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Rhodes - The Pearl of the Dodecanese

From the Valley of the Butterflies and the Acropolis of Lindos to the exciting nightlife on Hippocrates Square - Rhodes caters for the tastes of all travellers and conjures a smile on everyone's face.

Beach and castle Lindos on Rhodes

Geography - The main island of the Dodecanese

Rhodes is the main island of the island group of the Dodecanese ("twelve islands"). It lies in the South-East Aegean and belongs to Greece. Rhodes has an area of 1,407 km² and about 115,000 inhabitants, half of which live in the capital of Rhodes city. Other significant towns and villages are Faliraki, Lindos and Kalithea. Rhodes' landscape is very mountainous in the heartland. Attavyros is the highest mountain with a height of 1,215 metres. Rhodes is dominated by Mediterranean climate. Due to the Meltemi wind, the summers are warm and dry, while the winters are very mild and rich in rain. Nevertheless, there are far more than 300 sunny days per year.

Attavyros on Rhodes

Nature - Watching rare butterflies

The main island of the Dodecanese has a rich flora and fauna. You see donkeys, mules, goats and sheep, the typical working animals of the Mediterranean, everywhere. In addition, there are countless wild animals such as partridges, rabbits, martens, weasels, pheasants, foxes, badgers and eagles. Occasionally you can also watch deer. The diversity of insects is particularly great on Rhodes. One highlight is the Valley of the Butterflies, which is home to the rare butterfly species of the Jersey tiger (Panaxia quadripunctaria). Reptiles and amphibians populate the island as well. The flora has a lot to offer too. With its numerous gardens, it is a real treasure trove for botanists. Common species are the Aleppo pine, the plane and the olive tree. There are great plantations with citrus fruit, various other fruit trees and vegetables. Besides many orchids, travellers can marvel at blooming shrubs such as bougainvillea, hibiscus and oleander. You find beautiful beaches in Lindos and Faliraki, for example.

The Valley of the Butterflies on Rhodes

Culture - On the track of the Colossus of Rhodes

Rhodes' old town has been inhabited for over 2,500 years and bears testimony to a rich cultural heritage from Hellenistic, Ottoman, Venetian and Maltese times. That is why it is part of the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage. According to legend, the entrance of Mandraki Harbour was the location of the legendary Colossus of Rhodes - a bronze statue with a height of 30 metres, which has been one of the wonders of the world for a long time. Today, you see two statues of the island's heraldic animal in the harbour entrance, the jumping deer. They are called "Elafos and Elafina". A true highlight is a round trip of the well-known Palace of the Grand Master, a magnificent fortification with the Byzantine Museum and the Old Harbour. Lindos is known for its Acropolis but the village at the edge of the Acropolis is worth seeing too. Another interesting sight is the ruin of the ancient city of Kameiros. Popular museums are the Archaeological Museum of Rhodes, the Museum of Modern Greek Art as well as the Museum of Mineralogy and Paleontology.

The legendary site of the Colossus of Rhodes

Experience - Exciting nightlife and wonderful beaches

Rhodes is fully developed for tourists. Popular destinations are the capital of Rhodes city and Faliraki. The latter accommodates the WaterPark. The nightlife on Rhodes is very lively. Rhodes city's Hippocrates Square (Greek: Platia Ippokratous) in the centre of the old town is the main meeting point with numerous taverns and cafes. Most of Faliraki is in English hand, which is particularly apparent from its nightlife. You can also go shopping on Rhodes. Besides the many tourist shops with typical souvenirs, there is a wide range of other shops. Despite the high number of tourists, Rhodes has preserved some of its nativeness and bears witness to a chequered history with its numerous ancient cultural sites. A ride on the tourist mini train, which runs through the city centre and off the main roads of Rhodes city, is highly recommended. In addition, Rhodes has many wonderful beaches at which you can swim or simply relax.

Hippocrates Square on Rhodes

Activities - A paradise for surfers

Whether you are in the water or on shore, there are many activities for travellers on Rhodes. Golfers, for example, can pursue their hobby on the 18-hole golf course in Afandou. Near Faliraki, you find the most beautiful and only motocross track on Rhodes. In Ialysos and Theologos, you can take riding lessons. Popular activities on the water are sailing, windsurfing, jet-skiing, canoeing and kayaking. You can also go diving on Rhodes but only in the designated diving area in Kalithea. In addition, travellers enjoy playing beach volleyball, bungee jumping and skysurfing.

Kitesurfing on Rhodes

Information

You best reach Rhodes by plane via the island's airport or by ship. The island itself has excellent bus connections, which travel to all tourist destinations at regular intervals. Thanks to the pleasant and constant climate, the best travel time is between April and the end of November.

Rhodes is ideally suited for family or active holidays. In addition, water sports fans get their money's worth. Rhodes city, Lindos and Faliraki are particularly popular destinations because they offer a variety of leisure activities and cultural sights.

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