The Hypogeum of Ħal Saflieni is a Neolithic subterranean structure dating to the Saflieni phase (3300 – 3000 BC) in Maltese prehistory, located in Paola, Malta. It is often simply referred to as the Hypogeum (Maltese: Ipoġew), literally meaning "underground" in Greek. The Hypogeum is thought to have been a sanctuary and necropolis, with the remains of more than 7,000 people documented by archeologists, and is among the best preserved examples of the Maltese temple building culture that also produced the Megalithic Temples and Xagħra Stone Circle.
The Hypogeum was discovered by accident in 1902 when workers cutting cisterns for a new housing development broke through its roof. The workers tried to hide the temple at first, but eventually it was found. The study of the structure was first conducted by Manuel Magri, who directed the excavations on behalf of the Museums Committee, starting from November 1903. During the excavations, a portion of the contents of the Hypogeum, including grave goods and human remains, were emptied out and discarded without being properly catalogued. To confound things further, Magri died in 1907 while conducting missionary work in Tunisia and his report on the Hypogeum was lost.
|Monday||9:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Tuesday||9:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Wednesday||9:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Thursday||9:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Friday||9:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Saturday||9:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
|Sunday||9:00 AM – 5:00 PM|
Chris Biddle | Jan 20, 2018
You probably have no idea how important of an archaeological find this is. I didn't really understand it until I went here. It costs a lot to enter but the experience and understanding of what it is truly mind blowing when you realize just how old this site is. We were not allowed to take pictures. We were limited to a group of 10 people at a time entering. As I said before it is very expensive compared to other places. This is because of how fragile the site is. Visit if you have the means and want to know more about humans in the ancient world.
Adam Branscombe | Jan 15, 2018
Amazing site. Thousands of years of work to excavate it originally. Amazing stonework for the period, and remarkably well preserved. Make sure to try booking well in advance as often they are completely full weeks beforehand. No photos allowed within the site itself but great audio tour that is actually open about the challenges we have in identifying purpose behind items left from periods where we have no written records.
fandango1111 | Feb 19, 2018
So, I’ve read the 1 to 3 star reviews here. The place deserves 5 stars for sure, everyone who rated it down did it because of confusion of pre-booking, which is a must or other issues with management of the place. Book it as early as possible (months ahead!)to avoid disappointment. This is a unique and atmospheric place which will enrich your understanding of where we come from and what was it like to have lived 6000 years ago.
Martyna Mentel | Feb 17, 2018
It's difficult to embrace with mind the age and meaning of this place. Highly recommended! Do not forget to buy your tickets a month in advance. Otherwise, forget to get in. Taking photos is not allowed.
K Emm | Jan 23, 2018
I think other reviewers have said it quite nicely-this is an amazing find and wonderful place to visit-one of a kind. Expensive (40€ a person in jan 2018) but to me this is worth it because this money is supposed to go preserving this very fragile site. No photos are allowed so bring your memory:)
Kevin Tarchenski | Mar 22, 2018
Really expensive for what it is, but what it is is probably the oldest human crafted structure you can visit. That alone is priceless. But be warned, you can’t take photos and the spaces are crowded even with the limited number allowed on each tour. On the other hand, the high admission goes toward preservation.
Maria Larkin | Mar 11, 2018
Fantastic spot. The extent of the stonework is amazing. Got tickets the day before at Fort St Elmo, worth the price considering it’s a world heritage site.
Geoff Berry | May 16, 2018
This is a must see site for anyone visiting Malta. If you are not planning to visit Malta you should just for this site and all the other historical sites they have. The site has VERY limited so during the peak season they can sell out months in advance. I went there during winter and bought my tickets months in advance and they sold out a month out. The site is very well preserved and the tour is fantastic. It is one of the most interesting sites I have ever seen. It does have some low ceilings and there is grated flooring so be prepared to bend over and I wouldn't recommend heels. I can't recommend this site enough.
Ciaron Murphy | May 1, 2018
The Hypogeum is an amazing piece of ancient history, definitely worth a visit! The tour lasted about an hour and was really interesting and very informative. The ticket prices may seem a little expensive but bear in mind you are contributing to the preservation of this amazing site.
William Livernois | May 1, 2018
Wonderful guided tour, so glad that we managed to get last minute tickets. One of the highlights of our vacation to malta, definitely try to book ahead so that you can get a spot!
Bomba | Jun 19, 2018
We arrived as the place opened having booked a couple of months in advance. We had a great visit, so informative, yet still so much mystery as its so ancient. Fascinating to deer the work done so long ago .
Peter Griffiths | Jun 14, 2018
Excellent, worth every penny. Tour through the underground tombs in small group of 20. Audio tour provided runs automatically so no fiddling with buttons. Book online in advance is best. Notice at entrance saying next available tour was 16 July ( a month's time)
cDaveMc | Jun 15, 2018
We booked this several months ago, for 4 of us, we could only get the 9 am slot. So no lie in and an early taxi from St Julian area took 30 mins to get there. But, we really enjoyed the 50 minute tour. Fascinating!
Alice Cooperman | Jun 12, 2018
If you're interested in ancient life and especially ancient death rituals, this is the place for you! Very interesting and amazing that it is so well preserved. Note: you must buy tickets well in advance.
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