Rhodes is the largest island of the Dodecanese group and one of the most famous islands of Greece, known for its numerous historical sites, magnificent castles and superb beaches. The Medieval Town of Rhodes, the island capital, is in the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites. It is the oldest inhabited Medieval town in Europe built by the Order of the Knights Hospitaller.
In the past Rhodes was home to one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient world - the Colossus of Rhodes which stood at the port entrance, rising to a height of 30 meters. Today there are no signs of the the colossus presence but the rest sights on Rhodes fully compensate for this. You will need more than one week to see all the interesting places this island can offer.
Where to stay in Rhodes?
The largest settlement is Rhodes Тown and it includes the old fortified town and the new part which has spread out of the castle walls and around the Acropolis of Rhodes. It is lively all year round and it is the best place for accommodation if you visit the island out of the summer season.
Most resorts are concentrated in the north and east coast of Rhodes where some of the best beaches of the island are located. The largest and most popular of them are Faliraki, Kallithea, Lindos, Stegna and Archangelos. Lindos is a picturesque old village with a labyrinth of alleys and ruins of a citadel on a hill above the sea.
The south and west parts of Rhodes are less populated, with long and predominantly pebbled beaches away from the crowds. The beach of Prassonissi, a favorite spot of surfers, is the southernmost point of the island.
Which are the best beaches of Rhodes?
Rhodes has more than 40 beaches, varying from sandy to pebbled and rocky. Many of them lie on the east coast between Rhodes Town and Lindos, and almost all of them have facilities. The most popular sandy beaches are Faliraki, Tsambika, Agathi and Pefki, while the beaches of Lindos, St. Paul`s bay and Anthony Quinn Bay are visited because of their exotic landscape. Less visited and calm beaches can be found to the south, like Plimmiri and Agios Georgios, as well as those on the wild southwest coast.
Due to its location, Rhodes town also has a couple of beaches - Elli (quite long and wide beach), Akti Miaouli, Akti Kanari and Ixia. Ixia is a very long beach 4 km from Rhodes port and it has developed as a separate resort.
What to visit in Rhodes?
The Medieval town of Rhodes is very well preserved. It starts from the port and includes the Palace of the Grand Master, the unique Street of the Knights, the Archaeological museum, numerous gates, bastions, churches and small no-name streets full of souvenir shops, cafes and restaurants. The Acropolis is 3 km west of Rhodes Town center and it hosts a small theater and ruins of ancient temples. Apart from these, other interesting places to visit while in Rhodes are:
- The picturesque village of Lindos with its impressive Acropolis and the bay of St. Paul (Agios Pavlos)
- The castles of Monolithos, Kritinia and Archangelos
- The ruins of the ancient towns of Kameiros and Ialissos
- The Filerimos monastery above Ialissos
- The valley of the butterflies, natural park
- The park of seven springs, a cool valley with pine trees and a lake
- The islands of Symi, Chalki or Tilos (via ferry or organized boat trip)
How to get to Rhodes?
Rhodes has a large airport, called Diagoras International Airport. It is located close to Rhodes Town airport and around it you can find plenty of car rental options.
The island is much closer to Turkey than to Greece but it is well connected to the port of Pirause and the other islands of the Dodecanese group sea via regular ferries. There are also ferries from/to Marmaris and Bodrum in Turkey which allow tourists to visit Rhodes for a day trip.