In my time exploring Malta I pushed my tourist trails slightly more intensely than I expected. After the reader vote on my new project (Połnocny Irlandczyk w Polsce) I thought I would have 6 lazy days relaxing in the Republic of Malta, a side trip to the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and while away the rest of my time waiting on my travel friend’s apology and working on my laptop. However things changed and I ended up backpacking Malta hard-core like old times. It probably didn’t suit me anymore and I felt 100 years older, yet I still managed to review three hotels and visit lots of sights.
As well as exploring Malta I also spent a night and day in quaintly Gozo (Malta’s second biggest island after the main island Malta itself). Then on my way back from Gozo to Malta it seemed like a good idea to backpack through Malta’s third biggest island which is Comino. It was a well nabbed hat-trick.
Getting to Comino
I had a Tallinja card for all bus routes in Malta however, Comino has no train or bus lines. It has no airport (simply a helicopter landing spot). So if you don’t fancy swimming ( not recommended for a backpacker!!) Then boat is the best option.
I got a small ferry from Mgarr on Gozo island. The good news is it’s easy to organise and efficient . I paid 15 Euros for the double boat and a cruise of the caves.
This felt like a bargain to me as the ferry across from Malta to Gozo the previous day was free! Therefore each boat trip was a mere 5Euros on average with the cave cruise a bonus ball. You have two main choices for the Gozo to Comino route.
1.Gozo to Comino. Then Comino to Gozo.
2.Gozo to Comino. Then Comino to Malta.
I loved Gozo and would have been overjoyed to explore it more but alas it was a short trip for me. So after backpacking Gozo I went back to Malta via Comino.
Top Sights on Comino Island
1.Tower of St. Mary
For me the number one sight on Comino Island and the place I made a bee hive for was the Tower of St. Mary. It was built by the Order of St. John (which preceded the Sovereign Military Order of Malta) and dominates the island of Comino. It’s the main sights, the highest building and the highest point. Inside is a museum, a huge roof balcony, a shop and you make a donation to visit.
2.Flag of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta
As a pure fire rock n roll backpacking treat you can see here TWO flags of the Order of St. John also known as the Sovereign Military Order of Malta. The first of these flags is just inside the entrance to the Tower of St. Mary and is permanently there.
The second one is on the roof, but doesn’t always fly.
3. Former Isolation Hospital
There was a small hospital here on Comino Island. When Isay “was” the building still exists but is generally not open to tourists. Perhaps one of the island’s 3 residents lives in it. It’s a 3 minute walk from the Tower of St. Mary.
4. St. Mary’s Battery
We are not talking about a 4pack of treble A batteries for your scaelextric! I had learned battery can also mean a fort stronghold area with cannons where they aimed to “batter” people. This short walk takes you to St. Mary’s Battery.
5. The Blue Lagoon
Most people visit Comino Island with the sole purpose of seeing the Blue Lagoon. It’s fairly unmissable as most boats arrive into the harbour where the Blue Lagoon is. It reminded me of EXACTLY ten years ago that month when I toured the Blue Lagoon in Iceland in my pink pants! This time I was older and busier and didn’t even go in for a dip.
6. Comino Caves
As a bonus my boat trip included a cruise around part of the island. This meant touring yet more gorgeous turquoisey bluey greeny waters with rock formations and caves. We did this on the return leg back to Malta.
7. Comino Hotel
If you fancy spending a night here and a few jars in the only bar in Comino then you can. Book into the Comino Hotel! If I had allocated a bit more time to Malta then I would have stayed a night here. A night on the rip on an island with three full time residents would have made for a pure wacaday experience. Pub crawl? Well there are a lot of kiosks selling beer by the Blue Lagoon so you could do it! But sunset cocktails and a midnight beer as the stars fall sound wonderful don’t they?
It’s actually a huge hotel with even tennis courts and pools. So crazy for such a small island where only 3 people really live!
For an island housing only 3 permanent residents, there are more people dead here than alive! You can check out the cemetery, I didn’t walk all the way up – just admired it from the bottom of the small hill.
There are actually quite a few other sights on Comino Island such as the Old Bakery, a pig farm and a chapel, but I only spent 3 hours on the island and was satisfied with my visit. I could probably bang out a top 20 if I had been more bothered, but it was just nice to be there this time. Here are some more photos from my time backpacking on Comino Island.
Here are some videos from my time backpacking on Comino Island: