Lonely Planet suggested a pleasant walk along a section of the Gozo Coastal Walk, from Mgarr Harbour near our hotel, to the cliff-bound inlet of Mgarr ix-Xini. This was once used by the Knights of St John as their main harbour but made famous more recently as being the location of Angelia Jolie’s last film with Bradd Pitt. Google maps suggested it was around 3.5km and would therefore take around an hour.
As temperatures were hovering around 30 degrees, we set off whilst it was still relatively cool at 8.45am. The initial route showed a lower coastal path and a higher one through a small village and we decided we’d take the former.
The undulating trail was frighteningly scary as it veered very close to the edge in places and it required sure footed negotiation, particularly as our steps were dogged by a grey cat who kept winding its body around our legs. At one point we came to a decision point where the options were a steep uphill path or a clamber down to rocks along the coast.
Whilst contemplating which would be best, a young man came along who said he’d done the route two weeks ago and suggested that as the tide was relatively high, we may not be able to get round the crag. He set off like a mountain goat upwards with us following in his wake. Not only was it steep, but there was also lots of loose gravel and at one point I was literally on my hands and knees as it’s a long time since I was so scared.
Having got to the very top, we could see parked cars in the distance, but this required a downhill descent and at the top of a steep gravelly gulley, it was easier to sit on my bottom and slide down. We eventually reached terra firma and hit Xatt I-Ahmar bay where novice divers were taking lessons. Nearby were salt pans which Gozo is famous for.
At this point we’d been walking for nearly two hours, but were only around halfway to our destination, and although we could see the path continuing in the distance, we discounted further scrabbling as there was an option of an albeit steep road, but up to the higher track. Back on the main road, it was plain sailing all the way back to our hotel.