Beautiful secluded bays; stunning turquoise seas and colourful fishing villages
At a glance...
6 nights, hotel-to-hotel
Departs Selected dates from 23 Mar '14 to 24 May '15
Buffet breakfast and evening meals
Sustainability rating: 83%
Route notes and maps provided
High quality bikes provided
Varied routes for nature lovers and botanists.
Discover stunning historic sites en-route.
Lots of swimming opportunities.
Great vegetarian meal options.
Holidays to enhance your wellbeing.
Especailly good for solo travellers.
Follow stunning coastal routes.
Delightful island holidays.
Highlights of Gozo Cycling
Surrounded by azure Mediterranean waters, diminutive Gozo lies just 5km from its lively sister island of Malta. In contrast, the pace of life on Gozo however is one from an era gone-by, even a short visit will lull you into its relaxed rhythms. This tranquillity, combined with the island's size, makes Gozo perfect for gentle exploration on two wheels - each day offers a montage of ancient archaeological treasures, stunning gentle tracks, coastal vistas and hidden hilltop hamlets - and short distances mean that you can explore at your own pace. An evocative silence pervades the island; as you pedal along the only sound is the soothing peel of church bells, the sea softly lapping the shore or the rhythmical clopping of horses' hooves.
Your journey starts at Ta Cenc, the island's most panoramic spot with views sweeping as far as Malta and Comino. First, you pedal to Calypso's Cave with breathtaking views over Ramla's red sands, to reach Xaghra, where locals gather every afternoon in its beautiful piazza to catch up on the daily gossip! You then travel west past a string of colourful fishing harbours and striking salt pans to the luxurious Kempinski Hotel in San Lawrenz. Your last section takes you inland to honey-hued Victoria with its tangle of alleys and ancient citadel, before taking in azure sea views again as you return to Ta'Cenc.
The superb hotels offer a highlight to your holiday too. The romantically secluded 5-star Ta'Cenc, in Xaghra you stay in a former Gozitan farmhouse, now renovated into a cosy hotel, and our hotel in San Lawrenz boasts one of Europe's best spas. All have sparkling outdoor pools (as well as indoor heated ones at two hotels!) and offer delicious al fresco dining in warm weather, as well as opportunities to sample Gozo's excellent wine.
We meet you at Malta airport and transfer you via ferry (25 mins) to the exclusive 5-star Hotel Ta'Cenc - lovely pool if you fancy a pre-dinner dip!
Day 2 - Ta'Cenc to Xaghra 14km/9mi
A panoramic swoosh takes you to Xewkija, a small village boasting Europe's third largest dome, from where you can drink in views of the entire island and beyond. Cycling through gently swaying vineyards you reach Calypso's Cave with its magnificent views to Sicily; it's said that the nymph Calypso kept Odysseus captive here for seven years. Maybe descend by foot to the rich red sands of Ramla Bay - the island's best beach - before pedalling on to Xaghra and your friendly 4-star farmhouse hotel.
Day 3 - At Xaghra
There's plenty to explore in Xaghra's tangle of butter coloured streets. Perhaps visit the megalithic temples of Ggantija, an archaeological wonder dating back to 3500BC or Xerri and Ninu's grottos, two caves full of stalagmites and stalactites strangely located within their owners' houses! Xaghra's piazza with its church is at the centre of village life - do as the locals do and relax in one of the cafes and watch the world go by. Or, our hotel has two lovely pools in its geranium decked courtyard.
Day 4 - Xaghra to San Lawrenz 15km/9mi
Farmers tend their crops in the verdant terraced fields as you descend to Marsalforn, where rugged fishermen mend their nets in the harbour, their brightly painted luzzu boats bobbing lazily in the turquoise waters. A wild and beautiful stretch of coast takes you past a patchwork of salt pans and on to Wied il-Ghasri, a narrow inlet with a beautiful secluded cove - a perfect picnic spot. Time to visit the remarkable neo-Romanesque basilica at Ta Pinu before reaching the luxurious Kempinski Hotel in time for a swim before dinner.
Day 5 - At San Lawrenz
Perhaps visit Dwerja Point (there's a free shuttle from your hotel), where you'll find spectacular coastal scenery and some of Gozo's most recognisable sights such as the Inland Sea, the stunning Azure Window (where the blue sea and sky is framed by a honey-coloured stone archway) and Fungus Rock. Our 5-star hotel has several pools as well as one of Europe's best spas, so there's no excuse not to soothe any aching muscles!
Day 6 - San Lawrenz to Ta'Cenc 9km/5mi or 15km/9mi
In fine weather maybe follow one of the island's most attractive trails along the western coast, fields bright with tiny yellow flowers and the air fragrant with Mediterranean garrigue. Otherwise it's a gentle pedal towards the north-west, where the terraces are dotted with Gozo's succulent tomatoes. Then on to the capital, Victoria, with its tangled maze of flower-scented streets - the mediaeval citadel boasts spectacular views across the whole island. Time to explore Ta'Cenc's archaeological treasures before your final candlelit dinner beneath the ancient carob tree.
Day 7 - Leave Gozo
You return by ferry to Malta for your flight home, or stay on at the Ta'Cenc for a few extra nights?
During your holiday you stay at the following hotels. If you'd like to extend your time at any of these or, if you'd like to enhance your stay with an upgraded room, just let us know at the time of booking.
If you'd like to keep your bikes with you for any extra nights we can arrange this for you for just £22 per adult per day and £16 per child per day. Please contact us for further details.
Hotel Ta Cenc, Sannat (5 Star)
The Hotel Ta Cenc has an inimitable setting, scattered across the Ta Cenc cliffs, just near the town of Sannat. This is the highest point on the island, and the views from the hotel's 400 acres of ground sweep across the entire island to the sea, even taking in Malta and Comino.
The hotel offers a private cove, two enormous swimming pools, aromatherapy bath, a fitness centre, tennis courts, beauty rooms and tranquil gardens. The building itself has been built on one level to blend in sensitively with the natural surroundings, and guests are accommodated in individual air-conditioned stone bungalows, each with its own terrace or small garden.
The rooms are spacious and all are equipped with satellite television, minibar, safety deposit box, air conditioning/ heating, direct dial telephones, a trouser press and en-suite bathrooms with hairdryers. Meals are usually served al fresco on the patio under a 200-year old carob tree.
The Hotel Cornucopia is a traditional Gozitan farmhouse that has been sympathetically renovated into a unique hotel. The 50 rooms are almost all accessed from open corridors which overlook the pleasant courtyard or the beautiful surrounding countryside.
The bedrooms are spacious and simply furnished in a traditional farmhouse style with exposed brickwork and pine furniture.
The Kempinski is a luxury hotel located on the edge of the lovely village of San Lawrenz, near to Dwerja and the Inland sea. The hotel is modern in style but retains some local features such as Gozitan wood panelling.
The rooms are very spacious with tiled floors, neutral furnishings and are well-equipped with tea and coffee making facilities, direct dial telephone and an iron, folding ironing board in every room. The bathrooms are all fitted with a bathtub and overhead shower.
Headwater clients will be allocated deluxe rooms which have balconies and overlook the pool area.
The hotel has WIFI for guests to use free of charge- Please note this is subject to availability at the time of booking.
If you'd like to extend your trip with extra nights at the start or end, or if you'd like to arrange a stop off point en-route, then we recommend the following hotels.
Hotel Phoenicia, Malta (5 Star)
The Hotel Phoenicia is a large, elegant hotel just outside the old city walls of Malta's capital, Valletta, and just 3 minutes walk from the city gate. It has retained its original architecture based on the grand style of the 1920's, with a luxurious classical décor and a blend of warm hospitality and old world service.
Unusually for a city hotel, it has extensive and quiet rear gardens with an open-air rotunda, mini golf course, gazebo, and outdoor swimming pool (heated in winter)- A lovely place to stretch your legs or relax with a good book away from the hubbub of the city.
Transfers included from Malta Luqa airport at 15:00, and back to Malta Luqa airport at 11:15. Please call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange connecting flights.
Everyone who goes on a Headwater holiday will be emailed a link to our post-holiday questionnaire where they can give us an honest assesment of all aspects of their holiday - everything from how quickly we answer the phone to how clean the hotels were - plus, of course, an overall rating and comments about their holiday.
Any feedback collected is posted straight to our website - totally unedited. So, for the real tales, twists and turns of our holidays, look no further than the reviews from our previous travellers.
Reviewed by MR THOMPSON on 28/10/2013
Very well organised and accomodation excellent. Gentle trip - as described. Met expectations and had a very good time
Reviewed by MR EELE on 24/04/2013
Exceeded expectations. Great choice of Hotels and locations. Guides and maps need updating a bit and checking. There are new island cycle signs that were confusing as we were not on these routes all the time and they were only mention in the briefing not in the notes.
You just had to concentrate a bit harder than expected on occassions.
Reviewed by MRS URQUHART on 13/04/2013
Enjoyed the freedom of doing as we pleased. I would not recommend it for first time cyclists. Loved the friendliness of the Maltese people.
Reviewed by MISS WARBY on 30/03/2013
Extremely well organised, went without a hitch. Travelling as a solo lady this was most welcomed & not once did I need to think of any plan B's!! I also felt totally relaxed with everybody I met & did not have to worry about my safety.
I would not hesitate to recommend it other adventure minded ladies!
Reviewed by MR MULLIN on 23/03/2013
The holiday does seem a touch on the pricey side however the half board at the 5 star hotels and the lovely food makes up for it. I had a great time.
Reviewed by MR WHALAN on 23/03/2013
Admin prior to the holiday was poor but we got it sorted in the end. Hotels were very good, food excellent and Gozo is certainly worth a visit.The people are so welcoming. Roads are very very poor and sprung seat pins for the bikes would have made a big difference, If you have them take them! The gel saddles provided are not enough!
Reviewed by MR HARPER on 09/03/2013
I did not stay at the Cornucopia but i heard it was below standard.
State of roads and tracks very poor. Not really cycling terrain. Thankfully most of the steep hills had a good surface.
Lovely island which I think more suitable for walkers.
Preferred Ta Cenc to Keblinski as a hotel but food at Ta Cenc not 5 star standard.
Zlendi (especially) and Marsalforn nice lunch stops.
Reviewed by MR WILLIAMS on 02/03/2013
Positive experience of an organised holiday. Cycling in Gozo is not challenging and gives plenty of time & opportunity to see the local sights.
Reviewed by MRS SHERIFF on 30/10/2012
The hotel/accomodation was a pleasant experience. Gozo has some picturesque qualities. The brochure promised gentle cycling but there were many climbs, the roads are badly potholed and there is a lot of vehicle traffic. It is best described as a walking/cycling holiday unless you are young and fit (see below).
Reviewed by DR LEWIN on 29/09/2012
You should advertise more for honeymoons! We had a wonderful time and were treated really well at all the hotels - the suite at the kepinski was amazing!!!
Only issue was getting from hotel in malta to ferry terminal - I think we should have had transport through headwater for this - I appreciate we choose to have the extra nights but still.....
That said the return journey was very smooth from hotel in gozo across ferry to malta direct to airport.
Bikes not bad but a few issues with clunking gears etc but overall fine.
Reviewed by MRS PRESTON on 24/09/2012
Unfortuntely one of us was unable to cycle due to an accident post booking, however the holiday was not spoilt. One of us travelled with the baggage the other cycled. cycling on your own was easy and the locals very friendly, especially when a puncture needed mending (even though their help wasn't really req'd). George our rep was efficient deliering spare tubes when needed and everything went very smoothly. The Cornucopia hotel is definately a little faded and not up to the other hotels but this wasn't a problem and the food there was excellent.
The cycling was a little hilly for novice riders and the roads a little worse for wear (hence the punctures)but it was a lovely relaxing holiday with excellent food, weather and people. Also the journey by ferry to Gozo was a particular delight.
Reviewed by MR DIXON on 23/06/2012
We had a wonderful holiday on this tranquil and unspoilt mini island. Sadly we were unable to do the cycling element of the holiday due to illness but still enjoyed every moment.
Reviewed by MR CLOSE on 11/06/2012
Gozo is in a time warp. Please don't tell anyone about it. The cycling distances are not too great, which means there is plenty of time for detours, and Gozo is the place for detours.
Reviewed by MRS PEARSON on 11/06/2012
A very enjoyable experience as it was our third with you we had a good idea of what to expect.
Reviewed by MR WARD on 19/05/2012
Gentle cycling was an wonderful way to view this delightful island.
Reviewed by MR MORGAN on 19/05/2012
First rate. Gozo was so different. People charming.
Reviewed by MR WRAGG on 31/03/2012
Absolutely superb - even the weather was excellant!!!
Reviewed by MR PATTERSON on 21/10/2011
An excellent mix of cycling & relaxation. Lots of interest locally. Everyone loved it!
Reviewed by MR ANDERSON on 21/10/2011
Great weather, easy cycling(age!), great hotels
Reviewed by MR CARROLL on 06/10/2011
Excellent for first time holiday cyclists
Reviewed by MRS BOMFORD on 06/10/2011
A very good holiday enjoyed by all four of us. Just the right amount of activity/days off on Gozo - and we enjoyed our sightseeing days in Valetta. All arrangements went without a hitch and we were well looked after. Bicycles excellent - Gozo more hilly than anticipated. 1st day route from Ta Cenc to Corncopia could be improved (we thought in retrospect). The Cornucopia was a 'step down' from the other 3 hotels and looked tired. All in all a really good fun holiday which we would recommend to anyone.