Comino Caves

comino caves

Comino is home to many gorgeous scenes, including the historic Comino Tower, the beautiful Blue Lagoon, the Comino Chapel, just to name a few. Also located on the island are the spectacular Comino Caves, which were naturally formed through hundreds of years of shaping by the rough Mediterranean sea. Today, these caves are popular destinations for both Maltese and non-Maltese visitors, as their crystal blue waters and magnificent structures provide an unforgettable experience for all. Check out all you need to know about the picturesque Comino caves, including what to do and how to get there!

Visit the Santa Maria Caves

With at least 10 caves, the Santa Maria Caves are a popular option for those visiting Comino. Located in the North of Comino, the caves offer a wide variety of gorgeous destinations for visitors to set up camp. The caves are less than 8 metres deep, making them a super choice for those who may not feel completely comfortable in the water but would still like to go through the experience. Countless underwater photographers have chosen these caves to take unbelievable photos of the deep blue sea, the underwater creatures, as well as the beautiful structures of the caves themselves. They were even famously featured in the 2002 hit film The Count of Monte Cristo!

Explore the Julia Caves

Also located in the North of the island, not far from the Santa Maria Caves, are what have come to be known as the Julia Caves. Known for its sparkly blue waters and top destination for the perfect souvenir picture, this cave is a hidden gem for the island which not too many people know about. Its gorgeous character truly shines through and should definitely be on the top of your list of places to visit. It even connects to the Santa Maria Caves underwater! So if you’re looking for an adventure, going from one cave to another through the natural underwater trail is the ideal way to spend your time in Comino.

Go for a swim

Many people make the most out of the caves by swimming in them. Due to the rock formations, most caves provide shelter from the scorching Maltese summer heat, unlike on beaches where sun umbrellas are typically rented to avoid the sun’s harmful rays. The caves offer a wonderful swimming adventure which will definitely be the highlight of your trip. They are typically only accessed by boat, so whether you’ve rented a private charter or are using the standard ferry, be sure to make a few stops at the caves and enjoy the gorgeous waters! It is important to note that since there are no very shallow ends like on beaches, young children should constantly be supervised by adults to avoid any accidents.

Go snorkelling or scuba diving

The Santa Maria caves are a great option to go snorkelling due to their being quite shallow. Snorkellers can easily come up for air at any point without worrying that they won’t make it up in time. For scuba diving, the Santa Maria caves are an excellent choice as the sunlight frequently shines through the cracks of the caves, also making it an ideal destination for underwater photographers and videographers. However, unless going with a certified instructor, you must be a certified diver to a depth of 18 metres to dive in these caves. The Julia caves is also a top destination for snorkelers and scuba divers looking to explore the depths of Comino.

Visit the caves by boat

Whatever you choose to do at the caves, most can only be accessed by boat as opposed to by foot from Comino itself. If you’re renting a private charter or even have your own boat, we suggest you first take a quick trip around Comino to locate each cave and determine which one is least busy. Those going to Comino with the standard ferry and taxi services don’t need to worry about missing the experience, as many services visit the caves on the way back to Malta/Gozo. So, however you get there, just be sure to check out these naturally gorgeous caves to get the full Maltese islands experience!

All in all, the caves are an excellent choice for everyone, from couples who want a quiet and secluded option, to groups who are searching for the ultimate Maltese adventure! Click here find out more about how to visit the Comino Caves.

Exploring Comino in Winter

Comino, the smallest of the Maltese Islands, is typically known for the hundreds of Maltese and non-Maltese visitors it has each Summer, due to its luxurious beaches and sea views. Yet, many underestimate how enjoyable a trip to Comino can be during Wintertime, especially for those who are not drawn to the sun and sea. Take a look at these 5 tips for exploring Comino in Winter.

Appreciate Comino without the heat and the masses

Although Comino’s main attractions are better enjoyed in Summer, many who don’t really favour the heat can also enjoy the island. Comino’s spectacular views can sometimes be better appreciated without the blazing sun on them, given that there aren’t many places of shade around the island. Moreover, since most people visit Comino to swim, snorkel, and tan, it’s much quieter in Winter. The serenity of hearing the ocean waves hit Comino’s shore without peoples’ background noise makes for a super enjoyable day if you’re one who searches for such tranquillity.

Enjoy a hike around the island

Given Comino’s smallness, some choose to travel to the island for a relaxing walk or hike. It’s entirety is 2.5kms by 1.5kms, meaning that you can get around the whole island by foot in a few hours. Whilst there are obviously spots in Malta and Gozo where walks and hikes can be held, if you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of these busy places, Comino is a great place to get some exercise whilst ensuring peace and serenity. The added bonus of Comino’s incredible views increases its superiority over its sister islands. It is important, however, to come prepared when walking in Comino in Winter. Since there are not many places for shelter, it’s vital that proper clothing is worn to protect yourself against harsh weathers.

One of Comino’s coastal towers

Take gorgeous pictures

It’s undeniable that Comino is a gorgeous island. Its shadowy caves, well-defined natural structures, the sparkling Mediterranean sea surrounding it, and, of course, the lack of concrete which can cover its natural beauty. This is why many photographers and photography-enthusiasts have taken the time to travel to Comino. The splendour of the environment not only makes for a gorgeous photo, but is also frequently used as a perfect background for photoshoots, professional and recreational. If you’re thinking of going to Comino for such a task, remember to check certain things beforehand, such as wind and rain, to ensure that you capture the perfect shot.

Comino aerial shot

Delight in covid-free ferry trips

Since less people would be inclined to visit Comino in Winter, the ferry would be much less busy. With the Covid-19 pandemic, this is a big plus for those who want to keep extra cautious, given that social distancing is much easier and there’s a lesser chance of having sick people aboard. So, less people would be on the island as a whole compared to Malta and Gozo, meaning that you can social distance in comfort and, as long as you’re abiding by the Maltese government’s regulations, even stay without a mask to be more comfortable.

Check ferry schedules and weather reports

Due to the decrease of people travelling to Comino in Winter compared to the Summer months, ferry trips are less frequent. Thus, if you’re planning to go to the island during Wintertime, it’s best to confirm travelling times from Cirkewwa (Malta) or Mgarr (Gozo) to Comino and back. If in doubt, give Ebsons Comino Ferries a call to find out the scheduled ferry times. Moreover, sometimes the Winter weather is too harsh for boat trips and even if not, may be too windy/rainy to enjoy Comino at all. This is why it’s important to frequently check weather reports for the day that you’re planning to travel, as although they’re not always completely accurate, you can get a good indication of the weather for that day.

Comino is a beautiful island, and whether enjoyed in Summer or Winter, hundreds of locals and tourists visit it to get the full Maltese experience. Whilst pastimes like swimming and snorkelling are off the list for Wintertime, those who prefer colder weathers can definitely still enjoy a relaxing day off in Comino doing other activities.

Comino Hotel

Comino Hotel

Comino is possibly the most popular tourist attraction around the Maltese Islands, making it an ideal place for accommodation. That’s where the Comino Hotel comes in. Having been built in the early 1960s, it has hosted hundreds of international tourists as well as local Maltese and Gozitans. 60 years later, Hili Ventures, a local company, have suggested a much-needed renovation of the building. Take a look at the history of the hotel and its proposed reconstruction.

 

The Comino Hotel’s History

1970s Comino Hotel Postcard
1970s Comino Hotel Postcard

The Comino Hotel was built in the 1960s by Comino Development Company Ltd. The owner of the company, John Gaul, saw that such a structure could attract more people to the little island for longer stays. Maltese people were thus able to have long-term stays in Comino as opposed to strictly day trips, and non-Maltese tourists could spend some nights of their stay on this quiet beach haven, away from the hustle and bustle of most Maltese villages. Apart from the hotel itself, Gaul also built several summer bungalows for a more private and luxurious vacation. Both the hotel and bungalows are located above Comino’s gorgeous St Nicholas Bay, where residents and non-residents can spend their days swimming, tanning, and enjoying the Mediterranean weather.

The Current Plans

Now, Gaul’s Comino Hotel and summer bungalows are up for a big revamp by Hili Ventures. The plan is to rebuild the structures in a way that less space will be taken from Comino’s natural land than the original buildings have. With a budget of around €110-€120 million, Hili Ventures have proposed a design which primarily focuses on the sustainability of the natural environment.

Current Building. Source Times of Malta

Antonio Belvedere, the lead architect of this project, has worked on several massive developments in Malta, such as Valletta’s Renzo Piano Parliament building and City Gate. He says that the building will be a mix of timber and natural stone, creating a clear distinction to Malta’s concrete jungle. By doing so, this new and improved hotel will blend right in with the rest of Comino and its beaches, creating a true sight for sore eyes whilst ensuring that Comino’s natural beauty is preserved. The developers of this project have stated that they feel it is their moral responsibility to conserve Comino’s environment and safeguard its attractiveness to both tourists and locals.

New and Improved Structuring

Although the newly-revamped hotel will include less rooms than the original – 70 down from 95 – it will include several elements which beef up the hotel’s excellence. The building will include a central foyer, restaurant, basement, ground-floor level swimming pools, as well as upper-floor level terraces, among other amenities. The swimming pools will also be designed to mimic the island’s salt pans, continuing with the structure’s camouflage within Comino’s environment. The developers have calculated that just under 10% of Comino’s total area will be occupied by the hotel and bungalows, as they cover around 27 hectares of land in total.

An artist’s impression of the hotel from the south. Source Times of Malta

The summer bungalows along St Mary Bay are also receiving a much-needed facelift, as they will be replaced by 21 three-bedroomed villas, each with a private pool of their own. The current two-storey buildings will be substituted for one-floored villas, as one of the developers’ goals is to keep the buildings low rising for the benefit of the environment. These villas are planned to be leased for short or long term stays and will include a restaurant in the area.

The hotel is also being designed as low rising in order to integrate the design within the natural environment. Moreover, it will be broken up into different buildings with spaces of greenery integrated in between, a structural tactic which utilises the natural sea breeze for cooling inside the hotel. Another approach for environmental sustainability which the new plans will employ is that the hotel will be constructed through prefabrication off-site and brought to Comino by sea, which reduces negative effects on Comino’s environment. The hotel’s sewage will also be treated on-site, and they intend for it to use zero fossil fuels.

Hili Ventures have estimated that the project will take approximately two years to be finalised, and meetings are still currently underway with the Planning Authority and the Environment and Resources Authority.

Visiting Comino by Ferry during Covid-19

Comino Boat Tour

With Malta’s heatwaves, there’s nothing better than having a relaxing boat day, looking at the spectacular views of the Maltese islands while having a cool drink and getting a much-needed tan. Even though the Covid-19 pandemic has put a large dent in most people’s plans. Ebsons Comino Ferries are offering inexpensive boat travels from Malta and Gozo to Comino and back which will lift up your spirits whilst keeping the Comino ferry covid free!

The standard Comino boat

One way to go about travelling to Comino during the Coronavirus pandemic is by using the general Comino ferry. This departs from the Mgarr Harbour in Gozo to the beautiful Blue Lagoon beach in Comino. Although you’ll be with people who you don’t know on the ferry, the Covid-19 restrictions in place will surely allow you to enjoy your day off in the open air and keep the Gozo Comino ferry covid free. The use of masks or visors and strict social distancing measures whilst on the Comino ferry ensure a safe and enjoyable journey, both to Comino and back. As per Maltese Covid-19 regulations, fully vaccinated people may remain maskless outside when in groups of a maximum of 2 people.

Private Charters

A better option for those who are still too wary to be around a group of people during the pandemic is the private boat. By booking a private boat, you and your family and friends can appreciate the gorgeous views of the Maltese islands and crystal blue waters in seclusion, with no need to worry about other people on the ferry potentially making you or others sick. Private charters are arranged depending on your individual requirements, and you can choose between a 3 hour and a 5 hour boat ride which take you to unique swimming and snorkelling locations around Comino and Gozo. Including the infamous Blue Lagoon, Crystal Lagoon, St Maria Bay, Mgarr ix-Xini, and Xatt l-Ahmar.

Self Drive Boats

Going one step further, instead of the standard Gozo Comino ferry, you can also rent a Self-Drive Boat, thus not needing any extra persons to actually drive the ferry. This way, someone from your own safety bubble can drive the boat themselves, with a maximum of 5 passengers on the boat. By using one of these self-drive boats, you can be completely relaxed knowing that nobody outside of your friends and family is aboard alongside you, and therefore that the virus cannot reach you. Another advantage of choosing this ferry is that you are completely free as to which beaches you would like to visit. So, if one seems too crowded for your liking, you can simply move on to another one, or even enjoy the stunning Mediterranean sea from the comfort of your Comino ferry, covid free!

Choosing quieter beaches

Whichever boat option you choose, due to Covid-19, it’s always better to choose quieter beaches so that you can enjoy some sun and sea feeling reassured, especially when going with young children who run around like lightning bolts. When visiting a quiet beach, there is much more space for easier social distancing, both on the beach itself and in lines for kiosks and ice-cream trucks, making it simpler to stay safe. Santa Maria Bay is arguably Comino’s quietest beach, as many people automatically go towards the more popular Blue Lagoon which is a postcard location. Despite it not being the first option for many, Santa Maria Bay, being a small but just as stunning beach, should be at the top of your list during these times, as safety and relaxation are guaranteed!

Choosing quieter days

Avoid weekends and holidays to enjoy quieter time in Blue Lagoon, Comino

Apart from choosing the right beaches to visit during Covid-19, choosing days which are quieter than others is also crucial to ensure a comfortable and peaceful mini-holiday. It’s to be expected that most people choose to go on such day trips during weekends and public holidays, given that many workplaces, including children’s summer schools, operate during office hours. So, by avoiding weekends and holidays, not only would the standard Comino ferry be less crowded, but so would all the beaches and establishments, thus making social distancing a much less problematic feat.

Finally, it goes without saying that if anybody in your bubble feels any Covid-19 symptoms, or has tested positive for the virus, please do your part for the community and cancel your Gozo Comino ferry booking.

This article was written on 21 July 2021. It is possible that such health regulations pertaining to the Covid-19 pandemic have been modified in line with the health Authorities. For any updated information, kindly get in touch with the Health Authorities of Malta.

Idyllic beach havens to visit by boat around the Maltese Islands

Comino Blue Beach

Comino Beach havens on a glorious summer day

There’s nothing more spectacular than crystal-blue waters, surrounded by gorgeous cliffs reflecting colourful hues of oranges and browns on your chartered boat. This is what Comino has to offer and tonnes more with picture-perfect beaches and memorable bays – deal for kayaking and paddle-boating. Across the bay from Comino, is the easily-accessible sister island of Gozo which also offers breathtaking, spectacular beaches.

Santa Marija Bay, Comino

A shallow bay nestled in between several other secluded bays around Comino, Santa Marija offers a place of respite for non-confident swimmers. With shallow waters and a sandy beach, the bay is ideal for families with young children and for swimming alike.

Crystal waters in Blue Lagoon

This magnificent bay is well-known to many and is renowned as one of the most spectacular beaches around all the Maltese Islands. Crystal-blue waters, sandy beaches and glorious landscapes is appealing to people of all walks of life. A number of activities can be done from here such as kayaking, snorkeling and paddle-boarding. Such items can be easily rented out from the on-land kiosks who rent such equipment for those seeking a little adventure in an idyllic setting.

Isolated bay in the sister island of Comino

You may get to Daħlet Qorrot – a secluded beach in Gozo from land or by boat. Conveniently situated close to the village of Nadur, this tranquil bay is often frequented by local fisherman and offers a peaceful bay from which you can relax, snorkel or kayak in the surrounding waters after taking one of our schedules Gozo to Comino ferries.

Diving for beginners and advanced enthusiasts alike

Comino and the Maltese Islands offer a perfect location for diving enthusiasts – whether you have just started the hobby or whether you have years of experience. There are a variety of bays and caves to dive from and all with something unique to offer.

Natural cliffs, rock and a secluded bay

For a secluded experience, enjoy a secret bay which can be found lying underneath the cliffs of Rdum il-Biez. This bay is only accessible by boat and can be part of a chartered boat trip around the islands of Gozo and Comino. The unique bay gives you the chance to enjoy a private bay whether you have rented a boat alone or with a small group of friends who are avid sea and beach lovers.

How to charter a boat

You may book a chartered trip by visiting our webpage https://www.cominoferryservice.com/services/private-charter/ where you may book a half day or a full day boat trip whether it’s for small groups or large groups. Our skipper will offer you a private tour of what the Comino Islands and its surround areas have to offer.

Fishing – a unique experience to enjoy in Comino

Fishing in Comino

Fishing – a unique experience to enjoy in Comino

If you’re looking to do something unique in Comino, shore fishing might be just what the doctor ordered! Enjoy idyllic landscapes, nestled between beautiful bays and venture into an age-old hobby.

What’s the big enjoyment with Comino fishing?

Shore fishing came about to get closer with nature by immersing yourself with sea creatures and have mental peace and well-being. The relaxing atmosphere with the calming sounds of the Comino seas gives a sense of calmness which is hard to achieve unless in solitude – remove from other social contact. Shore fishing can be enjoyed both in isolation or amongst a small group of friends who are equally passionate about this hobby.

The scenic coast of Comino

There are several locations around Comino which are ideal for short-fishing. A short walk to the cliffs close to Santa Maria Bay provides a pleasant fishing experience which is both quiet especially during the months of Winter and also in the evenings on a warm summer day. The reef of Lantern Point is another place to find an abundance of fish sheltering from the deep.

Rocky areas provide a good platform for fishing in Comino

You can find shallow waters made around the island of Comino and such locations provide rocky areas to fish from which are easily accessible by on foot. In such areas you will mostly find parrot fish, several kinds of wrasses and breams with fish sizes varying from small to medium.

Fishing activities require equipment

You may use both pole and reel rods for your fishing expedition in Comino. Pole rods are easy to use however are a bit more complicated if you’re looking to shoot out bait further away from the rocky area. A reel rod on the other hand, allows you to fish in deep waters and you are also able to reach difficult areas which are otherwise impossible with a pole rod.  

Fish of the day

The type of fish you catch is dependent on the type of rod. Big fish can be caught using a reel role. But, both pole and reel rods can be used using a float or lead. Float fishing is more indicated to catch mullets using bread as bait whereas you have a greater chance of catching a variety of bottom-fish with lead when charting a boat for the day.

Where to get equipment

Being such a popular hobby in Malta and Gozo, fishing equipment can be purchased from several shops around the islands. There are a couple of fishing shops in Victoria, Gozo so you will always find a place to get what you need. Then hop onto one of our scheduled Gozo to Comino ferry to enjoy a nice spot of fishing.