rhodes

Discover the island of Rhodes Greece

Rhodes continues to attract and enchant thousands of people. It was one of the first Greek islands to acquire tourism. It is the largest island of the Dodecanese with thousands of years of history, able to offer to the international travelers a wide variety of attractions.

From the time of the Italian occupation in the beginning of the 20th century until the begining of World War II, Rhodes was the ideal holiday island for wealthy Italians and other Europeans, even the famous writer Agatha Cristi dedicated a novel with her hero Hercule Poirot set on Rhodes with the title “Triangle at Rhodes”.

Rhodes is one of the most popular Greek islands, a few years ago it was the 5th most popular island in the world. It is located in the southern Aegean, with a crystal clear blue sea that has made the seaside resorts of Greece so popular.

It is true that the majority of tourists come here for the beaches, but here, sunbathing and swimming can be combined with interesting cultural visits, like the historic districts of the city of Rhodes or the archeological site of Kamiros and Lindos.

Entertainment in the nightclubs of Faliraki, exciting boat trips to the nearby island of Symi or refreshing walks in the inland forests and parks. Do not miss the charm of Lindos, the romantic city that of all the cities of Rhodes best embodies the image of a Greek postcard with the white houses that descend to the blue sea and the wonderful archeological sites.

In short, Rhodes is an all-inclusive island, ideal for holidays, relaxation, fun, romance, culture, nature and gastronomic delicacies combined with the friendliness and joy of life that distinguish the Greek people. Ideal destination for everyone: young people, families, couples, lonely travelers, groups of friends.

Rhodes town

rhodes

Rhodes town the capital of the island, is one of the most well-preserved medieval cities, dozens of impressive beaches, important archaeological sites, interesting inland and, of course, highly developed hotel infrastructure and vibrant life make Rhodes an ideal island for getaways of different styles. It is equally enjoyed by lovers of luxury resorts and family vacations, as well as those who want to combine relaxation on the beaches either with monuments of different historical periods (from antiquity to the Italian occupation) or with intense nightlife and secularism.

Where does Rhodes located?

Rhodes is a 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 island, 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

The medieval city of Rhodes

medieval city of rhodesThe medieval city will monopolize your walks with both the attractions and the atmospheric restaurants and bars, while the most beautiful part of the new city is the seafront with the casino in the historic “Hotel of the Roses” and the rest of the Italian buildings (National Theater, Command Office, Post Office, etc.) but also the much photographed beach.

It is worth spending at least one day in the second class city of the island, Lindos, with the citadel and the unique captain’s houses. The most popular accommodation bases are the seaside resorts near the city (Ixia, Ialyssos, Kallithea, Faliraki), while in the south there are even less busy sandy beaches and “hidden” villages.

It is an ideal island for those who love car trips and sightseeing: from the Valley with the Butterflies and the Baths of Kallithea to the hill of Filerimos and Ancient Kamiro, the reasons for walking are many and different.

Of course, the most inland unknown to many with its many natural beauties and the monuments of the Italian occupation deserves your attention. Also of interest are the villages of Kolimbia (25 km from the city) and Archangelos (28 km from the city): the first for its green and pebble beach and the second for the belief of the inhabitants in their traditions and language idiom that strongly reminiscent of Cyprus.

Rhodes can be combined, finally, with one-day excursions to the surrounding islands-satellites, such as Halki and Symi.

What to see

Rodini Park

Rodini park  Rhodes This cool and shady spot offers some escape from the summer heat. Rodini Park is on the edge of Rhodes City, about 3km from the centre and is considered one of the oldest landscaped parks in the world and popular with the Roman.

It lies in a green river valley and has a number of small lakes with bridges over them.

There is a perfumed rose garden and a small zoo, although wild peacocks and deer run freely in the park. Woodland trails and rowing boat rides add to the attractions. The park is easily reached by car or bus or you can walk there. It can get quite busy in summer months.

Monolithos Castle

rhodes-monolithos-castleThe impregnable fortress at Monolithos is found on the rocky south-west coast near Apolakkia Bay perched on a 300ft rock.

Built in 1480 by the Knights of St John it’s a steep hike up a narrow path. Within the walls is the church of Agios Panteleimon.

The village of Monolithos below is worth a visit in itself, a peaceful village with a few tavernas. The road leads to the Monolithos pebble and sand beach of Fourni which has some dramatic rock formations. Nearby are some 17th century caves carved into the rock by early Christians.

Embonas Winery

Embonas is the centre of the Rhodes wine growing region and a favourite target of coach parties. Tavernas and tourist shops have grown to meet the demand of an almost endless stream of summer visitors here to see the attractive vineyards by day and to enjoy Greek Nights as well. The Emery grape produces Rhodes’ best wine and there are complimentary tastings for visitors. The red is thought better than the white.

Butterfly Valley

buterf;y-valley-rhodesButterfly Valley is near Petaloudes and about 5km inland from Tholos.

The butterflies here are actually Jersey tiger moths, Euplagia quadripunctaria, but the bright red wings make them look like butterflies.

They come here by their thousands to rest before mating and are a well camouflaged except in flight when they display deep red overwings.

Visitors are asked not to disturb them as they follow a waymarked trail through the woods and wooden bridges that cross the River Pelekanas.

Afandou Golf Course

afandou-golf-rhodesYou can enjoy a round of golf at this 18-hole, par-73, golf course links that follows the coast at Afandou. This championship-level course opened in 1973 and admission fees are nominal.

It has the usual facilities including pro shop, changing rooms, showers and a small snack bar.

Specially selected grasses keep fairways and greens in condition throughout the year. Afandou Golf Club is located at Afandou Bay, about 20km from Rhodes Town and is well signposted off the main highway.

Rhodes beaches overview

rhodes beachThe most popular, but not necessarily the best, of Rhodes’ beaches are on the north and east coasts. The north coast resorts are strung between Rhodes Town and the airport; mostly narrow strips of sandy shingle backed by enormous hotel complexes. This is the main tourist holiday and conference hotel strip of Rhodes island.

On the east coast expect busy beaches backed by resort hotels. Every bay off the main highway has a busy holiday resort and they can vary from the notorious beach party playpen of vast Faliraki, to the upmarket kitsch hideaway of Therma Kalithea and to the bare beauty of Afandou.

Beaches tend to get quieter as you head south with the hugely popular Lindos and neighbouring Pefkos the exceptions. Beautiful sand beaches are tucked away in glorious bays at Kolymbia, Tsambika, Stegna and Agathi.

The south of the island is comparatively quiet as poorer roads, fewer facilities and the distance from the airport tends to keep numbers down. Plenty of hotels have sprung up in recent years to meet demand but empty, dune backed sands can still be found. Beaches may be rarer but Rhodes feels more authentically Greek here than in the package holiday north.

When to go to Rhodes

rhodes-in-summerRhodes is located close to the Turkish coast and enjoys a typically Mediterranean climate, with long hot summers and mild, temperate winters. Rhodes has the longest holiday season of all the Greek Islands, running from early April to mid-November, and gets well over 300 days of sunshine a year.

Spring on Rhodes sees warm days with up to nine hours of sunshine and temperatures rising to 21°C in May. In June temperatures climb to 25°C, reaching 28°C in August with at least 12 hours of daily holiday sun. High temperatures are tempered by the cooling sea breezes.

Warm holiday weather continues in early Autumn with temperatures of 20°C to 24°C. Late autumn storms can usher in the winters which stay mild at an average 11°C in January, which is the wettest month on Rhodes.

How to get to Rhodes

 

By Air

diagoras-airport-rhodesThe Diagoras International Airport is near north coast Kremasti, about 16km from Rhodes Town. International charters and regular domestic flights bring in more than 3 million visitors annually. Rhodes Airport has one terminal with 13 check-in desks and opens round the clock.

Rhodes airport is still notoriously chaotic so expect long queues and organized chaos. There is short term and long term parking opposite the terminal. There are 30 daily buses to Rhodes and the journey takes about 40 minutes.

There are plenty of taxis and car hire companies have offices here. The airport is on a dual carriageway along the coast and clearly signposted.

By ferry

getting to rhodes by ferryRhodes Ferry Port is at the north-eastern end of the old town. Regular ferries run to Piraeus (Athens) but it takes about 16 hours as it calls in at Astypalea, Kalymnos, Kos, Nisyros and Tilos.
Blue Star operates ferries to Syros, Patmos, Leros and Kos. Hellenic Seaways has routes to Paros and Kos both ways while ANEK Lines head for Milos, Santorini, Crete and Karpathos.

The Dodecanese island are linked by a fast catamaran service to Kos, Kalymnos, Leros and Patmos. There are regular trips to Mamaris, Turkey and many daily boat trips around the island but mainly to Lindos. There are daily excursions to Symi, calling in at Panormitis Monastery.

Where to stay on Rhodes

rhodes-accommodationAs you might expect on such a popular holiday destination Rhodes offers visitors a vast choice of accommodation. Rhodes Town itself, both the island capital and the main port has some of the best and most luxurious hotels.

Those located in the medieval centre are full of character but very expensive while outside the outskirts, particularly heading inland has a good supply of cheap rooms and apartments.

If you want luxury and have deep pockets then the restored Turkish and medieval buildings in the old town’s 14th century citadel should be just the ticket. If you are on a budget then aim for the area between Sokratous and Omirou for small hotels and a cheap youth hostel.

Rodi