North Malta History

Wignacourt Tower

Wignacourt TowerWignacourt Tower, overlooking St. Paul's Bay, was built in 1610 and is the oldest standing watchtower from the period of the Knights of St. John. The two floors contain exhibitions and there are outstanding views across the bay from the roof. Leaving the tower, turn left in the direction of Qawra Point and you'll find Roman baths, St. Paul's Shipwreck Chapel and Bugibba Salt Pans. Temple remains can be viewed in the grounds of the Dolmen Hotel. Fra Ben Tower overlooks the entrance to Salina Bay with its extensive salt pans. On the other side of the bay are the Salina catacombs (reached via a field to the right of the Salina Chapel). Finally, just before the Coastline Hotel, is the Ximenes Redoubt and, just beyond it, a fougasse.

Buses: 12, 31 and X3 stop nearby.

Xemxija Heritage Trail

Xemxija Heritage TrailFrom the bus stop in Xemxija take the first road on the left, then follow the road round to the right to find the startof the Heritage Trail. Climbing the Roman road (which is steep and rather rough to begin with), you'll find several caves that have been in use since ancient times as burial chambers and, at times, have been inhabited. There are two sets of ancient beehives and a 1,000 year old carab tree, Punic rock tombs and a farmer's 'hovel'. Where the Roman road divides follow the right hand road to a Second World War pill box. Immediately after this, a flight of steps leads down to the remains of a Roman bath house. Return to the top path and, a little further on, a path to the right leads to an impressive set of 'cart ruts' dating to the Bronze Age.

Buses: 41 from Valletta, 221 from Qawra, 222 from Sliema, St. Julian's

Skorba and Ta' Hagrat Temples

Skorba and Ta' Hagrat TemplesThese two archaeological sites date back to the very early temple builders. On the skorba site, close to the village of Zebbieh, pottery has been discovered dating back as far as 4500 BC. The Ta' Hagrat site is close to the village of Mgarr, with its impressive church featuring an oval-shaped dome. There are also remains of Roman Baths nearby but these have not been open to the public for some years.

Buses: 23 from Valletts / Mosta; 102 from Mellieha

Victoria Lines

Victoria LinesBuilt by the British forces, the Victoria Lines were intended to take advantage of a natural fault line that crosses from one coast of Malta to the other in order to provide a defensive wall. Most of the walls are still relatively intact and provide some of the best views on the island. You'll need strong shoes, a good map and a head for heights.

Buses: 23 from Valletta (Gharghur, Targa Gap, Bingemma Gap); 31, 41 to Mosta (Targa Gap)