The Neolithic people & their temples

Hagar Qim - The least understood of Malta’s temples from the Neolithic period!

neolithic people temple

The Neolithic people left a lot of mystery behind them.

With all the modern technology available to researchers and archaeologists, these people are still one of the least understood of prehistoric civilizations.

This is why thousands of visitors each year flock to the Maltese islands.

Maybe you too would like to get an idea of how these people lived, where they came from and how they eventually disappeared.

Hagar Qim temples are located at Qrendi on a rugged rocky plateau. Dramatic cliffs add up to the incredible atmosphere that surrounds the temples.

It is said that the habitat hasn’t really changed much since when the temples were built, thousands of years ago. It is believed that the temples were originally roofed over with wood. Obviously, the wooden material that was used has since rotted away.


neolithic people malta


One of the best preserved and evocative of Malta’s megalithic temples, Hagar Qim is at its best at dawn or sunset. At these times, the stones seem to change colour and are tinged pink and gold. Hagar Qim is fenced off and the gate is locked during these hours. However, visitors still go and look in awe at these mysterious temples, especially around the winter solstice.

Hagar Qim, one of the most visited of the attractions in Malta, is made up of a series of interconnected, oval chambers. It’s the least understood of all neolithic temples on the Maltese islands and also different from the other temples found on the islands because it lacks a regular trefoil plan.

As you wander in awe around the temples, try to imagine and come up with your own theory of how the Neolithic people managed to carry and lift such massive blocks of stone. Although many researchers have tried to come up with concrete answers, perhaps we will never really know how these mysterious people managed to build such impressive structures.


neolithic people malta temple


In one of the chambers, you can see a small altar post which is decorated with plant motifs. The famous fat lady statuettes (believed to be the Goddess of Fertility for the Neolithic people) and Venus de Malta figurine that were found at Hagar Qim are now on display at the National Museum of Archeology in Valletta.


Getting there

If you're heading to these temples by bus, go to www.arriva.com.mt to find out which bus number/s to take depending on your departing location.

If you’re going by car, ample parking is available right next to the temples.

The temples are open daily from 9.00am to 5.00pm and admission fee is Euro 4.66. You can also buy a combined ticket for Euro 7.00 that will give you access to Mnajdra temples as well. Discounts for students, kids and senior citizens are available.


In Gozo (Malta's sister island), there are a set of Neolithic temples that continue to fascinate visitors to this day. They're the oldest free standing structures in the world! Some say they were built by giants. Learn more about these temples by visiting our Ggantija Temples section.


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