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Xlendi lies on Gozo’s southwest coast and is very popular for its beach. Indeed, it is one of the most popular diving spots in all Malta and Gozo. The area is well-served with hotels, bars and restaurants and is very popular with locals and foreigners alike, especially during summer months. The most important landmark in the area is the Xlendi tower – which is the oldest free-standing coastal watchtower in Gozo. It was built in 1650 to defend the area from pirates as well as to guard against smuggling. It is believed that the tower was still being used for this purpose as late as 1871.