Ghar Dalam Cave and Museum – Birzebbuga
Ghar Dalam Cave (meaning cave of darkness) is 145 metres long, 18 metres wide and between 3 to 6 metres high.
Formed many million years ago, the cave was also a source of refuge for the first human settlers of the Maltese islands.
Malta Museums: Ghar Dalam Cave and Museum
The cave provides the oldest evidence of man's presence on the islands.
Surprisingly, people continued to live in the cave for many years and as recent as 1911. The last people living in the cave were evicted by the local authorities because excavation work was going to commence.
Through excavations which were carried out in 1937, a huge number of animal bone deposits were found in the cave. The remains belonged to Prehistoric animals ranging from elephants, hippopotamus, deer and other animals.
These findings confirmed that Malta used to form part of the European mainland. These discoveries are now exhibited in showcases in the museum. Although quite small, the museum sheds a light on the wild fauna that was found on the Maltese islands during those times.
Exhibits in the museum include human teeth and skull dating back to 7000 years ago, shreds of pottery and rodents’ teeth necklaces.
If you visit this museum, you will also get the chance to see 125,000 year old remains of a hippopotamus and dwarf elephant.
The cave and museum are one of the most popular places of interest in Malta and are a much anticipated stopover for many Malta tours.
However, the smallness of the museum can leave some a bit disappointed, especially if one is not too keen on paleontology.
The cave and museum are located in Zejtun Street, Birzebbugia. Go to www.arriva.com.mt to learn which is the best bus route to take to get to this site, depending on where you're leaving from.
The site is open daily from 9.00 am till 5.00 pm and the entrance fee is Euro 3.50.