The largest and most important of the Dodecanese Islands offers several of Greece’s best beaches, a fascinating medieval town, the most sunshine among all of the islands and the most picturesque rural tourist centre, Lindos. Whether you love ancient history or prefer to lie on a sunny beach, find a quiet bay or party all night long, there’s something for everyone here.
dariusz linkiewicz
5 REASONS TO VISIT…2. LINDOS A wonderful place for all who seek a bit of ancient history is the Acropolis of Rhodes, situated at the top of a 180-metre-tall precipice overlooking the sea. We can admire the gothic gate, the ruins of the Church of St. John and the “Warship of Lindos,” which is a bas-relief dating from the 2nd century B.C. But the Acropolis is only the literal peak of a picturesque mountain, below which is situated the town of Lindos, which is full of the traditional white cottages that are so often associated with Greece. Additional flavour is provided by the over 100 donkeys standing close to the main square of the town, waiting for tourists, whom they very willingly transport to the peak. Thanks to numerous restaurants, taverns and discos, in the evening the town transforms into a huge party that often lasts all night long
5 REASONS TO VISIT…3. GREEK SALAD, SEAFOOD AND FISH Greek cuisine is the quintessence of simplicity, amazing flavour and freshness. Because of the temperature, which reaches 40˚ Celsius in summer, the food on Rhodes, like throughout Greece, is light and tasty. The dishes most people are familiar with are present here, such as Greek salad. But this is not all. Each island offers its own local specialties, and on Rhodes these are certainly marides (fried anchovies served with lemon), briam (baked aubergine with feta cheese and a wonderful aftertaste of oregano, and dolmades (rice and lamb meat rolled up in grape leaves). Of course, this is only a small glimpse of the culinary adventure which one can experience by going to one of the many taverns, such as “Dinoris,” run by the Dinoris family for over 45 years, situated in an old residential building at Museum Square 14.
5 REASONS TO VISIT… 4. A VALLEY OF BUTTERFLIES Near the village of Theologos, there is the Valley of Butterflies. This is one of the most important attractions on Rhodes and undoubtedly a good reason to visit the island. This place is a habitat of Panaxia Quadripunctaria, an extremely rare species of butterfly that appears here from the middle of June to the end of September. The entire terrain is surrounded by a pine forest which is cut across by the Pelecanos River and many ponds and waterfalls. There is also a restaurant here with a view of the waterfall. The butterflies usually sleep on the shady sides of trees, creating a magical view which is intensified when the insects fly together, forming orange-hued clouds. It’s definitely worth resting here from the sun and pleasing your eyes with the incredible view.
When going to Rhodes, we can’t forget about the Southern nature of all of the inhabitants of Greece. One of their favourite sayings is “Siga Siga,” (“slowly, slowly”), which completely expresses the atmosphere of Rhodes – time flows more slowly here. It’s important to remember the siesta, which lasts from 1:00 to 3:00 pm on Rhodes, and during which everything is closed except restaurants and taverns. That’s precisely when, if you wish to become acquainted with the true nature of Greeks and learn about the life of the island’s residents, it’s worth going to a tavern on the water, sitting under a large umbrella, enjoying a cold drink, and talking with local residents or the tavern’s owners. The residents of Rhodes are very open and sincere, and show no reluctance to having contact with their guests. But it’s worth remembering that they consider their island to be the most wonderful place in the whole world. And they’re right!