I didn’t go to Gozo in my first week in Malta, so today I went to the north of the main island to take the short 25 minute or so journey across on the ferry. It’s free to get the ferry when going to Gozo, the charge is only applied when returning to the mainland (€4.65 which seems reasonable to me for a return fare).
Setting off. It was a much larger ferry than I had expected, it has a capacity in the hundreds and there’s a cafe on board and lots of space to sit or stand. The organisation of the whole ferry was professional and although the bus timetables don’t entirely coincide with the ferries, there are sufficient buses to mean that delays aren’t excessive.
Leaving the main island….
And the harbour town of Mġarr in Gozo, where there have been ferry services of some kind since 1241. In the background is Fort Chambray, which was designed to be the Gozo equivalent of Valletta. This meant that it would have been a new city and would have replaced Cittadella as Gozo’s capital, being well fortified and designed to a modern standard. However, despite work starting on this project in the eighteenth century, the threat of attack started to fall and so it was never completed to the scale that had originally been planned.
There’s talk, even this month, of building a tunnel between the main island and Gozo, but that would come at an enormous expense and for visitors at least, the ferry is an interesting little adventure. I imagine for the locals, they’re probably fed up of it though….