Rhodes beyond the beaches: Where to go and what to do

With its miles of sun-kissed sands lapped by heavenly blue sea - from popular Lindos to picturesque Tsambika - it's easy to see why Brits fall head over heels for the beaches of Rhodes. However, there is so much more to this Greek[1] isle than its sparkling Blue Flag attractions. Steeped in 5,000 years of history and blessed with a culturally rich identity, Rhodes has seen various invasions by the Romans, Knights of St John, Ottomans and Italians who have left their mark on its art, language and culture.

To discover just how much there is to see and do in Rhodes, beyond its fine sands, I headed to the well-loved Greek island with holiday specialist On the Beach, to discover its magnificent food, nature and historical must-sees. What to see Home to one of the best preserved medieval cities in Europe, the island's capital Rhodes is like an open museum.

Its Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where you can walk the fascinating Street of the Knights to the Palace of the Grand Master, a site dating to the 14th century when it was erected by the Knights Hospitaller. Its architecture, mosaics and archaeological exhibitions make the monument an absolute must-see. Meanwhile, the captivating Archaeological Museum, housed at the Hospital of Knights of the 15th century, contains highlights such as a bathing Aphrodite statue and funerary slabs of the Knights.

Easily missed by tourists is the wonderful walk along the medieval walls, where you can catch some of the best views over the Old Town and appreciate the work that went into the enormous, 12-metre-wide structure.

Has Sani Resort in Greece created the perfect family holiday?


Head south of the island to visit the enchanting white-washed town of Lindos, with its towering Acropolis, stunning bay and inspiring views. Walk the cobbled streets of the pretty town where donkeys carry tourists to the Acropolis, one of the most significant archaeological sites in Greece, which is home to the remains of the temple of Dionysus and a theatre. At night, head for a rooftop bar to see the incredible ruins in their illuminated glory as you sip cocktails and soak up the laid-back vibe of charming Lindos.

Acropolis of Rhodes (Pixabay)

Where to eat

For one of the most delightful food experiences, take a trip to the quaint village of Vati, around 30 minutes from Lindos, to feast on traditional Greek fare at Taverna Platanos. Frequented by villagers, local cats and the occasional tourist who hears of the exceptional dishes prepared by owner Kostas' mother, this atmospheric restaurant offers an unpretentious yet unforgettable foodie experience. Grab a table under the tree and watch the world go by as you gorge on Kostas' recommendations of the day.

Everything from the pittaroudia (fried mashed vegetables) to the dolmades, fava and Greek salad, will leave you wanting more. Elsewhere, Mavrikos in Lindos holds the Greek equivalent of a Michelin[3] star and is an excellent spot for its terrific food and ambience. The black butterbeans with carob syrup, cuttlefish ink risotto and calamari sauteed in saffron with beetroot coulis are some of the delectable dishes to sample at this surprisingly affordable eatery.

Lindos, Rhodes, Greece (Pixabay)

How to relax

When it comes to heading out of town and getting back to nature, one of the island's most popular attractions provides a breath of fresh air and a spectacular phenomenon between mid-June and late September. During this time, at the Valley of the Butterflies, millions of Jersey tiger-moths gather on the trees thanks to the area's high humidity, flowing waterfalls and tranquillity. The nocturnal moths spend the summer months in the cool habitat and mate during the last weeks of the season.

Visitors can catch the millions of moths gathered on the nature reserve's trees, often covering entire trunks. To see Rhodes from the water, you can enjoy a glamorous boat trip to take in the island's coastline in style. Go all out on the world's largest RIB, Opera 60, which at 20 metres long has enough room for 25 passengers to enjoy its sleek red and white interior.

Leaving from Rhodes Town's picturesque Madraki Harbour, a half-day tour takes you to the clear waters of Anthony Quinn, the bay where The Guns of Navarone was filmed and known as one of the most beautiful beaches on Rhodes. It's best enjoyed by jumping straight into the sea from Opera 60 and snorkelling the emerald waters before climbing back on-board to recharge with seafood sandwiches, fresh fruit and a glass of wine in hand.

Gennadi Grand Resort (On The Beach)

Where to stay The newly opened Gennadi Grand Resort in the south coast village of Gennadi is an all-inclusive hotel, but not as you might imagine it.

Expect all the luxuries of a five-star hotel, from the gourmet dining and drinking spots to the spaciously chic rooms and suites. Here, it's about the small details, including the eco-friendly credentials (recycled water is used throughout), separate secure WiFi connections for every room (a first in Greece) and a smart air-conditioning system that knows to cool your room from the moment you check in. There are huge swimming pools in the resort and a Blue Flag beach just steps away, for when you feel like taking a dip in the sea.

One of its best features is its sheer size, which means it never feels crowded. For something closer to the historic sites of Rhodes in the north, Electra Palace is a modern resort ideal for families, boasting a fantastic private beach, gorgeous spa and an array of dining spaces.

Gennadi Grand Resort (On The Beach)

Details Beach holiday specialist On the Beach offers seven nights at the five-star Gennadi Grand Resort from GBP408 per person, including return flights from airports across the UK and bed and breakfast accommodation (half board holidays available from GBP665).

Seven nights at the five-star Electra Palace in Ialyssos costs from GBP372, including return flights from airports across the UK and half board accommodation.

Book online at onthebeach.co.uk[4] or by calling 0871 474 3000.

A half-day boat trip to Anthony Quinn on Opera 60 for up to 25 people with Rhodes RIB Experience costs 1,200 euros (GBP1,070).

More about: | Rhodes | Greece | Travel[5][6][7]


  1. ^ Greek (standard.co.uk)
  2. ^ Has Sani Resort in Greece created the perfect family holiday? (www.standard.co.uk)
  3. ^ Michelin (www.standard.co.uk)
  4. ^ onthebeach.co.uk (www.awin1.com)
  5. ^ Rhodes (www.standard.co.uk)
  6. ^ Greece (www.standard.co.uk)
  7. ^ Travel (www.standard.co.uk)

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