Guide to the island of Rhode Greece

RHODES MANDRAKIRhodes is Greek island of the Aegean Sea in Greece, included in the group of the Dodecanese islands. Rhodes lies about 20 Km. off the Turkish coast,  it is shaped as a lengthened rhombus, from south-west to north-east, and it is 80 kms long and 38 km. wide. Mostly a mountainous land, its highest peak is Mount Attavyros (1215 m. high). Its main economic resources are: agriculture, sponge fishing and tourism.The main centre is Rhodes town, on the farthest northern end of the island, an active trade and tourist port, with food, mechanic and tobacco industries. The western coast of Rhodes Greece, constantly scourged by the wind, consists of a long strip of  hotels, coffee houses and restaurants on sandy beaches,  stretching from Rhodes town to Paradisi. But heading southwards, the landscape becomes green and fertile, with vineyards, olive trees, green slopes and picturesque rural villages.

HISTORY

RHODES HISTORY Rhodes was born independent, it managed to keep as such for centuries, only surrendering to Alexander the Great and later to the expansion of the Roman Empire. When the capital city of the Empire was shifted from Rome to Constantinople, Rhodes passed under the hegemony of Byzantium.

Later Rhodes occupied by the Arabs, the Venetians and the Franks, under the rule of the Knights of St. John, it acquired again its former importance as a sea and trade power.
The period during which the Knights ruled in Rhodes was the most brilliant in their history.
After establishing themselves in Rhodes, the Knights extended their power over the neighbouring islands and, for a considerable time, over Smyrna.
The Knights left imposing evidence of their presence in Rhodes, and gave to the island the particular character it retains to this day, with its impregnable walls, gates, churches, hospitals, Inns and palaces.

After the departure of the Knights of Rhodes, the island was annexed to the Ottoman Empire. The Turkish occupation of Rhodes was the darkest period in its history, as indeed it was for the whole of Greece. The island was under the control of a Kapudan Pasha, while the city itself was capital of the Province of the Aegean and was the seat of the General Administrator.

In the early 20th century it was occupied by the Italian army, and only at the end of the Second World War, together with the other isles of the Dodecanese, Rhodes eventually became a part of the Republic of Greece. With its history, rich with multi-ethnic influences, this island has always been a welcoming place where you can find very easily the traces of its origin.

WHAT TO SEE

RHODESAmong the places to visit in Rhodes are the Monastery of Filerimos, the ancient Kamiros, the wine centre of Embonas, the mount Profitis Elias, with its springs and the charming valley of Petaludes. Further southwards, we find all kinds of landscapes, ravines surmounted by castles and views on the sea as far as the isles of Halki and Alimia. the Acropolis of Lindos and many others.

The eastern part of Rhodes, more sheltered, counts kilometres of rocky beaches and little inlets, among which the crowded places of Kalithea, Faliraki, Afandou, Archangelos and Lindos, in a sharp contrast with the desert banks of the south-east. It is divided into two sections: from the southern tip of Prassonissi, as far as Pefkos, and then from Lindos upwards as far as Rhodes town.

The landscape of Rhodes shows a variegated mosaic, from the green hills and mountains to rocky coasts and sandy beaches.In the south of the island we find Cape Prassonissi, which becomes the extreme southern end almost an independent island, according to the tide. Over the time Cape Prassonissi has gradually become the paradise of windsurfers, owing to the constantly strong winds, which are calm on the one side and wavy on the other.

The Archeological Museum

A vast collection of archaeological finds are exhibited in the Archaeological Museum of Rhodes, originally built to be used as Major Hospital of the town during the Knights of St. John’s domination (15th century). The second hospital used by the Knights is now the seat of the library of the Archaeological Institute. .
From the main entrance you can walk into the inner central yard, where you can see the statue of a lion holding with its pawn a bull’s head.
Inside the building, you can find a wide collection of statues and epitaphs dating back to the post-classic, Hellenist, Roman and the Knights of St John’s periods, as well as two reproductions of Aphrodite (the smallest of which is known as Aphrodite of Rodos) and a wide collection of urns and vases.

Folk dances

The traditional culture of the island of the island of Rhodes is celebrated at the Greek Theatre of Folk Dances in the Old Town of Rodos. The Greek tradition is kept alive every year at the Greek Theatre of Folk Dances of Nelly Dimoglou, in the old town of Rodos. The theatre organizes lessons of genuine Greek folk dances. The gardens are open all day round, with cocktail parties and, at 9.30 p.m.., a show of typical dances with live music and traditional costumes takes place every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, starting from about the middle of June until October 8th. The dancers who performs there have an experience of more than 12.000 performances all over Greece and abroad and they have a worldwide reputation.

Sound and Light

The show takes place at the Municipal Garden of Rhodes town. For tickets and information, apply to the box at the entrance of the Garden, near the main taxi station on the port of Mandraki.

It’s not just the long summer season and the sandy beaches that attract, but the remarkable medieval city of Rhodes.  The classical past is found at ancient sites like Kamiros, Ialyssos and Lindos while castles galore come courtesy of the Crusaders. Rhodes While the north has tourism of almost frenzied proportions the south quickly dissolves into dirt roads and unspoilt villages.
Rhodes For an all-inclusive hotel holiday of sun, sand and clubland night-life then the popular island hotspots are pretty hard to beat.

ENTERTAINMENT AND NIGHT LIFE 

Tourists of every nationality, age and character spend their time off tasting refreshing drinks in one of the so many coffee houses in Rhodes, Trianda and Faliraki. In these places, music of any kind is played,: from live music to rock and roll, from disco music to pop and Greek music. And don’t worry if you get there too late, because the real night life in Rhodes starts very late! For those who don’t love clubs and like to have fun by doing something in a more relaxing way with some friends, two cinemas can be found in Rhodes town, the Metropole and the Palace, which screen recent or from archive films. All their movies are in the original language, with captions in Greek language.

One of the best shows cheering up the nights on the island is Sound and Lights, which tells with music, dances and light effects the history of the island during the period of the Knights of St. John. For those who want to approach to Greek music, the Buzouki clubs in Rhodes offer live Greek music all evenings. In those places you will find all the Greeks you want: for women the evening dress is a must; for men, a full wallet! An evening in a Buzouki may actually turn to be rather expensive: between 100 and 300 euros for one or two bottles of wine, added to the cost of the flowers (to be thrown on the singers as a sign of approval). Unfortunately, for several reasons, breaking dishes is not allowed any more, but the buzouki is still an exciting place.

RHODES BEACHES

RHODES BEACHFrom the rocky beaches of the north-western coast to the sandy ones in the south of the island; from the wide and quiet inlets – the perfect place for families and children – to desert and pure beaches: a real paradise for the lovers of privacy.
There are perfect beaches to practise windsurf and others, perpetually animated by bikini parties.
On the sea shore, you can also taste fresh fish, suitably and simply cooked, or have evening walks in the moonlight, while enjoying the cool and steady sea breeze, which never leaves the island.
For the lovers of water sports it is possible hiring sailing or motor-boats, equipment for windsurf, pedalò, water bikes or scooters or practising snorkelling and diving.In a word, whether you like relaxing or amusement, privacy or animation, sand or rocks, Rhodes has got whatever you look for and within your reach.
You will find beaches at Ialyssos, Ixia, Trianda, Kremasti, Paradisi, Tholos, Teologhos, Soroni, Fanes, Kamiros, Monolithos, Apolakia.
Kalithea, Faliraki, Antony Quinn, Ladiko’, Traganou’, Afandou, Kolimbia, Tsambika, Stegna’, Aghati, Haraki, Malona, Kalathos, Vliha, Lindos, Pefkos, Lardos, Kiotari, Gennadi, Plimiri, Prasonissi.

The most famous beaches of Rhodes are located on the east coast. They are basically organized, with sunbeds and other facilities. Tsampika is large organized sandy beach, you can go up the hill of the church with the amazing view, Afandou with pebbles, deep water and family profile. Ladiko (small and pebbled), Anthony Quinn beach with natural stone sunbeds, the famous star adored when he was shooting here the film Guns of Navarone. Agathi a small sandy beach with canteens, Kallithea with small secluded beaches with canteens. To the north Ixia and Ialyssos are typical tourist beaches with large hotels. Be sure to go further south to Kiotari with wet sand and water sports, Glystra with pebbles and pines and Prasonisi, the southernmost tip of the island, named by the homonymous rocky islet and sandy beach that surfers love. In the area of ​​Agios Pavlos and Gennadi you will also find pristine sandy beaches with dunes and cedars (some accessible by dirt road).

GETTING TO RHODES

FLIGHTS FERRIESRhodes can be reached by plane or by sea. DIAGORAS international airport is open all the year round and ships and ferries get every day to its commercial port coming from the continent.
Two quays are already able to receive pleasure crafts; a third quay is being built. Furthermore, Rhodes is connected with all the islands of the Aegean Sea. The route to Salonika goes through the islands lying in the north of Rhodes, such as Kos, Patmos, Syros and Samos. The island of sun is also connected to Crete, via Paros and Santorini.In addition, there are also direct connections with Thessaloniki and the larger islands in the north-east of the Aegean Sea, such as Limnos, Mytilini (Lesbos), Chios and Ikaria.

Flights to Rhodes.

Rhodes international airport Diagoras, can always be reached by airlines, via Athens, Salonika, Crete, Mykonos and other local airports.
From Athens Eleftherios Venizelos airport (30 Kms. from the town), Olympic Airways and Aegean Airlines have connections with Rhodes throughout the year (about 1 hour’s flight) and the same is for Thessaloniki airport (about 1 h 40m’ flight). Read more…

Ferry boats to Rhodes.

The Island of Rhodes is connected to Athens (Piraeus port) all year long, ferry boats from several companies operate on this route. The distance from Piraeus to Rhodes is about 250 sea miles and the trip is about 8 to 12 hours long, depending from the type of boat and how many times it stops before reaching Rhodes. Connections to the other islands of the Dodecanese are more frequent in the summertime.

ACCOMMODATION

RHODES HOTELRhodes offers a wide range of accommodation, large hotels equipped with all comforts, all inclusive utilities (board and lodging included in the price), full board, half board or only breakfast; holiday villages with animation teams and shows.
Small pensions in the heart of the ancient town (more Spartan, but with a matchless charm), rooms to let and studios or villas and flats around the island.
You can choose whether to stay in the town centre or a few metres away from the sea, in hilly areas with amazing views on the sea, or plunged into the luxuriant nature inside the island.
For those who wish a holiday in close touch with the sea, it is possible to hire a boat of any dimension, with or without crew, and make it one’s own floating home.

LOCAL CUISINE

Few dishes of local cuisine are revived to this day. Pitaroudia (tomato meatballs with onion), suppio rice (risotto with cuttlefish ink), lakani (beef with tomato sauce) and talagoutes (pancakes with honey and sesame) are some of the things you can find in taverns. Widespread traditional desserts that you will find only in homes and celebrations, are melekounia (a type of pastel).

Wines

The local vineyard remains alive and the restaurants offer you the opportunity to try local wines. You will also find wineries to visit. Variety is dominated by white Athiri (the best of the mountain vineyards) and Mandilaria with the local name Amorgiano.