Things to Do in Rhodes For The Perfect Grecian Getaway
From its bustling Old Town to the magic of Butterfly Valley, discover the best of Rhodes
When you really need to escape the rest of the world, get thee to an island. There’s just something about being surrounded on all sides by some of the bluest water you’ve ever seen that washes all of your cares away. Rhodes is the fourth largest Greek island, and the largest island in the Dodecanese, and it has so much to offer that you’ll probably be able to resist the urge to island hop in order to luxuriate right where you are. It has a fascinating history, rich culture, and buzzing nightlife - as well as medieval castles and beautiful beaches, of course. Here at Plum Guide, we love going above and beyond for our guests, providing you with all the best places to see, things to do, and homes to book. So, without further ado, here is our expert advice on the best things to do in Rhodes.
- Wander through Rhodes Old Town
- Marvel at the Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights of Rhodes
- Discover Prasonisi
- Be wowed by Butterfly Valley
- Check out the Kalithea Hot Springs
- Venture out to the Acropolis of Lindos
- Spend a day at Rodini Park
Wander through Rhodes Old Town
Once you’ve checked into your luxurious accommodation, Rhodes Old Town is the first place you should head - the cobbled streets here look as though they’re straight out of a movie. Wander the vaulted passages and take some nosy glances through the wooden doors to the impressive interior courtyards. Parts of the area date back to the 1400s, so you can see the varying influences of the cultures which have inhabited Greece over the centuries on sites such as the Sultan Mustafa Mosque, which dates back to the 1700s. Exploring the Old Town is an unmissable addition to your list of things to do in Rhodes.
Marvel at the Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights of Rhodes
The island of Rhodes is dotted with almost too many ancient castles and monuments to count. This particular offering is one of the only examples of Gothic architecture in the whole of Greece, dating back to the 7th century when it was a Byzantine citadel. Think about that kind of lifespan the next time you get stressed over finding yet another grey hair. This palace has had many heydays. In the 14th century, the Knights Hospitaller, a medieval and early modern Catholic military order, turned it into their base of power. In the 20th century when Rhodes was under Italian control, Benito Mussolini resided there for a while. Today, the Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights of Rhodes is a museum exploring the monument’s history and showcasing the centuries-old buildings.
If you prefer a fresh sea breeze to a whispering wind from ancient times, consider an outdoor pursuit over a museum. You're in the Mediterranean, after all, so going to the beach is one of the best things you can do. On the far south coast of Rhodes is a Greek island unlike any other. Prasonisi is a tidal island that’s only accessible at low tide - so if you’re having a holiday disagreement with a family member who insists on reserving the best sun lounger at 5am every morning, get your own back by conveniently forgetting to tell them the tide times. When the tide is low, it’s a popular spot for hiking, swimming, and enjoying the water. In fact, the windsurfing in Prasonisi is second to none, if you’ve always fancied having a go at falling into the sea an indeterminable number of ways in a day.
Be wowed by Butterfly Valley
This nature reserve could just be the most incredible memory of your trip - unless you’re scared of butterflies, of course. You'll find yourself surrounded by bubbling streams, swaying trees, and rolling hills is the Butterfly Valley, which from June to September is filled with brightly coloured butterflies of all varieties. They’re attracted by the scent of the Oriental Sweetgum trees which cover the entire landscape, and they use the area to rest - so watch out for snoozing butterflies. If you stand still enough (and get very lucky) one might even land on your arm for the perfect holiday snapshot. There’s a small museum explaining the habitat and its history, so if you're in Greece with kids, they'll have something to write about for their ‘what I learned on my summer holidays’ essay.
Check out the Kalithea Hot Springs
These natural springs have been enjoyed by locals and visitors alike since ancient times. A spa was built here by Italians in the 1930s, although unfortunately it's no longer in operation, so you can’t actually bathe in a hot spring (sorry). What you can do, however, is admire the Art Deco architecture, and enjoy the shaded pavilions and pergolas (not to mention, of course, the unmissable Kalithea Bay). This tropical beach, a long inlet with transparent water, pale sand and palm trees, might just provide the most relaxing experience of your trip, and it’s an unmissable thing to do in Rhodes. Bring the bathing suit that your children are the least embarrassed by, kick back, and relax in the warmth of the Grecian sun.
Venture out to the Acropolis of Lindos
Another historic feature on the sunny island, the Acropolis of Lindos is one of the best things to do in Rhodes for anyone seeking a bout of exploration. With ruins believed to date back as far as the 9th century B.C, you can get your culture fix with the added bonus of breathtaking views across the Mediterranean - is this paradise? Stand where offerings and sacrifices were once held in tribute to the Goddess Athena (anyone you wouldn’t mind leaving behind?), and take a seat in one of the few remaining rows that once filled an ancient theatre.
Admire the intricacy of the architecture on the tall standing pillars, and marvel at the plethora of rocks adorning one of the most popular archaeological sites in Greece. Protecting the Acropolis, you’ll find a 14-century castle with well-preserved towers, and a number of churches and temples can be discovered dotted around. Many of the site’s monuments have been developed on top of existing builds, so the whole area boasts even more history than initially meets the eye. You’ll never forgive yourself if you forget your camera for this trip, with such an abundance of historic, unforgettable structures with the most scenic backdrop imaginable - we’ll see you there.
Spend a day at Rodini Park
As if the views aren’t remarkable enough around every Rhodes corner, the island is even home to the picturesque Rodini Park - arguably the perfect family day out. Interestingly, this was actually the world’s first ever landscaped park - even the seemingly regular places have a hold on history in Rhodes. Find yourself in front of what is believed to be the ancient tomb of the Ptolemies, and marvel at the eye-catching archways that decorate the park. Cross the characterful bridges, and stroll along the turquoise stream as you set up the perfect shot - it’s time for a new screensaver.
You may well be joined by ducks as you wander through the semi-wild park, and be sure to say hello to the official residents of Rodini Park should you see them around (peacocks, the residents are peacocks). Situated just 3km from the city centre of Rhodes, this park makes for the perfect trip to get away from the crowds and discover both the beauty and culture of the island. This park is even said to have been popular with Romans, so you’re navigating some very well-trodden paths.