Maria Chatzilazarou

Deputy Mayor of Tourism
Municipality of Rhodes Island

Bilateral Meetings

  • Monday SAN DIEGO 17:30 - 21:00
  • Wednesday LOS ANGELES 17:30 - 21:00
  • Thursday SAN FRANCISCO 17:30 - 21:00
DescriptionRhodes, the island of the god Sun, of the god Apollo Rhodes, the island of Colossus and of the Knights Rhodes, an island with centuries of history, a crossway between nations and civilizations Rhodes, the homeland of many Olympic champions and philosophers Rhodes, the emerald isle of unparalleled natural beauty, of superb light and unique hospitality Rhodes, a luxurious place for vacations, offering whatever you wish History - Culture Rhodes is an island with 5000 years of history. During the ancient era, it had been inhabitated by several peope: Telkhines, Carians, Phoenicians and Dorians; the latter having built the three major cities of Lindos, Kamiros and Ialyssos, which united to establish the city of Rhodes at 408 b.C. The three centuries to follow have been the golden age of Rhodes. The island was a center of economical and cultural exchanges between peoples for many centuries. Its strategic position yielded wealth to Rhodes and made the city of Rhodes one of the most pre-eminent cities of Ancient Greece. The marine trade, the navigation know-how and the wisely progressive political and diplomatic management helped to conserve the city powerful. The science and the arts have flourished for centuries in Rhodes. One of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World was the notorious artifact of Colossus of Rhodes, which was constructed in 282 BC by the Lindian sculptor Charis and was destroyed at 226 BC due to a huge earthquake which struck Rhodes, causing the collapse of Colossus. Rhodes has been a crossroad of peoples and civilizations, a fact indicated in every aspect of the island’s life and culture, in art, in language and in architecture. Text references and excavations prove the glory of Rhodes and its Greek identity, which was reserved during the centuries, despite the various evades by Romans, Knights of St John, Ottomans and Italians, until its union, in 1948, with its motherland Greece. Medieval Town UNESCO World Heritage Site One of the most beautiful medieval towns of the Mediterranean, since 1988 declared World Cultural Heritage Site by UNESCO, the Medieval Town of Rhodes has been a mosaic of different historical eras, the most dominant of which were these of the Knights and the Ottomans. The Knights of the Order of St John from Jerusalem arrived in Rhodes at 1310 AD. Since then, the Medieval Town has been enriched with gothic and renaissance elements. The whole set of palaces, towers, churches, arches and cobbled streets fascinates every visitor. The Grand Master’s Palace (Kastello) is a great monument from the Knight era. Nowadays, important exhibitions have been hosted in its halls. The Arcaeological Museum is housed in the gothic building of the big knights hospital and its halls bear masterpiece articrafts of Rhodian art, findings from ancient Kamiros and Ialyssos and mosaic floors from the town. The Knights street, that magnificent street leading to the Grand Master’s Palace, hosts the restored lodgings of the Langues (Tongues) of the Order. Other locations in the Medieval Town worth visiting are the Church of Our Lady of The Castle, the Clock Tower, the Kahal Kadosh Shalom Synagogue and the Syleymaniye and Recep Pasha Mosques. The Medieval Old Town of Rhodes is one of the few functioning medieval towns left in the world that is still inhabited and full of life. Monuments - Attractions At any place, the visitor will be among monuments that reflect the history of 50 centuries. Every corner in Rhodes is a visit to the past, to different civilizations and to the religions that defined them. Some of those monuments worth mentioning, besides the Medieval Old Town, are: The Acropolis of the city of Rhodes, with its ancient stadium and theater at the top of the Monte Smith Hill. The Lindos Acropolis and the village settlement, ancient Kameiros, Mt Philerimos with the basilica church dedicated to the Virgin Mary, built over an ancient temple, and the island’s castles at Monolithos, Kritinia, Asklepio, Archangelos and Haraki, as well as the numerous newer buildings, architectural monuments left behind by the Italians, one of which is the impressive Kallithea. Don’t forget to visit the Butterfly Valley, the Seven Springs, and Kallithea with its thermal springs and, of course, the beautiful beaches of the island. Religious Monuments A tour of the religious sites of the island will give the visitor a chance to discover its universal dimension and see another aspect of its history. Whichever religious path you choose, you will see magnificent temples of the early-Christian era, Byzantine churches with elaborate carved wooden altarpieces and religious icons, famous monasteries and many chapels. You can visit Panagia Tsambika, Panagia Church at Kremasti, the Monastery of Panagia Skiadeni (Virgin Mary the “Shade Casting”), Our Lady of The Castle, etc. You can also visit the two Roman Catholic churches of Rhodes, San Francisco and Santa Maria, as well as the Muslim mosques and Synagogues at the Old Town. Modern town The past and the present, different works of Art such as castles, neoclassical buildings and Italian architecture are uniquely combined at the modern city of Rhodes. Imposing Italian buildings dominate the seafront of the city of Rhodes, a modern cosmopolitan city. In the historic center, some of the buildings that stand out are the Rodon Hotel, the buildings of Italian architecture which today house the Town Hall, the Prefecture and the Post Office, the Church of Annunciation, the National Theater, and of course the small fawn statues, which are trademarks of Rhodes. Enjoy a walk at the Mandraki Marina with the small yachts, as well as the settlements and neighborhoods just outside the city center, the so-called Marasia. And when you take the coastal road, it will take you to the Aquarium of Rhodes, the most important scientific center for the study of marine life in Greece. You can also browse around at the Municipal Gallery, the second largest gallery in Greece, after the one in Athens, and also the Gallery of Modern Art “Nestoridion Melathron” at Ekato Hourmadies. Nature – Sites of natural beauty – Interesting routes Rhodes is a place blessed, endowed by nature itself with beautiful coasts, several kilometers long, with a rich aquatic environment and a unique variety of plants and animals in its mainland. It has abundance of waters, a diverse landscape and favorable climatic conditions. Throughout the island there are sites of outstanding natural beauty, NATURA 2000 protected areas, the world famous Butterfly Valley, a rare habitat, the Seven Springs with the centuries old sycamore trees and the crystal clear waters, the forests of Prophetis Elias and Kymisalas, the bushes of Mt Attaviros, Prasonisi, the dunes of Apollakia Bay, the torrents of Loutanis and Gadouras and the posidonia sea grass (seaweed). This natural environment is home to the famous Archangel Cob horse, Bonelli’s eagle, the Dama Dama dear, the peacock of Rhodes, while rare species of shrubs and plants are thriving such as peonies and orchids, fifty species of which are endemic only to Rhodes. In the rivers and streams of the island lives the fish Ladigesocypris ghigii or simply gizani, while in its clean seas and coasts live the Monachus Monachus seal and the Caretta Caretta sea turtle. Beaches Rhodes is world famous for its amazing, vast and award winning beaches. Sandy or with pebbles, organized or free, they will offer hours of relaxation underneath the famous sun of Rhodes. At the east, the ones standing out are the beaches of Tsambika, Charaki and Stegna, the beach of Afantou next to the Golf, and Kallithea. At the south, the most popular beaches are the beaches of Kiotari, Glystra, and Pefkoi and in the southern part of the island there is Prasonisi, a spot beloved by windsurfers. You should also visit the beaches at Aghios Pavlos in Lindos as well the one in Gennadi with its dunes and its bushy wild-cedars. Conferences Rhodes, a place connected with summer tourism, can now connect its name with other forms of tourism, for example conferential tourism. The historical, cultural and natural wealth of the island along with its intact and modern infrastructure, its conference rooms of high aesthetics and technology as well as its professionally trained staff, make Rhodes the ideal venue for conferences, symposiums and exhibition. Cruising – Yachting (Sailing Boat-motor boat) The natural beauties of the island, its marine environment, its ideal weather, its culture and the port infrastructure, which in recent years show a significant improvement, make Rhodes an attractive destination for cruise ships and yachting (sailing boat -motor boat) enthusiasts, Greek and foreigners alike, all year round, who may moor yachts and boats both in the organized marinas of the island (Mandraki and New Marina), as well as in other parts of the coast. Weddings – Family Vacations Rhodes is one of the most popular wedding destinations. Lindos and the Springs of Kallithea are the top preferences among the couples who want to get married in Rhodes. But Rhodes is also ideal for family vacations because it offers infrastructure for children of all ages, juniors and seniors, such as the Water Park, the ostrich farm, horse riding schools and go-karts. Water sports and fun - Sports Sports Tourism Activities- Sea and Land Sports Rhodes name is inextricably linked to sports and Olympians from ancient times and the time of Rhodius Leonidas of the Diagorides and of “the Rhodian Lady” Kallipateira, onto our days that still give birth to modern Olympians and great athletes. Major Greek and international competitions are now held in Rhodes, as it has an abundant natural environment, modern facilities for many sports enthusiasts and support by institutional bodies. Many international events have been held in Rhodes such as Aegean Tennis Cup, the Aegean Regata, Grand prix, International and European championswindsurfing, beach volley, beach socker. One of the top events held in the island is the National Marathon of Rhodes, with many athletes and volunteers and the support of the whole island community. The island is ideal for many activities: water sports, sailing, windsurfing, kitesurfing,, skiing, wakeboard and diving. It has golf courses, modern tennis facilities, a shooting range and basketball court, football, volley, organized facilities for horse riding and of course cycling, since Rhodes has a big athletic history in cycling. Cultural events The Municipality of Rhodes organizes a rich program of cultural events each year, in cooperation with local and international institutions, cultural associations, theater groups and many more. The events range from the beloved classical music festival (Rhodes Music Days), Medieval Cinema Festival, drama and theatrical performances, concerts, exhibitions and book presentations, as well as local festivals, traditional dances and village celebrations to promote local products. Rhodes by night – Entertainment and fun Rhodes-by-night is a “stroll in the world”. It offers entertainment and fun for all tastes and ages, from lively bars and discos, DJ clubs and live rock bands, to places with Greek music and folk music, while nights of traditional music and dance give a different touch to both residents and visitors. Gastronomy – Traditional products – Market The traditional diet of Rhodes, all along from ancient times till today, and the Rhodian cuisine are based in olive oil, olives, legumes, cereals, fish and seafood, honey and wine. Both in traditional taverns and in restaurants with international cuisine, the flavors of Rhodes, the local tastes and dishes and appetizers hold a prominent position. The ones that stand out are: Rhodes bagel, giapraki (stuffed vine leaves), rifaki or kapamas (stuffed goat), karavolous (escargots), milla or sparingia (asparagus) and pitaroudia (fried chickpea balls), all processed with local Rhodian products and accompanied by wheat bread and Rhodian wine. The Rhodian sun makes the island wine very delectable. In the vineyards, in the mountainous regions of the island, they grown rare grape varieties with guaranteed designation of origin such as “Athiri” or “Amorghiano”. As for desserts, the visitor can choose among a wide variety of local products. From the famous Rhodian melekouni with sesame, almonds and honey, which is given at weddings and baptisms, talagoutes and spoon sweets, to diples (dough stuffed with cinnamon and sesame) and katimeria (traditional dough with sugar and cinnamon). Market: Rhodes has a rich market with modern shopping centers and designer stores offering a large variety of consumer products and luxury items by Greek and foreign brands.
CityRhodes, 1, Eleftherias Square, 85131 Google map
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