All over the Maltese islands, many mysterious temples were built thousands of years ago.
The plans of the Maltese Neolithic temples are based on a forecourt in front of a concave facade, a trilithon doorway leading to a central paved corridor from which semicircular rooms open on both sides.
Made using huge stone blocks in a period when no metal tools existed, the temples surprisingly survived until today when their gigantic structures can be still visited in Ggantija on Gozo, Hagar Qim, Mnajdra, Tarxien and the underground Hypogeum at Hal Saflieni on Malta.
Built in the honor of the Mother-Goddess of fertility, the temples seem to be the result of a superhuman effort.
For more details visit my Ggantija Temples page.
As gratitude or devotion for the blessings received by the pilgrims who came to this holy place to pray, many ex-votos stand on the walls of Ta' Pinu sanctuary.
The ex-votos are devotional paintings done in thanks for a miraculous event, a favorable solution to a problem for which the petitioner would bring it in gratitude.
This window back into the past, to the preoccupations and everyday events of the people concerned, are a real confirmation of this special sanctuary's importance.
In Malta everybody has the opportunity to admire the beautiful specific Maltese balconies, but it is said that the Gozo ones are the most picturesque.
As the women here used to work mainly around the house, it was a tradition and also a competition among them to have the nicest and most decorated balcony.
That's why the balconies in Gozo have richer decoration than the one in Malta.
A walk in the citadel is a real pleasure.
The narrow alleys house shops selling local craft and wandering around you'll find yourself asking what will be view that the next angle will display in front of your eyes, what other hidden treasure you will discover.
As also in Malta, the road conditions in Gozo are not the best ones, but this is probably the island charm.
As you cannot go with higher speed on these narrow streets, you have the occasion to admire the island beauty: the houses, the balconies, little squares or even the agricultural fields.
I've probably seen in Malta one of the most beautiful and elaborated coats-of-arms.
Almost every important building has its own coat-of-arm and for us it was amusing to try to identify the elements included.
The official coat-of-arms of Gozo has six parallel wavy horizontal bands alternately silver and black, three slightly pointed hills in black and above the shield a mural coronet.
Due to this emblem, Gozo earned the popular nickname of the "Island of the Three Hills".
You can't miss the local traditional fishing boat with these bright colors as yellow, green, red and blue. This boat called "luzzu" is one of the maltese symbols. The Phoenician eyes are often painted at the bow in order to protect the boat and to get an abundant fishing.
The local salt evaporation ponds will offer you some amazing and picturesque coastal perspectives.
After filling some shallow pools, the seawater is drawn out by natural solar evaporation. At the end only the salt remains and could be harvested. An ingenious and costless system to extract the marine salt.
The niche with the statue of Our Lady of Soledad is located within the walls of the Citadel, opposite the Cathedral in the square.
The niche was made in 1896, but it is said that the statue dates back to 1559.
The mode of life of the locals are surprising! Travelling around Gozo you may notice that there are keys in the locks from the outside! It means: 'We are at home, come in, we are not afraid of anything.' There are no thieves and robbers on Gozo. One more story to amuse you: once a man from Malta came to visit his brother living on Gozo. He parked the car near his house and began to lock it. On seeing that his brother rashed out of the house with a yell not to disgrace him. Nobody locks cars on Gozo. :-))
The local falling down water. Pronounced "CHISK", it's about 40c a bottle upwards and quite pleasant.
It's great to see these old GPO telephone boxes. They have far more character than the concrete and glass things.
Plus they work too.
In my opinion, the real maltese life is inside this island: its people, little villages and landscape...
I was completely happy in this one day tour around this little island but really authentic!