Updated January 11th, 2023 by Travel the Greek Way
Are you planning to spend a week on Rhodes island and you are interested in the best things to do once you are there? This post will help you organize your visit and plan better how to spend your week on Rhodes island.
Rhodes, also known as the Knight’s island, is a stunningly beautiful, versatile, and cosmopolitan island. It is the fourth largest in Greece, right behind the Crete, Evia, and Lesvos islands with a population of 115.490 permanent residents.
The island is so packed with things to do, with so many choices for lifestyle, beach life και nightlife that it is very easy to spend a week on Rhodes island and not have a dull’s moment! A week will be probably not enough to see everything but you will definitely have time to visit the most important sites on Rhodes Island.
Rhodes was once home to the Colossus of Rhodes, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and is currently the most visited island of the Dodecanese. Its most spectacular site is the fortifications of Rhode’s main town, the largest active medieval city in Europe, with over 6,000 inhabitants!
Rhodes also has some spectacular beaches to visit like the southernmost Prasonisi beach (more info further down on the post).
Up next I am going to tell you about how best to spend a week on Rhodes Island, with accommodation, beaches, site information, and locals’ survival tips!
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Where Best to Stay on Rhodes Island
I would spend half of my time either in the Old Town – very scenic but some find it also a bit claustrophobic – or the new town of Rhodes and the rest of my time by a seaside village (will provide more options in the itinerary). In that way, I would enjoy both Rhodes city and its central position and beach small village.
10GR Hotel & Wine Bar Rhodes (adults only), is not only in the heart of the Old Town of Rhodes but also houses one of the best wine bars where you can have eclectic wine tasting.
Bellevue On The Beach Suites (great for families): A superb hotel with an excellent beach location in Rhodes town, great rooms with spectacular views, pools, and hydromassage for total relaxation!
Tip: Elli beach, is a beautiful, pebbled, fully organized beach in Rhodes Town with the famous trampoline for your high dives. This makes it extremely popular, as everyone has access to it, so it is super busy in the summer months.
How Best to Spend a Week on Rhodes Island
Day 1 on Rhodes Island – Explore Old Town
Rhodes town has 55.000 permanent residents so it is nothing like the tiny Chora, which one usually finds in the Cycladic islands. Within the town, you will visit the spectacular Medieval City of Rhodes or Old Town, one of the best-preserved medieval cities in the world, and since 1988, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Old Town of Rhodes contains several spectacular attractions, with the Grand Master’s Palace being the most prominent one.
The Old Town of Rhodes is surrounded by the 14th-century fortifications which were actually a defensive crescent around the medieval town made of the stone mound, equipped with sloping levels, bastions, and a moat! The walls are 5 km long and there are 11 gates where you can enter the town.
Part of the old town is very commercialized with shops of any kind you can think of. A really magical walk is at Knights’ Street, a narrow street flanked by medieval buildings with no shops at all.
As you walk on that street, you think that armored Knights on beautiful horses will jump out of the corner. The Knight’s street ends up at the Grand Masters’ Palace.
Suleiman, Sultan the Magnificent, built-in 1808 an imposing mosque close to the Palace of the Grand Master and across from the Ahmed Hafuz Muslim Library, two notable monuments.
Must-Sees in the Old Town are as well the:
- Archaeological Museum of Rhodes
- Kahal Kadosh Shalom Synagogue & Jewish Square
- Clock Tower
- Socrates Square
- Old Hammam
The entrance to the Palace is €8 but if you take the special ticket package, the €10 ticket, you can also visit the Rhodes Archaeological Museum, the church of Our Lady of the Castle, and the Decorative Arts Museum.
Day 2 on Rhodes Island – Enjoying the Beaches!
Go to Mandraki, Rhodes’ town port, and stroll to the two-pillar with the deer statues on top. This is where the Colossus of Rhodes used to be, a gigantic 30-meter copper statue that fell into the sea after just 66 years of standing.
The windmills at the pier and the lighthouse at Mandraki’s end are amazing during sunset. You can take a yacht from here and visit the beaches in the most exciting way.
TIP: Generally speaking the best beaches of the island are located on its eastern side. The west side of the island usually has strong winds and this makes swimming difficult to impossible. On the other hand, it makes this side irresistible for fans of wind-based water sports such as surfing and parasailing. So, pick up whichever side suits you best!
Faliraki is a very popular, long, and beautiful beach, with calm, warm waters, and free parking by the beach. It is an organized beach with a cost of around $10 for a sunbed and umbrella and is a fantastic beach for any water activities and sports.
Anthony Quinn’s Beach
One of the top ten beaches in Greece is Anthony Quinn’s beach, 4 km south of Faliraki. The actor fell in love with the beach back in 1961 when he was filming the ‘Guns of Navarone’ and the Greeks named the beach after him. It is a small closed bay, with very warm waters, full of fish and marine wildlife. Partly organized, partly free to lie wherever you want. However, it gets very busy in July and August so you better come early in the morning to get a good spot.
TIP: If you find that Anthony Quinn’s beach is too busy for your liking, go to the nearby beach of Ladiko, which is just behind the rocks and also well-organized.
Tsampika beach is a large, sandy, and beautiful beach with welcoming shallow light blue waters. It is fully organized and is very popular, especially among families. It took its name from the Monastery of Holy Mother Tsampika which stands on top of the hill right on the beach.
There is an uphill trail with 301 wide steps leading to the Monastery with impressive views of the beach below. Inside the Monastery, you will see a masterpiece of an Icon of the Holy Mother, the Tsampika. Couples who would like to have babies, but facing problems to achieve it, come here, pray and seek Holy Mother’s help.
One of the most impressive sites on Rhodes is Kallithea Springs, set at the Kallithea bay with azure waters, surrounded by trees and gardens just 9 km from Rhodes town. It is a fully organized area with sunbeds and cafes and besides the beautiful beach, stroll the impressive round building built by the Italians. Look at the masterpiece of the floor made as a mosaic from small pebbles, really unique. There is an entrance ticket to the beach.
Impressive Prasonisi beach is the southernmost tip of the island, 92 km from Rhodes town. Prasonisi is actually connected to the rest of the mainland by a narrow strip of sand almost 500 meters long, which in winter is covered by the waves! Prasonisi is quite unique as one side is always peaceful and the other wavy, which is why it is perfect for windsurfing lovers. It is fully organized with taverns and cafes.
Day 3 on Rhodes Island – Lindos
I simply love Lindos for so many reasons! It is located 50 km southeast of Rhodes town and is built amphitheatrically around one of the most impressive beaches and scenery on the island. Do stroll its Cycladic island-looking alleys and pay attention to the famous mansions, with the date of their construction engraved on the front of their doors.
The Acropolis of Lindos on the top of the hill, the picturesque village with the top roof bars and taverns, the small bay of Agios Pavlos, and the main sandy beach of Lindos, never fail to amaze me.
Lindos Survival Tips
- To get to the top of the Acropolis, you will need to walk a steep uphill. Get there the earliest possible in the morning or the latest in the evening as Lindos is one of the hottest areas in Greece
- The village of Lindos can be overcrowded when the cruises arrive
- There is plenty of choice of restaurants, cafes, and bars
- Please, don’t use the poor donkeys as a means of transportation.
Where Best to Stay in Lindos: Melenos Art Boutique Hotel is one of the most amazing hotels on Rhodes Island. It is located on the north side of the ancient Acropolis, below the Temple of Athena, with spectacular sea views.
Day 4 on Rhodes Island – Explore the villages
Theologos Village and The Valley of the Butterflies
Rhodes has 42 villages and the Valley of the Butterflies near Theologos village is the most popular natural attraction in Rhodes. The valley is set in beautiful surroundings with lush vegetation, waterfalls, and springs landscaped with wooden bridges, benches, and ponds.
Every year, from June to September, the butterflies Panaxia Quadripunctaria gather here to mate, creating a colorful and spectacular spectacle. The place is open between 8-4 pm and the entrance fee is €3.
Archangelos Village & 7 Springs
The Seven Springs is located near the village of Archangelos, 30 km from the center of Rhodes city. The route to the Seven Wells and the ravine with the plane and pine trees are of great natural beauty and a great place for some cool rest.
Archangelos village houses a magnificent Church with a mosaic floor, quite unique for a Greek Orthodox Church, and is also famous for its handcrafted and painted ceramics that you can find in the shops.
Day 5 on Rhodes Island – Visit Symi Island
Take the daily boat from Mandrakia, Rhode’s main port to stunning Symi island. Symi’s port is famous for its beautiful colorful neoclassic buildings, for swimming on remote beaches that are only accessible by boats, such as Maroni and Agios Georgios Dysalonas.
Visit the impressive Monastery of Panormitis, the Archaeological and Folklore Museum, and the Maritime Museum of Symi, and explore the 6 magnificent villages on Symi.
Day 6 on Rhodes Island – Visit Chalki Island
Halki is a small mountainous island with golden sandy beaches – it is ideal for those who want to take a holiday away from the stress of the city.
Halki is ideal for quiet hiking holidays where you can discover the 360 or so deserted chapels as well as the remains of a Venetian castle. Admire the 3 windmills high up on the mountain, the bell tower of St. Nicholas (the island’s polytunnel), and the impressive clock tower in front of the Town Hall building.
There is a daily connection with Rhodes, via Kamiroos Skala. You can also charter a boat and go to distant beaches or to the nearby island of Alimia.
Best villa in Halki: Villa Katingo
Day 7 on Rhodes Island – Hike Atavyros and Wine Tasting
For your last day on Rhodes Island, you can Hike Atavyros Mt with a peak of 1215 m. The beginning of the 2-hour trail is at the entrance of Agios Isidoros Rhodes, on the side of the olive press, and leads to landscapes of rare natural beauty.
Afterward, you can have a wine tasting at the mountain villages of Emponas and Charakaki which have the best vineyards in Rhodes.
How to Get Around Rhodes
Rhodes is a large island and if you are going to explore it you will definitely need a rental car.
For bus routes and timetables visit here.
When is Best to Visit Rhodes Island
Like Crete, Corfu, and Syros, Rhodes is also quite lively throughout the year. With a steady population of 104.523 (2021) people, and with one of the longest tourists season, you will find an active vibe all year round.
Every April, Rhodes island organizes the International Rhodes Marathon with participants from 35 countries all over the world. The Rhodes Marathon coastal route follows the walls of the island’s medieval old Medieval Town with a constant view of the Aegean Sea, offering participants a unique running experience. If you would like to register, sign up here.
This is a fantastic time to be in Rhodes as April is the month that all wildflowers and herbs have blossomed in the fields and the rituals of Greek Orthodox Easter (April 16th, 2023) are inspiring.
If you are after warm weather and hitting the beaches, then May to October is ideal with August being Chios’ busiest month.
How to Get to Rhodes Island
Greece’s Aegean Airlines currently has three direct flights from Athens per day to Rhodes, which last about an hour.
You can also take the ferry from Athens’ main port, Piraeus but the trip lasts between 15 to 18 hours which is a lot of wasted time if you only have 1 or 2 weeks in Greece. You can have accurate info and cheap ferry tickets here FerryScanner.
Where is your next dream destination? Would you go to Rhodes?
I’d love to hear about where you’re spending your vacation this year, especially if you have any exciting travel plans! There are so many things to do on Rhodes island. I hope that you get the chance to try as many as possible. Till next time, Evgenia❤️
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Some of my Favorite Travel Resources for Greece
- ‘Hello’ and ‘Thank You’ in Greek: “Ya sou” and “Efharisto”
- FerryScanner or FerryHopper to book ferries to the Greek Islands
- Rent an Affordable Car in Greece
- Athens Metro Website (timetables and tickets info)
- Map of Athens Metro
- Trains (Hellenic Train)
- Public Buses KTEL
- Booking.com: I use Booking.com because I can get the best deals on both hotels and apartments, free cancellations, and great prices!
- Get Your Guide: For all your day or multi-day tours and city guide needs, I use Get Your Guide
- COVID Info for Greece: Ministry of Tourism Official Website
- Emergency Numbers Anywhere in Greece: AMBULANCE 166 – FIRE 199 – POLICE 100– EMERGENCY NUMBER 112