Rhodes Greece Vacation | Ancient History, Pristine Beaches & More
Where is Rhodes?
Discover Rhodes, an infinite Mediterranean island filled with pine and cypress forests, beautiful sandy beaches, pristine waters and backwoods with a wide array of wildlife, orchards,ancient homesteads and castles.
The opulent island is located in the eastern Aegean Sea and is the largest Dodecanese island of Greece. In Rhodes there is a landmass of around 1,400 square kilometres (541 sq. mi) where there are plenty of places to explore. In fact, just the coastline is approximately 220 km (137 mi) which offers infinite beaches to travel.
Great Historical Statues, Sunshine and Adventure
In Rhodes, it is overflowing with times gone by and oftentimes one can almost hear the primordial people whisper their legends in the four winds. There are countless medieval towns and ancient relics including the Colossus which was one of the Seven Wonders of the World and historic castles. This massive bronze statue was over 30 meters (107 ft.) high and grandly stood in the harbor. It was finished in 280 BC but unfortunately shattered by an earthquake in 224 BC.
If you are looking for sunshine then Rhodes is the place to travel. Amazingly, the average sunshine a year is a stunning 300 days. July and August are the hottest months and it is recommended to always carry water.
There is a wide range of hiking adventures in Rhodes. For an exciting journey you can tour historic ancient ruins, charming farms and greenhouses, natural baths constructed within relaxing coves, unspoiled beaches, lavish forested mountains and wide open valleys and yes even ancient castles.
Tsambika Beach is one of the most pristine beaches on Rhodes. It is a long beach is located on the eastern coast of the island about 16 miles south of Rhodes. The beach was named after the Monastery of the Virgin of Tsambika, a small monastery about ¼ mile up the hill.
The virgin of Tsambika is alleged to work miracles. Often a young woman that has difficulty conceiving will pray for her assistance. And if their prayers are answered, generally they name the child after the Virgin.
If you want to hike the monastery, it is 297 arduous steps to the top. However, the view at the top is well worth the effort.
Tsambika Beach is about ½ mile long and very wide. It has fine golden sand and minimal pebbles. So if you like to go barefoot, then this sandy beach is gentle on the feet. Moreover, the turquoise water is crystal clear and shallow. It is a great place for family swimming and water sports. There are many facilities at the beach such as umbrellas, sun beds, numerous restaurants, beach bars and a mini-market. Tourist will also find helpful colorful small flags marking out the beach sports centers and various eating establishments.
The beach has taken its name after the Monastery of the Virgin of Tsambika, a tiny monastery some 340 metres up the hill. From the car park there are 297 strenuous steps to the top, but the fantastic view over Tsambika Bay is definitely worth the effort
Vacationing in Greece
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For lodging there are over 40 various types of villages in Rhodes, from remote locations to cities of modern convenience. Close to some of the remote villages in the fertile Naithon valley there are amazing orchards that are plentiful in oranges, lemons and mandarins. Likewise, you can travel to local farmlands who have a wide array of produce such as karpoozi (watermelon), beans, tomatoes and several other fruits and vegetables. In the spring and winter one can often find locals on the side of the road picking wild vleeta (amaranth)and hortas (greens). As well, during harvest a wonderful way to travel Rhodes is to visit the local outdoor markets.
The Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights
Most tourist attractions usually involve history. One of Rhodes most famous relics is the Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights of Rhodes located in Rhodes City. T
The wonder was previously a citadel of the Knights Hospitaller that operated as a palace, fortress, command center and headquarters to numerous leaders and ministers.
The medieval castle was built in the early 14th century by the Knights of Rhodes who were among the most famous of the Western Christian military orders during the Middle Ages. The palace was built beneath the Acropolis of Ancient Rhodes where originally the Temple of the Sun God was erected. In the 7th century, it was the Byzantine Palace and acted as fortress until the 14th century. The castle was then rebuilt by the Knights of St John and served as administrative center. Unfortunately the castle was destroyed by a huge explosion of gunpowder that was hidden in the basement of the St John Church.
Around the middle of the 19th century, the first floor collapsed entirely. Not much of it survived until 1937. This was beginning of restoration. During the Italian rule, there were numerous additions like a chapel to the right of the immense marble staircase leading up to the first floor. The chapel contained a bronze statue of Saint Nicholas. Additionally, many rooms contained floor mosaics of late Hellenistic, Early Christian and Roman times.
The Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights was then rebuilt rendering the original drawings by the Italians in 1940. Today, it holds occasional major cultural events and remarkable exhibitions. This palace of Rhodes is filled with lavish rooms of variegated marble, statutes and sculptures, vintage furniture and exquisite rugs.
Known as the “Pearl of Rhodes,” Lindos is one of the best archaeological sites around. Atop the hill is the ancient Citadel (Acropolis). The Acropolis is both a citadel and state sanctuary of the ancient city of Athens. This natural fortress has been protected by the Greeks, Knights of St John, Romans, Byzantines and Ottomans. Through the centuries, there have been numerous additions like fortress walls, temples, statues. Some of the most famous buildings on the Acropolis are the Parthenon, the Erechtheion, the Propylaia and the temple of Athena Nike. Dating back to the 5th century B.C. you can still observe many of the archaeological remains.
Aside from the incredible archaeological sites at the Acropolis, there is an amazing view from atop the hill. You can see miles in all directions. The view alone is worth the trip. To get to the Acropolis you can hike or even rent a donkey.
Museum of Modern Greek Art of the Municipality of Rhodes
The city of Rhodes offers a wide variety of art and culture. If you love art and culture then the Museum of Modern Greek Art of the Municipality of Rhodes is a must visit. The museum was established to preserve and exhibit anything that relates to Greek culture. Most of the work displayed and preserved is from the 15th century and onward. Permanent collections include engravings of the 19th –20th centuries and 20th century Modern Greek Art. Moreover, there are temporary exhibitions European Engravings (Dodecanese) during the summer. The museum has a fine collection of painting, engraving, sculpture and more.
The Museum of Modern Greek Art also has educational programs with a wide variety of workshops and educational material for the children and adolescents of Rhodes, Dodecanese and the rest of Greece. As well, there are educational books, catalogues of Art, CD’s and gifts for children and adults.