Ta’ Bistra Catacombs – an Early-Christian Burial Site

Ta’ Bistra Catacombs date back to the fourth century C.E. and were discovered in 1871. The hypogeum which today can be seen on both sides of the road, lay in a field which was known as ‘Ta’ Bistra’ – hence the name. They are situated in the area known as il-Besbiżija, on the outskirts of Mosta.

The catacomb complex is quite extensive, comprising a large number of burial chambers dug in the live rock. While the original function of the tombs was that of a cemetery, along time people from the local community made use of this site for a variety of purposes. These included the keeping of animals, like an underground farm.

During World War Two some of those living close by utilised the hypogeum as a shelter during air raids. Recently these catacombs have undergone major preservation and upgrading works and are now under the management of Heritage Malta and can be visited by the public.

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