Separated by a short hop of sparkling turquoise seawater, Gozo is Malta's laid-back little cousin. Featuring postcard-perfect scenery, lively outdoor festivals, and deeply engraved history, it's easy to see how Gozo earned its name – which translates simply as ‘Joy'.
You'll quickly feel this elegant island's uplifting effect for yourself, as you arrive on sleepy Gozo's shore, which sits just 58 miles from Malta. Bathing in 300 days of sunshine every year, the island is enjoying a burgeoning reputation as one of the top outdoor adventure playgrounds in the Mediterranean. Sheer cliffs, mountain bike trails, sea kayaking and diving are some of the many active pursuits here that are bound to get the pulse racing. For a gentler pace, try sea strolls, paddles in shallow waters, and sprawling relaxation sessions on the isle's soft sands. Sadly, the natural rock arch of the famous Azure Window finally gave in and fell into the sea recently. It remains a beautiful location, however, and a place to soak in the views of Fungus Rock.
The magnificent Ġgantija Temples, welcome you to Gozo's pretty harbour, and this megalithic wonder is within easy reach nearby. Older than the Pyramids and Stonehenge, island legend says these spectacular stone structures were forcibly embedded into the earth by giants. They've been dated back to between 3,600 and 3,200 B.C. Inland you'll find Victoria - the island's capital - which is bejewelled by the reinforced walls of its splendid citadel. Enjoy the salty tang of delicious seafood, if you sit down to eat, and soak in the atmosphere of the narrow streets, as you wander past locals weaving garments from sheep's wool. For a snack to keep you going, try pastizzi, a type of sandwich, oozing with indulgent cheese.