Rhodes, the largest island of the Dodecanese archipelago, with its rich history and natural beauty, justifies the title of one of Europe’s Europe’s most visited resorts. We had an opportunity to visit this intersection of the great civilizations of Europe, the Middle East, and Africa a few years ago, so we hope that our experience will help future travelers, especially for first-time visitors. Having said all of the above, you’re probably aware of the fact that the car rental would be a must if you don’t have a car on your own.
Describing a place known as the island of the colossus, sun, knights, Greek gods, as well as hundreds of other nicknames in just a few words, is not easy. That’s why we are writing the following lines, as there is no other option.
The city of Rhodes is the capital of the island of the same name, inhabited by about 50,000 inhabitants, who make up half the population of the whole island. Rhodes is located on the very tip of the island. Its shores are flooded by the waves of the Mediterranean and Aegean sea. There are two vast beaches in the city, one on the west (Windy beach) and the other on the east side of the town (Elli beach). The opinions differ, but for us, the beach that overlooks the Aegean is more beautiful.
That is because it provides more peace because of less attendance, and because of the incredibly turquoise color of the sea, which, previously, we only saw in pictures of distant exotic islands. It also gives you a great view of the Turkish coast just 15 kilometers away. However, we only bathed on this beach several times, as the wind and big waves made it difficult to swim.
Only 10 minutes walk from this coast, you need to reach the main city beach, Elli beach. The calm Mediterranean sea that splashes this part of the island is also crystalline, and despite a large number of tourists, the place has plenty to offer for everyone. Along the whole beach, you have big hotels, numerous tavernas, and a charming casino building.
What particularly impressed us was the spike of the island where the two seas merge. Huge waves, strong winds, and dozens of shades of turquoise create an extraordinary natural beauty.
Rhodes is believed to be the island of Helios, the god of the sun, and, precisely, its spectacular sunsets give it even more atmosphere when staying at this place.
We have listened to a lot about the beauty of the sea in Greece, so the bigger surprise for me was the incredible history and cultural diversity of Rhodes. If we were to write about all the historical events that took place here, this travelogue could be the size of a smaller book. Therefore, we will refer you to some vital information about its rich history.
It is the picturesque port that takes your breath away. At its entrance once stood the Colossus of Rhodes, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. It was destroyed in an earthquake even before the new era, and today there are two pillars with bronze statues of deer and doe in the same place. We could not help but notice that more tourists were looking at luxury yachts with unusual and silly names than at this genuinely magnificent port. We suggest you to visit this place by car. Services such as www.carhire-rhodes.com could be very useful for these trips.
The Old Quarter
We continued our walk to the walls of the old town, which is one of the largest preserved cities in Europe. Walking inside the walls, you can experience the Byzantine, Latin, and Turkish influences through the maze of streets and squares. Exhausted from walking in Socrates Street, we came to Hippocrates Square, and, sitting by the fountain, watched a bunch of tourists head for souvenirs or one of the restaurants.
Each of the following days, we were continually discovering the sights and new mazes of the streets of the old city. Some of the more famous are the following: the Clock Tower, the Suleiman Magnificent Mosque, the Temple of Venus, and the Archaeological Museum.
At the entrance of the old city, we felt like we were entering another world. Also, there was a little English boy, who enthusiastically pulled his mom up his sleeve, shouting, “Mom, Mom, we’re at Harry Potter’s School.” The boy thought of the imposing Grand Master palace, which led me to believe that only knights were missing here. Indeed, the old core of the city was built by the Knights of John’ Order, whose walls had previously protected the town from the Turks’ attack.
The Modern Part
In addition to the old town, Rhodes also has a new part which is full of shops and restaurants. Walking through this part, you will see many parked Vespas, which gives it the charm of Italian resorts. If you thought Rhodes was not a city for a crazy night out, you were wrong. Bars and clubs are at every corner of the newer part of town, and the busiest one is the lively Bar street from which the famous hits of electronic music can be heard.
Prices and accommodation
In addition to the beauty and sights of the island, we should also mention the prices. That is an essential part of every journey. As in most tourist destinations, the preseason is more favorable in terms of both accommodation and expenses. In Rhodes, you can find a very diverse range of accommodations, from cheaper rooms and hotels at reasonable prices, to extremely luxurious hotels. When visiting the old town, you should be careful because you could comfortably sit in a restaurant or tavern, without knowing how expensive it is.
Lindos and nightlife
On the fifth day of our stay in the city of Rhodes, we rented a car and headed for the 50 km distance to Lindos. Driving through the island, we passed through the town of Farilaki, which gives you the “Ibiza feel,” a paradise for nightlife lovers, and luxury resorts on all sides. On the way to Lindos, we bathed at the beautiful stone beach of Anthony Quinn. The beach is named after the famous actor, who shot scenes of the movie Cannons from Navarone.
Upon arrival at Lindos, we realized that this place justifiably bears the epitome of one of the most beautiful villages in the world. The typical Greek white houses, the Acropolis above them, and the beautiful bay create an unforgettable sight. Upon entering Lindos, you will first notice the bay of St. Paul, who is believed to have brought Christianity to Rhodes. If you continue walking towards the next bay, you will pass through beautiful winding streets that are scented with flowers and Greek specialties.
There’s so much to tell about this beautiful town, but it would be best if you discovered it yourself. We highly recommend it!