The Citadel

A good place to begin exploring Gozo is the Citadel, or Citadella, an historic castle right in the centre of Victoria. The area that is now the Citadel was first fortified around 1500 BC, with further developments occurring under Phoenician and Roman rule.

Up until the 18th century, it was the only fortified refuge against attack for Gozo's inhabitants. From the ramparts of this fascinating sanctuary, visitors can admire sweeping views of the whole islands. Happily, the Citadel houses a number of attractions and makes for an exciting visit.

The Gozo Museum of Archaeology, found just inside the walls of the Citadel, is a 17th-century building that was originally the town hall. It provides great insight into the history of the island, also illustrating the cultural history of Gozo from prehistoric times to the early modern era.

Presented chronologically, this collection covers the Neolithic Period, the Phoenicians, the Romans, medieval times, and the emergences of the Knights of St John. The Citadel also houses the spooky Old Prison, which is now a museum.

One of the Citadel's greatest treasures is the beautiful 17th-century Baroque cathedral. The Citadel could easily keep tourists occupied for a few hours with the views alone justifying a visit.

Website: www.visitmalta.com/en/victoria-and-cittadella