The Dwejra Walk in Gozo is a lesser-known trail option. Yet, the Dwejra Walk includes seeing some of the most outstanding natural attractions on the island. Admittedly, Beck and I didn’t do the normal Dwejra Walk starting and ending in Victoria. Instead, we did a modified version of the Dwejra Walk, which exclusively involves coastal walking. We highly recommend this hiking route alternative, particularly if you like beautiful coastal scenery. Basically, instead of starting in Victoria, the hike starts in Xlendi. On your way to Dwejra Bay, you’ll hike by the amazing Fungus Rock. Once you arrive at Dwejra Bay, you’ll explore the amazing Blue Hole and Inland Sea Dive Site – two of the most incredible attractions in Malta.
In this guide, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about this modified Dwejra Walk. Included in our description of this alternate route, we’ll discuss information about getting to Gozo initially. We’ll also talk about gear essentials and bonus tips whilst exploring Gozo in Malta. Anyway, before you read this guide, feel free to watch our Malta hiking video.
We hope you find this guide helpful. For other great Malta hikes, read our Dwejra Lines, Comino Walk and Golden Bay to Ġnejna Bay guides. Otherwise, read our Malta Hiking Guide to find out about the nine best hikes on the island.
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Dwejra Walk vs. Modified Dwejra Walk (Gozo, Malta)
The standard Dwejra Walk and this modified Dwejra Walk involve exploring a similar stretch of coast between Xlendi and Dwejra Bay. But, there are some obvious differences.
The standard Dwejra Walk is a combination of town, countryside and coastal walking. You’ll explore the towns of Victoria and San Lawrenz. By doing so, you’ll see more historical attractions such as parish churches. Then, walking between these towns and the coast, there will be more country walking dominated by barren farm landscapes.
This differs from this modified Dwejra Walk, which is, essentially, exclusively a coastal walk. Yes, there are some country walk elements in sections where you’re unable to strictly follow paths along the coast where they fall on private property. But, otherwise, the modified Dwejra Walk is more or less just a coastal walk. For nature lovers, this modified version may be preferable. That’s because this walk focuses on coastal scenery, rather than human-made attractions.
Of course, if you’re keen to stick to the original Dwejra Walk, please find a GPS-guided map here.
Otherwise, if you’re keen on doing the nature-focussed modified Dwejra Walk, then this guide will have your sorted. Before we dive into a trail description, you can find a GPS-guided map and trail specs for the modified Dwejra Walk below.
Modified Dwejra Walk Details and Map
- Type: One-way
- Distance: 8.3km
- Time: 2.5 hours
- Accumulated elevation gain: 160m
- Difficulty: Easy
- Trailhead: Xlendi Bay
- Map: Wikiloc
Modified Dwejra Walk Trail Description
In this trail description, we’ll break down the route into sections to show you the best parts of this coastal walk. Indeed, the highlights include Fungus Rock, Dwejra Bay, the Inland Sea Dive Site and the Blue Hole, all of which, are some of the best natural attractions in Gozo, Malta. So, how did you get to Gozo in the first place?
How to Get There: Gozo Ferry
If you’re staying on the mainland of Malta, you’ll need to catch the Gozo Channel Ferry. It’s also possible to take your car from the mainland to Gozo on the ferry. The Gozo Channel Ferry service runs 24/7 and is usually €15.70 ($15.70USD) for the car and passenger, plus €4.65 ($4.65USD) for each additional passenger. If you don’t have a car, you’ll just pay the standard passenger fare of €4.65 ($4.65USD) for the return ferry. You’ll depart from the Cirkewwa Ferry Terminal on the mainland and return from the Gozo Ferry Terminal (Mgarr Harbour). Check here for the Gozo Channel Ferry schedule.
Once you arrive at the Gozo Ferry Terminal, you’ll need to get to Xlendi to begin the modified Dwejra Walk. If you don’t have a car, you’ll need to get public transport. Catch the 301 bus from this bus stop in Mgarr to Victoria. Then, from this bus stop (Vicotria Bay 5) in Victoria, catch either the 306 or 330 bus to Xlendi. If you have a car, simply drive to Xlendi! You’ll find plenty of parking there. But, as usual, parking spaces can fill up quickly in the peak season. So, try and get there early if you visit in the summer.
Car hire: in 2021, we hired a manual car with Green Motion using Rentalcars.com from Malta International Airport for only €17/day ($17USD). It was possible to get a cheaper manual car for €13/day ($13USD) with Sicily By Car. But, they require an International Driver’s Permit and have a poorer reputation. Anyway, for an automatic car, you’d be looking at around €22/day ($22USD) with a reputable company.
FYI – you can explore Gozo with Hop On Hop Off – if that’s your preferred way of getting around the island.
Starting the Modified Dwejra Walk in Xlendi
From the northern end of Xlendi Beach, you’ll ascend a steep set of stairs. You’ll then turn left following a faint and dusty trail, that briefly descends. Next, you’ll steer right, following a barely defined trail leading up the rocky landscape, running parallel to the coastline. The trail then steers away from Xlendi Bay in a northerly direction. At this point of the walk, there’s barely a trail to follow. Make sure to use our GPS-guided map for clarification. Anyway, looking back at the Xlendi Bay area, you’ll enjoy a magnificent far-reaching view across the water.
Eventually, you’ll reach a point where the rough and rugged coastal terrain meets a road. It’s important that you turn right and follow the road in a northerly direction. If you turn left, you’ll follow a trail that inevitably intrudes on private property.
By following the road north, you’ll eventually reach an intersection. Turn left to follow the Triq Santa Katarina Tal Qabbieza road towards San Raflu Lake. All in all, you’ll do around 2km of road walking at this stage of the hike. Sure, road walking isn’t the most inspiring section of this walk. But, you’ll still enjoy nice coastal views. Besides, you could speed hike to help you complete the road walking quicker.
What’s speed hiking? If we’re doing a less enjoyable road walk as part of a hike, we’ll speed hike to complete it quicker. Find out more about speed hiking here.
San Raflu Lake
Along Triq Santa Katarina Tal Qabbieza road, you’ll pass San Raflu Lake – the only natural waterhole in Gozo. To be honest, it’s more of a small pond that’s nothing special. From there, you’ll join a rougher country road, which hugs nearer the coastline. There are sections here that are private property, which prevents you from staying strictly by the coast the whole time. During this part of the walk, you’ll enjoy mesmerising yellow-coloured sandstone cliff formations. Soon enough, you’ll arrive at Wardija Punic Temple.
Wardija Punic Temple
Wardija Punic Temple, also known as Ras il-Wardija, is listed on the National Inventory of the Cultural Property of the Maltese Islands. It’s a dilapidated Punic-Roman sanctuary that was built in the 3rd Century BC. The historical attraction is carved into the promontory about halfway between Xlendi and Dwejra Bay. It was excavated in the 1960s by Italian archaeologists.
Unfortunately, the area is privately owned and in a pretty bad state. So, there’s not really a whole lot that you’re able to see without permission from the owner. Because of that, Beck and I didn’t spend time much time there. Besides, we were keen to crack on towards Fungus Rock in Dwejra Bay.
Once you’ve left Wardija Punic Temple, the next main attraction along the modified Dwejra Walk is Fungus Rock. Located in Dwejra Bay, Fungus Rock is a magnificent natural attraction. It’s a huge rock formation submerged in the waters of Dwejra Bay. Fungus Rock is a solitary landform detached from the coastline. Indeed, it’s an incredible sea stack, which partially protects Dwejra Bay. It’s almost as if Fungus Rock is the gatekeeper for those entering Dwejra Bay from the sea!
You’ll enjoy splendid views of Fungus Rock from the high cliffs above and west of Dwejra Bay. From there, you’ll steeply descend, making your way down to the shoreline of Dwejra Bay. As you descend, you’ll lose sight of Fungus Rock. But, you’ll enjoy ongoing superb views of Dwejra Bay and the surrounding coastline.
Before heading to some of Malta’s best natural attractions – the Blue Hole and Inland Sea Dive Site, you’ll pass Dwejra Tower. This small watchtower was built in 1652 during the reign of Grand Master Lascaris. Admittedly, Beck and I were a bit too excited to head to the Inland Sea Dive Site. So, we didn’t admire Dwejra Tower for long.
Inland Sea Dive Site (Inland Sea, Gozo)
The Inland Sea Dive Site, also known as the Gozo Inland Sea, is a very popular dive site. Basically, there’s an 80 metre long underwater tunnel that connects the Inland and the Mediterranean Sea. From the platform at the Inland Sea Dive Site, you’ll be able to see the 60 metre wide shallow semi-circular inland lagoon. You’ll also see an opening in the rock wall – this is where the underwater tunnel starts and travels out to the Mediterranean Sea.
Many keen divers head to the Inland Sea Dive Site to explore the underwater tunnel and the many small and large caves within. Beck and I aren’t divers. But, if we were, we’d certainly be keen to explore the epic Inland Sea Dive Site!
The Blue Hole in Gozo, Malta
The Blue Hole, also known as the Malta Blue Hole, is another outstanding natural attraction to see along this modified Dwejra Walk. Indeed, the Blue Hole is another popular dive site in Malta. Basically, the Blue Hole is around 10 metres wide and roughly 15 metres deep. At around a nine-meter depth, there’s an epic window that opens into the sea. Divers have been heading to the Malta Blue Hole for years to enjoy one of the best diving spots in the Mediterranean. Again, Beck and I didn’t dive on this occasion. We were simply content with admiring the marvellous coastal attraction from a nearby cliff wall.
Azure Window Collapse (Dwejra Window)
You’ve probably heard about or seen photos of the Azure Window, AKA Dwejra Window, that used to exist in Dwejra Bay. It was a spectacular natural arch bridge, located near the Blue Hole and Inland Sea Dive Site. Unfortunately, Azure Window collapsed in March 2017. So, Azure Window collapsed well and truly before Beck and I visited in 2021. Currently, the coastal area that used to be accessible to view and walk onto the Azure Window is now forbidden to enter due to safety concerns.
Hiking Gear Essentials For the Modified Dwejra Walk
These are our five hiking gear essentials for the modified Dwejra Walk.
- Merrell Moab Mid Gore-Tex Hiking Boots: these hiking boots are super comfortable and lightweight.
- The North Face Venture Jacket: a fantastic windproof/waterproof jacket.
- Osprey Skarab 30L Day Backpack: a great backpack for hiking, which has plenty of space to store your gear.
- The North Face TKA Glacier Fleece Jacket: an excellent warmth:weight ratio fleece jacket that’ll help keep you warm.
- Columbia Convertible Trousers: a value for money pair of water-resistant convertible trousers.
It can obviously get very hot in Malta during the summer. Make sure to pack plenty of water, sunscreen and a hat. Anyway, for a more exhaustive gear list, check out our 66 Travel Items You Must Travel With. For a general summary of everything you’d need for a great trip to Gozo in Malta, read our Packing Checklist.
- Getting back to Xlendi: from Dwejra Bay, you’ll need to catch the 311 bus to Victoria and then the 306 bus from Victoria to Xlendi.
- Extend the walk: personally, Beck and I walked from the Gozo Ferry Terminal (Mgarr Harbour) to Xlendi. This walk is known as the Xlendi Walk. From Xlendi, we then completed this modified Dwejra Walk. Ipso facto, you could combine the Xlendi Walk with this modified Dwejra Walk.
- Other activities and Gozo experiences not to miss: make sure to explore Dwejra Heritage Park, Xwenji Salt Pans, Tal-Mixta Cave, Wied Il-Għasri and Wied il-Mielaħ Window. For something a little bit different, check out Alpaca Walks Gozo.
- Other epic Gozo walks to do: Saltpan Walk and Ħondoq Ir-Rummien Walk.
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