Exploring Torri l-Abjad, Mellieha area (Part 1)
Destination Mellieha … What a glorious sunny day today! It’s October and it feels like we’re right in the middle of summer.
I decided to head to Torri l-Abjad and l-Ahrax today for some quiet me time. Yes, even teddy bears need their space. So I took bus no. 44 from Valletta and headed to Mellieha Bay (or Ghadira Bay as it’s also known). This is Malta's most popular beach!
The bus stopped at the Ghadira bus terminus and I started my walk from there. The bus terminus is right opposite the bay so you only need to cross the road and you’re practically on the beach already!
The bay looked beautiful (as always) perhaps even more so than in summer because it was a lot less crowded. Still there were a lot of people swimming. I decided to pass because I forgot my swimming trunks. [Editor: Teddy bears don’t usually wear swimming trunks, just saying.] OK OK, I chickened out because I was scared that the water might be a bit too cold for me. I’m only a small bear after all!
From the bay, I walked due north and up the winding hill. From the hill you can look back to admire Mellieha Bay in its full glory. What a stunning beach!
The famous Red Tower is also visible from this hill. The tower’s official name is St. Agatha’s Tower, but it’s more known as the Red Tower due to its red painted walls. It is a magnificent sight. I would have to go there sometime and tell you all about it. On top of the hill, you will reach a road junction.
Since I was heading to Torri l-Abjad, I took the road to the right and continued walking. It was very quiet and not a soul was in sight. Perfect! The long road ahead looked lovely with trees and bushes on both sides.
At one point, I came across a girna! Of course, I had to stop to take a photo for you guys. A girna is essentially a corbelled hut. There are many similar huts on the Maltese islands, especially in Mellieha.
These huts are built entirely and solely from loose rocks and stones. Incredible, isn’t it? I’ve no idea how they manage to remain so sturdy. I once heard a farmer say that building these huts is a difficult task, especially when one comes to build the top of the hut! The girna building technique has been passed down from generation to generation.
So what did they use these huts for?
In the old days, farmers used these huts to shelter themselves from the elements. Some were also used to house a few farm animals.
To be continued ...