The land of breathtaking seascapes and rich history, Greece is surely a travel destination that many avid travelers dream of. Many look forward to doing interesting and unique things, such as visiting the medieval Meteora known for its Eastern Orthodox monasteries. While newly married couples opt to escape to one of its many spectacular honeymoon destinations. But what about budget travelers?
When it comes to traveling budget, Greece might not be on the top of the list since it can be expensive to travel and stay here. Skip the upscale regions and rather choose an off-the-radar destination like Rhodes Island, where one will get to explore the authentic side of Greece. One does not really need wads of cash to enjoy this spearhead-shaped island which has been serving as a strategic location for ancient civilizations in the past. Rhodes Island was the epicenter for the crusaders coming from all over Europe. During the medieval age (1309), it was here where the Knights of Saint John claimed their headquarters. From the ancient remnants of its old town to its quaint castles tucked in the hills, this place is a real treat to the eyes. Of course, holidays without Greek beaches are always incomplete, so expect to find many unspoiled beaches with turquoise blue waters around. Ready to visit Rhodes on a budget? Then check out these beautiful places.
Stroll At The Iconic Knight’s Street - Rhodes Island
For a free but rich historical tour in Rhodes Island, simply saunter the 0.3-mile-long old street of Odós Ippotón, as most called it the Knight’s Street, and get back to the medieval time, where the Knights of the Order of St. John settled and occupied the island for about two centuries. Take a tour of cobblestone street, which acts as an open museum to discover medieval-Gothic architecture. Marvel at the intricate facades of the Grand Master’s Palace or the 15th-century Knights’ Hospital of St. John. Take a tour of the interior of these buildings and discover many antique objects such as mirrors, furniture, and pots.
Check Out The Mandraki Harbor
The Mandraki Harbor has become a popular place among tourists who come here to take some amazing pictures of the gorgeous mills with the azure sea in the backdrop, and the good news is that it doesn’t cost a dim to enjoy this attraction. The harbor is a special place to visit for many reasons. Firstly, many believe that it was home to one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, where the 33-meter-high Colossus of Rhodes used to stand here until it was destroyed in an earthquake around 226 BC. Another interesting account is that the harbor used to have about 14 mills, which were utilized by the locals to grind grains. Unfortunately, today there are only three of them left. Visitors can also dine at one of the seafood restaurants and enjoy the sweeping view of the blue sea, the towering mills, and the white yachts.
Visit The Medieval Kritinia Castle
Perched beautifully on a hill right at the western coast of Rhodes Island, the 15th-century old Kritinia Castle overlooks the glistening blue sea. Many visitors come here to enjoy the fantastic view of the rolling hills peppered with pine trees and olive groves, but also for the historical architecture of the castle, which was designed by Giorgio Orsini. The prime reason for building this castle was to protect the then inhabitants from an Ottoman invasion. In addition, visitors will get to enjoy the whitewashed village of Kritinia kitted out with authentic tavernas offering some mouth-watering seafood dishes such as Shrimp Saganaki. This is the best way to experience the friendly hospitality of the locals and the serene setting of the area.
Hike The Rugged Mount Profitis Elias In Rhodes
Another way to enjoy the sheer beauty of Rhodes Island for free is by hiking the majestic Mount Profitis Elias, a 2,618 ft mountain to soak up the fresh air and warm sunshine. Many hikers choose to start this eco-adventure at the quaint village of Salakos, located on the northwestern coast of the island. This tranquil village is ideal for those looking for a more rustic and authentic side of Greece. Since the hiking trail has gained a lot of attention, there are many convenient, well-connected bus routes to access the village. Wear a pair of comfortable hiking shoes and set for the two to four hours of hiking trail which starts at the village square. Take the rugged pathway and follow the red marks along the hiking trail. On the way, hikers will find a shrine, and from there, the terrain gets a little steep, so the hike might just be a little strenuous. Don’t forget to pause and visit the historic St Michael’s Chapel along the way. At the summit, take in the picturesque view of the gorgeous Aegean Sea and the Turkish coastline.
- Highest Point: 2,618 ft
- Trailhead: Salakos Village
- Duration: 2 to 4 Hours
Enjoy The Unspoiled Beaches In Southern Rhodes
The great thing about visiting the southern part of Rhodes is the fact that there are many unspoiled beaches to choose from. Whether one is planning to relax on the sun-soaked beaches or enjoy an exciting windsurfing session, Rhodes has many great spots for these activities. Some long stretches of beaches include Kiotaru, Gennadi, and Plimmyri. Surfers can visit Prasonisi beach to enjoy the wind and waves.