May 29, 2019
Today our tour was initially scheduled for the morning, but due to a few cruise ships scheduled to arrive the same time as ours, the tour was rescheduled for the afternoon.
Here is the view of city on our arrival.
So, we got off the ship on our own and wandered through the city of Rhodes. We love it here. The city is surrounded by medieval walls with seven gates and the cruise ship docks very close to the St. Catherine’s Gate.
The medieval city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1988 and is very well preserved. The walls were built by the Knights of St. John.
We walked through the narrow streets and as always, were just charmed by the sights. Here are some of them.
We eventually reached the magnificent Palace of the Grand Master. This was originally a Byzantine fortress in the 7th century AD and later held the administrative center of the Order of Knights. It was destroyed by an explosion in 1856 and later, in the 1930’s, was rebuilt by the Italians to be used as the home of the Italian Commander (during the Italian occupation.) Today it houses two large exhibits on the City of Rhodes. In one of them, no pictures were allowed but we could take them outside in the courtyard and in the second exhibit. The mosaics in the floors and the lighting fixtures were particularly impressive.
We did some shopping – and there are many shops and restaurants here – and then enjoyed lunch back on the ship before going on our tour to Ancient Lindos.
Our tour guide was Anna Maria.
The trip to Lindos took about an hour and we learned a lot about Rhodes. This island is one of thousands – only about 120 are inhabited. They get 300 days of sun a year so it is a really beautiful place to visit almost all year, although between April and November is prime tourist season. Only 15 of 5000 hotels are open in the winter. The temperature rarely goes below 50 degrees. Turkey is only 12 nautical miles away and there are ferries that go between Greece and Turkey.
On our way, we stopped at a pottery showroom and watched demonstrations of pottery making and the painting of the finished products.
Along the way, we saw lots of olive trees and also oleander, which Anna Maria told us is a poisonous tree.
There were some markets in Lindos and also the donkeys which you can choose to ride up to the Acropolis which means “highest city”. Only 700 people live in this city.
Lindos is ancient town with well preserved 15th century buildings. We climbed up to the Acropolis of Lindos which is a steep climb, but nothing compared to the Tiger’s Nest in Bhutan! The views are beautiful.
This island arose from the sea after a volcanic eruption so you see shells in the rock formations here.
The day was hot but not nearly the high temperatures we had in the middle east. Very enjoyable return trip to Rhodes. We really like Greece. They are still experiencing financial problems though, and it is sad to hear. The people and the country are both beautiful.
I love Rhodes. We went there for the first time in ’88 and rented a car for a couple of days to explore the island. Lindos was definitely a highlight.