Ggantija is the oldest and largest complex of the world renowned megaliths of Malta. This impressive and mysterious construction made of huge rustic stones and giant blocks attracts thousands of tourists, who are interested in archeology and history. Constructed in the Neolithic era more than 5000 years ago, this complex belongs to the World Heritage sites along with five other megalithic temples of Malta and Gozo islands.
The complex consists of two constructions, with the oldest dating back to about 3600 BC. This makes Ggantija more ancient than the famous pyramids, Maya sites or Stonehenge. It is amazing how ancient people could build such a tremendous structure in prehistoric times, when metal tools and the wheel hadn’t been invented. Scientists are still discussing the construction methods, since Ggantija were made of limestone blocks, the length of which reaches almost 6 meters, while the weight runs up several dozen tons. Huge stones are held together only by their own weight with no bonding mortar between them. There is a plausible reason for the fact that Ggantija means "Giants’ Tower" if translated from Maltese, since a local legend has it that it was built by a giant woman.
To some extent the legend corresponds with scientific theories, as scientists believe Ggantija was used as a temple of a fertility goddess. Both temples have a form of a clover leaf and their semi-circular parts house ancient altars for sacrifices. Along with the altar slabs, visitors can observe a large block with a cavity supposedly used for ritual ablutions and massive stones with mysterious holes in them. Some stones bear traces of ancient symbols, while others strike the eye with their smooth surface, proving skills of unknown builders. The entrance to the complex is framed by large vertical stones of impressive size.
Though niches of the ancient temples are now empty, tourists can take a look at figurines of the fertility goddess, which occupied these niches thousands of years ago. There is a small, but exciting display in the archeological museum of Ggantija, giving an insight into the Neolithic period and excavations in Gozo. A palm tree-lined pathway leads from the museum to the temples, offering beautiful views on a picturesque landscape.