17 April 2014

Meandering in Malta: The Citadella in Gozo

The highlight of my three-night stay in Gozo was the Citadella. This fortified walled-city is located in Victoria, which is the largest town of the island. I can see the citadella from Xagħra, which was the village I was staying in. In fact, walking from Xagħra to the Citadella felt a little quasi-dramatic. I was crossing the fields while gazing at this huge piece of rock up front.

It was about to rain, but thankfully the rains were short. I reached the citadel after a few minutes of walking (the island of Gozo is very small, you can walk it from end to end in a few hours). And yes, I explored the citadel, and walked every corner of it.

This place has plenty of history in it. Gozo was attacked by the Ottomans in 1551, and the people who were trapped in the citadel were taken as captives. There were several other attacks that followed, but that one was the most important for Gozitan history.

One thing that impressed me a lot here was the architecture, which is dominated by the limestone that is commonly found in the island. In fact, pretty much every building is made of this beige-colored stone. Everything, from houses to citadels to stores to everything. The area is rather dry, which makes me wonder how hot it gets during the summer. I visited during January, and yet even cacti were able to grow.

The citadel contained several museums, and I visited quite a few of them. However, the only one I would like to show here is the Old Prison. This was an interesting place, because it preserves the historical graffiti that old prisoners have created here. In fact, this shows how malleable the stone is, as you can easily sketch lines and drawings on it. Now don't you go on imitating that Chinese dumb tourist who sketched his name on Egyptian artifacts. This place is under heavy surveillance.

There, I presented here some of the pictures I have taken during my visit to the Citadel. There are more things to show, so stay tuned.


  1. It looks so quiet! Nice view though.

    1. Zhu,

      It is definitely quiet, but I also went off-season. I am not sure I'd be so enthusiastic about it if it is so flooded with people. At the time of my visit, I totally loved the quietness of things.