Rhodes News

Latest news about the island of Rhodes in Greece.

Island shopping in Greece

Whether you're interested in history, mythology, geography - or simply lying in the sun with a glass of retsina, Greece has an island to suit everyone, writes Paul Edwards.

The journeys of the mind are cheap - in my case all it takes is a glass of retsina, a plate of moussaka and the opening chord of Zorba's Dance.

Instantly I'm back in the Greek islands, threading through the tightly packed grey and white houses on mysterious Chios, or joining the never-ending movement at the ferry terminals at Piraeus.

I'm hobbling across the burning sand of Koukounaries beach on Skiathos or watching the dolphins around the ferry from Samos to Patmos. I'm taking in the hectic in-crowd scene at Mykonos and wishing I was somewhere else - perhaps the green fields of Corfu, looking across the narrow strait to Albania.

The imagination conjures up the snow-capped mountains of Crete and the spectacular harbour at Rhodes, and with another retsina the mind switches to Hydra and its patient donkeys or blown-apart Santorini, perhaps the most spectacular island of all.

There are 1450 Greek islands, but fewer than 200 of them are inhabited. I haven't heard of anyone visiting each one, but if they have, they've covered one of the world's truly great destinations.

The largest of the Dodecanese group, Rhodes owes its legendary birth to the union of Helios the sun god and the nymph Rhode. It is still known as the Isle of the Sun, appropriate for the hundreds of thousands of visitors who come here simply to lie on beaches and eat in tavernas. Hopefully they also get a whiff of the island's history, much of which is neatly packaged in the capital Rhodes.

Rhodes was central to the Crusades and was governed by the Knights of St John during the Middle Ages. Many of their fortifications remain, nudging up to even older ruins including the temples of Zeus and Athena.

If you're after beach life, there's plenty of it here. The most popular resorts are along the main road from Rhodes to Lindos; others are in slightly less accessible settlements along the west and south coasts.

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