Tag Archives: sea

Salt Pans | Bugibba, Malta | 2 October 2014

BUGIBBA SALT PANS Situated on the foreshore of the Bugibba area next to the pier, these salt pans have been known to be here for a very long time. Probably like other sites in the region, a fine layer of sand covered and preserved them in the state they are in, to the 21st Century. The site is a pride of bygone engineering skills, basing it’s unique function on the simple law of gravity. The water flow is directed to different pans, through rock-hewn gutters, and controlled by the use of sluice gates and stone shutters. In other parts, circular channels bring the water level to service other canals that otherwise would be excluded from the system. The workmanship is excellent, particularly when one compares the site to other salt pans around the island. Two large salt-water reservoirs linked the rest by a central canal system furnished the smaller pans with water. Previously there may have been as many as six such reservoirs, some of which have been buried under new development. From the reservoirs, the central channel runs to two different sluice gate systems that service a number of pans, six of them being a uniform square type. A complex circular system of water control connected three of the pans. This system making use of stone shutters and canals, would have served to bring up the water level to the desired level so as to service the other pans further along the system.

Information from: Rural Development for Malta 2007-2013 The European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development Government of Malta Europe Investing in Rural Areas

Bugibba Salt Pans, Malta, 2 October 2014

Bugibba Salt Pans, Malta, 2 October 2014

Bugibba Salt Pans, Malta, 2 October 2014

Bugibba Salt Pans, Malta, 2 October 2014

Bugibba Salt Pans, Malta, 2 October 2014

Bugibba Salt Pans, Malta, 2 October 2014

Bugibba Salt Pans, Malta, 2 October 2014

Bugibba Salt Pans, Malta, 2 October 2014

St. Paul’s Island | Malta | 30 September 2014

Christianity has almost 2000 years of history in Malta. According to tradition, it was brought to the Islands by none other than the Apostle Paul himself in around A.D. 60. Paul was being taken to Rome to be tried as a political rebel, but the ship carrying him and some 274 others was caught in a violent storm only to be wrecked two weeks later on the Maltese coast. All aboard swam safely to land. The site of the wreck is traditionally known as St. Paul’s Island, and is marked by a statue commemorating the event. The welcome given to the survivors is described in the Acts of the Apostles (XXVIII) by St. Luke:

“And later we learned that the island was called Malta.
And the people who lived there showed us great kindness,
and they made a fire and called us all to warm ourselves… ” 

As the fire was lit, Paul was bitten by a poisonous snake but he suffered no ill effects. The islanders took this as a sign that he was a special man. This scene is depicted in many religious works of art on the Islands. According to tradition, the Apostle took refuge in a cave, now known as St. Paul’s Grotto in Rabat, Malta. During his winter stay, he was invited to the house of Publius, the Romans’ chief man on the Islands. It was here, according to tradition, that Paul cured Publius’ father of a serious fever. Publius is then said to have converted to Christianity and was made the first Bishop of Malta. The Cathedral of Mdina is said to stand on the site of Publius’ house. Archaeological evidence seems to support this tradition, as Malta was one of the first Roman colonies to convert.

Information from:
Web: http://www.visitmalta.com/en/st-paul-in-malta

© Tony Blood - St. Paul's Island, Selmun, Malta.  30 September 2014

© Tony Blood – St. Paul’s Island, Selmun, Malta. 30 September 2014

© Tony Blood - St. Paul's Island, Selmun, Malta.  30 September 2014

© Tony Blood – St. Paul’s Island, Selmun, Malta. 30 September 2014

St. Mark’s Tower | Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Malta | 26 September 2014

This is one of Grand Master de Redin’s watch towers and is situated a few hundred metres from the Għallis Tower. Also known as St Mark’s Tower, this is probably the third of the thirteen towers built by Grand Master de Redin. The stone work cost 408 scudi and was paid for by the Grand Master. Its construction and history is similar to that for Ghallis Tower and it was built between March 1658 and July of the following year together with the other twelve towers. During the British period a small room was built in front of the Tower to serve as a guard room but only its foundations remain. On the first floor there is an inlet to an underground well.

Information from:
Web: http://www.visitmalta.com/en/info/qaletmarkutower

© Tony Blood - St. Mark’s Tower. Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Malta. 26 September 2014

© Tony Blood – St. Mark’s Tower. Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Malta. 26 September 2014

St. Paul’s Island | Malta | 26 September 2014

St Paul’s Island, also known as Selmunett, is a small island off Selmun near the north-east of the main island of Malta. St Paul’s Island is sometimes split into two islands by a shallow isthmus, and it is therefore sometimes referred to in the plural as St Paul’s Islands. St Paul’s Island has been uninhabited since World War II, and it is the largest uninhabited island of Malta.

The Acts of the Apostles tell the story of how Paul the Apostle was shipwrecked on an island which some scholars have identified as Malta while on his way to Rome to face charges. Traditionally, St. Paul’s Bay and St Paul’s Island are identified as the location for this shipwreck.

In 1576, Marco di Maria was being chased by Barbary corsairs off the coast of Malta. He navigated his vessel through the narrow channel between St Paul’s Island and Malta, but when the pirates followed him they ran aground and were captured. As a result of this, the Grandmaster Jean de la Cassière gave St Paul’s Islands to di Maria. Since he was a member of the Salamone family, the islands were often called Selmunett.

In 1844 a prominent statue of Saint Paul was erected on the island. It was sculpted by Segismondo Dimech from Valletta and Salvatore Dimech from Lija. The statue was officially inaugurated and blessed on 21 September 1845. It was restored by Din l-Art Ħelwa in 1996 and again in 2007. It will be restored once more in 2014.

Until the 1930s, a farmer called Vincenzo Borg, nicknamed Ta’ Bajdafin, lived on the island. His farmhouse was located close to the statue of Saint Paul. He abandoned the dwelling and the fields on the island just before World War II started. The farmhouse was a three-chambered structure with a heavily buttressed wall at its lower level. It resembled the Lascaris or De Redin towers, although it was never used for military purposes. Since it was abandoned, the upper room has collapsed and the structure is now in ruins. Pope John Paul II visited the island by boat during his visit to Malta in 1990.

Saint Paul’s Islands lie about 80 metres off the coast of Mellieħa, Malta. The island can split into two islands by a shallow isthmus according to the sea level, and when they are split the larger island on the west is known as Saint Paul’s Island while the smaller one on the east is known as Quartz Island. Both islands are made of upper coralline limestone. Saint Paul’s Island’s landscape is a maritime garigue dominated by Golden samphire, Maltese fleabane and other species. Quartz Island is more exposed and has less vegetation than the main island. A population of the land snail Trochoidea spratti can be found on the islands. Wild rabbits used to live on the island but the population died off due to disease. A subspecies of the Maltese wall lizard known as Podarcis filfolensis kieselbachi also lived there but the population apparently became extinct in 2005.

Information from:
Web: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/St_Paul’s_Island

© Tony Blood - St. Paul's Island, Selmun, Malta.  26 September 2014

© Tony Blood – St. Paul’s Island, Selmun, Malta. 26 September 2014

© Tony Blood - St. Paul's Island, Selmun, Malta.  26 September 2014

© Tony Blood – St. Paul’s Island, Selmun, Malta. 26 September 2014

Salt Pans | Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Malta | 26 September 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans, Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Naxxar, Malta, 26 September 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans, Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Naxxar, Malta, 26 September 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans, Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Naxxar, Malta, 26 September 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans, Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Naxxar, Malta, 26 September 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans, Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Naxxar, Malta, 26 September 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans, Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Naxxar, Malta, 26 September 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans, Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Naxxar, Malta, 26 September 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans, Baħar iċ-Ċagħaq, Naxxar, Malta, 26 September 2014

Salt Pans | Sliema, Malta | 17 September 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Sliema, Malta, 17 September 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Sliema, Malta, 17 September 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Sliema, Malta, 17 September 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Sliema, Malta, 17 September 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Sliema, Malta, 17 September 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Sliema, Malta, 17 September 2014

Sunset | Għajn Tuffieħa Bay, Mellieħa, Malta | 4 September 2014

Għajn Tuffieħa is a popular sandy beach nestling below hills and an unusually-shaped promontory. It is unspoilt and undeveloped, yet has the facilities you need to enjoy a day on the beach sun lounger and umbrella hire, pedallos and a small snack bar.

The beach can only be reached down a steep flight of steps or by a gravel track. The hillside behind is a designated natural park. The foundation managing the hillside has planted tamarisk and samphire to prevent further erosion at this beautiful natural bay. Għajn Tuffieħa’s location means it is not usually as crowded as its neighbour, Golden Bay. However its fine sand and rural surroundings make it the more alluring. The beach is generally safe for swimming but it is prone to strong currents when the wind is to the north-west. A red flag indicates when bathing should be limited to the shallow waters only. A headland to the west side of the bay separates this beach from Ġnejna Bay. All the area is a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) due to unique geological features. Għajn Tuffieħa Bay is managed by the NGO, GAIA Foundation. Beach management includes the services of a lifeguard and safety ropes affixed along the bay. In 2011 the beach was awarded a Beach of Quality award and for 2012. Tip: Linger on after most bathers leave for home and enjoy the best time on the beach – the spectacular sunsets.

Information from:
Web: http://www.visitmalta.com/en/info/ghajntuffieha

© Tony Blood - Sunset. Għajn Tuffieħa Bay, Mellieħa, Malta, 31 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Sunset. Għajn Tuffieħa Bay, Mellieħa, Malta, 31 August 2014

Mellieħa Bay | Mellieħa, Malta | 4 September 2014

Mellieħa Bay is the largest beach of thirteen pocket beaches around Mellieħa. It is a sheltered beach between two headlands and is situated on the Northern part of the Island.

Its sand has a low gradient slope and together with its clear, shallow water makes it the most popular family beach on the island. Mellieħa Bay has most facilities and services including restaurants and two hotels. Some parts of the bay are designated for water sports and wind surfing. Beach management is operated between June and September by the Malta Tourism Authority with the cooperation of Mellieħa Local Council. It includes the services of lifeguards, a small First Aid clinic, two beach supervisors and a number of persons in charge of beach maintenance. It is an accessible beach furnished with a mobile toilet, wheelchair access and special sand wheelchair buggies for physically impaired bathers. In 2011 the beach was awarded a Beach of Quality Award. Mellieħa Bay has an old castle perched on one side while the old village of Mellieħa is situated high on the opposite side. The hinterland of Mellieħa Bay was once an important salt flat and wetland, known as L-Għadira. It is now a Nature Reserve that boasts of indigenous flora and fauna, and is popular with bird watchers who study local and migratory birds. Mellieħa Bay is also referred to as L-Għadira.

Information from:
Web: http://www.visitmalta.com/en/info/melliehabay

© Tony Blood - Mellieħa Bay, Mellieħa, Malta, 4 September 2014

© Tony Blood – Mellieħa Bay, Mellieħa, Malta, 4 September 2014

Bay View | Mellieħa, Malta | 1 September 2014

Mellieħa ([məˈliːhə], or il-Mellieħa) is a large village (pop. 10,003 in March 2013) in the northwestern part of Malta. It is a popular tourist destination during the summer months. Mellieħa as a village developed under British colonization after the British encouraged people to settle in the area by giving leases to the population. For two centuries previously, the area was abandoned due to fear from attacks of corsairs and Saracens. Before that, only a few villagers lived in the area.

Information from:
Web: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mellieħa

© Tony Blood - Mellieħa, Malta, 1 September 2014

© Tony Blood – Mellieħa, Malta, 1 September 2014

Fungus Rock | Dwerja, Gozo | 30 August 2014

Fungus Rock is one of a trio of spectacular natural landmarks in Dwejra, along with the famous Azure Window and The Inland Sea.

The Rock – known in Maltese as Il-Gebla Tal-General (or General’s Rock) is a small islet in the form of a 60 metres high massive lump of limestone situated right at the entrance to an almost circular lagoon.

During the times of the Knights, it was thought that a particular tuber which grows on this little island had medicinal properties and could cure various ailments.  So much so that the Grandmaster declared it illegal for anyone other than authorised knights to climb onto the rock and pick the plant, Today, tests are being conducted to verify whether these medical claims have any foundation.

Information from:
Web: http://www.visitmalta.com/en/info/fungusrock

© Tony Blood - Fungus Rock, Dwerja, Gozo, 30 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Fungus Rock, Dwerja, Gozo, 30 August 2014

Azure Window | Dwerja, Gozo | 30 August 2014

The Azure Window is another spectacular natural landmark in Dwejra, along with The Inland Sea and Fungus Rock. The Azure Window at the end of the cliff, is a giant doorway, through which one can admire the blue expanse beyond the cliff.

It must be one of the most photographed vistas of the Islands, and is particularly spectacular during the winter, when waves crash high inside the arch. The sea around is very deep and of a dark blue hue, which explains why it is called the Azure Window. The rocks in this area are encrusted with fossilized crustaceans, evidence that most of the island was once covered by water. In front of the Azure Window is the Blue Hole, and The Chimney, two of the most popular dive sites in Gozo.

Information from:
Web: http://www.visitmalta.com/en/info/azurewindow

© Tony Blood - Azure Window, Dwerja, Gozo, 30 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Azure Window, Dwerja, Gozo, 30 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Azure Window, Dwerja, Gozo, 30 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Azure Window, Dwerja, Gozo, 30 August 2014

Slugs Bay | Mellieha, Malta | 27 August 2014

Slugs Bay is a secluded, tiny, pocket beach with a few square metres of sand  located in the Marfa ridge overlooking Mellieħa.

The bay can be reached over difficult terrain descending along a cliff slope. Access from the water is restricted due to rocks jutting from the sea. Consequently little or no development has taken place and the bay is largely in pristine condition. The bay took its name from the dark brown, sea-slug which can be found in its waters. The rare indigenous plant the pancratium maritimum is abundant in the area in August.

Information from:
Web: http://www.visitmalta.com/en/info/slugsbay

© Tony Blood - Slugs Bay. Mellieha, Malta, 27 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Slugs Bay. Mellieha, Malta, 27 August 2014

Salt Pans | Il Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta | 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, August 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, August 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Hiker's Cave.  Il Blata Tal Melh, rabat, Malta, August 2014

© Tony Blood – Hiker’s Cave. Il Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Hiker's Cave. Il Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, August 2014

© Tony Blood – Hiker’s Cave, Il Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, August 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Bahrija, Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, August 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Bahrija, Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, August 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Il Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, August 2014

© Tony Blood – Il Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Inlet. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Inlet. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Staircase. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Staircase. Blata Tal Melh, Rabat, Malta, 26 August 2014

Salt Pans | Marsaskala, Malta | 22 August 2014

Marsaskala Bay is largely edged by promenade, with low shelving rock ledges cut with salt pans on the seaward face of Ras iċ-Ċerna, which continue on round the eastern point, past l-Abjad iż-Żgħir, and into Il-Bajja ta’ San Tumas (St Thomas Bay) to the south.

Information from:
Web: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marsaskala

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Il-Hamriga, Marsaskala, Malta, 22 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Il-Hamriga, Marsaskala, Malta, 22 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Il-Hamriga, Marsaskala, Malta, 22 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Il-Hamriga, Marsaskala, Malta, 22 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Il-Hamriga, Marsaskala, Malta, 22 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Il-Hamriga, Marsaskala, Malta, 22 August 2014

© Tony Blood - Salt Pans. Il-Hamriga, Marsaskala, Malta, 22 August 2014

© Tony Blood – Salt Pans. Il-Hamriga, Marsaskala, Malta, 22 August 2014