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Rhodes: everything you need to know about knights' island

Dodecanese ● Rhodes ● 21 October 2018
 
Rhodes is one of the most popular summer destinations in Greece and Europe. It is located in the complex of the Dodecanese, and it is one of the largest Greek islands. In ancient times, it was famous for the statue of the Colossus of Rhodes, which belonged to the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Rhodes city is the capital of the Dodecanese Prefecture. The population of the island is estimated between 115.000 and 120.000, and it continues to grow. Nowadays, the tourism is the largest source of income on the island that offers astonishing beaches, traditional villages and luxurious as well as affordable hotels. If you want to spend amazing summer vacation in Greece, then read here the most important things you should know about the knights' island, and get ready for a journey back in time! Plus, you can visit Rhodes not only during July and August, when thousands of tourists try to find a place to admire its beauty. The island is situated in southern Greece, and thus it has calm weather and sunshine all year long. If you visit it during the off-season, for example in October or April, you can spend truly unforgettable holidays away from the crowds.

Where to go

Medieval Town

Rhodes is worldwide famous for its Medieval Town. The Medieval Town is one of the best-preserved medieval cities in Europe, and therefore Unesco inscribed it on its World Heritage List. During the Byzantine Period, the island was an important trading post in the Mediterranean Sea. In the 7th century A.D., the Arabs captured Rhodes, and the Knights Period started in the 14th and continued until the 16th century. Walking around the Old Town of Rhodes is a unique experience of medieval beauty and multicultural character between the East and West. The most exciting thing with the Medieval Town of Rhodes is that it is a vivid legend and not just a historical site. You can stay there in one of the numerous luxury and all-inclusive hotels in Rhodes, stroll around, drink your cocktail and shop in elegant boutiques feeling that a knight is waiting for you behind each impressive building of the antiquity.
Town of Rhodes

Lindos

Lindos (less than one hour drive from Rhodes Town) should be your next stop as it combines a significant archaeological site with a beautiful settlement. Above the well-preserved, traditional town of Lindos , which is a wonderful white-washed town with elegant and aristocratic atmosphere, rises the Acropolis of Lindos, which offers spectacular view of the Aegean Sea around it. In Acropolis of Lindos, you will see the Doric temple of Athena Lindia, the Propylaea of the Sanctuary, the Hellenistic Stoa and a Christian church as well as the Castle of the Knights, which prove that the site has a multicultural character and has incorporated various civilisations.
Lindos

Ancient Kamiros

Ancient Kamiros is also a site you should not miss! It is a must for any history lover as it was one of the three Doric cities that created the powerful city-state of Rhodes. Kamiros' wealth was based on the agriculture, and it was the first city in Rhodes that cut its own coins in 6th century B.C. The excavations testified the existence of a temple dedicated to Athena, but the earthquake of 226 B.C. destroyed the classical city.

Ancient Ialyssos

The area of ancient Ialyssos was inhabited since 2,000 B.C. The archaeological site is located on Mt. Philerimos. At the highest point of the mountain, you can admire the remains of the Temple of Zeus and Athena, while the whole site has also an early Byzantine Basilica, a small Byzantine church and a Doric fountain house. That is the most impressive thing with Rhodes and whole Greece: many civilisations create a multicultural site that shows you the phases of Europe's history and how these various cultures created a unique entity.

Valley of Butterflies

The Valley of Butterflies in Rhodes is a wonderful forest with literally thousands of butterflies that come every May to breed. The picture of the green haven and the spectacular trees with innumerable butterflies is just something unforgettable. Hundreds of rare butterfly species can be found there, and the area is protected as a National Park. If you come to Rhodes with your children, this valley charms the kids, but it is also a great place to visit if you love nature and its beauty.


Beaches

Rhodes has numerous astonishing beaches and golden sandy coves with a variety of touristic facilities such as hotels, bars, taverns, restaurants and water-sports facilities. All the beaches of the island have turquoise waters, and they are characterised by impressive natural beauty. The traveller can choose between rocky coves, long beaches and windy surfers’ paradises. 

Kalathos Beach is a golden sandy beach on the south-eastern coast of the island. It is very clean, with deep blue waters, bars and umbrellas, and one of the most popular beaches of Rhodes. Be prepared that it gets really crowded during the high-season.
Prasonisi is definitely one of the most wonderful beaches in Greece and the ultimate spot for wind or kitesurfing. The beach has two sides, and you can choose each time which side is best for you. The scenery is just impressive with hundreds of surfers breaking the waves in these emerald sea waters.
Prasonisi
 
Faliraki is the longest sandy shore on the island. It can be very crowded during July and August, but the further you walk down, the more relaxing it becomes. The beach offers quality local restaurants and water sports amenities in a bay that makes you feel like being in California. It is the ultimate spot for youngsters and travellers that want to have fun, drink and dance all day long. 
Tsambika is a wonderful and quiet sandy beach with a breathtaking view. To find it, look out for the signs of the Tsambika Monastery, which you can visit before going to the beach, as it is one of the oldest and best-preserved Greek Orthodox monasteries. It has sunbeds, umbrellas and a small Greek tavern behind it. 
Ladiko is a secluded bay in a small cove with only a few umbrellas. The waters there are perfect for fishing. On this beach, you will feel relaxed and free from tension and anxiety, especially if you are an off-the-beaten-path type of traveller. 
Lindos is one of the most popular beaches in Rhodes, especially for families. It offers water sports and taverns as well as many all-inclusive and family-friendly hotels to fully relax. If you walk around the corner, you will find a shallow inlet with waters excellent for bathing. Then, don't miss visiting the town of Lindos and the ancient site on the top of the cliff. 
Stegna is a long sandy coast with rocky outcrops and a magnificent view onto the bay, in a short distance to the capital city of Rhodes. It is an uncrowded beach, ideal for families away from mass tourism. 
Around the corner of Lindos, is located the small village of Pefkos with its beautiful beach. It is not as busy as Lindos, and it can offer you and your family a calm day. There, you can always find umbrellas and sunbeds to hire even in the high-season, something which is mot that easy with the other beaches.
The Anthony Quinn Beach is an area with rocks, pools, romantic coves and small bays, which the famous actor and all the visitors adore. You will find there a small restaurant with the best grilled fish on the entire island. If you are in search for something different than the classic long bays, then this complex is perfect for you. It is not a coincidence that Anthony Quinn loved it. 
Anthony Quinn Beach

Ixia is a pebbly and shingle beach with strong winds that attack the west coastline daily, making it a paradise for windsurfing and kite surfing. It has many centers to rent the equipment you need for these water sports as well as schools to learn them.
Faliraki Nudist Beach is located south of the Faliraki Village, and it is one of the few organised nudist beaches on the island. It is popular and convenient for those, who want to be natural on their vacations. It is sandy and shingle with rocky outcrops. 

Local food

Rhodes as the most Greek islands is famous for its delicious food. Your vacation in Rhodes will be an abundant culinary experience. Fresh fish, sophisticated seafood and traditional Greek dishes, such as mousaka, Greek salad, pastitsio and souvlaki, are only some of the gastronomic surprises you will have in Rhodes. The island also has some signature plates you should definitely taste,. Pitaroudia are fried pies with chickpeas, onions and tomatoes. This dish is one of the most famous dishes in Rhodes and the perfect appetizer before moving on with main dishes that will please your stomach. Avranies is a salad in Rhodes made of asparagus, cooked with virgin olive oil and dressed with a sauce from lemon juice and flour. Chtapodokeftedes (octopus fritters) are made of minced octopus meat and delicious herbs, an alternative version of tomato fritters.

Island Hopping from Rhodes

Another amazing thing with Rhodes is that it offers you the possibility to do Greek Island Hopping, as it has many stunning islands in a close distance to it. With the great Rhodes ferry deals you can find, you can go on a budget from Rhodes to the nearby beautiful and picturesque islands in less than one hour. A day trip or a couple of days are enough to explore these islands and get familiar with the experience of island hopping in the Aegean Sea!

Kastellorizo is the easternmost Greek island, a tiny island literally closer to Turkey than to Greece. The architecture of the port has Italian and Ottoman influences, offering its visitors a surprising mixture of these civilisations. On this island, it was filmed in 1991 the Oscar-winning movie Mediterraneo. Symi has one of the most impressive coastal towns in Greece thanks to its neoclassical, colourful buildings that make it look like a painting. Apart from the scenic traditional village of the port, Symi has also amazing beaches with crystal and deep blue waters.
Kastellorizo

Chalki is the smallest inhabited island of the Dodecanese with a permanent population of 330 residents. Because its tourism is not as developed as on the other islands, Chalki is ideal for peace and privacy away from mass tourism. The island is characterised by its impeccable architecture and the relaxing beaches, which are accessible by bus or on foot. 
Chalki

Tilos is an alternative destination with secluded beaches and small villages. The most touristic place is the port of the island, but you will be impressed by the village Mikro Chorio, a ghost village with abandoned buildings. Nisyros is a volcanic island with wide caldera. You can stay in Mandraki or Nikia, which are picturesque villages that can offer you the calmness you are looking for. Kos has many top things to do and see, like ancient monuments and vivid nightlife, while all beaches of Kos are sandy and organised, so you can relax without having to worry about anything. Plus, Kos offers a traditional harbour with various Ottoman influences, which makes it an exotic place to spend some days during your Greek Island Hopping.

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Where to Stay

Hotel in Rhodes, Greece Tsampika Hotel
Tsampika Hotel
1, Agisandrou str., Faliraki, 85105 Rhodes, Greece

Only minutes away from the busy centre of Faliraki, yet in a quiet, peaceful location, the family-run Tsampika Hotel is located within 10 minutes walk from the popular Faliraki Beach. The historic Rhodes Town is at 14 km. International Airport "Diagoras" is 12 km away from the hotel.

Hotel in Rhodes, Greece Star Hotel
Star Hotel
129, Lazarou Tiliakou Str., 85100 Rhodes, Greece

The family-run Star Hotel is located on the outskirts of Rhodes Town, just 10 minutes walk from Zefyros Beach and 15 minutes walk from the centre of the scenic Old Town of Rhodes. The main port of the island is at 1.8 km. Rhodes International Airport "Diagoras" is 16 km away.

Hotel in Rhodes, Greece Congo Hotel
Congo Hotel
Tiliakou 145, Rhodes Town, 85100 Rhodes, Greece

Congo Hotel is located in Rhodes town, only a 5-minute walk from Zephyros beach. Rhodes Port is an 8-minute drive away. Rhodes International Airport is 15.7 km away.


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