Popeye Village

Northern Malta

Steep-sided, pretty little Anchor Bay was named after the many Roman anchors that were found on the seabed by divers, some of which can be seen in the Maritime Museum at Vittoriosa. In 1979 Anchor Bay was transformed into the ramshackle fishing village of Sweethaven, the set for the 1980 Hollywood musical Popeye, starring Robin Williams. The vintage set still stands and houses an old-fashioned theme park; it's great fun for kids.

Admission includes animation shows, splash pools and a 15-minute boat ride. You can pay extra for the chance to make a movie (€6), which is particularly good fun.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Northern Malta attractions

1. Għadira Nature Reserve

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Close to Mellieħa Bay is the Għadira Nature Reserve, managed by BirdLife Malta volunteers. This area of shallow, reedy ponds surrounded by scrub is an…

2. Mellieħa Bay


The warm, shallow waters and soft white sand of Mellieħa Bay are easily accessible (via bus or you can park on the road that backs the beach), safe for…

3. Red (St Agatha's) Tower

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The chess-piece-like Red Tower was built in 1649 for Grand Master Lascaris, as part of the chain of signal towers that linked Valletta and Gozo; the view…

4. Church of Our Lady of Victory

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The Church of Our Lady of Victory sits prominently on a rocky spur overlooking Mellieħa Bay. It's attached to the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Mellieħa, which…

5. Mellieħa Air-Raid Shelters

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The Mellieħa air-raid shelters were dug by hand to shelter the town's population from WWII bombs. It's one of the largest underground shelters in Malta,…

6. Ras il-Qammieħ


The western headland, 129m at its highest point, commands fantastic views and feels like the end of the world. It's home to an old radar station.

7. Grotto of the Madonna

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Across the main street from the Church of Our Lady of Victory, a gate in the wall and a flight of steps lead down to the Grotto of the Madonna, a shrine…

8. Park tal-Majjistral

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The area between Golden Bay and Anchor Bay was once earmarked for a golf course, but opposition from environmental groups led to the creation of National…