history

Gozo History

Cittadella

Citadella, Victoria, GozoThe Citadella, Victoria, dominates the Gozo cuntryside and dates back to the Romans and Arab occupations. For centuries, Gozitans were all expected to return to the citadel before nightfall for fear of attacks. However, after the Turks seized the Citadella in 1551, taking almost all the surviving inhabitants into slavery, the Knights of St. John set about strengthening its defences. Within the Citadella are Gozo Cathedral and several important museums.

Buses: 301, 302, 303, 305, 306, 307, 308, 309 to Victoria then a short walk from the main square.

Gozo Cathedral

Gozo Cathedral, VictoriaThe cathedral is located up broad steps immediately behind a large piazza. Entry to both the cathedral and its associated museum is through a joint ticket. The cathedral lacks a dome; instead, a tromp l'oeil is painted on the ceiling giving the impression that you are looking up at a high dome.

Further information...

Buses: as per Citadella

Ggantija Temples

Ggantija Temples, Xaghra, GozoThese temples, located in the village of Xaghra, are reputed to be the oldest free-standing man-made structures in the world, dating back over 5,000 years. The heaviest stones weigh over 20 tons and local legend is that they were carried to the site by a female giant, hence the name Ggantija. The temples themselves are thought even to have been built in the shape of a female godess and are believed to have been roofed over.

Buses (to Xaghra): 306 from Victoria; 322 from Mgarr ferry teminal

Comino

Santa Marija tower, CominoMost visitors to Comino never venture far from the Blue Lagoon which, despite the beauty of the lagoon, is a pity. Follow the road up from the ferry landing jetty, then turn right. After passing what was once a Knights' isolation hospital you'll see the impressive Santa Marija tower, open to visitors whenever the flag is flying. This was built as part of the Knights' defences and nowadays contains a small museum and exhibition. Continue along the path round the island and you'll find the Santa Marija battery, another part of the island's defences.

Comino can be reached by ferry from Cirkewwa ferry port and from Mgarr, Gozo.