Popeye’s abandoned village built for 1980 Robin Williams musical has become a tourist hotspot
Popeye’s Village in Malta is a favorite with locals and tourists alike, but was originally built as the film set for the musical adaptation starring Robin Williams in 1980.
Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)
An entire village built just for a Popeye musical may not look like your typical holiday hotspot, but that’s exactly what Popeye Village in Malta offers.
The village, which has 20 wooden houses, was originally built as the setting for the 1980 musical adaptation starring Robin Williams.
165 crew members headed for Anchor Bay armed with two thousand gallons of paint, wood and eight tons of nails. (The village is three kilometers from Mellieha, about an hour’s drive from the capital Valletta).
Filming began in January 1980, but when completed the village with its wooden structures was left on the waterfront.
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Nowadays, it has been transformed into a popular tourist attraction and has firmly established itself as one of the beloved abandoned film sets that you can visit around the world.
The wooden structures that served as the characters’ “homes” and the seaside location make it a quirky hit with visitors, not to mention that it also doubles as a theme park with lots of fun games and attractions. (although he didn’t ride one).
There are also screenings of the 1981 musical and documentaries offering insight into the creation of this unusual place. Snacks include popcorn – but not spinach!
Oh, and of course, you can meet and greet the sailor himself, as well as other beloved characters such as Olive Oyl.
Visiting during the holiday season? Children can explore the elf village where Santa’s helpers are hard at work making toys for Christmas.
Families who have visited recently have praised the attraction for providing a fun activity for a few hours from games to playgrounds.
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Simply book a holiday with departure before June 30, 2022 and enter the discount code MALTALATES at checkout to save £50 per person.
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One reviewer wrote: “Wonderful morning. This place looks beautiful. The mini golf is really challenging but fun and there are also lots of games to play in the village. Food and drink are good portions and well priced too. Definitely worth a visit even if you are on a very affordable budget.”
When it comes to these photo ops, it’s not just the snaps with Popeye to have on your radar, with one visitor saying “the view from the top of the cliff on the set is stunning and very photogenic”.
Popeye Village Tour
Getting to Popeye’s Village is fairly easy as there are direct bus routes, although some reviews on Tripadvisor have warned that these are not particularly regular, so be sure to leave some wiggle room in your route.
It is located a few kilometers from the village of Mellieha, which takes about an hour to reach by car if you are coming from Valletta.
Between June and October, adult tickets cost €15 and for children up to 12 years old, tickets cost €12.50. You can find out more at popeyemalta.com.
If you’re looking for a cheap Malta holiday, you can also check out Mirror Holidays’ Malta deals, including packages from £206 pp between June and October. There are also plenty of hotels in Mellieha if you want to explore and stay in the area.