Medieval Festival: every year at the end of May takes place the famous Medieval festival of Rhodes that represents life of those times. Join us to watch Medieval fights , medieval feasts and a lot more from actors that wear traditional Medieval costumes , with armors and swords, Medieval dancers and stilbots, listen to Medieval music and imagine that you live in the Medieval Rhodes of knights of St. John. Of course all this would be nothing without tasting the cuisine of the knights , with traditional cheese, bread and beer.
Stawberry festival: takes place in the village of Paradisi next to the airport of Rhodes and is an opportunity to try local strawberries , local deserts , accompanied by traditional music and dancing events.
European Music Festival: at the end of June in the Palace of the Grand Master and the City Hall square of Rhodes the famous festival of European classical music takes place, with famous artists and dancers from all over Europe. The city center is transformed into an open stage of musical events.
Watermelon festival: in the mid of July in the village of Apollakia and of course at the end of watermelon harvesting, locals organize a small event to launch their products made out of watermelon, such as jams, desserts .
Assumption of Mary: at 15th of August in the village of Kremasti we honor one of the greatest religious events, the assumption of Mary, or as we call it the Easter of Summer. At that day Kremasti village becomes the center of the island with thousand of people arriving from all over the island to light a candle in the name of Holy Mary. Also except from the religious part of this big event you will also find a small feast outside the church with local tastes and small producers showing off their merchandise.
Giapraki festival: in the mid of August , in the village of Salakos , in order to celebrate the end of grape harvesting, the locals dedicate a day to serve all the guests with the famous “Giapraki” (stuffed vine leafs with rice and pork meat). If your way brings you there , make a stop and try this traditional plate.
Wine festival: at the end of August in the small village of Empona , we celebrate the vintage of wine . The feast starts of course with wine tasting , accompanied with traditional dishes and ends with singing and dancing with local artists.
Walnut festival: usually takes place at the end of September when the walnuts are ready to be harvested in the small village of Dimilia. The locals prepare a big feast and they serve traditional walnut deserts
While wandering around the narrow cobblestone streets of the Medieval Town admiring the history and the medieval aura of the City, you can enjoy your meal from fresh local products, you will taste a fresh fish in the small traditional taverns while you survey the harbor. Everywhere around there is a smell of sesame from the traditional Rhodian Desert (Melekouni) that you can find in the bazaar of the Medieval Town along with the traditional loukoumi. Leaving the center and driving to Butterfly valley and the ostrich farm, you can try the famous omelette from ostrich eggs which is in a size of a fooball. Southern to the island while searching for the ideal place to have your dinner sit in a traditional fish taverna in Kolympia to have your shrimps , octopus or kalamari next to the sea, or if you prefer something more graphic you can drive until Stegna and they will serve you with the best pasta with lobster you could ever imagine . You can really feel and taste the sea in it.
On the other hand if you are meat lovers and prefer more agricultural destinations you can find what you are looking for in the small villages on the mountain Attaviros of Rhodes. Fresh meat from mountainAttaviros, the best “kleftiko” you will ever taste (kleftiko is a traditional plate with goat meat , peppers and onions in the oven) , traditional Rhodian drink “Souma” and of course the best local red wine you can find on the island. Last but not least after the rich lunch you are not allowed to leave unless you taste the well known “Diples” (traditional desert with honey and nuts).
Finally on your way back to the center you can make a few stops if you still can stand it to taste some wines, in the small wineries you will find along your way.
The most important site to visit and just 10 steps from our hotel is the Grand Master’s Palace: According to recent study, in the exact spot in which the palace exists today, there were the foundations of the ancient temple of the Sun-god ‘Helios’ and probably that was the spot where Colossus of Rhodes stood in the Antiquity. The palace was originally built in the late 7th century as a Byzantine Citadel. After the Knights Hospitalier occupied Rhodes and some other Greek islands (such as Kalymnos and Kastellorizo) in 1309, they converted the fortress into their administrative centre and the palace of their Grand Master. In the first quarter of the 14th century, they repaired the palace and made a number of major modifications. The palace was damaged in the earthquake of 1481, and it was repaired soon afterwards.
The Archaeological Museum: The Archaeological Museum of Rhodes is located in the Medieval City of Rhodes. The museum is housed in the monumental edifice that was the hospital of the Knights of Saint John. Construction of it was begun in 1440 and brought to completion in the time of the Grand Master d’Aubusson (1476-1503). The Museum contains various collections of archaeological artifacts from various parts of Rhodes and the neighbouring islands. Statue of the Crouching Aphrodite, 1st century BC, inspired by a famous prototype work created by the sculptor Doidalsas in the 3rd century B.C.
Museum of Modern Art: The Modern Greek Art Museum presents extensive painting and engraving collections not to mention numerous sculptures, drawings and documents of historical value. The works of engraving and painting represent efficiently the modern Greek art of the 20th century along with its most eminent artists. Some of these works of art are considered to be of great significance and they are chosen in order to narrate the history of art. The central idea of all these collections is to present the history of Greece through the eyes and the soul of Greek artists of the 20th century. The Modern Greek Art Museum reflects the particularity and simultaneously the international character of Greece.
Suleiman Mosque: This mosque was the first mosque in the town of Rhodes, built soon after Ottomans besieged it and captured it in 1522. In 1808 the current building of mosque was built through the reconstruction of this first mosque. Its plaster is rose-pink. The most of the mosque was reconstructed using materials of the buildings which existed at the same place in the earlier period.
Our lady of the castle: The church of Our Lady of the Castle is located at the eastern end of the Knights Street in Kollakio the Medieval City. The original core of the building was probably erected in the 11th century. and belonged to the type of cruciform domed temple. This architecture phase is evident to the genesis of some vaults.
According to the Ministry of Culture after the conquest of Rhodes by the Knights, the Byzantine church was reconstructed and took the form of three-aisled Gothic basilica with transept. The coats of arms of the Grand Master Helion de Villeneuve and Pope John XXII saved in the central pointed arch window militate in dating this phase between 1319 and 1334.
Hafiz Ahmed Agha Library: is an important historic Ottoman building in the medieval city of Rhodes in Greece, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The library was founded by Hafiz Ahmed Agha in 1793. Hafiz Ahmed Agha was born in the village of Asgourou , 3 km to the south from the present center of the city of Rhodes, in the middle of the 18th century in a wealthy, established Ottoman family. He was educated in the Imperial Court and later became the Chief Equerry of the Sultan. He retired in 1789, but was reactivated and became a member of the regular delegations travelling to Mecca with the yearly presents of the sultan to the Sharif of Mecca. He died on such a travel some time between 1800-1802. He founded this library for the literate public of his home town with 1995 manuscripts from the entire scope of Islamic science in 1793. The institution became a center of learning. Hafiz Ahmed Agha paid the librarians also for teaching the Arabic language, which was necessary for the reading of the texts. Presently there are 1256 manuscripts in the possession of the library. Among the most valuables there is a Koran from 1540, the history of the Turkish siege of the city in 1522, and manuscripts with Persian miniatures.
Roloi clock tower: The clocktower is a byzantine structure that was originally built at the end of the 7th. century, and has undergone several rebirth since. It now is a fonctioning piece of our history where you can enjoy the beautiful views of Rhodes and Old Town.
Local products and local cuisine gives a place an identity. The products of the island of Rhodes are unique products with special characteristics.
The most famous and most common product of Rhodes is “melekouni” , a dessert that is traditionally offered in weddings. According to local tradition, the abundance of sesame seeds symbolizes fertility, while the honey represents the union between the couple. It is truly a dessert full of vitamins and nutritional elements. it is made of sesame seeds , honey , cinnamon, almonds and orange juice.
The best vines grow at an altitude of 650-700 meters. The vineyards are low-yield and are exposed to the Aegean’s strong northerly winds that moderate the high temperatures and provide a favorable climate for high-quality grapes. The island’s main varieties are Athiri and Amorgiano, together with two Muscats, the petits grains (“small-berried”) and the Di Trani, a clone of Muscat introduced by the Italians from Puglia, that grow In the limestone-rich soil of Attavyros.
Rhodes Olive Oil and Olives:
Rhodes has 2 varieties of olive trees , Koroneiki and Ladolia. The extra virgin olive oil is produced from the Koroneiki variety of olive trees in the area of Kalamonas Rhodes , with special care throughout the production, from cultivation and pruning, to storage. Olives are harvested every year in the early November and transported into plastic crates to the mill. Cold extraction takes place on the harvest day in order to maintain all organoleptic features and nutritional characteristics of fruit. The oil is distinguished by its fruity character and the delicate taste which is balanced between bitter and spicy. Olives from Koroneiki variety is used only for the production of olive oil , mostly because the olives are too small . On the contrary Ladolia variety is mostly used for eating and when they have this dark brown colour and wrinkled surface , they are ready to taste.
Anise (ouzo) with coffee:
As the name suggests, Ouzo with Coffee is a mixture of ouzo and coffee liqueur. In the first moment, this may seem quite strange, but once you have tasted it, you know it tastes extremely delicious. Coffee liqueur removes a bit of ouzo “sharpness” and thus the drink becomes very interesting and full of flavor. Each sip of ouzo with coffee liqueur is an unforgettable taste experience. A genuine liqueur from Rhodes to drink as an aperitif or as an iced shot.
In Rhodes we produce honey of excellent quality in different varieties such as flowers, pine, conifers, thyme etc. The vegetation of the island is wild and self-seeded. Over 400 bee plants have been recorded. All mountains are full of herbs, wildflowers and coniferous trees such as thyme, rosemary, oregano, heather, pine etc. All these offer honey a high nutritional value and excellent taste. Rhodes has an excellent climate and long-lasting sunshine period (Island of the Sun). It is therefore ideal place for bees to work.
Rhodes is famous for the “Askadia”, dried figs that are boiled in a cauldron of water with various aromatic branches, ascik, alfalfa, myrtle, walnut, laurel, which will add aroma. Then leave them in the sun for a few days to dry and eat them in the winter with nuts or neat. Askadia are made from very mature figs that wither and fall from the tree. Then they are baked in the oven as well, but we take care not to overcook them because they harden when they cool down. Most famous in Rhodes are “Pastelaries”. These are large and soft dry figs with roasted sesame and cinnamon. They are baked in a moderate oven and, as they are hot, they are stacked in a tin box or plastic box, with myrtle or alfalfa leaves.
Traditional painted plates of Rhodes:
Another tradition of Rhodes that is connected to a traditional marriage of the local community is the colorful ceramic plates that tend to decorate the walls of the just-married couple. It is a symbol of heritage that passes from generation to generation and you will find it mostly in the small traditional villages of Rhodes. The decoration on the plates mostly are inspired by colorful Islamic herbal motifs, with tulips, carnations, a bouquet of flowers, but also other representations of various types of boats and pictures of animals and birds and even mythological monsters.