travel zone


OK, so. My mother has a brother, my uncle Alexander. Uncle Alexander is kind of like my parents, he travels a lot. You could say it runs not only in the family, but the whole sib. Anyway, uncle Alexander first visited Rhodes when he was around 20 years old. That's when he decided he would live there when he got a little older.

Of course, my grandmother and his siblings thought he was crazy or just. daydreaming. But a few years later, he really did it. He rented a house there, he got a job and set his life up there. A few years later, he even bought his own house.

What's the point of my telling you this? Well, first of all, narrating my trip to Rhodes, because I stayed in that very house with my friends, Georgia, Isidora and Chris. But also, it's a subtle sign of how magnificent Rhodes is, isn't it?

I visited Rhodes seventeen years ago and spent about two weeks there. My friends and I were the only ones in the house (my uncle was in Athens those days; it wasn't a lucky strike, we'd planned it with him this way) and we had the whole place to ourselves, but the island was begging for me to explore it so, let's just say, we didn't get much sleep. Each morning we would be out exploring archaeological sites or taking a swim and at night we'd go clubbing and then come home to sleep, only to find ourselves staying awake, lying together on that big bed, talking, watching movies or just. lying there.

Anyway. facts.

Rhodes was "more beautiful than the sun", according to the ancient Greeks. Well, I haven't traveled to the sun, but I'm pretty sure they were right. Rhodes is the largest and most fertile island of the Dodecanese, as well as the fourth largest Greek island. It has 300 sunny days per year and it's the queen of tourism in Greece. Just imagine that it's been described as "Europe's answer to Florida". It's also home of the Colossus, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, which was sadly destroyed.

rhodes greece - rhodes island map

Rhodes Hotels

If you search for accommodation in Rhodes I recommend you to visit Rhodes Hotel Online Bookings. There, you can make your reservations directly to the hotels and find rooms in low prices and useful guest reviews.

Istambul potos tursticos

So, what does Rhodes look like?

Rhodes is essentially as city within a city: the medieval is nearly encircled by the modern New Town. Their contrast is more than obvious: fast food restaurants, shops with expensive designer clothes and techno-beat versus a maze of paved alleyways and narrow passageways that take you back to the middle ages. Rhodes is full of handsome villages where lots of monuments are scattered. It has numerous torrents and lush vegetation.

rhodes greece - rhodes old town rhodes greece - rhodes old town

Are there any places I should visit in Rhodes?

rhodes - archaeological museum

First of all, Rhodes has two museums you should not miss. But since the Archaeological Museum is housed in the Knights' Hospital (that I'm going to refer to in the next section), I'm going to start with the Decorative Arts Museum that displays all kinds of items representing the various activities of the island during the Turkish period: ceramics from Nicaea, plates from Lindos, furniture and traditional costumes, among others. Nearby you can visit the Gallery of Modern Art and the Armeria Palace, which was the first hospital in Rhodes.

rhodes - rhodes town

The place you should definitely explore is the Old City. Only cars with special permit are allowed in, but it's a quite pleasant place to walk around: cobbled streets, a magnificent village feel, quarters like the Turkish. The Old Town has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO to prevent plans like the one the Italians had, to widen all the streets for cars and build a ring road.

While you're there, make sure you visit the Clock tower and climb up the second floor; the panoramic view of the town is amazing. The tower was built in 1851 on the foundations of the Collachium's former watchtower.

Did I mention quarters above? Wait. yes, I did. Well, the Turkish quarter is at the western part of the Old Town. Every square of it has a fountain and it has a quite interesting old bazaar. As for the Jewish Quarter, it's got Byzantine churches hidden among the alleyways, with the exceptional example of the Church of the Holy Trinity (Agia Triada) that has beautiful frescoes and unusual architecture. The square of the Jewish martyrs is quite beautiful itself. Close to the synagogue, it was named in memory of the 2000 Jews deported from Rhodes.

rhodes greece - butterfly valley

The Butterfly Valley (Petaloudes) on the Northwest Coast is a famous natural curiosity. Every year red and brown butterflies arrive in this humid gorge from June to September, attracted by the sweet scent of the liquidambar trees. The scene is quite unique and beautiful.

Finally, there's the French Inn. After the damage that was caused to it by the siege in 1480 and by an earthquake, it was largely modified in 1492. Today it houses a branch of the French Consulate, but you can visit during office hours and have a look at its truly magnificent garden.

What about the archaeological and historical sites of Rhodes?

the colossus of rhodes - helios statue

As I mentioned earlier, the Knights' Hospital houses the archaeological museum, so I'm going to start with it. The Hospital is a magnificent building that is entered through a wide central courtyard. Shops once stood on the ground floor while the first floor housed the hospital services. The Ward of the Sick is a large hall that once contained about a hundred beds. Out of a total of 15 rooms, rooms 2 and 6 contain the finest pieces of the museum, pieces like steles and statues from the Hellenistic Period of the Rhodian School. Two of the best statues you will find are the Statue of Aphrodite of Rhodes and the Statue of Helios, the Sun God.

The Palace of the Grand Masters is yet another must-see in Rhodes. The Grand Masters of the Order of Saint John built themselves a real military fortress. The fort was seriously damaged by an earthquake, soon followed by an explosion of the power keg in 1856, but it was rebuilt by the Italians. Make sure you don't miss the Underground Rooms (sounds interesting, eh?) which house two interesting exhibitions: Antique Rhodes with various pieces of pot-tery, pearls and statues and Medieval Rhodes with beautiful 14th C icons to illustrate it.

If you really want to see traces of Ancient Rhodes though, you will have to go to the slopes of Monte Smith, on which the acropolis of the island was once perched. What you will find there are the remaining four Doric columns of the Temple of Apollo, the stadium and the ruins of the gymnasium. The theatre nearby that was entirely rebuilt by the Italians and performances are given there every summer.

Does Rhodes have any beaches worth visiting?

rhodes - rhodes beach

You're kidding, right? Well, your bathing suit should be on the top of your suitcase, I'm only going to tell you that. OK, if you're not a dedicated wind-surfer, the western beaches are to be avoided due to the north wind, but the eastern beaches are quite good.

Tsambika: the most popular beach in Rhodes. Organized, with excellent golden sand. Need I say more?

Ladiko: organized, with very green surroundings and beautiful water.

Lindos Beach: a bit crowded, but quite good. There are also facilities for water sports.

Glystra: a lovely little bay with lots of trees and greenery.

Prassonissi: a sandy peninsula at the southernmost point of Rhodes. Attracts windsurfers mostly.

Faliraki: a long, sandy, crowded beach that is popular with the young crowd. It has facilities for water sports.

Kalathos: 3 km long, shingle, with clear waters, untouched by tourism.

OK, I think I just gave you a pretty good idea of where you should go, right?

What about food?

rhodes - greek food

OK, let's start with Two Sisters, mostly because I really loved its name. Two Sisters? Catchy. Anyway, you will find it on Platanos Street. It's a lovely little restaurant that is run by a Turkish family and has a peaceful terrace and good food. Despoina's on Agiou Fanouriou Street is a tiny unpretentious taverna with surprisingly quick service. The food is tasty and it's not even a tiny bit expensive.

Araliki on Aristofanous Street is a stylish restaurant that is run by two Italian sisters. Araliki is a slang term for relaxing in Greek and this place is what we Greeks like to call "onoma kai pragma" (=term and thing, meaning that the term describes what it is quite accurately). It's creative, the Greek-Italian dishes are tasty and the atmosphere is lovely and welcoming.

All these are in the Old City. Now let's move on to the New Town. La Casa Nostrana on Mandilara Street is only open in the evening, but it's worth it: the Italian dishes it serves are delicious. Apostolis near Mitropoleos Street is an unpretentious little restaurant serving excellent Greek food. Finally, Old Story Story on the same street is frequented mainly by locals, but its setting is pleasant, the service is quick and the Greek dishes are not only delicious, but also carefully prepared. Booking is essential, though.

And finally, I saved the Traditional Greek Taverna "O Ilias" for the end since this is a very special restaurant in Embonas village on the main square, where you will have the opportunity to taste the most delicious fresh, local meat grilled on the spot after you have selected on your own the piece of your preference. Bon appetit!

Does Rhodes have nightlife?

rhodes island - faliraki-highstreet

Rhodes is quite famous for its nightlife. The modern town is actually bursting with bars and nightclubs. Most of these are concentrated in the northern part of the town.

Resalto Club in Plateia Damagitou in the Old City is a Greek music centre that features live music on weekends. Down Under Bar on Orfanidou Street is ideal for a wild night of dancing. Red Lion on the same street has a more relaxed atmosphere, kind of like a British pub. Ron and Vasilis will answer all your questions about Rhodes for the price of a drink!

Let me fast-forward now: Mango Bar on Plateia Dorieos is a beautiful music bar with an internet service. Mandala on Sofokleous Street is perfect for a cocktail and something to eat. Marko-Polo Caf is a caf-bar that adjoins the hotel of the same name. As for Caf Hamam on Eshilou Street, it has good cocktails as well and you can dance in vaulted cellars.

How do I get to Rhodes?

In the summer, there are plenty of scheduled and charter flights from Northern Europe. Rhodes is connected to Athens, Kassos, Heraklio, Thessaloniki, Kos, Karpathos and Kastellorizo, as well as to several island of the Cyclades. The international airport of Rhodes is 16 km from Rhodes Town, but there are regular buses to and from Rhodes Town.

If you want to come by sea, there are 4 ferry lines that connect Rhodes with Piraeus and several Greek islands.

Book online your ferry tickets to the greek islands and have them delivered at home easily.

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