Fabulously diverse hotels: 4-star and 5-star, all with swimming pools
Baroque churches, honey-hued hilltop hamlets and archaeological treasures
Beautiful secluded bays; stunning turquoise seas and colourful fishing villages
Swimming opportunities every day
At a glance...
6 nights, hotel-to-hotel
Departs Selected dates from 12 Oct '14 to 22 May '16
Buffet breakfast and all evening meals
Managed by Headwater appointed agent
Sustainability rating: 83%
Route notes and maps provided
High quality bikes provided
Luggage transfer between hotels
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.
Perfect for couples.
Follow stunning coastal routes.
Delightful island holidays.
Highlights of Gozo Cycling
Surrounded by azure Mediterranean waters, diminutive Gozo is just 5km from its livelier sister island Malta. Here, the pace of life is leisurely, the welcome is genuine and the people are friendly. The tranquillity, combined with the island's size makes Gozo perfect for gentle exploration on two wheels. Quaint villages, Baroque churches and traditional farmhouses blend naturally into the picturesque landscape and complement the unique coastline and amazing UNESCO world heritage sites.
This short, leisurely route combines a mixture of coastal tracks and quiet roads and take in panoramic views from the Ta'Cenc plateau as far as Malta and Comino. Visit Calypso's Cave overlooking the red sands of Ramla, reputed to be Gozo's best beach, and the UNESCO recognised temples of Ggantija. Travelling west towards San Lawrenz the 350 year old salt pans come into view where it's still possible to see locals scraping up the salt crystals. Finally, visit the ancient citadel and narrow alleyways of the capital, Victoria, as you return to Sannat along one of the island's most attractive trails.
Your first hotel, the Ta'Cenc Hotel, is a hideaway resort situated on the outskirts of a sleepy village. It includes a spa, several pools and sun terraces, and restaurants offering traditional Gozitan cuisine. At Xaghra you stay just outside the village, with views over the valley. The service here is friendly and the swimming pools are inviting after a day in the saddle. A touch of elegance awaits you at San Lawrenz. The spa at the Kempinski Hotel is reputed to be one of the best in Europe! Have a leisurely swim in one of the pools or just relax with a sundowner in one of the bars.
We meet you at Malta airport and transfer you via ferry (25 mins) to the exclusive 5-star Hotel Ta'Cenc. It has a lovely pool if you fancy a pre-dinner dip!
Day 2 - Ta'Cenc to Xaghra 14km/8.5mi
A panoramic downhill ride takes you to Xewkija, a small village boasting Europe's third largest domed church. 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. Take the opportunity to descend on 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. Visit the megalithic temples of Ggantija, a UNESCO World Heritage site and 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 relax at the hotel with its two lovely pools in geranium decked courtyard.
Day 4 - Xaghra to San Lawrenz 15km/9.5mi
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. It's a perfect picnic spot for lunch. There is 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 stunning Azure Window, where the blue sea and sky is framed by a honey-coloured stone archway; Fungus Rock, once prized for its strange flowering plants, and now a nature reserve; and the Inland Sea, linked to the Med through a narrow natural arch. 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/5.5mi or 15km/9.5mi
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. Alternatively, pedal towards the north-west, where the terraces are dotted with Gozo's succulent tomatoes. Its then on to the capital, Victoria, with its tangled maze of flower-scented streets. The mediaeval citadel boasts spectacular views across the whole island. 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 why not 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 £23 per adult per day and £17 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 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 email@example.com 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 assessment 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 Mrs O'Hare on 12/04/2015
An opportunity to get close to the spirit of Gozo, travelling slowly under your own steam. This is not a holiday for cyclists who want to cover great distances, since the hotels are close together and the island is tiny. Nor is it suitable for novices, despite the 1-bike rating - we felt this was perhaps not appropriate, since although distances are small the tracks and even roads are rough and gradients can be steep. But it is a hugely enjoyable way of seeing all kinds of things in depth, and the hotels are really well chosen. We would recommend extra time at the Ta' Cenc since one night on arrival and one night before departure don't really give you time to do justice to the surroundings or hotel facilities. We booked an additional five nights at the Hotel Phoenicia in Malta and while this was a very different and more conventional few days, we really enjoyed this too. There is so much to see, do and absorb in Malta and the Phoenicia is perfectly located by the City Gate and bus station in Valletta to make it easy to get around. We would like to give a particular mention to the friendliness of the Maltese and all the hotel staff.
Reviewed by Ms Smith on 11/03/2015
Very well organised, most enjoyable holiday!
Reviewed by Mrs Newman on 28/10/2014
We were a little worried that Gozo would be rather limited due to its size but the cycling was excellent and there were lots of uphills to stretch us. We added additional excursions into the suggested routes to make the cycling days a little longer. The hotels were superb and it was lovely to come back to a welcoming choice of pools at the end of each day. Only niggle would be the variable availability of the internet - except at the Kepinski which had excellent coverage.
Reviewed by Mr Morgan on 17/06/2014
Well organised with in-depth knowledge of the island
Reviewed by Mrs Reynard on 09/06/2014
A good mix of exploration and relaxation, cycling is a brilliant way to explore Gozo.
Reviewed by Mrs Gittins on 14/05/2014
A relaxing cycle holiday with short distances but rather hilly. Hotels superb with lovely pools and relaxation areas.
Reviewed by Mr Drew on 15/04/2014
We had a refreshing, relaxing time. It's great to be able to rely on the directions, and to arrive at two luxurious hotels at the end of a day of fresh air and sunshine.
Reviewed by Mrs Tulloch on 15/04/2014
Gozo definitely worth visiting.
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 Mis 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 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 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 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 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 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 Mr Morgan on 19/05/2012
First rate. Gozo was so different. People charming.
Reviewed by Mr Ward on 19/05/2012
Gentle cycling was an wonderful way to view this delightful island.
Reviewed by Mr Wragg on 31/03/2012
Absolutely superb - even the weather was excellant!!!