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“Maltese gem - for true fans of Neolithic enigmas”

Hal Saflieni Hypogeum
Ranked #1 of 8 things to do in Paola
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: PLEASE NOTE that this site is TEMPORARILY CLOSED. Tours of the site are therefore currently suspended. The Ħal Saflieni Hypogeum is an underground prehistoric burial site, a complex made up of interconnecting rock-cut chambers set on three distinct levels. Earliest remains at the site date back to about 4000BC, and the complex was used over a span of many centuries, up to c. 2500 BC. The Hypogeum was first opened to the public in 1908. Due to its uniqueness, the site became very popular with visitors. Unfortunately, this had a negative impact on the delicate microclimate of the site. For this reason, a conservation project was conducted that also included the closure of the site for 10 years between 1990 and 2000. As a result of these studies, a new visiting system was established. Nowadays, only 10 visitors an hour are now allowed inside the Hypogeum for a maximum of 8 tours a day. This system is also complemented by an environmental control system which keeps temperature and humidity at required levels.Tickets for the Hal Saflieni Hypogeum should be bought well ahead of the chosen visiting date since tours are often fully booked weeks in advance.For more information visit Heritage Malta's website.
Klaipeda, Lithuania
Level Contributor
51 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Maltese gem - for true fans of Neolithic enigmas”
Reviewed May 26, 2013

If you expect a Dysneyland type of fancy 'prehistoric' attraction, forget about it. Yet, if you are truly interested in the Neolithic revolution and mysteries of that crucial period, then this place is the must, like Stonehenge or Ġgantija on Gozo island. Hypogeum is well prepared for visitors and well managed with just 10 visitors per hour. You have to book online at least one-two months in advance. If you opt for an improvised visit, go early in the morning one day in advance to the National Museum of Fine Arts. There every morning at 9.00 a.m twenty tickets are sold for the next day's visit. We came at 6.30 a.m. and were the first ones. Other early birds started to flock around 7.30, but even if you come at 8 a.m., you might have a chance to get the last tickets.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Ramunas P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Colorado
Level Contributor
190 reviews
119 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 209 helpful votes
“Truly Unique!”
Reviewed May 24, 2013

You will need to purchase your tickets weeks in advance, but if you are traveling to Malta you must see this-it is truly unique in the world! Hypogeum Hal Saflieni has been designated a World Heritage site by the UN, as it is one of the oldest man-made structures on the planet. Being able to enter this structure, which is 5,000 years old, is amazing. Audio guide provided with tour is very informative. The idea that fellow humans built this so long ago is humbling. Well worth the visit.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank hrtraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
80 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
“Not entirely what I was expecting, but still very worth seeing”
Reviewed May 22, 2013

Had to book the tickets for a May 14th visit back in February via the Heritage Malta website, but after visiting I can confirm that it is well worth it - €20 for an adult, €15 senior citizens. The site is so environmentally sensitive that only 10 people are allowed into The Hypogeum per hour. From its grisly pre-history (remains of 7000 discrete individuals recovered) to the fascinating story of how it was rediscovered in 1902, The Hypogeum fascinates throughout. Each of the three levels is accessed by a walkway to prevent further damage to the surfaces and the audio commentary is available in numerous languages. For some reason I was expecting some kind of tomb full of mosaic-type pieces but it pre-dates that by some way. One of the most interesting hours I have ever spent anywhere is in here, the only prehistoric underground temple in the world!

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Benjiboots
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oslo, Oslo, Norway
Level Contributor
14 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“NOTHING LIKE IT ON EARTH!”
Reviewed May 19, 2013

This is more of a underground monument that has the optic illusion of a prehistoric underground temple - the only one of its kind on earth and truly unforgettable!!!

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Ewa G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Well Organised Tour”
Reviewed May 7, 2013 via mobile

This was recommended by my friend who came last year. And I wasn't disappointed at all. But the ticket to the Hupogeum has to be purchased months before. You have to book a certain timing depends on the availability, apparently it's limited to 10 persons an hour, it was said to control the amount of carbon dioxide in the air so that the paintings on the wall wont deteriorate fast.
Upon registering, we were asked to put our bags in a huge locker. No photography is allowed anyway. And besides, the walkways can be cramped and slippery.
We were each given an audio guide with your language preference set for you. The tour was organized and timing of the explanation couldn't have been better. The explanation and the lightings were synchronized so you will know exactly where to look at during the explanation. Be careful with the steps and the low ceilings. I felt the facilitator did a great job by giving us adequate warning to the steps and illuminating the path when it's dark.

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank wayne-alice
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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