The British Army first pursued rock climbing on Gozo and Comino in the 1950s and '60s, even producing a guidebook of the islands' routes. After independence, climbing was subsequently forgotten as a local sport, but in recent years has been rediscovered. There are now more than 300 climbs in 12 locations across the island in amazingly dramatic yet accessible locations. Dwejra has good-quality rock and some incredible climbs, although climbers have to be aware of not disturbing nesting sea birds in spring. Another important area is between Xlendi and Munxar, with 21 new bolted routes in a coastal gorge. You can learn to climb here, or there are multiple climbs at grades 7 to 8 for experts looking for a challenge. For more information, see Gozo Climbing (www.gozo-climbing.com).
With moderate terrain, stellar clifftop vistas and many historic and natural attractions a short distance apart, Gozo is an excellent walking and hiking destination. Comprehensive bus services mean it's also easy to schedule return transport after a day's walking.
One of the most popular routes is the Xlendi Walk, a 12km journey from Gozo's harbour at Mġarr west to the sheltered cove at Xlendi. En route, the walk takes in the beautiful bay at Mġarr ix-Xini and the cliffs along Ta’Ċenċ. Other walks on Gozo include around the spectacular marine-scapes of Dwejra, the salt pans of Marsalforn, and on the island of Comino.
Detailed route maps and track instructions can be downloaded for eight different walks at www.visitgozo.com. Search 'Country Walks/Rambling' on the website.