Discover two sides of the Dodecanese Archipelago: the art and architecture of Rhodes and the beaches, villages and vineyards of Symi and Lindos
Explore the medieval centre of Rhodes City with a private guide
Spend four nights in a beautiful hotel overlooking the glistening Aegean Sea
Round off the holiday with a guided sunset hike on Mount Profítis Ilias
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FLIGHT TO RHODES
Your holiday begins today! Enjoy a relaxing start to your trip with snacks and refreshments in the airport lounge before boarding your four-hour flight to the island of Rhodes. You will be met at the airport and privately transferred to your hotel in the heart of the historic centre of Rhodes City. Spend the rest of the day settling into your hotel. You can relax and enjoy dinner at the hotel, or, if you’re itching to get out and get a feel for the city, we can recommend plenty of great dining options on your doorstep.
DISCOVER RHODES CITY
Today is all about discovering the medieval city of Rhodes. When the Knights of Saint John of Jerusalem conquered Rhodes at the beginning of the 14th century, they wanted to stay here indefinitely. So they set about building a simple, elegant and (most importantly) impregnable city. However, Rhodes City didn’t prove to be as impregnable as they had hoped. In 1522, Suleiman the Magnificent of the Ottoman Empire succeed in his second attempt to take siege of the city. Your private guide will lead you to some of the most important sites of the UNESCO-listed medieval citadel: the ramparts, the Palace of the Grand Masters and the Street of the Knights, which is lined with the ‘inns of tongues’ (palatial residences for different nationalities). For a change of scenery, head to the Diagoras monument, a statue which celebrates the feats of an Ancient Greek boxer from the fifth century BC.
This morning you will be privately transferred to the port of Rhodes to hop on a boat across the azure waters of the Dodecanese Archipelago to the idyllic island of Symi. Your home for the next two nights is a beautiful property in the town with wonderful views out to sea. The rest of the day is yours to enjoy. We recommend savouring a long, lazy evening at the hotel to ensure you have plenty of energy for tomorrow.
Today is all about discovering the beauty of Symi. Spend the morning exploring the picturesque town, with its grand pastel-toned houses facing the sea and traditional fishing boats bobbing in the harbour. Then it is time to hit the beach and take a dip in the transparent turquoise ocean. You’re spoilt for choice in the region, so we recommend making use of the small water taxis to jet around the coast. We can also arrange for you to continue your exploration out to sea aboard a caïque – a traditional fishing boat.
SCENIC DRIVE TO LINDOS
Today you will embark on a journey to the beautiful town of Lindos back on Rhodes Island. Enjoy the peaceful boat ride across the Dodecanese Archipelago before being transferred to a rental agency to collect your hire car. The drive to your next hotel should take around one hour, but we won’t be surprised if the classic Greek landscapes you are driving through seduce you into taking a few breaks along the way. Your home for the next four nights is a contemporary hotel perched above Vlycha beach. Spend the rest of today settling in and relaxing after a day of travel. You can explore the Mediterranean garden, read your book by the pool, make use of the soothing spa and tuck into a tasty evening meal.
LINDOS AND ITS SURROUNDINGS
You have the next two days to explore Lindos and its beautiful surroundings. While you might be tempted to while away the hours kicking back on the idyllic Mediterranean beaches, we recommend making use of your hire car to discover every nook and cranny of this charming corner of the island. On your doorstep is Lindos, a classic white-washed village set on a promontory with an ancient acropolis and a lovely ringed bay, Agios Pavlos. Further south, the villages of Asklipio and Lachania are worth a visit. Nature-lovers can head out to the west coast to soak in the pristine landscapes of vineyards, orchards, vegetable gardens, Aleppo pines, Italian cypresses and date palms. There is also a shady valley, which is home to the beautiful Jersey Tiger moth. When you are ready for a good glass of wine, head to the village of Embonas to taste some high-quality varieties from nearby vineyards. There are also plenty of opportunities for wine tasting along the way.
SEA KAYAKING AND A SUNSET HIKE
To make the last full day of your island-hopping adventure on the Dodecanese that much more memorable, we recommend scheduling in a sea kayaking tour with a local guide to discover the tiny coves dotted along the coastline. Then, come afternoon, set off on a sunset hike up Profítis Ilías. Enjoy a scenic one-hour drive to the central-western part of the island for a walk along the slopes of Mount Profítis Ilías to the village of Salakos. The mountain is the third highest in Rhodes and is covered shaded by ilex, pine and olive trees. As you climb, watch the sun descend over the Aegean Sea, the Turkish coastline and some neighbouring islands. You can also discover ‘Elafos’ (the deer) and ‘Elafina' (the hind), two twin hotels built by Italian settlers in 1929 and 1932 in an Alpine architectural style. The Villa de Vecci, the house of the former Italian governor of Rhodes and the Byzantine church of Profítis Ilías can also be spotted along the way.
The time has come to head back home, so make sure to soak in the last of the gorgeous Greek surroundings on your one-hour drive back to the airport. Drop off your hire car and then settle in for a pleasant four-hour flight back to the UK.
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SYMI BY CAIQUE
Shipyards and sponge fishing made Symi a prosperous island until the beginning of the 20th century and many houses still bear witness to this prosperity. One of the best ways to admire the island and its beautiful architecture is by boat. The caique is the traditional fishing and transport boat of the eastern Mediterranean. Its rigging, style and size have all changed over time, but is still the same elegant, slender and manoeuvrable boat that makes sailing such a pleasure. Head out with an English-speaking skipper for an adventure around the island’s picturesque coastline.
SEA KAYAKING AROUND RHODES
Kayaking is still the best way to discover the wild coves, hidden bays and crystal-clear waters that surround the island of Rhodes. After a few explanations from the instructor, you will paddle from Kathara Beach to a number of tiny coves spread across the island’s coastline. Breaks for swimming and snorkelling in the crystal-clear waters, as well as a picnic lunch on the beach are also on the agenda.
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