Xewkija - Discover The Oldest Village in Gozo

Nestled on the picturesque island of Gozo, Xewkija is a captivating invitation to all who seek to explore its rich history and unique charms. As the oldest village in Gozo, Xewkija proudly boasts a heritage that traces its roots back to 1678, when it earned its distinction as a parish. The very name, "Xewkija," carries echoes of the past, translating to "thorny" and offering a glimpse into the history of this enchanting destination.

With a population of approximately 3,600 inhabitants spread over a 4 km² area, Xewkija is a testament to how past and present synchronise. One of its standout gems is the awe-inspiring Rotunda church, an architectural masterpiece dedicated to St. John The Baptist. This remarkable church is adorned with a striking coat of arms featuring a shining gold background and a bold red horizontal strip flanked by two thorns—a symbol deeply rooted in Xewkija's heritage.

But Xewkija is more than just its iconic church. It proudly hosts the University of Malta's Gozo Campus, where education meets the island's timeless history. Speaking of history, a fascinating artefact from Arabic times graces this town—the Majmuna stone. This thick marble slab, bearing an Arabic inscription dating back to 1173, commemorates the life of an Arab girl named Majmuna, who once lived and passed away in Xewkija. This historic relic is a testament to the enduring Arabic influence that has left an indelible mark on the island of Gozo.

In this blog post, be prepared for a journey through time and culture as we delve deeper into Xewkija's treasures and secrets. Our exploration starts here, promising discoveries that will ignite your curiosity and beckon you to uncover the hidden gems of this remarkable village.

Where is Xewkija?

Located in the middle of Sannat, Munxar, and Nadur, Ix-Xewkija is found between Mgarr Harbour in Ghajnsielem and the capital city, Ir-Rabat (Victoria), making it a must-visit on the island of Gozo.

Visiting Xewkija with Yippee

Unforgettable Six-Hour Adventure

  • Meticulously planned itineraries for an incredible journey.

Tour Options

Seamless Experience

  • Yippee Tours ensures a smooth experience from booking to pick-up in Malta.

Boat Crossing to Gozo

  • Start your adventure with a scenic boat trip to Gozo.

Explore Comino

  • Discover the stunning sights of Comino, including the famous Blue Lagoon.

Traditional Gozitan Lunch

  • Enjoy a delicious Gozitan lunch paired with local wine.

Visit Iconic Destinations

  • Explore the oldest village in Gozo and the famous Xewkija Saint John The Baptist Church, known for its Europe's third-largest unsupported dome.

Create Lasting Memories

  • Don't miss the chance to book now and cherish these experiences forever.

Alternative Transportation Options

Public Transport

Once you arrive at Gozo, reaching Xewkija Square is easy. You can take a short trip from the Mgarr ferry terminal using bus number 301, a route that operates every 30 minutes throughout the year. This bus ride will take you to the third stop, called "Universita", conveniently connecting you to Xewkija.

Taxi and Car Hire

Car hire is readily available for rent from various locations for those looking to explore Gozo at their own pace. Reaching Xewkija is straightforward, thanks to clear road signs guiding the way. Modern mapping services such as Google Maps or Waze can provide reliable navigation assistance.

If you prefer not to drive, there are various transportation options. You can opt for a traditional white taxi or utilise the convenience of ride-hailing services like eCabs, Uber, and Bolt, ensuring you have a hassle-free way to reach your location in Gozo.

Exploring the Rotunda Church of Xewkija

Xewkija Rotunda Parish Church

  • This famous church features a 27-meter-wide dome, reaching a towering height of 75 meters.
  • The dome weighs around 45,000 tonnes, showcasing remarkable craftsmanship.
  • Much of the construction was done by hand, with significant contributions from dedicated village women.
  • Explore the Rotunda, Gozo's most prominent church, for a profound sense of hope and glory.

Sculpture Museum and tal-Hniena Chapel

  • Discover the Sculpture Museum, highlighting delicate lacework on ancient Maltese stones.
  • Visit the tal-Hniena Chapel, which opens at 6:45 a.m. on weekdays and 7:00 a.m. on Sundays.
  • Immerse yourself in the rich history and artistry of these unique attractions.

What to see and do


Discover Historical Gems in Xewkija

  • Explore Xewkija and its surroundings to uncover unique historical buildings.
  • Notable among them is the Knights' era windmill, showcasing the eight principal wind directions.
  • You can also visit well-preserved towers from the same period, including the incredible Santa Cecilia Tower in Ghajnsielem.

Mgarr ix-Xini Bay

  • Mgarr ix-Xini Bay is conveniently located a 9-minute drive or 30-minute walk from Xewkija.
  • This hidden gem offers unspoiled landscapes and is a famous dive site for those seeking underwater adventures in the dark.
  • It gained fame as the filming location for Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt's "By The Sea" movie in 2015.
  • After exploring the bay, enjoy refreshments at the snack bar/restaurant at the hill's end.

Visit Ir-Rabat (Victoria)

  • A visit to Ir-Rabat (Victoria) is a must while exploring Xewkija.
  • Whether your accommodation is in Gozo's capital, Ir-Rabat (Victoria) is the perfect destination for breakfast, lunch, or dinner at local restaurants or snack bars.
  • Relax at any time of the day and explore attractions like the historic Citadel, Independence Square, and the lively It-Tokk Market.
  • Victoria also offers enriching experiences in its countless museums.

Ta' Cenc Cliffs and Sanap Cliffs

  • Embark on a 10-minute drive to Ta' Cenc Cliffs, an ideal starting point for a scenic one-hour walk to Sanap Cliffs.
  • Enjoy an immersive panoramic journey and capture stunning sunset views midway in Sannat.
  • Explore the beauty of Sanap Cliffs and Ta' Cenc Cliffs while enjoying spectacular scenic landscapes.

Multilingual Adventure with Yippee Malta

Experience Gozo's wonders with Yippee Malta, the top-rated option in Gozo for travellers. Led by our professional team, our TukTuk tours and Quad Bike tours cater to couples, families, and friend groups. Our multilingual drivers will share their extensive knowledge at every stop, guiding you through Gozo's stunning landscapes. Explore Xewkija Rotunda and other iconic locations like Tal-Mixta cave, The Cliffs of Sanap, The Citadel (Victoria), Wied il-Mielah Window, Fungus Rock at Dwejra Bay, Gozo Salt Pans, Xlendi Beach and Marsalforn Bay. Make your escape to Gozo hassle-free and unique with Yippee Tours. You are just one click away from booking your unforgettable dream trip.

Author: Norbert Bezzina

About Yippee

Yippee (part of Cominology Ltd) is the #1 Gozo tour operator, with a unique fleet of brightly-coloured Tuk Tuks, eJeeps, and high-powered Quad Bikes.

Address: Yippee, 17 Triq ix-xatt, Ghajnsielem, GSM 9033, Gozo - Malta

Contact: +356 2156 0512

Email: info@yippeemalta.com