Popeye Village, located on the northwest coast of Malta is one of the Island’s main tourist attractions. This bright and colourful village is where the 1980’s movie Popeye was filmed. Those who are old enough to remember, Popeye was played by the hilarious Robin Williams.
Popeye Village has grown from a movie set into a bright and bustling piece of the Maltese tourism industry. Nestled into a narrow cove called Anchor Bay, the village is a great day out for the family. However, things can get a little pricey.
A quick tip for visiting Popeye Village, take your own food and arrive early to get a good spot. Sunbeds are available but the best ones get taken early. The entrance fee is 14.50 Euros per person, the cost of a beer 5 Euros and a hotdog is is an outrageous 7.50 Euros.
Another quick tip, for those who would like to see the village but do not wish to splash out the cash. From the cliff tops overlooking the village you can get a great view of Popeye Village and also walk down to a small jetty where you can swim in the pristine cove for free. If you take your own food and drink, this is a great way to see the village and save some money.
How To Get To Popeye Village
The village is on the north coast of the Island and is very easy to reach. For those that have never been to Malta, the Island is tiny. From top to bottom is only 24 kilometers and from side to side is 16 kilometers.
As you can see, getting anywhere on an Island so small is quite easy. However, the traffic on malta is a nightmare, so a short journey in another country can take an hour here on Malta.
Also the bus timetables and routes are always changing, here is the Maltese transport website for you to make sure of your route.
Most likely if you are visiting the Island on holiday you will be staying in either St Julian’s, Sliema or Bugibba. Regular buses run along the coast which will take you north to Mellieha Bay. From here you can either walk or catch a bus the 2 kilometers to Popeye village.
We decided to walk, the road took us through some traditional Maltese farmlands where we got to see some of the local delicacies such as prickly pears and peppers.
What To Expect When You Arrive
We arrived at Popeye Village with high expectations, well Dave did, Silvana has never seen the movie before. Unfortunately we did not do our research before arriving and was a little taken aback by the price. In the end we decided that we should pay the 29 Euros for our two tickets and entered the “park”.
As part of the entrance fee, also included is a free photo, a small glass of alcoholic punch, a sunbed and a postcard to send home. To be honest, the postcards are terrible and the punch is not so great. However, the free picture is a good keepsake if you can have it taken without people bustling in the background.
We had a look around the village, wandering up the street reading all of the funny signs and looking at the memorabilia. If you have seen the movie, walking around the village will bring back many fond memories.
Soon we found ourselves in the house of Olive, Popeyes girlfriend. We had a look around, in the back room of the house a documentary on the making of the movie was being played on a loop. We watched for a few minutes and found it quite interesting.
Things To Do In The Village
Swimming in Anchor Bay
Next, with it being 30 degrees we headed down to get a sunbed next to the water. Popeye Village is built on one side of a little cove. On one side the village runs down to the water’s edge. Whereas on the opposite side there are sheer cliffs which are 30 meters high. It is from these cliffs where you can get a great view of the village if you do not wish to pay.
This cove is perfect for swimming and like all of the waters around Malta, it is pristinely clean and beautiful. We made our way down to the waters searching for a sunbed.
Unfortunately we arrived at around 1pm and all of the best sunbeds were taken. This is why you should arrive early. Eventually after much searching we found two on the upper decks.
Inflatable Obstacle Course
In the water there is an inflatable obstacle course which is quite cool but was very crowded. On the obstacle course there is also a trampoline, this is a great way to get rid of the children for a while. Or if you are still a child at heart, a great way to have some fun crashing into the water.
Throughout the village, different animations are playing. Along with the making of the movie which is on a loop in Olive’s house, there is also a loop of the movie itself playing in an another of the colourful buildings.
At other spots in the village you will also see old cartoons of Popeye being shown.
For some strange reason there is also a Mini Golf course in the village, which is free to play. I think that they were running out of ideas and chucked this one in for the fun of it.
Other Things To Do
Other things to do include the silversmith demonstration, the splash pool and also a boat tour around Anchor Bay. Unfortunately the boat was broken when we visited and had been for sometime. When they plan on fixing this we do not know.
What We Really Thought Of Popeye Village
We enjoyed our visit to Popeye Village… but.
For what is on offer we think that the price is very expensive. Also it is a bit of a tourist trap, with only two restaurants which charge what they like. We paid 5 Euros for one beer and 7.50 Euros for a hotdog. You should most definitely take your own food.
Alos we made a mistake when visiting, we arrived at 1pm. All of the best sunbeds had been taken and we had to search about. We soon found a bed up on the top decks of the restaurant, arrive early to get a bed on the water’s edge.
Maybe visiting during the quieter months Popeye village would be much better. However, with the crowds and the prices of the high season, taking your family might be very expensive.
Also there is not many things to do in the village so you should use the day as more of a relax day. Anchor Bay is beautiful and is a great place to just kick back and chill.
How To Make Your Day A Great One
To avoid the same mistakes that we made, here is our quick guide to making your day a great one.
- If you travel by bus, set off early.
- Arrive as early as you can to get a good spot next to the water.
- Bring your own food and drink.
- Make sure you have a hefty budget.
- Prepare to relax.
See The Village For Free
As we said earlier, there is a way to see Popeye Village for free and to be honest, looking back this is how we should of seen it.
For those who do not wish to spend the money, and still want to get a great view of the village, head to the cliffs on the opposite side of the cove. From here you will be met with a stunning view of the village.
To reach the opposite side is simple, when you arrive at the main entrance, walk a further 20-30 meters down the road and you will see the cliff tops and Anchor Bay below. From here it is also possible to get down into Anchor Bay itself. From the cliff top a road leads down to a jetty which stretches out into the crystal clear waters of the Mediterranean.
As you will see if you choose this option, many people decide to view the village from this vantage point and do not have to pay a single cent. However there are no facilities on this side of the bay so you must take your own food and drinks.
What Did You Think Of Popeye Village?
Have you visited Popeye Village? If you have we would love to know what you think. Were you disappointed or did you love? Or like us, were you somewhere in between? Leave us a comment and let us know.
Also, we are going to be here on Malta for a while and was wondering if any of our readers have any places that they would recommend we visit? We are always looking for new places to explore and who better to ask than you guys.
Thanks for reading and watch out for our upcoming posts on this beautiful diamond of the Mediterranean.