A scenic cruise on dusty roads and cliff-top tracks.

Statistics

278

m

277

m

7

max┬░

Difficulty

FATMAP difficulty grade

Moderate

Description

Starting in the port of Mgarr - the gateway to the island of Gozo - this is a lovely ride which takes in beautiful little coves, peaceful village squares and soaring cliff-top views.

Depart Mgarr and begin the tough climb up, south of Ghajnsielem, the main road towards Gozo's capital, Victoria.

As the road begins to flatten out, turn left and follow smaller lanes down towards Mgarr ix-Xini inlet.

Just before reaching the inlet you'll get to a set of steps and all but skilled trials riders will need to push their bikes down these.

If you want to avoid the steps altogether then just stay on the road and detour through the southern suburbs of Xewkija before swinging back to the inlet on a road. Regardless of how you get there, Mgarr ix-Xini is one of the most beautiful bays anywhere in Malta, if not the whole of the Mediterranean Sea.

It's narrow, shallow and provides some fabulous swimming and snorkelling.

If you don't have your swimming stuff with you, there's also the option of getting a cold drink and sitting under a sun shade at a small waterfront bar and enjoying the ambience. Leave the bay via an exceptionally steep (but mercifully short) section of road and then branch off left on a small, dusty path which leads you back onto tarmac.

Follow a road briefly then branch off left and go along a series of lovely tracks through some terraced fields which enjoy a fabulous view across Gozo's south coast. Get back on the road by the Ta Cenc Hotel and follow some peaceful country lanes through the villages of Sannat and Munxar before turning south and making the short detour to the utterly spectacular Sannat Cliffs.

These epic formations are imposing, intimidating and beautiful in equal measure. Head back to the road and descend down towards Xlendi village, which is reached by a short track and then a fast, fun road.

Grab a drink and an ice cream, and go for a swim! Either stay in Xlendi and carry on around Gozo the next day, or made the tough climb back to Victoria and on to another part of the island.