Hiking on Gozo and Comino on the picturesque coasts of Malta

For many decades, Guide John has been hosting roughly a dozen ambulatory explorations on the verdant isles of Gozo and Comino. John enjoys the hiking comradely of the hike and possesses extensive knowledge of both Gozo and Comino.

  • Unseen water reserves,
  • Hidden or concealed caves,
  • Ancient air raid shelters,
  • Cart-Ruts
  • Windmills once driven by donkeys of yesteryear…

Not a secret of these splendid islands has managed to elude John. Acquire a summary of the hiking and scaling expeditions that John presents on Gozo and Comino. On offer are 13 distinctive trails, three of them accompanied by arguably the most amiable donkeys in Gozo (as of January 2024).

For those who decide quickly:

Looking for an adventure?

28.02.2024: Walking with (Gorgeous) Donkeys (Route 3)

Join two of Malta’s cutest and prettiest donkeys on a gentle walk to some of Gozo’s most beautiful views. The circular walk takes about 2 hours, including a snack break. The starting and ending point is the Church of the Conception on the road from Qala to Hondoq, which is well worth seeing.

Book your place today via Meetup’s quick registration

WoM Difficulty level 1

Note: World of Malta is not the organizer of the mentioned event. Rather, it is a recommendation from us, as we enjoy taking part in these hikes ourselves. This event is organized by the event portal Meetup, where you can find further information and details. We wish you an enjoyable and enriching experience exploring Gozo´s!

Table of contents

13 fantastic hikes on Gozo and Comino

When the springtime arrives, Gozo bursts into greenery, surpassing Malta itself. This owes to Gozo’s numerous subterranean aquifers. Consequently, the springtime, post Easter time is ideal for adventures in Gozo and Comino. The coastlines of these islands provide plenty of coastal hiking paths and trekking opportunities.

Gozo Hiking Route 1 — Mgarr Ix-Xini Tal Valley Floor

Discover a fantastic landscape and the beautiful realm of the Mgarr Ix-Xini Valley. Throughout this guided journey, traverse this fascinating and unique region at a leisurely pace. Visit an 18th-century water pumping station and a sanctuary dating back to the Phoenician era. Prepare to be awestruck by the secret caverns, including the “Cave of the Bells,” acclaimed as the largest in Gozo. After 3 hours, John will escort you back from the serpentine valley.

WoM Difficulty level 2

Gozo Hiking Route 2 – Shelf Above Mistra Rocks

Commence by San Blas Bay and be taken aback by the sheer awe-inspiring panoramas on the Mistra Rocks hike. Discover hidden passages and ancient aqueducts. On select days, a visit to one of the most exquisitely situated farmsteads in Gozo is on the cards.

WoM Difficulty level 2

Gozo Hiking Route 3 – The Split Below Ta’ Sopu Tower

This hike is a memorable foray into rugged terrain. Ascend through diverse chambers, skirting between towering rock faces and adjacent plateaus. With Ta’ Sopu Tower, erected in 1667 by the Knights of St. John, commanding views over northern Gozo unfold before you. The Isopu Tower — alternatively known as Nadur Tower or Torre Nuova — bears resemblance to Gozo’s triad of other defensive bastions: the Mġarr ix-Xini Tower, Xlendi Tower, and Dwejra Tower.

WoM Difficulty level 3

Gozo Hike Route 4 – The Route Through Mistra Rocks

The tour leads over and through Gozo’s Mistra rocks. Some imposing boulders are the size of churches. On the way to picturesque farms hidden in the rocks, discover Gozo’s magnificent wildflowers and plants that bloom all year round. Discover hidden caves overgrown with thorny branches like Sleeping Beauty’s castle or Little Briar Rose.

WoM Difficulty level 3

Gozo Hiking Route 5 – The Magical Mistra Tour

The Mistra Rocks, quite simply, constitute the most beautiful facet of Gozo. This hike guides you along a pristine, finely groomed path through the wildest pockets of the rocks, a landscape thousands of years in the making. None of the Mistra Rock tours can parallel the uniqueness of these formations.

WoM Difficulty level 3

Gozo Walking Tour Route 6 – The Island of Comino

Experience the beautiful island of Comino from an entirely fresh perspective. This guided tour of Northern and Eastern Comino unveils multiple “azure windows”. Another highlight includes what is probably the most thrilling cave within the entire Maltese archipelago. From the southern flank of Santa Maria Bay, a majestic panorama of Gozo unfolds. Close by stands the Chapel of our Lady.

WoM Difficulty level 2

Gozo Hiking Route 7 – Amazing Secrets of Dwejra

The Dwejra region, a wondrous part of Gozo, offers not only spectacular views and water sources but also unveils forgotten valleys and striking contrasts within this remarkable area.

WoM Difficulty level 2

Gozo Hiking Route 8 – Hidden Highlights of Hondoq

Embark on a guided stroll to Hondoq’s charming yet lesser-known spots. The journey starts at the glorious Paris Church at Qala’s heart. Prepare for an astonishing array of terrains:

  • A lost green wilderness,
  • Sundry thrilling clay inclines,
  • Stunning pebble-strewn beaches,
  • Natural sea arches,
  • Obscured caves,

stepped fields hosting Gozo’s finest sea vistas. The beaches and bays offer numerous chances for a swift dip. The delights of this hike are truly challenging to encapsulate with mere words.

WoM Difficulty level 2

Gozo Hike Route 9 – The Other Side of Comino

Setting off at the Blue Lagoon, traverse World War II shelters to the derelict Abandoned Isolation Hospital. Continue along the seashore to Saint Mary’s Tower, immortalised by “The Count of Monte Cristo.” If festivities are in swing, you may glimpse inside. Head southerly to Saint Mary’s Battery, boasting two historic cannons. On your return, a former pig farm visit awaits. En route, massive water cisterns lead to a verdant oasis crowned with a tranquil pond at Comino’s heart. Discover breathtaking caves, amazing shorelines, grand seascapes and little-known views of the palazzo.WoM Difficulty level 2

Gozo Hike Route 10 – The Neolithic Caves

This leisurely hike takes you through the wide variety of caves above “Ghajn Abdun”. They are located near the beautiful landscape of Santa Lucija. These caves have yielded Neolithic artifacts. This was probably the earliest human settlement in the entire Maltese archipelago. The view from there is incredible.

WoM Difficulty level 2

2 donkeys from Qala, Gozo

Donkey trekking: Guided donkey tours on Gozo

Accompany two of Gozo’s cutest and prettiest donkeys. The tour starts with a visit to the donkey paddock at Simar Farmhouse’ in Qala. There you will be greeted by the two donkeys. Because they have known since 2020 that it’s time to go out into the wild.

 

Gozo donkey hike route 1

Akin to the previous, this circular walk spans around 2 hours and includes a break for a bite to eat. Commencing and concluding at the well-worth-seeing Church of the Conception on the road from Qala to Hondoq.

Difficulty level 1

Gozo Donkey Hike Route 2

We have not been able to participate in this tour in Qala to Hondoq. The report will follow.

Gozo donkey hike route 3

The circular walk takes about 2 hours, including a snack break. The starting and ending point is the Church of the Conception on the road from Qala to Hondoq, which is well worth seeing.

Difficulty level 1

Difficulty levels hiking in Gozo

Trekking in Malta transcends mere ambulation, encompassing both subjective and objective difficulty tiers. Malta lacks objective classifications as per hiking or alpine clubs. Yet, following consultations with guide John, we offer you a rudimentary compass.

  • Hikes with a walking time of up to 2 hours
  • Minor ascents and descents up to 100 meters in altitude
  • The hiking route is on flat paths or wide hiking trails
  • No steep ascents
  • No potentially dangerous and unprotected (exposed) places
  • Oriented to alpine and hiking clubs, a blue or T1 hike.

These hikes extend for up to 2 hours and feature modest elevations and descents, with a maximum difference in altitude of 100 meters. The trails are even and broad, perfect for leisurely walks, with no sharp inclines or perilous, unprotected spots. These rambles are equivalent to a blue or T1 hike, as classified by alpine and hiking associations.

  • Hikes with a walking time of up to 3.5 hours
  • Ascents and descents up to 200 meters in altitude
  • The hiking route is on good hiking trails, with scree areas and cliffs
  • Steep terrain possible
  • Oriented to alpine and hiking clubs, a blue or T2 hike

Designed for up to 3.5 hours of walking, these hikes encompass ascents and descents reaching up to 200 meters. Traversing reliable paths that may include loose stone sections and cliffs, some steep terrain might be encountered. They align with blue or T2 hikes, adhering to alpine and hiking clubs’ criteria.

  • Hikes with a walking time up to 4 hours
  • Ascents and descents up to 200 meters in altitude
  • The hiking route is on footpaths, with scree areas and cliffs
  • Steep terrain with climbing possible
  • For regular and trained hikers
  • Sure-footedness is necessary and hiking or trekking shoes are recommended
  • Oriented to alpine and hiking clubs, a red or T3 hike

These outings, suitable for habitual and vigorous walkers, last up to 4 hours. They tackle ascents and descents of up to 200 meters, along footpaths that run through scree and cliffside areas. Some climbs may be required. Proficiency in hiking is a must, as is wearing proper hiking boots. These trails correspond to a red or T3 category, as recognized by alpine and hiking clubs.

FAQ - Questing for Gozo and Comino hikes? The responses await!

Aside from various commercial travel entities, Meet Up provides complimentary affiliation, thereby joining the Gozo Meet Up group. Henceforth, booking current marches is achievable via search.

The guide lauds boots, well-tread shoes, or trainers. On the odd blustery, precipitous day, a pullover, cardigan, sweatshirt, or sports jacket is advisable.

 

Rare are the chances to procure foodstuffs and potables mid-route. It is prudent to come equipped with nibbles and drinks.

 

This venture, including the hikes, incurs no fee. Donations to countryside caring guides are common in Malta and are gratefully accepted. Malta’s government has a focus on business first. Pretty much every building application on green land seems to be approved. Nature conservation and cultural projects usually receive little or no government funding. The development of these walks and the maintenance of the trails takes a lot of time and is organized privately. We suggest contributions starting from 5 euros.

 

In the absence of Maltese hiking consortia to decree difficulty gradations, we’ve formulated a basic compass for Gozo and Comino’s hiking rigour with guide John’s counsel.

A mere 3 km² houses Comino, with habitants numbering three or four. Comino Redoubt Hill, peaking at 75 meters, vaunts the islet’s zenith. Further reading on Comino’s notables and locales is available in the article sights and cities.

On the area of 3 km² on Comino live four people. The highest elevation of Comino Redoubt Hill is 75 meters. More details about Comino you can read at the sights and cities.

John’s conducted ventures across Comino and Gozo often entertain dogs. Post deliberation with John, brining a hound is plausible.

Is canine companionship viable on these hikes?

Are you missing a question about hiking in Gozo and Comino?

Feel free to contact us. We are sure we have the right answer.

Thank you for spending your time with us.

World of Malta is a free project by Niclas and Ralf. Honestly researched and free of charge for our readers. Would you like to support us? Then we would be delighted if you could buy us an espresso.

Do you want to know more? Current travel guides to Malta 2024:

Malta Travel guide

The Mini Rough Guide to Malta

DK Eyewitness Top 10 Malta and Gozo

Lonely Planet Malta & Gozo 9 (Travel Guide)

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