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RHODES HISTORY

The island of Rhodes is found at the crossroad of three continents: Europe, Asia, and Africa. It is also found on the marine routes which connected West with Orient, since early antiquity. As a result of its important position, the island attracted various populations. It was influenced by several cultures during its long history. Every people who arrived at Rhodes, peacefully or after winning a war, in mass or in small groups, have left their traces on this beautiful island. Rhodes had always been and still is a place rich both in natural and human resources.

Archaeological surveys have shown that the island was inhabited as early as the Neolithic period. The mythological and ancient sources, but also the scientific research, state that the first residents of the island were the Carians, the Phoenicians and the Minoans, who came from Crete. Those latter were settled in the area of Ialyssos during the 15th-century B.C. and led the island to an outstanding cultural and economic flourishing. Following the destiny of Crete, Rhodes surrendered to the Mycenaean power and under the Achaeans continued to be prosperous for more than 350 years. In 1100 b.C. the Dorians founded the three great and famous cities of Lindos, Kameiros and Ialyssos. The evolution of these three cities went along with that of the cities of the coast across (Southwestern Asia Minor), with which they became allies, a fact that pushed forward wealth and prosperity.

It is the period of the great personalities of the island as the tyrant of Lindos Cleobulus, one of the Seven Sages of the ancient world and Diagoras, winner of the Olympic Games several times. In 408 b.C., the three cities decide to establish a new capital city of the island; thus the city of Rhodes is founded, a town that still exists and flourishes.

Rhodes has followed the destiny of the rest of Greece and was involved in the disputes and wars with the Persians.

During the period of Macedonians and in the Hellenistic period Rhodes was under the power of Macedonians and afterward of Ptolemy of Egypt. This period is the peak -period of glory and prosperity for the island. It was so powerful, that it achieved to defeat the famous Macedonian general Demetrius Poliorkitis (“the besieger”), in 305 b.C. It is in memory of this glorious victory that it was erected the most famous statue of antiquity, the so-called Colossus of Rhodes, which was one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.

During the Roman expansion, Rhodes became an ally of the Romans. However, in this period the town and the whole island suffered damages, due to the civil wars of the Roman generals. Rhodes is one of the first places in Greece where people adopted Christianity; it was St. Paul who preached Christianity on the island in 57 A.D.

During the Byzantine times, the island has periods of prosperity and flourishing. Due to its wealth and its geographical position, Rhodes attracts many invaders, who often attack and pillage it. Finally, in 1306, the island, along with the neighboring islands of Kos and Leros were sold to the Knights of the Order of St. John. Under the domination of the Knights Rhodes becomes commercial, economic, military, and cultural center of the Eastern Mediterranean. The fruit of this period of glory, wealth, and prosperity is the Medieval Town, this wonderful complex that still exists and gives to the town of Rhodes its unique character and atmosphere. It is in this period of flourishing that is formed the particular features of the collective consciousness and the character of the people of the island, that still survive, up to nowadays. In 1522, after a siege that lasted six months, the town and the whole island, surrendered to the Ottomans of the sultan Suleiman the Magnificent.

The island continued to be under the Ottoman domination until 1912 when it passed to the Italians. In the beginning, the population of the island received them as liberators, but soon enough they realized that the Italians’ domination was only new domination that did not bring the freedom they expected. However, the Italians added a lot to the infrastructures of the island and constructed several interesting buildings, which helped the island to recover soon from the damages it suffered during the World War II, both by the Nazis and by the bombings of the allies. After the end of the war, Rhodes was occupied by the British army, who kept it until March 1948, when it was incorporated into Greece, along with the rest of the Dodecanese.

Ever since the history of Rhodes goes along with the history of Greece. Today this beautiful island with the fascinating natural environment, the glorious history, the cultural treasures, and the friendly people has been developed in a first choice tourist destination. Tourism has contributed a lot to the actual wealth and prosperity of the island.

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RHODES TAXI TOURS

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SeattleNWtraveler
SeattleNWtraveler
30 January 2024
Excellent Tour of Rhodes with Rhodes Taxi Tours We spent a very enjoyable day exploring the island of Rhodes with Rhodes Taxi Tours. Our driver Nicholas was very friendly and knowledgeable. Our tour included the historic district of the city of Rhodes, the scenic viewpoints and historic sites of the island, and we drove to the town of Lindos so we could explore the amazing acropolis. Nicholas took us to a ceramic workshop that has been run by a family of artists for generations. Our tour lasted about five hours, but Nicholas was open to customizing the itinerary. We only had one day on Rhodes, and we will likely never have an opportunity to return. Our tour with Rhodes Taxi Tours was definitely the best way to get a good overview of this beautiful island in the short time we were there.
Kimberly M
Kimberly M
24 October 2023
Highly Recommend I highly recommend using Rhodes Taxi Tours. From the very beginning they were very responsive and in constant communication. Our driver Mr. Nicholas was EXCELLENT!! He was extremely knowledgeable and made our experience on this beautiful island superb!
Lori M
Lori M
5 October 2023
What a great way to spend the day in Rhodes We were picked up right at the cruise ship and whisked off to see the beautiful sites of Rhodes. We had a fantastic lunch sea side and lovely swim in a beautiful bay. We met many wonderful locals and bought beautiful pottery from a lovely family with a sweet French bulldog. Could not have asked for a better day.
ChrisGG1950
ChrisGG1950
17 September 2023
A friendly fun day! Met from our Cruise Ship by Nico who rapidly became a friend. His love of his native island was evident in every stop we made and the chats we had, we learned so much. All four of us had a fantastic day in the company of this delightful man, even the downpour at Lindos did not dampen our spirits! We will long remember our brief stay on Rhodes and the luxury tour with Nico!
Joonas M
Joonas M
10 September 2023
Daytrip to Butterfly valley and Lindos We booked a day trip (5 hours) via Rhodes Taxi Tours. The taxi picked us up directly in front of the hotel. Our driver was Nicholas. He was a very friendly and professional driver! He was able to tell us about the history and sights of the island. He was flexible as a driver. It was easy for us to reach the sights we wanted and the driver knew well what to do to save time. We highly recommend Rhodes Taxi tours and special thanks to Nicholas. This trip was one of the highlights of our holiday and exceeded our expectations.
Tornike C
Tornike C
4 September 2023
Excellent tours in Rhodes Perfect choice for group. Great driver and very comfortable minibus. Highly recommend this company for your tour in Rhodes, Greece
Voula R
Voula R
24 August 2023
Excellent Rhodes Private Tours for Families We had a perfect day touring Rhodes! Great welcoming driver met us promptly at the reception desk of our hotel. With great car we explored the island stress free even we had kids. Perfect choice for families. Highly recommend!
Timothy
Timothy
18 July 2023
Fabulous day touring Rhodes with Nikos Had a brilliant day touring Rhodes with our driver Nikos. Nikos was polite, punctual, and passionate about Rhodes. He was very flexible regarding our itinerary for the day, and took us to Lindos and the Acropolis, beach for swimming, fabulous Greek Taverna by the seaside for lunch, pottery workshop and a 1760 monastery.
Dan K
Dan K
1 July 2023
Fantastic Tour of Rhodes With a Local Amazing day with Nicholas, he made us feel welcome and comfortable right away and gave us a great tour of the island which only a local could, providing some great insight about the history of the Island. If you are here thinking about a tour of Rhodes, book it now.
ChrisGG1950
ChrisGG1950
11 June 2023
Fantastic half day! What a fabulous day we had with Nicholas, from our greeting by the ship to our farewells outside the Old Town, it was brilliant. Not only did we get to see a lot of the island and some of the best sites ( and sights!) but it was fascinating to talk to such an enthusiastic islander. Our journey to Lindos was full of stories of Nicholas's life and "Grandpappy's weather forecasting". If ever we return to Rhodes we'll be sure to get in touch, can't recommend this enough! Efcharisto, Nicholas!
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