A year and a half ago, as the Covid-19 pandemic started its first blitz on Europe, Little A and I explored Malta on our own while Susann was supposed to go on a business trip to London. We had a great time, especially exploring the less crowded areas. One of these was a hike from Marsaskala to Marsaxlokk and Birżebbuġa. Well, I did the walking and the then soon-to-be 3-year-old Little A enjoyed being pushed in her stroller. So this time, with Susann joining us, we decided to redo a part of the hike. This time we only took a hike to Marsaxlokk and the now 4-year-old Little A that had to cope without the stroller.
Read more about Marsaskala and Marsaxlokk:
St Thomas’ Bay
When heading southward from central Marsaskala you pass by the St Thomas Bay, right at the outskirts of the city. St Thomas’ Bay is in many parts a beach with cafés and a playground. So, while walking through the area, we enjoyed the sunshine. We had to tell Little A that we would find a playground later during the day and that we wanted to start our walk now instead of getting stuck at the first playground. It was a really sunny day as we walked towards the start of the Muncar Path. We did, however, not get to leave St Thomas’ Bay before we had to take our first cookie-break of the day. Well, we did have a great view out over the water from the barely used park benches.
Our walk eventually took us to Munxar Hill and the path to the top of the small peninsula. This is actually the most scenic part of the whole route. The climb is done along a small rocky road that in many places might not be considered a road. At least it was in a much better shape than what it was a year and a half ago.
There is a path to the tip of the peninsula, but when carrying a 4-year-old it is still a quite challenging start on the hike. The rewards are, however, great. The view out over the next bay is amazing from the high cliffs overlooking the Mediterranean. The path from here continues along the edge of the cliffs before it continues to Saint Paul’s Tower. One of the fascinating aspects of this part of the hike to Marsaxlokk is all the cacti that surround the path.
St Paul’s Tower, Chapel, and Battery
When you leave the cliffs, you will very soon spot the massive stone cube of St Paul’s Tower. The tower also goes by the names Ta’ Bettina Tower and Delimara Tower. The tower is directly next to the Kappella ta’ San Pawl, the St Paul’s Shipwreck Chapel. The chapel dates back to the 1740s and the tower is not much younger. The tower and chapel might be inaccessible today but is still possible to view them from the small path leading past them.
Shortly after the tower, the path reaches a paved road and the walk gets a lot easier. This is also close to where the road passes by the Saint Paul’s Battery, Batterija ta’ San Pawl in Maltese. The battery was built in the 1880s by the British and its purpose was to assist Fort Tas-Silġ with the defense of St Thomas Bay. Its time in operation was, however, short. The fort was abandoned already in the year 1900 and has since fallen in disrepair. Even today, it is still one of the more impressive sights on the hike to Marsaxlokk.
The rest of the road back down to the coast is quite uneventful. It didn’t take long before we once more were out on a gravel road, the so-called shortcut to the sea. n fact, it was the end the shortcut. But the last hundred meters to the coast passed through a quite ugly area filled with rubble. Well, luckily the view got much better once we reached a paved road.
The first thing we saw in Marsaxlokk was a large construction site along the waterfront. I assume they decided to take the chance to develop the area during the low season. Unfortunately, this meant that the playground was inaccessible for Little A. Luckily the sun was shining and as we entered the famous fishing village we soon found something else for Little A to think about. Marsaxlokk is one of the main tourist attractions in the eastern part of Malta. The picturesque view of the traditional Maltese boats and the many restaurants along the waterfront are just two things that attract visitors. A third interesting attraction is the daily open-air market.
We started our adventure in Marsaxlokk by looking for ice cream. The options in low-season are a bit more limited, but we were soon sitting next to the water-sharing three scopes of ice cream. And, yes, Susann got her coffee. As we enjoyed the view, we soon noticed that the ice cream had melted into something that could be described as a sweet drink. The ice cream was followed by a visit of the market and a replacement of Little A’s cap, the earlier one had been a bit too big. That eventually led us up along the streets away from the bay. We had time to have a look at the local grocery store before ordering a taxi to take us across the island to Sliema.
Considering a Hike to Marsaxlokk from Marsasakala?
In case you ever visit Marsaskala, we can definitely recommend this hike to Marsaxlokk. The hike itself is not very difficult but it’s a good idea to bring some water as it can get quite hot. This is the perfect chance to enjoy nature and the spectacular views while escaping the more crowded tourist attractions.