Ramla Bay is a beach with soul. It's found in an unspoiled corner of the island's north-east, and owes its name, The Red Beach - Ir-Ramla il-Hamra in Maltese - to its unusual, terracotta-coloured sand.
The beach doesn't just draw sunbathers and swimmers to its calm, shallow waters - historians and bibliophiles make the journey to witness its historical treasures. Limestone cliffs flank the beach, and on the eastern side lies a cave alleged to be Calypso's Cave in Homer's Odyssey, where Odysseus was kept as a prisoner for seven years by its seductress inhabitant, Calypso.
There's currently no access to the cave owing to rockfall in the area, but the cave is easily visible from the beach, and it's possible to walk along the cliffs for a closer look. On the west side of the beach, it's possible to spot the remains of a Roman domus, first unearthed in 1912 - head to Gozo's Museum of Archaeology to find out more about the excavations.
San Blas is Ramla Bay in miniature - a tiny red-sand beach just two miles from Ramla Bay surrounded by spectacular, completely undeveloped landscape. The catch? Access is difficult. There's a heart-pumping and practically vertical slope down the cliffs to the beach, which blissfully limits the number of sunbathers. Just make sure you save enough energy for the hike back up to the top.
Getting there: From Rabat, get the 302 bus for Ramla Bay, and the 304 for San Blas.