6 Hot Tips To Use When Visiting Comino
With Crystal Clear Waters And A Stunning Natural Habitat All Year Round, Visiting Comino Is A Must, But Know This First…
One of malta’s natura 2000 nature sites
Comino is one of the most sought-after places to visit across the Maltese Islands due to its crystal blue waters. It is one of Malta’s Natura 2000 nature sites, with an aim to protect birds and other species and their habitat. Many don’t consider visiting the island during the colder months, but Comino has so much to offer all year round, not only the famous Blue Lagoon.
Below, the Galea Family share their ideas for your next Comino adventure. There is never a bad time to visit Comino and you can fully immerse yourself in nature, especially at low season, when the majority of tourists and locals opt to stay on the mainland. Weather permitting of course!
camping on comino
You can only do so much in a day so why not camp?
There are two campsites in Comino – one is close to Santa Marija bay and the other is close to Blue Lagoon, known as Tal-Ful. We consider both sites as a kind of wild camping as there are no facilities in the campsites. However, you can make use of the public toilets close to the respective bays.
(Please Note: A permit from the Environmental & Resources Authority is required to camp near Santa Marija Bay).
Walking Around Comino
Hiking in an area of 3.5 kilometres squared, within a minimally built-up area should be very straightforward. We suggest you start by walking along the coast as there are viewpoints all around. It will take you around two hours, but take some inland detours and make the hike longer and more interesting. Read further down for more details.
The first hike could start from Blue Lagoon, after having a dip there in the early morning. Tour Operators arrive at 10 am, so get the beach all to yourself and arrive earlier. Head up to Comino Tower and admire the views from the top. If you’re lucky enough to visit when the tower is open, make sure you go in to have a look! After this, continue walking along the coast towards the Santa Maria Battery and then across the middle of the island back towards the starting point. This should take you no longer than an hour and a half.
The second hike would take you from Blue Lagoon towards Santa Marija bay and just before you can have a look at the chapel. Walk towards the Santa Marija caves – here the challenge is to find the access hole that leads you to one of the caves. Once there, allow time for some snorkelling near the cave. Finally hike along the cliffs, one of the highest points in Comino, and head to the middle of the island.
Comino’s Best Swimming Spots
Comino has it all! From rocky beaches to sandy ones. Apart from the very well known Blue Lagoon and Santa Maria Bay, there are other spots close by which are absolutely stunning. The water is warmest in Autumn as the sea would have absorbed the heat throughout the summer. In Spring, the water would be slightly cooler, but it’s definitely something to consider, especially after hiking for an hour or so in the sun!
Two lesser known swimming spots on Comino.
- The Santa Maria caves are usually accessed by boat, but they are also accessible by land. Weather permitting, you can swim around to the other caves and enjoy some snorkelling. this is one of the best diving spots in the Maltese islands, so why not admire the beauty within?
- The Crystal Lagoon is a stone’s throw away from the Blue Lagoon and easily accessed by boat, but if you walk along the coast towards Comino Tower and then swim a little bit, you can easily admire the beauty of this place.
Comino’s HIstorical buildings
Although there is only one family that lives on Comino, surprisingly, the tiny island hosts a number of historical buildings, which can be easily accessed on foot.
- Comino Tower (also known as Santa Maria Tower)
Built in 1618 by Alof de Wignacourt, the knight of malta, it is the biggest tower in the whole Maltese archipelago. Apart from admiring the architecture of the tower and its historic importance, you can easily walk on top of the tower to have a bird’s eye view of Comino as well as Gozo and Malta.
- Santa Maria Battery
Built in 1715-1716 by the Order of St. John, it formed part of a series of modern architectural fortifications around the island. You can find another one on mainland Malta, called Vendome Battery; together they defended the channel to the south of Comino.
- St. Mary’s Chapel (also known as the Chapel of the Return from Egypt)
The earliest proof of a chapel on the island of Comino dates back to the 12th century but the current chapel only dates back to the 17th when people started to settle back on Comino. Due to the fact that there were no inhabitants on Comino, the chapel was deconsecrated, but reconsecrated later on once people settled on the island.
- Isolation Hospital
The initial building was a small palace built by the same Grandmaster that built the Comino tower. It was then enlarged by the British to be used as barracks and served as an isolation hospital in the early 20th century for cholera and plague diseases.
Getting to comino
There are numerous companies offering a service to get you to Comino by boat from Mgarr Harbour in Gozo. We recommend you contact one of these companies before heading off to Comino during off-peak season. Boat trips are only done weather permitting.
Follow the Galea family on Facebook, Instagram, and their Website for more adventures, tips, and ideas, and be sure to check out their other GITH features by searching #ExploringGozo.
Words: Therese Galea | Editor GITH
the galea family
Parents Therese and Joseph with Daughter Krista and Son Mattia. Meet the Galea family whose life mission is to inspire families to experience Gozo in all weathers and offer practical tips to make the most out of your island hikes.