Prehistoric Civilizations in Malta

Impressive New Stone Age Tarxien Temples

It is said that from all Prehistoric civilizations that we know of, the Neolithic community in Malta was the most advanced. The community blossomed from 5000 – 2500 B.C.

During those times, the Maltese islands are thought to have had between 5000 to 10,000 inhabitants.


prehistoric civilizations tarxien malta

An altar that you can see at the Tarxien Temples - Notice the lovely spiral patterns that adorn the altar!


These numbers only add to the mystery surrounding the Neolithic people in Malta. Because in order to build the impressive New Stone Age temples that they built, it meant that a lot of them had to be working on the temples full time.

What’s strange about this, is the fact that these Prehistoric civilizations had to also produce their food and maintain their dwellings. Many researchers and archaeologists have tried to come up with some sort of answer on this issue.

The issue further complicates itself, because in around 2000-2500 B.C., the Neolithic community in Malta suddenly disappeared.

prehistoric civilizations tarxien temples

Sadly we may never know what really happened to them, but we are eternally grateful to these people for allowing us to share a small part of their lives i.e. their magnificent temples!

The Tarxien temples are located at Triq it-Tempji Neolitici, Tarxien. They are by far the largest and most advanced temples in Malta.

The temples were also the last to be built, since they were built sometime around 3000 and 2500 B.C. Evidence shows that the Bronze Age peoples later used these temples as a crematorium.

The Tarxien temples were discovered by accident in 1941 when a local farmer decided to probe further and investigate what was ruining his plough.

It is believed that originally the building stood some 23 metres high! What we see today is just the bottom third of the Tarxien temples.

prehistoric civilizations tarxien temples

Unlike the other temples found on the islands, Tarxien temples today are unfortunately surrounded by modern buildings, but rest assured that once you're in the temples you will be rewarded greatly.

Built with huge stone blocks measuring up to 3 metres by 1 metre, you can still see the decorations on some of them that include spiral patters, pitting and reliefs of animals.

It's simply amazing what Prehistoric civilizations managed to achieve with such limited resources!

So make sure to make time for a visit to these awe inspiring temples. If for some reason you can't make it to the Tarxien Temples, we recommend that you at least visit another one of the many Neolithic temples that you can find in Malta and Gozo.

Remember ... you won't find anything quite like them anywhere in the world!


Getting there

As the name implies, these impressive temples are located in Tarxien, Malta.

Depending on your departure location, visit www.arriva.com.mt and check their bus routes and timetables to determine which is the best bus route to take to get to the temples.

Tarxien temples are open daily from 9.00am to 5.00pm and admission fee is Euro 2.33. Discounts for students, senior citizens and kids are available.


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