Street & District
Rhodes is a medieval pearl surrounded by roses and washed by two seas with different characters. Recreation here is different — cultural and quiet, bright and rich. You will decide which one you will have.
There are so many legends about this place that sometimes all of this seems to have somehow existed.
One of the popular myths is the one about the creation of the island. After defeating the enemy, Zeus decided to distribute the land to all the gods who participated in the battle. Each of the gods of Olympus who were present received their own territory. But the sun god Helios was not among them. No one even thought about him. When Helios came to ask about it, Zeus simply threw up his hands and said that there was no free land left. Then Helios asked if it was possible to take the land that would appear from the depths of the sea. Zeus nodded — he did not know that at that time a wondrous island appeared at the junction of two seas.
Thus, it is believed that the first settlers of the island were mystical wizards Telchines. They not only knew how to do magic, but they were also very good with a hammer and anvil. They created the trident for Poseidon. But it so happened that the heirs of Helios and Poseidon expelled the wizards from the island. Those sent a curse in retaliation, with the help of which no ruler could rule this place for a long time. Various peoples lived here: the Carians, Phoenicians, and Achaeans. Before the Dorians arrived, who are considered to be the founders of the capital, Mycenaean Greeks used to live here. The ancient city in the form of an amphitheatre was located on the slope of a hill facing the sea. At the top of the hill, presumably the Acropolis was situated with the temple of Athena of Kamir and Zeus the Perfect. The settlement itself was located below and consisted of a parallel network of streets and residential blocks. On the lower level, there was the temple of Apollo of Pythia, the Agora, the fountain pavilion and the public Roman baths.
It was the leader Dorieus who decided to found the capital of the island and issued a decree on the construction of infrastructure, temples and other public buildings.
The quiet and peaceful period in the history of Rhodes island continued until 305 B.C. Right at this time, the son of Antigonus, Demetrius decided to lay siege to the island. For a year, he tried unsuccessfully to enter the city, but the stone walls did not give up under the pressure of the catapults. The warlord went home without even taking them with him. The enterprising locals quickly figured out what was what. They sold military vehicles and weapons of the enemy and received funds for the construction of the Colossus of Rhodes — the seventh wonder of the world.
There are a lot of opinions in the scientific community about what the statue looked like and where it was installed. The first version is that it was located in the city centre. It is believed that a monument in the form of a young man in a chiton and with a laurel wreath on his head was erected on one of the central streets. But this version is not very popular, because building a huge monument with the height of a ten-storey house on a street where most of the houses were two-storey would be a real crime against the foundations of urban planning. The Greeks are considered to be masters of proportions and creating harmonious public spaces, and that was why they could not do so.
Another version is a monument in the sea. According to this version, the Colossus can be considered to be the forefather of the Statue of Independence in the United States. But in this case, there are even more questions. How did the Greeks manage to build such a complex structure in the sea, which is a task of increased complexity even in the 21st century with the use of modern technology? And what happened to the remains that were dumped into the sea as a result of the earthquake? The local population firmly believe that the first mayor of the settlement was the legendary hero Hercules, who successfully ruled the people between his labours.
One of definitely proven Rhode island facts is that people had already known about the water supply 2500 years ago. In the city of Kamiros, archaeologists have found a well-preserved sewer system that had been serving all residential houses of citizens.
There are several ways to get to Rhodes. The first one is by ferry, which often runs from Turkish resort cities (Bodrum, Marmaris) to Rhodes. Despite the fact that it is cheaper than flying by plane, this travel method will also be expensive (compared to other ferry routes).
The easiest way to get to Rhodes island in Greece is by plane. “Diagoras” international airport is located on the island.
Old city of Rhodes
If you have not visited this main attraction of Rhodes, which is included in the UNESCO cultural heritage list, you can be sure that you have not seen anything.
The Old city is divided into several parts:
The Old city is surrounded by an unassailable fortress, which you can walk around for a fee.
Note: there is an amphitheater on the western side of the wall, where scenes from ancient life adapted from ancient Greek tragedians are constantly played out. The schedule of performances can be found on information stands and lampposts.
On the sea side, the Old city is surrounded by 3 harbours — Acadia, Commercial and Mandraki. The latter is a very popular place for walking along the sea coast. On both sides of the entrance to the harbour statues of deer are placed on plinths-columns — a male and a female ones. It is believed that many centuries ago in the place of these animals were the feet of a huge statue of the God Helios (Colossus of Rhodes) — the patron Saint of Rhodes.
This place is considered to be one of the main must-visit places in Rhodes. In this village, the ruins of the ancient era harmoniously coexist with modern buildings in a remarkable manner. It is this place that can be considered the birthplace of Maritime law. The local residents, who were mainly seamen, made up the set of customs of Maritime law many centuries ago — the “Rhodes law”. Even local houses, which are called captain's ones, represent this past. Consider that the number of nodes drawn around the doorways indicated the number of vessels the owner of the house had at that time.
The main attraction of Lindos is the Acropolis, which locals consider to be the second most important in Greece (after the one in Athens).
Lindos is also famous for the fact that Apostle Paul landed in the bay near the city in 57, when he was on his way to Jerusalem. He was preaching a new faith, converting more and more pagans along his way. This bay is now named after him. There is also a same-name chapel next to it. It is visited by people in love from all over Greece who want to start a family.
This place will catch fancy of thrill seekers. It is noteworthy that the leader of the Italian fascist movement had never even been here. The villa, named after him (another name is Villa de Vecchi), is located among pines and firs on one of the peaks of the Profitis Ilias mountain range. It was built in 1912 after Italy had occupied Rhodes — it got the island as a trophy during the Italo-Turkish war. It was planned that the Italian leader Benito Mussolini would rest here in summertime. But in fact it was the mansion of the Italian governor Cesare Mario de Vecchi. The villa was abandoned for many years. You can walk through the abandoned halls and enjoy the beautiful view from the balcony. It is whispered that sometimes at night you can hear the soft sound of piano playing and footsteps in this mansion. Now the villa is being put up for the privatization of state property’ auction.
Due to the nature features, this valley has become a real home for butterflies (mainly the woolly bear family), which get off the summer heat to the coolness of the valley.
This place has been known since ancient times as a resort with healing springs. In 1929, the Italians opened a clinic here. Since then, every year many travelers stop here to improve their health and relax on the well-kept sandy beach.
This mountain is not very high — up to 300 m; it was named after the monk who brought here the miraculous icon of the Mother of God. The church where it was once kept (now a copy is here) was able to reconcile Catholics and Orthodox by giving each group a half of the church. Now only the Orthodox part is functioning. Despite the fact that the miracle-working icon is no longer kept here, you can see many toys and offerings from grateful believers near the copy. It is believed that the icon helps to cure infertility. The monks who once lived here paved the “Way to Golgotha” to the temple — a segment of the road that recreates the biblical path.
There is a small shop next to the temple where you can buy liqueur with local herbs according to the recipes of the priests.
This beautiful monastery is located near the village of Archangelos. Every year, on September 8, childless couples come to it to pray for a child, since it is on this day that the miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary is brought here.
There are many small villages on the island, where the inhabitants lead a slow and measured life. To experience it yourself go to the village Koskinou. Wander among the colourful houses, visit the Daily life museum and have lunch at the family restaurant Ankirovoli.
We also recommend that you visit Salakos. This village is lost among fig trees and springs. Here you can taste the right chureki, which the locals bake in real wood-burning stoves, and buy a souvenir made of wood.
Active holiday in Rhodes is diverse. The first thing to do is to swim in the sea. The resort boasts a huge number of beaches, including:
If you prefer active and extreme recreation, then go to Prasonisi Cape, which is located in the southern part of the island. There are two bays with a sandy beach appearing between them in summer. There are two surf schools that work with both beginners (lessons on the waves of the Mediterranean Sea) and experienced athletes (lessons on the waves of the Aegean sea).
To learn more about what is at depth, go to the diving school Waterhoppers, which has been working since 1978. Experienced instructors will teach you how to handle the equipment and will choose a suitable place. For example, you can go on a small underwater tour to the sunken ship or to the shallow bay of Ladiklo.
For those who do not part with their fitness bracelet and walk at least 10 000 steps every day, there are many hiking trails on the island. You can walk along the path from Archangelos to the Tsambika monastery through the picturesque olive groves or climb to the top of Filerimos.
On the island, cars, bicycles and segways are actively rented out, which can be used to get to little-known beaches and old villages.
One of the most popular places is the Seven springs gorge. There is a belief that if a man passes it, seven deadly sins will be forgiven to him, and if a woman does — she will become 7 years younger. The tunnel in this picturesque place was built in 1931. You will have to pass through the gorge in the dark up to your knees in cool water, enriched with mineral salts from seven springs. The path ends on the shore of a lake where rare fish and turtles live.
There are trails that are more interesting in Rhodes. For example, here you can walk in a tree. Not far from the temple of Nektariya you will find an old sycamore tree, which is more than one hundred years old. Inside, the tree is hollow and so huge that it can accommodate up to 10 people at a time.
In Rhodes, the shopping marathon is a race through fur boutiques, bustling flea markets, Greek delicatessen shops, and small shops of local artisans. From here, we recommend bringing honey, olive oil, local sweets, figurines of knights and refrigerator magnets. Don't forget to bring a couple of bottles of local wine from the C. A. I. R. Rhodes S. A. winery.
If you like to dance and have fun, then go to Faliraki. This part of the island even is tacitly called the "Ibiza of Greece". Locals and non-locals gather in the restaurant "Colossus of Rhodes", where their hanging out begins. After that, they all go to a football pub, rock-and- roll club or night club.
Popular night clubs on the island include the Colorado Club, Akanthus Rhodes, and Elli Disco Club.
If you are one of those people who find it difficult to get home after a party, there is an interesting solution on the island — an institution called Jack Daniel's FRIENDS. On the first floor there is a bar in a brutal male style with strong alcohol, rock bands, harsh audience and motorcycles as a decoration. And on the second floor there are rooms where you can relax and build up your strength after a fun night.
There is entertainment with a mark of 21+ in Rhodes. It is a casino. Gambling is offered here in a fashionable Grande Alberto delle Rose boutique hotel built in 1927. The design of the hotel creates the necessary atmosphere: heavy crystal chandeliers, expensive soft carpets, designer furniture, light gilding on the walls. Guests must present their passport and fill out a special questionnaire at the entrance. Only then, they can take one of the 15 American roulette tables, one of the 13 blackjack tables, the stud poker table, or the punto banco table. This establishment has a dress code: before 7 p.m., you can come only in modest covering clothes, and after 7 p.m. you have to wear dresses and dinner jackets.
It is important to remember that in Greece this sphere of entertainment is strictly controlled. You can only gamble in designated areas, so better do not play poker on the beach.
On Rhodes such holidays and festivals are often held:
Rhodes is considered to be one of the most popular destinations in Greece. It is visited by more than 1 000 000 guests from different parts of the world every year. The well-developed infrastructure allows to accept them all, offering comfortable conditions and hospitable service.
There is a large amount of old housing stock on the island. Yes, you will be able to find quickly some suitable housing at off-season, but keep in mind that its quality will be quite of a sort.
There are many good villas on the island. If you want a more relaxed and measured holiday, then choose small villages, but if you are planning an active vacation and a bright night life, there are many suitable options in the centre of the New city. You can book your favourite option with the help of the app.
In Rhodes, you can find a hotel for any taste and budget.
Some of the budget hotels:
If you are looking for comfortable accommodation with no frills, pay attention to the Delfini Beach Hotel, Ano Kampos Hotel & Studios, Evi Hotel, Muses Hotel, Venezia Resort, Rhodian Rose Hotel.
Among standard ones:
Among luxury hotels:
The boutique ones:
In Rhodes, as in the other parts of Greece, the local people like to have a good meal and to enjoy a cup of coffee. There are so many good establishments that you can taste something new every day.
We advise you to visit:
We recommend visiting such traditional establishments in Rhodes:
Among the iconic places in Rhodes, the best restaurants are:
Tables in each of the above establishments should be booked in advance.
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