The Greek Island of Rhodes may have gained a reputation as a party island but it is also a cosmopolitan pearl in the heart of the Mediterranean. This little haven is a delightful mixture of medieval town, luxury holiday resort, wild rugged landscapes, golden beaches and unforgettable nightlife.
In the medieval Old Town, the warren of narrow streets create a romantic faraway feel and hide a multitude of delights including the Palace of the Grand Master, with its ancient mosaics, the Street of Knights and the city’s ancient fortifications. Those who love shopping will find plenty of retail therapy in the Old Town with late night opening on Aristotelous and Sokratous streets and lively Ippokratous Square. For an authentic Greek experience, the lively Folklore and New Market open-air markets are wonderful for haggling for a bargain.
Exploring Rhodes further reveals gems such as the small whitewashed town of Lindos, filled with Gothic, Byzantine Greek and Middle Eastern influences where no vehicles are allowed, only donkeys and carts. It is also the home of some of the island’s most important archaeological sites like the stunning Acropolis Tower. St Paul’s Bay, just south of Lindos, is where avid scuba divers can explore the beautiful colourful marine life or simply relax on the soft sandy beach.
Beyond the towns and villages lies the Valley of the Butterflies, an extraordinary natural phenomenon where every July to September, over 600,000 butterflies flock there for the cool mountain air. Nearby Mandraki Harbour with its 34 meter high bronze giant is one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
Those harbouring the desire to party until dawn need go no further than Faliraki. Filled with clubs, beach bars, water parks perfect for the whole family, bungee jumping and water sports, this party town is the place for those who don’t need sleep.
Ways to recover from a night on the tiles are plentiful from a game of golf on the Afadou Golf Course overlooking the sea, an amble through the Modern Greek Art Museum, exploring the tranquillity of the 13th century Church of Panagia or simply laying low on one of the islands many beaches. Agathi beach is sheltered and peaceful with local caves and tavernas; Ixia is idea for surfers, Kallithea Bay is another scuba divers paradise while Plakia beach boasts cotton white sands and a quiet cafe.
So while Rhodes may be a clubbers cloud nine, it is also a place of beauty, history and somewhere to get away from it all.
The following information is correct as of January 2015 and is subject to change. Please check with the airline directly for complete accuracy.
Rhodes Diagoras International Airport is located just 7.5 miles from the centre of Rhodes. It can be reached easily by car in approximately 25 minutes. A local bus service operates from outside the airport terminal to the city centre taking just 30 minutes. Alternatively there are taxis for hire outside the arrivals area of the airport.
What you need to know
Currency: The Euro (€)
Visas: UK and EU nationals do not require a visa to enter Greece. A passport valid for three months beyond date of departure is required. Nationals of other countries may need an entry visa. More information can be obtained from a local embassy or from the Foreign Office website.
Laws: The legal age for purchasing and consuming alcohol in Greece is16. A smoking ban is in force in all public indoor areas throughout Greece, however, it is often ignored in many places.
Best Time to Visit
With a warm Mediterranean climate, Rhodes is a great all year round destination. Summers are hot and busy but have a cooling sea breeze to ease the heat. Winters are mild although temperatures are much colder in the mountain regions. A beach holiday is possible from June to September while November through to March is the rainy season, particularly on the islands. April, May and October are quieter months with temperatures warm enough to enjoy the water sports on offer.
The highlight of the Rhodes calendar is the Hellenic Festival of Sound and Light in the summer with stalls and cultural events, open-air concerts and exhibitions. June and July bring the Visual Arts Festival with films, theatre and much more.
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