Gozo often gets short shrift from visitors to the country of Malta, but the tiny island comes complete with its own charms. Those looking for tranquillity, beautiful waters, and delicious, locally produced food could not do better than a visit to Gozo. Exploring it by bareboat charter will give you a commanding view of the cliffs and access to all the little bays that you can visit only by boat. Visit LateSail for the best deals on last-minute charters.
A grand start
The Grand Harbour on the larger island of Malta will be your starting point, and it lives up to the name. The non-commercial harbour, the Vittoriosa Yacht Marina, is in the city of Birgu. All around this area, you’ll find chic cafes and restaurants, and it offers easy access by bus or taxi to the other sights. You’ll want to spend a day in Valletta seeing at least a few of those sights. Be sure to include the National Museum of Archaeology – it will provide a lot of information about the famous ancient temples that dot the islands. Get just the basic provisions over here, as you’ll want to save your real shopping for Gozo.
Sail off the beaten path
Sail on from the Grand Harbour over to Gozo’s small marina at Mgarr, from where you can take one of the many cheap buses that head to the main town of Victoria. Wander the lovely small streets and do your provisioning here.
Why wait to provision on Gozo? You could easily plan all your meals around Gozitan foods and it would be a shame to miss the opportunity. If you love cheese, this is your dream destination: Ġbejniet is the name for the small sheep-cheese rounds that come in different preparations. You can get them fresh, cured, sundried, and pepper-crusted. They feature largely in salads in local restaurants. Between the local sausages, fresh and sundried tomatoes (which you can actually see in many towns, sitting there drying in the sun), and breads, you could eat wondrously and affordably every day.
Of course, you’ll want to do a few things other than eat, so after seeing the sights of Victoria, set sail. The cliffs of San Lawrenz and Dwerja are must-see spots, and you’ll appreciate them even more from your vantage point in the Med. There are no sandy beaches and you’ll be up close and personal with the incredible blue waters. There are a lot of environmental politics happening now in Malta, as the country fights to maintain its unique state of being, but the waters around Gozo are still very clean. Diving and snorkelling are incredible on calm days. If you fancy making an entrance, sail into the bay at Xlendi, where visitors set up on the surrounding cliffs and climb down ladders into the water below.
Direct, affordable flights from Heathrow and Gatwick get you to Malta’s airport in Valletta, and it’s just a short ride to the harbour where you’ll begin your dream yacht charter vacation.