A complete and up-to-date guide on the Blue Grotto in Malta. Includes detailed information about how to get here, what to expect, and photos to inspire your visit!
Malta’s Blue Grotto is perhaps one of the most iconic features of the island’s majestic coastline. Famous for its sweeping limestone arch and radiant, turquoise waters, this amazing natural wonder should not be missed on anybody’s Malta itinerary!
In this quick travel guide, I’ll reveal everything that you need to know to visit the grotto, including information on booking a boat trip to go inside the cave (and 6 more), as well as the nearby viewpoint (must-visit).
- About Malta’s Blue Grotto
- Quick Answer: Blue Grotto Boat Trip
- Where is the Blue Grotto?
- How to Get to the Cave
- Option 1: Full-Day Malta Tour Including the Blue Grotto
- Option 2: Rent a Car
- Option 3: Public Transport
- The Blue Grotto in Malta: What to Expect
- The Blue Grotto Viewpoint (viewing Platform)
- The 7 Caves Boat Trip in Wied Iż-Żurrieq
- Inside the Blue Grotto
- The Other Sea Caves of Wied Iż-Żurrieq
About Malta's Blue Grotto
The Blue Grotto in Malta (called Taht il-Hnejja in Maltese) features a massive, 30-meter (98 ft) arch and a deep cavern with a white sandy seabed. Locals say that the cave earned its name from a British soldier, who likened the cave to the famous Grotta Azzurra (Blue Grotto) on the island of Capri.
This is a very popular tourist attraction, with estimates of around 100,000 tourists coming here every single year! But, does that make it a tourist trap? I say, no way!
This stunning coastal sea cave forms one of the most impressive coastal landscapes I've ever witnessed. While it's far from a hidden gem, I'd say visiting this natural wonder is a must!
Quick Answer: Blue Grotto Boat Trip
The easiest way to visit the Blue Grotto is to book a full-day Malta private tour, which includes a boat trip (weather permitting) and a visit to Marsaxlokk fishing village, Dingli Cliffs, Popey Village, and more.
Book Your Trip
Where is the Blue Grotto?
The Blue Grotto is located on the southern coast of the island, just a short distance from the quaint fishing harbor called Wied iż-Żurrieq and close to the town of Qrendi.
There are plenty of other attractions in this southern part of Malta, including the Lapsi cave and hiking area, and the Ħaġar Qim and Mnajdra temple site.
How to Get to the Cave
Due to the remote south coast location, there are three main ways to get to the Blue Grotto in Malta, booking a group or private tour, visiting independently with your own car, or taking local public transport.
Below I've broken down each option.
Option 1: Full-Day Malta Tour Including the Blue Grotto
Looking for the most convenient way to get to the cave and experience a boat trip?
Below are the two best options available online. The first is one of the top-rated private tours in Malta (also very fairly priced), and the second is the best bang-for-buck group trip.
Book: Private Malta Tour including:
- Marsaxlokk Fishing Village
- Blue Grotto boat trip
- Dingli Cliffs
- Buskett Gardens
- Mdina Old City
- Ghajn Tuffieha Bay
- Popeye Village
- Mosta Rotunda
Check price: Group tour including the Blue Grotto & Marsaxlokk Market.
Book Your Tour Online
Option 2: Rent a Car
During my recent trip to Malta, I hired a car for the entire time. In my opinion, this is the best way to explore the island and get to all of the best sites on your own terms (and early enough to beat the crowds).
There are multiple car rental offices at the Malta International Airport. However, I've been told that cars can be difficult to source at late notice, especially during the busy summer months.
For this reason, I highly recommend comparing prices and availability across dealers using DiscoverCars before you arrive.
Once you've got your own car, you'll want to make your way to Wied iż-Żurrieq, where there is a large (and free) public parking lot. You'll find this small fishing village just beside the parking area for the Blue Grotto viewpoint (below).
Next, walk through the town and follow the signs for the "Blue Grotto boat trip ticket". The small kiosk is located in the harbor, about a 5-minute walk from the parking lot. More information about the boat ride below.
Travel Tip: The best time to visit the Blue Grotto is just before mid-morning. During this time, the sun shines directly into the cave, illuminating the blue water.
Option 3: Public Transport
Finally, the last option for getting to the Blue Grotto is to take one of the bus routes headed for Zurrieq.
Note that this is the longest and most time-consuming way but can work out the cheapest. Below I've listed some of the up-to-date bus routes stopping near the Blue Grotto taken from the Malta Public Transport website.
- Valletta - Route 74
- Buġibba - Route 186
- Gozo Ferry terminal (Ċirkewwa) or Mellieħa - Route X1, 41, 42, 49
- Airport - Route 201
Featured in: Best Things to do near Valletta
The Blue Grotto in Malta: What to Expect
With the logistics out of the way, let's dive into what to expect at the Blue Grotto in Malta! Below is a quick recap of my experience, with more photos that I hope will inspire you to check out this incredible natural wonder.
The Ultimate Malta Travel Resource
Looking for more Malta travel guides and inspiration? Below are my most comprehensive blog posts that will serve as a great free resource for your trip.
- - 70+ Things to do in Malta
- - Gozo Island Travel Guide
- - Comino Island Travel Guide
The Blue Grotto Viewpoint (viewing Platform)
In order to witness that iconic view, travelers will want to head over to the Blue Grotto viewpoint. This cliffside viewing platform is just a few hundred meters east of the turn-off to Wied iż-Żurrieq, with its own designated area to park.
Upon arriving, we took the short boardwalk descent down to the viewing area. On the way, we passed a man with a hawk, offering tourists a photo with his bird in exchange for a tip.
- Google Maps Pin: "Blue Grotto Panoramic view Point"
The viewpoint itself is behind a wide and rather tall stone wall, with a clear view of the Blue Grotto's main arch directly below. This is the best place to take photos of the iconic sea cave. The orange limestone walls contrast perfectly with the ocean's beautiful deep dark shade of blue, which creeps up to a glowing turquoise in the shallows.
After a short visit to the viewpoint, we headed back to the car to drive over to the small fishing village for a chance to jump on board the famous boat tours.
Don't Miss: Marsaxlokk: A Colorful Maltese Fishing Village
The 7 Caves Boat Trip in Wied Iż-Żurrieq
The famous boat tours depart from the western side of the seaside hamlet (Wied Iż-Żurrieq). These 30-minute trips go inside the Blue Grotto caves and a total of 6 additional sea caves nearby, including:
- Honeymoon Cave
- Cat's Cave
- Reflection Cave
- Window Cave
- Blue Window Cave
- Elephant Foot
The ticket price is 8 euros for adults and 5 euros for children. You can purchase these tickets just above the narrow harbor inlet, marked as Blue Grotto Boat Service on Google Maps.
A nice touch is that the vessel is not just an ordinary tourist boat. Instead, you'll take a traditional wooden Maltese boat called a luzzu. These are very colorful and often sport vibrant designs and markings. Additionally, your expert guide is a local fisherman who is skilled at navigating through the system of sea caverns.
Travel Tip: If you book one of the shared or private tours above, you'll get your boat ticket included in the price.
Inside the Blue Grotto
We arrived at the southern entrance to the Blue Grotto just 5 minutes from the departure point at the Zurrieq Valley Sea Inlet. This was great as it offered us an opportunity to see the towering main arch and unique limestone formations from a unique angle.
Inside the cave is a rich pallet consisting of numerous shades of crystal blue water and glowing white rock. Our driver drove slow enough so that we could stand up and take some great photos of Malta's Blue Grotto from the inside.
Blue Grotto depth: 5 meters (16 feet)
Next, we continued into the deepest cavern of the cave, which is almost pitch-dark, besides the glowing clear water below.
Don't Miss: Complete Guide to Visiting Malta's Blue Lagoon
Can You Swim inside the Blue Grotto?
While you can technically swim in the Blue Grotto, you won't be able to on the boat tours and therefore this is only possible if you have your own boat or kayak.
However, I probably wouldn't advise swimming here regardless due to the heavy boat traffic.
Did you know? The Blue Grotto is also a popular site for scuba diving. The steep rock face cliffs around the cave drop to a depth of around 30 meters, with plenty of small cracks and channels as you descend. This is great for spotting octopus and red cardinal fish.
The Other Sea Caves of Wied Iż-Żurrieq
After a short in-and-out, we exited through the northern face of the arch and continued to the other caves. Below are some photos of each to help you discover what to expect!
More Malta Travel & Adventure Inspiration
I hope that this short travel guide to the Blue Grotto sea cave in Malta has inspired you to visit this amazing natural wonder!
If you're after more reasons why Malta should be your next travel destination, make sure to check out some of my other articles below.
40 Amazing Things to do on Gozo Island, Malta
70 Awesome Things to do in Malta - 2023 Travel Guide
Coral Lagoon Malta - An Incredible Natural Sea Cave
Crystal Lagoon Malta (Comino) - 2023 Travel Guide
Dingli Cliffs - Epic Sunset Viewpoint in Malta
Popeye Village Viewpoint in Anchor Bay, Malta - Complete Guide
St Peter's Pool Malta - Complete 2023 Travel Guide(Video) 10 AMAZING Things To Do In MALTA | 4K Travel Guide 2023
For people to have the chance to enter the sea cave, they have to pay back in wooden rowboats and glide through the low cave mouth. People will be stunned next by the magical and dream-like blue water color inside. Every traveler must do this unique experience of floating in the Blue Grotto.How long does the Blue Grotto tour take? ›
The visit inside the grotto on rowboats lasts about five minutes. However, the wait to enter the cave can be long, reaching an hour during high season at peak times of the day. The average time for a tour of the island by sea plus a visit to the Blue Grotto is about two hours.How much is the boat ride to Blue Grotto in Malta? ›
The famous boat tours depart from the western side of the seaside hamlet (Wied Iż-Żurrieq). These 30-minute trips go inside the Blue Grotto caves and a total of 6 additional sea caves nearby, including: What is this? The ticket price is 8 euros for adults and 5 euros for children.Is the Blue Lagoon the same as the Blue Grotto in Malta? ›
Not to be confused with the Blue Lagoon, which is located in the North West of the archipelago, in the island of Comino, the Blue Grotto is a complex of seven caves found along the southern coast of the island, right across from the little islet of Filfla, and less than a kilometre west of Wied iż-Żurrieq.What is the best time to visit the Blue Grotto? ›
When is the best time of the day to visit the Blue Grotto? It is best to visit the Blue Grotto on a sunny day between the hours of noon to 2 pm, during this period thanks to the most intense sunlight, the most intense color comes and it illuminates the interior of the grotto the best.Can I swim in the Blue Grotto? ›
Can visitors swim in the Blue Grotto Capri? No, visitors can neither enter the cave by swimming nor disembark from their rowboat to swim inside the cave. However, after the cave closes to the public at 5:30 p.m. (when the rowboats and ticket office close), many swimmers enter the cave by sea.What do you wear to the Blue Grotto tour? ›
During the tour in the Blue Grotto, it is recommended to wear non-slip shoes or, at least, laced shoes that have a flat sole. It is also good not to forget the sunscreen, especially since the wait at the entrance can be long in periods of greater tourist influx.Is the Blue Grotto a wonder of the world? ›
The Blue Grotto in the Island of Capri is one of the 7 natural wonders of the world! The Blue Grotto in the Island of Capri is one of the 7 natural wonders of the world!What is special about the Blue Grotto? ›
More than just an empty rock face, the grotto has become one of the most famous natural attractions in Southern Italy for its enchanting bright blue waters. Only accessible by rowboat, the Blue Grotto is illuminated by the sunlight passing through an underwater cavity.Is it worth going to the Blue Lagoon Malta? ›
The Blue Lagoon is one of Malta's best beaches, a paradise with white sand and crystal clear water. You can take the opportunity to explore the whole island of Comino, and go hiking in the bays of San Nicolas and Santa Maria.
There are really only 2 ways to get to the Blue Grotto, other than swimming (which is illegal). You can either walk down the stairs from the shoreline (this requires first traveling to Anacapri) or traveling by boat from Marina Grande (either tour or private).Is it safe to swim in Blue Lagoon Malta? ›
Swimming, snorkelling and kayaking
In peak season, the lagoon is lifeguarded, so make sure to pay attention to the lifeguards, and only swim in the marked areas near the shore. If you're travelling outside of peak season, the lifeguards may not be working, so always be aware of currents, and swim safely.
Apart from being a paradise for snorkelers, divers and windsurfers, the main reason to visit Comino is to swim in it's beautiful Blue Lagoon. By far one of the best beaches in Malta and home to the most crystal clear water I have even seen or swam in, the Blue Lagoon is an absolute can't miss for anyone visiting Malta.Can you swim at the Blue Lagoon? ›
Can you swim in the blue lagoon? The Blue Lagoon experience is designed as a relaxing spa day where you submerge yourself in the bath-warm water and simply unwind. Although you can perhaps swim a couple of leisurely breaststrokes, it's not suitable for vigorous exercise and too shallow to dive into.Can you swim in the White grotto? ›
This grotto is the White Grotto, so called because of the bright white reflection of sunlight off the the bottom of the sea. Want to go for a swim here? Jump on it, the water's fine!Can you swim in the Green grotto? ›
You can swim or climb the cliffs in the Green Grotto, which looks like an enormous liquid emerald.What is the temperature of the Blue Grotto? ›
Dive SiteBlue Grotto Dive Resort - Williston, FL
The Blue Grotto lets you dive down to a depth of 100 feet (30 meters) in crystal clear water all the way down at a water temperature of 72 degrees Fahrenheit (23 degrees Celsius) all year round.
The Blue Grotto lets you dive down to a depth of 100 feet in crystal clear water with a consistent temp of 72 degrees F all year round! A popular training dive site. Wildlife encounters include your typical Florida spring fish like bluegill, bass, cichlids, catfish, and tilapia. Possible sightings of turtles as well.What animals live in the Blue Grotto cave? ›
Blue Grotto Wildlife
As for the roof of the cave, don't be surprised if you come across a few animals like bats, lizards, and aquatic-friendly critters and crawlers. It is also home to endemic species, such as the Maltese wall lizard.
Capri's most famous attraction, the Blue Grotto (the Grotta Azzurra), is visited by three thousands visitors every day and it is easy to see the reason: no trip to the Island of Capri is complete without seeing the Blue Grotto.
The tour lasts around 45 minutes but it's just a few caves and a small underground lake. Some of the cave passages have low roofs (I am over 6 ft tall) and underfoot is uneven - just as you would expect.How many blue grottos are there? ›
There are two famous blue grottos in this part of the world, and both have their merits. So let me offer you an honest comparison. This blue grotto, located on the island of Capri, is very crowded with many private boats and long lines on shore.Is Blue Grotto one of seven wonders? ›
Blue Grotto in Capri, Italy. One of the seven natural wonders of the world! Wonders of the world, Places to see, Natural wonders.Is Blue Lagoon one of the 25 wonders of the world? ›
Located in the heart of the Reykjanes UNESCO Global Geopark and surrounded by moss-covered lava fields, the Blue Lagoon Iceland is a wonderland. Named one of the 25 Wonders of the World by National Geographic in 2012, everywhere the eye looks brings forth a sense of wonder.Is it worth going to Capri for a day? ›
A day trip to Capri from Positano is 100% worth your time and will be a memorable experience. My day trip to Capri was actually my favorite day while in the Amalfi Coast. It's easy to plan on your own and the views are breathtaking.Is the Blue Grotto cold? ›
Exactly how cold is the Grotto? If you have watched the Blue Grotto orientation video (mandatory viewing for anyone diving the Grotto), you already know the water is a constant 22° C/72° F year-round. And, because the steady flow of water constantly mixes the water from top to bottom, there are no thermoclines.What do people do at the Grotto? ›
The Grotto Tobermory is a very popular summer attraction within Bruce Peninsula National Park. People come from all over the world to hike to this incredible spot! Known for its turquoise blue water and amazing caves for swimming, diving and snorkeling, The Grotto in Tobermory needs to be on your bucket list.Is the Emerald grotto the same as the Blue Grotto? ›
The interior of the Blue Grotto is different to the Emerald Grotto.What month is best to go to the Blue Lagoon? ›
Overall, the best time to visit the Blue Lagoon is during the winter, between November and February. The Blue Lagoon in Iceland is open year-round, but the best time to visit is when you can enjoy the warm water. During these months, temperatures average between 33 and 35 degrees.Is 2 hours enough at the Blue Lagoon? ›
The recommended time to spend at the Blue Lagoon is around 2-3 hours, but visitors can stay longer if they choose. It is recommended to arrive at least 30 minutes before your scheduled entrance time to allow for check-in and changing.
If you want the milky blue color and a luxury spa experience, then the Blue Lagoon would be better. If you don't need the blue color and just want a geothermal bathing experience in a more natural setting and at a lower price, then choose the Secret Lagoon.How long does it take to walk through the grotto? ›
Try this 0.8-mile out-and-back trail near Portland, Oregon. Generally considered an easy route, it takes an average of 17 min to complete.How long is the grotto walk? ›
The walk is a two kilometre loop track taking between one to two hours depending on whether you visit all of the four lookouts at the top of the cliffs.What do you wear to the Green Grotto Caves? ›
Children ages 0 to 3 are free. Recommended Dress We recommend wearing comfortable, seasonal clothing and closed-toe walking shoes. Guests should bring a light jacket or sweater to wear inside cave.Do you shower at the Blue Lagoon? ›
Yes, you should shower before and after your stay at the lagoon. Guests are required to shower, without their swimsuit, prior to using the geothermal spa. Simply use the showers and soaps available in the changing rooms.Can you shower in private at the Blue Lagoon? ›
All guests must shower—without a swimsuit—before entering the Blue Lagoon. Use of Blue Lagoon skin care shower gel and hair conditioner is complimentary. If you desire more privacy while you shower, locate a shower that is equipped with a door.How hygienic is the Blue Lagoon? ›
In fact, the Blue Lagoon is a weird but completely safe environmental accident. The water is clean and doesn't contain any chemicals that might be bad for you, only natural minerals.Are there jellyfish in Blue Lagoon Malta? ›
Unfortunately, the Blue Lagoon, like any other beach in the Maltese islands, cannot be considered safe from jellyfish. Before going to the Blue Lagoon (or any other beach in the Maltese Islands), I highly recommend visiting maltaweather.com's handy jelly map.Can you drink alcohol in the Blue Lagoon? ›
Enjoy. Choose from an enticing selection of smoothies, juices, soft drinks, beer, and wine.How much does it cost to swim at the Blue Lagoon? ›
Comfort tickets at the Blue Lagoon cost $62 USD. Comfort tickets include entrance to the Blue Lagoon, silica mud mask, use of towel (you can also bring your own towel), and a drink of your choice free of charge. Premium tickets at the Blue Lagoon cost $79 USD.
Can I wear a t-shirt and shorts in the Blue Lagoon? You are more than welcome to wear a t-shirt and shorts over your swimsuit. Likewise, swimwear can be rented for ISK 800, while bathrobes can be rented for ISK 1500.Do you have to wash your hair at the Blue Lagoon? ›
In the Blue Lagoon you will be advised to wash your hair. If you wash your hair before going into the thermal bath, your hair will have less silicia, which makes your hair dry.Can you wear a tampon in the Blue Lagoon? ›
Yes, you can! In fact, tampons are some of the most suitable sanitary products for taking a dip in the water while on your period. Before you get into the water, insert the tampon.Are Green Grotto Caves worth? ›
If you are a cave lover and have been to other caves before, you will quickly realize that these are not the deepest, or most unique caves out there. However, it is not something you should miss. The tour took a little under an hour, which felt just right. The tour is very interactive and the tour guide is excellent.Is a Capri boat tour worth it? ›
Looking for a bit of splurges and a luxurious experience while visiting the island of Capri? Well, you should know that a private boat tour of Capri is well worth it! It is absolutely recommended because it is the only way to visit the many caves and attractions on the island of Capri.Is the Blue Grotto one of the Seven Wonders? ›
Blue Grotto in Capri, Italy. One of the seven natural wonders of the world! Wonders of the world, Places to see, Natural wonders.Can you swim in the Green Grotto Caves? ›
You can swim or climb the cliffs in the Green Grotto, which looks like an enormous liquid emerald.What is the hardest cave to explore? ›
|Krubera Cave (Voronya Cave)|
|Depth||2,199 m (7,215 ft)|
|Length||16.058 km (9.978 mi)|
Two options for a Capri boat tour:
Motoscafisti and Laser Capri two companies which offer organized tours tickets for these group tours can be purchased directly at their offices in Marina Grande. If you prefer an individual tour, we recommend booking in advance.
The first thing to decide when planning a trip to Capri is how many days to stay. I believe you need at least 2 days in Capri, so one night on the island. The best amount of time to spend in Capri to see the highlights without rushing is 3 days.
The tourist season on Capri traditionally runs from the Easter holidays to the first weekend of November. Locals consider the best times to visit the island from the beginning of April to mid-June, and from the beginning of September to mid-October.Is the Grotto hike hard? ›
The hike to and from the Tobermory Grotto is not a very difficult one. It's about 20-30 minutes each way depending on your speed but it's a fairly flat trail until you reach the actual Grotto area which is when the cliffs etc. start. The trail is the Georgian Bay Trail and it's approximately 1.6 km in length.Is grotto Falls a difficult hike? ›
Trail Notes: The roundtrip distance to the waterfall is 2.6 miles and the hike is generally considered moderate in difficulty. It takes about 2-3 hours to hike to the waterfall and back. Carry drinking water with you. Portions of this trail are rocky-sturdy hiking shoes are recommended.Is it safe to swim in the Grotto? ›
Can you swim at The Grotto Tobermory? As of May 2022, you cannot swim at the caves at The Grotto. (Unless you climb down that hole, see above.) Instead, you can swim on the Georgian Bay shoreline nearby.