanied by the sound of church bells and marching bands. Visitors can expect to witness a display of fireworks, folkloric dance performances, and other festivities.

Sannat is only eight kilometers from the port town of Mgarr, where travelers arrive by ferry from the Island of Malta. It’s worth taking a day trip to Sannat to explore the village’s traditional craft and experience the vibrant atmosphere of the festival. 

Don’t miss the opportunity to visit one of the lace shops and take home a piece of Malta’s heritage, which is not only a treasured souvenir but a reminder of the intricate and long-standing history of Gozitan craftsmanship.

10) Mgarr ix-Xini: A Secluded Beach and Snorkeling Site

If you’re looking for a quiet and secluded beach where you can swim and snorkel in peace, then Mgarr ix-Xini is the perfect spot for you. Located about 10 kilometers away from the port of Mgarr and just five kilometers from Xewkija, this little pebbly beach is nestled in a narrow inlet surrounded by steep-sided cliffs and a valley. 

The setting is simply breathtaking, making it a popular destination for those seeking a slice of tranquility away from the hustle and bustle of the busier Maltese beaches.

While Mgarr ix-Xini beach may be small, it more than makes up for it with its calm, crystal-clear waters, perfect for swimming and snorkeling. 

The marine life is thriving here, providing an excellent opportunity for underwater photography and exploration. The beach may lack lifeguards or public restrooms, so visitors should come prepared and bring all the essentials for a day of sun and sea.

Besides its lovely beach, the area surrounding Mgarr ix-Xini is ideal for other outdoor activities too. Adventurous types will love the rock climbing opportunities on the cliffs overlooking the beach, while hikers can take the walking trail around the valley for spectacular views of the area.

All in all, Mgarr ix-Xini is a true gem on the island of Gozo. With its secluded location, clear waters, and beautiful setting, it’s no wonder that this beach has become a favorite among tourists and locals alike. So why not pack a picnic and make your way to this idyllic spot for a day of sun, sand, and sea? 

You won’t be disappointed.

Conclusion – Top 10 Attractions on Gozo Island

Visiting Gozo is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience that everyone should have. With stunning beaches, rich history, and friendly locals, there’s something for everyone on this beautiful island. 

Whether you’re a history buff, an avid beachgoer, or simply looking to explore a new place, Gozo is sure to impress. 


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Read also: 15 Beautiful Tourist Attractions in Malta That You Can’t Miss 

Malta: 10 Most Frequently Asked Questions Answered