Residents in Mellieha enjoy living in some of the loveliest residences in the northern region of Malta. The locality offers unique opportunities to purchase a first home with magnificent sea views or country views or one which is steeped in history within the centre of town.
The town of Mellieha stands on a group of hills on the northwest coast of the main island of Malta. Mellieha real estate consists of the areas of Mellieha Heights, Santa Maria Estate, il-Qortin, Ta’ Pennellu, Ta’ Masrija, and Tal-Ibraġ. The nearby villages of Manikata and Selmun also fall under Mellieha’s jurisdiction.
In 2009, Mellieha was awarded the title of European Destination of Excellence due to its sustainable initiatives.
Mellieha is rich in history. The locality of Mellieha gets its name from the Semitic word m-l-, which meaning “salt.” This is most likely a reference to the Punic-Roman salt pans that once existed in Mellieha Bay. The salt pans have recently been replaced by the Ghadira Nature Reserve.
Mellieha was initially settled in the Neolithic era, circa 3000 BC. Several megalithic remnants have been discovered, including the Ghajn Zejtuna temple, as well as caves and graves containing tools and pottery pieces.
Troglodytes began to live in Mellieha’s valley caves during the Roman era. The cave villages survived during Byzantine authority but were abandoned in the early Middle Ages.
Mellieha was one of the first ten parishes of Malta. It still existed in 1436, but it was abandoned soon afterward in the late 15th or early 16th century since the north of Malta was no longer safe due to raids by Muslim corsairs.
The northern coast of Malta began to be fortified in the early 17th century. The first fortification to be built in Mellieha was Saint Agatha’s Tower, which was completed in 1649. This large tower was built on Marfa Ridge, overlooking Mellieha Bay, with clear views over to Comino and Gozo. The smaller Ghajn Hadid Tower and Armier Tower were also built at the limits of Mellieha in 1658.
A series of coastal batteries, redoubts and entrenchments were also built in Mellieha in the 18th century. Several of these still survive, such as Mistra Battery, Vendôme Battery, Wied Musa Battery, and Westreme Battery. The Devil’s Farmhouse found at Ta’ Randa area is an example of Maltese farmhouses built in the 18th century.
Here are a few places of interest which makes visiting and buying property for sale or rent in Mellieha unique when compared to the other localities in Malta and Gozo.
The Mellieha church, which is positioned high on top of the town center’s hill, is a must-see. The Sanctuary of Our Lady of Mellieha is a baroque-style church built in the nineteenth century.
It is situated over a crypt that was formerly a natural cave. An antique fresco, painted in the Byzantine style and said to have been made in the early mediaeval period, can be found within. However, tradition has it that it was painted by St Luke while he and St Paul were stranded on Malta.
L-Ahrax tal-Mellieha, a wide area of land where wild garigue and history collide, is located just outside of town. The Red Tower, also known as Fort St Agatha, may be seen from here. This was one of seven towers built under the Knights of St John’s reign. This guard station is open to the public now, and the top of the tower provides spectacular views.
Popeye Village near Anchor Bay is another fantastic and unexpected Mellieha attraction. This is the set from the 1980 picture ‘Popeye,’ which starred Robin Williams in the starring role of Popeye. The village’s charming wooden buildings are still standing today and serve as a year-round tourist attraction.
The locality of Mellieha is home to two significant environmental reserves: Ghadira Nature Reserve, a bird sanctuary, and Foresta 2000, a Mediterranean forest natural habitat.
As a self-sufficient town, Mellieha offers all facilities and amenities required for modern comforts. Shops, supermarkets, boutiques, souvenir shops, a wide variety of restaurants, pizzerias, bars and pubs. The area is also rich in hotels, apart hotels and holiday rentals.
Mellieha is the place for swimming, rambling, diving, paragliding, birdwatching, jet skiing, water skiing, fishing, snorkelling, farming or just lounging and sun-bathing.
Apart from the local Primary School which is one of the best in this part of Malta, the area of Mellieha offers a number of English language schools which attract a considerable crowd of international students.
The Malta real estate market is thriving in Mellieha. Relocating to a seaside town has its advantages. With various Malta properties for sale or rent to choose from, people benefit from an all year-round vacation atmosphere, which blends in excellently with the residential areas of town.
Apart from that, the location has several new buildings in the form of designer apartment blocks, which are attracting second home buyers or buyers who would like to invest in a holiday home that can double up as a rental investment.
Whether one lives in the heart of the old town, on its outskirts closer to the sea, or somewhere secluded but still enjoying a view of the bay or the surrounding countryside, this location is one step away from Cirkewwa which ferries one out to Gozo.
Take a deep dive and browse the Maltese localities and local insights to see if the homes for sale/rent are right for you.