One of the largest of the Greek islands, Rhodes is a network of charming traditional villages filled with whitewashed houses, terracotta rooftops and historic churches. In the south, the village of Apolakkia sits between two hills, surrounded by lush olive groves, rolling hills and turquoise waters. Whether you’re on a romantic break for two, or a family holiday, villages like this are perfect for an afternoon of exploring.
From the Knight’s Quarter in Rhodes Town, and the Acropolis of Lindos, to the Palace of the Grand Master, Rhodes is bursting fascinating archaeological sites. Hora, the island’s commercial and residential district (sometimes known as the Turkish Quarter), is a patchwork of colourful, dome-topped churches and mosques, and is also home to the Muslim Library, where you’ll find centuries old Persian and Arabic manuscripts.
Rhodes boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in the Mediterranean, if not the world, so if sunbathing is on your holiday agenda, you’ve come to the right place. At Pefkos, you’ll find a surprisingly quiet Blue Flag beach with stunning golden sand and clam aquamarine waters, while the more popular resorts of Lindos and Faliraki are renowned for their party atmosphere and buzzing nightlife. If you really want to get away from it all, Kalithea has an array of secluded coves and inlets – ideal for settling down with a sun hat and a good book.
When you wander the streets of Rhodes Old Town, you can’t help but feel as though you’ve travelled back in time. An idyllic patchwork of cobbled streets and medieval and Byzantine architecture, the area features everything traditional fountains, ornate churches, ancient mosques and bustling markets. With over 200 tiny alleys and back streets, you’ll be hard pressed not to get lost at least once during your trip, but this is one of the best ways to get a real feel for the island’s historic roots.
One of the island’s most popular tourist resorts, Lindos is packed with beautiful beaches and fascinating ancient sites. Dating back to the 6th century BC, the carefully preserved Acropolis of Lindos is one such site - an absolute must for any visit to Rhodes. Situated above the village, on a piece of headland that stretches 116 metres high, this ancient complex includes the magnificent Temple of Athena Lindia, a sanctuary devoted to Athena, the Greek goddess of wisdom and war.
For any history buffs out there, the Archaeological Museum of Rhodes is a definite highlight. Housed within a 15th century hospital, the museum boasts some truly fascinating exhibits including intricate mosaics, a reconstructed burial site, and a marble statue of the goddess Aphrodite which dates back to the 1st century BC.
Rhodes is renowned for its spectacular beaches, so when you visit, the only trouble you’ll have is finding the time to see them all. By far one of the most picturesque is Ladiko Beach, situated in the north east of the island, south of Faliraki, and 16 kilometres from Rhodes Town. Because it’s so stunning, it’s not surprising that this stretch of sand can get pretty busy especially at peak times, but luckily it’s large enough to seek out a secluded spot.
Nothing short of a staple found on every Greek table, the traditional Greek salad is the perfect refreshing starter or accompaniment to any meal on your holiday to Rhodes. The salad is best shared between two to four people and usually comes served in a large, deep dish to showcase the ingredients of olive oil, tomatoes, cucumber, olives, feta cheese, onions and vinegar. It is usually finished off with plenty of salt, pepper and lemon juice for added flavour and served with extra bread to mop up the remaining juices at the bottom of the dish.
In Rhodes, summertime temperatures are usually in the mid-high 30s, with around 12 hours of sunshine per day and hardy any rainfall. During the spring and autumn, the weather will be cooler, with temperatures ranging from the late teens to mid-20s and the odd spot of rain.
If you are a British citizen, you don’t need a visa to enter Greece but you must have a valid passport. For the latest information on European travel regulations, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece/entry-requirements.
The currency in Rhodes is the Euro (EUR).
The main language spoken is Greek.