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My "Great Walk" to Xewkija
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...
The Lady of Loreto Church shows up in the distance
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...
The wide open road. If you have the "travel bug", it's exciting to see this in front of you!
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... a long way, not much life out there
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.
Walking further... any sign of life here?
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.
Rocky fence, buildings made of rock-bricks, everything is dry...
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
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:
Finally, some action: a boat!
...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.
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...
Livin' in a museum?
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!
Where have all the people gone?
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.
Newer houses with museum feel. The museum style must be the norm here.
Walkin', walkin', walkin'...
And I was already getting glimpses of Xewkija's massive Rotunda Church in the distance - its sight became my compass.
Xewkija's church cupola showing up in the distance
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.
The Saint Cecilia Chapel
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
Also check out the entire Malta Photo Gallery
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...
Not a bush for a pee...
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...
Just like a painting...
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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