Top things to do, places to visit, attractions and activities in Rhodes

When you are looking for top things to do in Rhodes, you may find that it is not that easy to pick out just a few options. There are so many different exciting and interesting activities and attractions, narrowing down your options my feel like a small challenge. Let us help you with a few interesting suggestions for top activities, things to do and places to visit on Rhodes.

Among many points of interest and things to do Rhodes island in Greece has to offer, here are just a few suggestions from our top list. Rhodes has more to offer than sea and sand, and the following places to visit and activities to engage in will surely give something extra to remember from your vacation.

Top 10 activities and things to do on Rhodes

1. Water sports

Top things to do, places to visit, attractions and activities in Rhodes © Rhodes Guide / RhodesGuide.com

This is probably the most obvious, since the island is well known for its beach activities after all!! However, what if you try out something, like windsurfing or water ski even if you have never done it before? You will find many instructors at the various sports centers all over the island, so just give it a go!



2. Hiking and trekking

If you, like so many others who visit the island, have a love for nature, you will find that Rhodes is a little paradise. With the weather being perfect during almost all year, trekking and hiking through the island is a pleasure one can enjoy at any time of the year. With its stunning landscape diversity and incredible views along the coastline, the island of Rhodes just offers the perfect conditions. And if you get tired along the way, worry not. You may find fresh and clean spring waters available in many places, and walking through some of the traditional villages not yet taken over by tourists will allow you to explore Rhodes in a way you would otherwise to be able to.



3. Cycling


Bicycles can be rented almost anywhere on Rhodes island nowadays, and this is an excellent opportunity to discover the island taking any route you wish at your own pace and time, combining your trip with some sporty activity. While the beachfront offers excellent routes for road biking and plenty of blue water to gaze at, there are also some really interesting mountain biking routes. There is also the option to join one of the a guided tours that will take you through the forest areas and nearby tourist resorts.



4. A daily excursion to a nearby island

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Rhodes offers an excellent opportunity to discover the surrounding islands of the Dodecanese island complex. There are ferries leaving daily for all of them, and the closest ones are just a couple of hours away, making those ideal for a daily excursion.

The beautiful scheduled monument settlement Symi attracts thousands of visitors year after year with its classicist houses, ornate churches and the well-known monastery of the Archangel Michael Panormitis.

Top things to do, places to visit, attractions and activities in Rhodes © Rhodes Guide / RhodesGuide.com

Chalki, with its charming houses and picturesque port, where you can enjoy excellent fresh fish.

Kastelorizo, also called Megisti, the easternmost island of Greece with a particularly eventful history. The settlement, with its beautiful neoclassical mansions, testifies to the island's former prosperity, whose port is considered the safest natural harbor in the eastern Mediterranean.

Or Tilos, a dreamy island, with the best way to get to know it is to walk through it. The Agios Panteleimonas monastery with its magnificent murals and the popular church fair on 25-27 July is particularly worth seeing.




5. Visiting a beach bar


How does gazing at a dreamy beach and the endless blue of the Aegean with a cold, refreshing cocktail in hand sound?  Life at it's easiest, and that is probably an understatement. Make yourself comfortable in one of the many beach bars around the island. Some will even allow you to place a chair directly in the water of that crystal blue sea you are gazing at, if you don't prefer relaxing on those wide comfy loungers.  At beach bars on Rhodes you can feel the good vibes everywhere.



6. Tasting the local cuisine

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A main characteristic of the typical table set on Rhodes is the variety of dishes served. There are, for example, a lot of "meze" selections. Vegetables and greens, legumes and mainly broad beans and horse beans, fresh fish and seafood from the Greek seas, juicy fruit, high-quality meat, cheeses, the refreshing Greek yogurt and dense and aromatic thyme or multi-flower honey, all of which are products of Rhodes and are ample on the island with the Mediterranean climate and fertile land. Combined with some excellent Rhodian wine, or some ouzo if you prefer something stronger, it will for sure be culinary experience you will remember. Of course, one of the best ways to do that is at a sea side taverna or restaurant, but you will find many excellent restaurants all over the island, in Rhodes town and at the many villages.


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7. Enjoying a magical sunset


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Rhodes has some of the best sunsets in the Mediterranean to offer. There are numerous spots all over the east coast, offering you the opportunity to enjoy  nature's magnificent play. Some to note are, the Rhodes Acropolis, Kritinia Castle, Monolithos Castle, as well as many spots on the road while driving along the southern west coast.



8. Scuba diving


Diving tourism and the experience of diving during the holiday combine an ecological way of recreation. Underwater Rhodes is the perfect place for divers. Combining beautiful dive sites, perfect visibility, very good water temperatures and very well organized beaches, Rhodes is in the top ten diving destinations in the Mediterranean. An extensive biodiversity and impressive underwater geological formations, lush ecosystems and shipwrecks resting on the sea bottom are in themselves a pole of attraction for scuba divers.

There are some excellent scuba diving schools to be found on Rhodes. Pick one, and combine your your stay on Rhodes with an unforgettable experience.



9. Experiencing history in 9D


3D picture, sound, motion, rain, snow, wind, fire, and even smells appeal to the senses and form great entertainments. Throne of Helios experience offers a fantastic journey in the mythology and the history of Rhodes. It’s one of the best activities you can choose on your vacation in the island. It’s a unique combination of historical tradition and high technology in the historic building of the old cinema of«St. George » – the first cinema ever established in Rhodes by the Italians in 1927.



10. Yachting and boat excursion experiences

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Dreaming of a sailing holiday in the Aegean sea? You can hire a small yacht or a cabin and choose between sailing boats and motor yachts, boat excursions, bare-boat or with a skipper. Of course all boats are well maintained and equipped with necessary safety equipment. A daily yacht trip offers a nice touch to your holiday. Of course, you can also rent a small sailing or motor yacht for your entire vacation, and to some island hopping in the Dodecanese, which is a fantastic experience by itself.  Whatever you choice, this is an experience you will not soon forget, and you can always come back and cruise the other parts of the Grecian Islands on your next visit.


Top 10 locations and places to visit on Rhodes

1. Valley of butterflies

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Situated approximately five kilometers south east of the village of Theologos (or Tholos), the Valley of the Butterflies (Petaloudes) is one of the most attractive destinations on the island. During August, thousands of butterflies of the genus Panaxia (species Quadripunctaria Poda) overwhelm the valley in order to reproduce. 
 

2. Filerimos and the ancient city of Ialysos

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Ialysos is one of the three ancient cities of Rhodes with remains of occupation dating back to 3rd millennium BC and also settlements & cemeteries dating from the Mycenaean-Minoan period.  
 
The building remains of ancient Ialysos discovered to date are mainly on the Filerimos hill, which was given this name in Byzantine times. Its earliest known name was Achaia, which is further evidence for the presence of Greeks in this area during the Mycenaean period, Strabo calls the hill Ochyroma ('Fortification'). From very early times the hill was in fact used as a strong point and also as a place of worship. 
 
During the period of Italian rule (1912-1945) a 'Golgotha' was built: this was a series of shrines with relief scenes of the Passion, which leads from the square to the west edge of the plateau of the Filerimos hill.  Also a 30m stone  cross was constructed but it was destroyed during the WWII. In 1996 a 16 metre cross was rebuilt on the top the plateau from  which you can enjoy an incredible view!
 

3. Seven Springs

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The scent of pine on every breath, rustic bridges and trickling streams set the mood for 'Epta Piges' (Seven Springs), found 30 km from the Rhodes Town. Those who want to rise to the challenge can wander around the maize of footpaths searching out the source of each of the seven springs. Lying across the entry road, a green lake with turquoise waters nestles in a pine clad gorge. 
 
A sign posted footpath leads to it from the main site as does a tunnel carrying a stream. Many visitors walk through the 610ft (186m) long dark tunnel but it is not recommended for claustrophobic, who may follow the signposted alternate route. Peacocks wander the site too and if they are not to be seen their penetrating cry is unlikely to pass unnoticed. Set in some of the deepest shade by the water edge, the taverna (occasional operation during winter) is an atmospheric place to refresh and the food is good too. 

 

 

4. The Marine Aquarium (Hydrobiological Station) of Rhodes

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The Hydrobiological Station of Rhodes (Aquarium) is located in the northern tip of the island and was constructed during 1934-1396, initiating its activities in 1937. In 1945 it was incorporated as a peripheral station of the Hellenic Centre for Marine Research under the supervision of the Athens Academy. Is has been operating as an Aquarium-museum and research unit since 1963.

The NCMR falls under the supervision of the General Secretariat of Research and Technology belonging to the Ministry of Development.
 

5. The monastery of Tsambika 

Tsambika Monastery Rhodes

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A tiny, Byzantine church, dedicated to Our Lady, located on the top of a hill which offers breathtaking views. The road to Tsambika monastery turns off the main road, some meters before the road to Tsambika beach. The road will take you half way up the hill. After this point, you need to walk up the hill, following 350 steps. It's perched high at 300 m with commanding coastal views, both north over Kolymbia and south over Tsambika beach to Lindos, which makes it worth, to climb up. According to the legend, any woman having problems getting pregnant should go up there barefoot, to pray to the Virgin and she will be blessed with children. The saints day is the 7. September.
  

6. Lindos and Lindos Acropolis

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Top things to do, places to visit, attractions and activities in Rhodes © Rhodes Guide / RhodesGuide.com
 
Lindos is one of the most impressive archaeological sites on Rhodes. The dramatic natural landscape is enhanced by the picturesque quality of the more modern town. Although you will find the most important archaeological monuments at the acropolis, interesting ruins are also scattered at various points within the town and just outside it as well.
 
To get to the Lindos Acropolis follow the road that leads up to the hill. The medieval walls are the first ruins you will encounter, fortifications built by the Crusaders (early 14th century) on the remains of earlier defenses, both Byzantine and ancient. There are a few of towers along the medieval walls, which follow the natural contours of the high ground.
 

7. The Medieval City of Rhodes

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The Medieval (or Old) Town of Rhodes is the oldest inhabited medieval town in Europe. There are many gates, but we suggest that you first enter through Eleftheria (Liberty) Gate, where you'll come to Plateia Simi (Simi square), containing ruins of the Temple of Venus, identified by the votive offerings found here, which may date from the 3rd century B.C.

The Medieval City of Rhodes offers an opportunity to loose track of time. There are roughly 200 streets or lanes that simply have no name. Getting lost here is not a defeat; it's an opportunity. Whenever you feel the need to find your bearings, you can ask for "Sokratous" street, which is the closest the Old Town of Rhodes comes to having a main street.
 
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8. Ancient Kamiros

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On the north-western shore of Rhodes, close To the promontory of Agios Minas (the Ancient Mylantio) lies the third of The island's ancient cities - Kamiros. Kamiros was one of the three large Doric cities of the island, which united with Ialysos and Lindos in the 5th century B.C. to create the powerful city - state of Rhodes. Although it was established by the Dorians, it seems like the first inhabitants of the area must have been Achaeans, as the ruins of an ancient Mycenaean necropolis close to the village of Kalavarda reveal. Kamiros was basically an agricultural society which produced oil, wine and figs. During the city's golden era of the 6th century, it was the first Rhodian city to cut its own coins.
 

9. Profitis Ilias and the Elaphos hotel

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Profitis Ilias, is a pine-wooded forest named after the Prophet Elias whose monastery is found on the mountain (2.600ft/ 720 m). The two adjacent Swiss Chalet style hotels, Elafos (stag) and Elafina (doe), were built by the Italians but they have actually been closed for a number of years. The Elafos Hotel became operational again in 2006 and offers 20 rooms and 3 Suites, while there is a plan to renovate the Elafina too.
 
A nearby café is open for tea, coffee or ouzo nearby the log fire. The walled-in monastery itself is small and shows little signs of life until 20 June, its Saint's day. 
 
At this altitude, the wild flowers can be enjoyed and it is possible to see Cyclamen repandum, which is widespread up here, until late May and possibly later in a cool spring. One specialty to look out for which is fairly common here but not in other parts of the island, is the charming, white Paeonia clusii. It flowers in April and May and can sometimes be seen on the banks overhanging the road.  
  

10. The village of Monolithos and the castle of Monolithos

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The main attraction of the village of Monolithos is the medieval castle, which stands among the pines on the great outcrop of an isolated rock from which the name Monolithos (lonely rock) is derived. After Leaving your car at the bottom, there is a ten-minute walk that will bring you to the summit, where your only company is the sea and the fragrance of the wild herbs.

Within the castle walls stands the church of Agios Panteleimon. Bellow the castle you will find an attractive stone building housing a small café. The road leads on to Fourni, the beach at Monolithos, ideal for those who like pebbles, waves and a peaceful setting.


You might also be interested in this related article: 5 Reasons to visit Rhodes island
 
Authored by RhodesGuide.com team

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My wife and I have been to Pefkos 14 times and will keep on coming to Pefkos its a lovely place we have made friends with lots of Greek people here they are brilliant people, looking forward to seeing them in September

Commented by david faulkner July 22, 2017

My wife and I have visited Rhodes on 4 occasions and have never been disappointed. Every visit we find something we haven't seen before. The scenery is breathtaking, the local people so friendly. The perfect place to holiday.

Commented by Andrew Edwards March 19, 2017

My first time. I saw a wonderful photos of Rhodes. love the Greek culture.

Commented by Samy . June 14, 2016

We have enjoyed our time in Rhodes. The weather is magnificent, the scenery fabulous and the people very friendly and helpful. We want to come again.

Commented by Clem June 06, 2016

I went to the valley of butterflies and It was wonderful!

Commented by Alex February 27, 2015

Wow i never knew there could be so many cool places on such a small island!

Commented by nadine August 20, 2014

I have been to Rhodes many times before and it is great!

Commented by AMY April 02, 2014

Always fascinates me how, despite time moving on, some things never change. The light, the water, the spirit of history but also the present struggle and life. A lot to see and do for all ages, just pick the right spot and attitude.

I will be going back home this year again, for a holiday!

Commented by Marios December 28, 2013

Went to Rhodes for a wedding a few years ago. such a beautiful place, that's why we're returning on June. We have so much more to see.

Commented by Linda March 26, 2013

We go to Rhodes every year to different hotels , best place ever, friendly people, hot weather, great scenic views. Would highly recommend Rhodes.

Commented by sheila September 19, 2011

I found this useful as a guide am off to Rhodes for the first time. Good to research place before you travel.

Commented by yvonne clarey August 07, 2011

This is the third time we have been to your Lovely island and we will be back again in June
again thank you!

Commented by sidney hutchings April 05, 2011

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