Mellieha Town, Selmun Palace, Ghajn Hadid WatchTower, Blata I-Bajda and Mistra Bay

On this walk we had a better idea of where we wanted to go. We took the same route as on our previous walk to Selmun Palace, but on reaching it we took the road to its left passing the adjacent Selmun Palace Hotel, which looked quiet and extremely expensive.

For a map of the route click icon. Map showing route taken from Mellieha to Mistra .

Selmun Palace.
Selmun Palace.

From here we followed a lovely trail/lane with fields on both sides, which were being cultivated by local farmers, who gave us a cheerful wave as we went past. The further we went along this trail the more it tended to descend and the views of the coast and sea improved. The sun was out. There were flowers everywhere.

This photograph was taken on the way to Ghajn Hadid Watch Tower.
This photograph was taken on the way to Ghajn Hadid Watch Tower,
or Qwara Tower,which is located on the high point in the distance.

At one point the trail descended very steeply and we negotiated zig zags, first left and then right. Without them the trail would have been far too steep for vehicle traffic. Soon after we reached a T-junction. I realised if we went right we would have returned to Selmun Palace passing close to Fort Campbell, which had been a British Army Barracks. However, our route was left, but the track we followed soon petered out at the top of a cliff where a number of cars were parked.

From here we were very near to Ghajn Hadid Watch Tower – also called the Qwara Tower on some maps - which we had seen most of the way from Selmun Palace. So we left the path and walked across what can be best described as a limestone rock garden to reach the tower. Needless to say it took Anne longer to reach the tower than me as she kept stopping to examine the flowers and other vegetation growing in the crevasses of the coralline limestone. As so often on our walks she was bemoaning the fact that she did not have a Maltese/Mediterranean Flower Guide so she could better identify the plant life. This has now been rectified and Anne reckons that the flowers she saw on this walk and the other walks included gladioli, orchid, sand crocus, Barbary Nut Iris, acacia, snapdragon, freesia, Hottentot Fig (mesembryanthemum), large clover (dried blood colour), marigold, asphodel and Bermuda Buttercup, which are the most common and found everywhere.

Mgiebah Bay or Selmun Bay - We intend to visit this beautiful bay on our next visit to Malta.
Mgiebah Bay or Selmun Bay - We intend to visit this
beautiful bay on our next visit to Malta.

While Anne was doing her botany bit I spoke to a group of two couples that were looking for a route down to Mgiebah Bay – also called Selmun Bay on some maps. Although they had been to Malta on many occasions they had missed the turn off near Selmun Palace to get to the bay. They were now contemplating the possibility of scrambling down the cliffside to get to the bay and the sea below. However, our route was not so daring. We backtracked to the "car park" and followed a steep but easy track that took us downhill and closer to the sea. Our route was now east along an undulating path before heading uphill to higher ground. We then dropped down to the coast directly west of St Paul’s Island, which is where St Paul was supposed to have been washed ashore after being shipwrecked.

St Paul's Island and flowers
St Paul's Island and flowers

This area, which I understand to be called Blata I-Bajda, had been used for salt production. The sea water would flow into some small shelf like lagoons and in the summer heat of Malta the water would evaporate leaving salt behind. It was now abandoned but it was a lovely spot to have our lunch of Maltese Bread and cakes, which we had purchased from George’s earlier in the day - Gosh, this sounds like an advert for George’s Bakery. It really was an idyllic setting. The sea was beautiful.

Looking across a large patch of flowers.
I don’t think I have ever seen sea as clear or as blue as the water surrounding Malta. (If I keep writing all these nice things about Malta do you think the Maltese Tourist Board would pay me, or even give us a free holiday? – Probably not).

No one visited this area while we were there, so we relaxed and took it easy for a while, watched the boats go by and generally enjoyed the seascape. Marvelous.

From here we went south aiming for Mistra Bay. However, to get there we needed to go uphill and over the cliffs which in parts were very dramatic, and yes we stopped every so often to look at more flowers.

Alas all too soon we were looking down on Mistra Bay and took the downward path to reach it passing on the way what seemed to be a mushroom growing establishment. Seemed an odd place to have such an enterprise!

At Mistra Bay we, like previously, sat and enjoyed the views before taking the minor road to the main route between Mellieha and St Paul’s Bay where we caught a bus to get us back to our hotel.

The distance of this walk? About 5 miles.

Top of Page