Prehistoric Malta & Gozo
A thousand years before the Great Pyramid at Giza was constructed, people on the tiny island of Malta were moving stones weighing up to 50 tonnes. At 5500 years old, the megalithic temples of Malta and Gozo are among the oldest ritual structures in the world. Decorated with some of the most extraordinary art to be found anywhere in the Mediterranean, they were made by a society intensely engaged in the practice of ceremonial activities.
Malta’s subsequent history is explained by the harbour at Valetta, a secure haven in the middle of the Mediterranean – used by the Knights Hospitallers as a stronghold against the Ottoman Turks after the great siege of Malta in 1565.
Benefit from this limited time offer:
- Pay a low deposit of £99, was £500.
Single supplement: £615
Day 1 - London - Valletta
We fly to Malta from London and transfer to our hotel in Valetta for our first dinner together as a group.
Day 2 - Mdina
Beginning in the town of Mġarr, we visit the two conjoined temples of Ta’ Haġrat and Mġarr built during the 4th Millennium BC. We continue to the village site of Skorba which has made a significant contribution to our understanding of early Maltese prehistory providing a stratigraphy from c5000 to 1500BC. We spend the afternoon in Mdina – The Silent City – which served as the island capital from antiquity through to the Medieval period and end the day seeing some of the renowned ‘cart ruts’ in the hillside at Buskett – features that occur on both Malta and Gozo and are comprised of parallel grooves which have been worn into the bedrock, sometimes for long distances.
Day 3 - Valletta
A day spent exploring Valetta on foot. Founded by the Knights Hospitallers following the Great Siege of 1565, this UNESCO World Heritage site occupies a commandeering position over two harbours. We begin with the exceptional array of artefacts from Malta’s unique prehistoric periods in the Archaeological Museum from man’s first arrival on the island, up to the end of the Bronze Age. We also visit St John’s Cathedral and the Grand Master’s Palace with facades of some of the many Auberges of the Knights.
Day 4 - Gozo
We take the ferry to Gozo where we visit Gġantija, a prehistoric megalithic complex of exceptional grandeur; the Xagħra Stone Circle a significant funerary complex; and the ruins Santa Verna, a megalithic site left to the ravages of time. In the afternoon we travel to the Cittadella in the town of Victoria and also visit the Gozo Archaeology Museum.
Day 5 - Valletta
Back on Malta, we visit the magnificent Haġar-Qim and Mnajdra megalithic sites, clustered together by the sea. Access allowing, we visit the Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and funerary complex, a vast subterranean complex, outstandingly presented. It seems that the monument was in use for most of the 4th millennium BC. Nearby, we will visit Tarxien megalithic site, one of the most elaborate of all the Megalithic temples on the island which has undergone extensive excavation and restoration. We end the day at Għar Dalam cave which consists of a water worn tunnel accessible by humans for about 80m and in which large quantities of Pleistocene faunal remains and evidence for later human activities (the earliest known on the island) were found.
Day 6 - Valletta
We take a harbour cruise in the morning on a traditional Maltese Luzzu to view the port of Valetta from the sea. Afloat, one can imagine the assembled might of the Ottoman Turkish Armada, estimated to contain up to 45,000 men taking part in a siege which lasted for 4 months during the summer of 1565. After we return to the shore for some free time this afternoon.
Day 7 - Valletta - London
Transfer to the airport for our flight home.
Tour dates & prices
Included in your cost:
- Expert Guide Lecturer
- Professional Tour Manager
- Meals as per the itinerary, wine and tea or coffee with dinner
- Entries to all sites as per the itinerary
- All taxes & gratuities
|Tour Departure||Tour ID||Departure date||Return Date||Guided by||Price||Deposit||Single Supp.||Offer||Availability|
|4 October 2021||AMAL211004||4 October 2021 (Monday)||10 October 2021 (Sunday)||Jeremy Bennett||£2,825