Sanctuary of Ta' Pinu

Price guide: Free

Outside Gharb towards Victoria, Gharb, Gozo, GRB 104

Price guide: Free

Ta' Pinu Church
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By Juliet Rix, your Gozo expert

#9 of 10
expert-rated things to do in Gozo
Expert overall rating:4.2 out of 5
Value for money:
Recommended for:
Culture vultures, First-time travellers, Seasoned travellers, History, Sightseeing

Expert review of Sanctuary of Ta' Pinu

This is Malta’s top pilgrimage site - a church full of stories in rural Gozo.

98% of Maltese are Catholic and this is their most important pilgrimage church where the Pope preached during his visit to Malta in 1990. So convinced are many that the Madonna Ta’ Pinu intercedes for them in times of trouble, that two rooms either side of the altar are full of ex-voto letters and offerings. There is even one thanking Our Lady of Ta’ Pinu for guiding him out of one of the Twin Towers in New York before it collapsed.

It all began with a sacred chapel where a 19th-century local girl heard the voice of the Madonna. The chapel is still here built into the back of the 1920s church that was constructed to accommodate the pilgrims flocking here. All the images in the church are of stone or mosaic except one – the 17th-century painting in the old chapel from which the voice of Our Lady is meant to have come.

Expert tips: 
Opposite the church is a hill up to the Way of the Cross (Stations of the Cross) with white marble tableaux dotted along the path to the peak. I like this walk. Lizards frequent it more than people and there are great views from the amphitheatre-like structure at the top.

More information on Sanctuary of Ta' Pinu:

Price guide:
Historic site, Religious site, Viewpoint
Outside Gharb towards Victoria, Gharb, Gozo, GRB 104
21 556 187
Months open:
All year round
Opening times:
Daily 6.30am-12.15pm, 1.30pm-7pm. For 15 Wednesdays running up to the festa (religious festival) on August 15 the church is open daily 4.30am-10.30pm. The Way of the Cross on the hill opposite is always open.
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