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My "Great Walk" to Xewkija

April 29, 2015

After having disembarked from my ferry at Gozo's Mgarr harbour, I proceeded to walk to my next destination: the town of Xewkija.

The walk started in Mgarr, continued through the town of Ghajnsielem and across an uninhabited agricultural field area all the way to Xewkija.

This is the story (with photographs) of my long walk from the Mgarr harbour to the town of Xewkija. A memorable experience due to the scenic sights and the strange quietness along the road...

Lady of Loreto Church

The Lady of Loreto Church shows up in the distance

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It would have been easier to take a bus, but the distance I covered was merely 3.8 km (an easy walk) and anyway, not even a single bus had passed me by during the journey...

Open road in Ghajnsielem

The wide open road. If you have the "travel bug", it's exciting to see this in front of you!

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As I climbed "out of the pit" - walking uphill from Mgarr's harbour along the road, I entered the town of Ghajnsielem through this long empty road you see above and below.
A large number of Maltese towns are joined together: they look and feel as if they were one.

Looking back

Looking back... a long way, not much life out there

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Most of this walking journey was through the town of Ghajnsielem, which felt deserted.
Only a very small number of cars passed me by on the road, but almost no people were walking anywhere around.

Walk across Ghajnsielem

Walking further... any sign of life here?

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It was kind-of like in the movies in which people disappear from the streets. But this was nothing to what I was about to see later...
I was about to cross entire populated areas with not a single man on the streets.

Dry Gozo

Rocky fence, buildings made of rock-bricks, everything is dry...

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Twilight zone?

This was my first ever experience of walking through a seemingly deserted town, but there was more to come, later on.


Dry, seemingly abandoned, but squeaky clean

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Gozo's Ghajnsielem was strikingly clean. Squeaky clean.

If the people disappeared, who could make a mess, right?

If felt like I had all the place for myself to enjoy... until this boat started coming towards me:

Boat lorry

Finally, some action: a boat!

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...presumably, the boat on the lorry was heading to Mgarr.

My favourite sight were the houses lining up along the main road. That typical Maltese style was reflecting from them, but they looked better than the ones I saw on the main island.

Elegant houses on Gozo

Maltese elegance

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These houses in Ghajnsielem looked so elegant and well-maintained. I reckon, some of them are newer, but still retain that old Maltese elegant look and feel...

Museum-like house

Livin' in a museum?

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The terraces, the balconies, the stony feel and the elegance of the entire style made me think these are like tiny museums.

You want to live in a museum? Build your own!

Empty street on Gozo

Where have all the people gone?

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I was weird I couldn't find anything open. Not a single door. Even the windows seemed closed.

People were either working or at a religious ceremony or... it's just plain paranormal.

Museum-like homes

Newer houses with museum feel. The museum style must be the norm here.

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Walkin', walkin', walkin'...

And I was already getting glimpses of Xewkija's massive Rotunda Church in the distance - its sight became my compass.

Ghajnsielem main road

Xewkija's church cupola showing up in the distance

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There's an attraction along the road, which many would pass by not knowing its significance is the Saint Cecilia Chapel - which is in fact a medieval building from the 1540's.
At first, one would think it's a bastion of some kind.

Saint Cecilia Chapel, Ghajnsielem

The Saint Cecilia Chapel

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The chapel is Gozo's oldest surviving chapel and it's dedicated to St. Cecilia, the patroness of sacred music - whose feast day is celebrated each November 22nd.

Splendid view towards Xewkija

Splendid view towards Xewkija

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Shortly, after passing the chapel's tower, I spotted Xewkija's church in the distance - across a wide grain field.

In the burning sunlight I was already running out of water to drink. The sunlight was burning and I was running out of water to drink and there was still a long way to get to my target.

This sight was stunning. I was walking on the side of the road that cuts across the grain fields between the Ghajnsielem and Xewkija.

By continental standards, these would be villages, but on Malta, they're towns.

One thing noticeable about all of these towns I've visited is that they all have this elevated elegant look - architecturally-speaking.

The Maltese towns don't reflect poverty, I didn't see any slums either.

One especially bothering thing about Malta is the transportation system.

But in this case, I manage to turn that to my favour...
Still, not all places are so scenic and I often had to wait an hour or more for a bus...

Stunning view

Not a bush for a pee...

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After this "great walk", I entered the town of Xewkija - view my experiences here.

If you have the time and you have plenty of patience and good feet, then do take this walk from the harbour all the way to Xewkija...

Xewkija from the distance

Just like a painting...

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Escape Hunter

About the Author:

Escape Hunter, the young solo traveler in his early 30's explores the World driven by curiosity, thirst for adventure, deep passion for beauty, love for freedom and diversity.
With a nuanced, even humorous approach to travel, an obsession for art and design, Escape Hunter prefers to travel slowly, in order to learn and "soak up" the local atmosphere...


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