Rhodes, Greece

by: Iyna Bort Caruso

In some ways, Rhodes is most famous for what it no longer has: a giant statue of Helios, the Greek Sun God. The so-called Colossus of Rhodes, destroyed in an earthquake more than 2,000 years ago, was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

Fortunately, Rhodes still has plenty of wonders – both the manmade and natural kind – which is the reason it is one of the country’s top destinations. Among them, a multicultural heritage that dates back 14 centuries, dozens of spectacular beaches and 300 days of sunshine. The island has its own microclimate. In the summer months, a dry western wind known as the meltemi offers cooling relief.

Rhodes is the largest of the Dodecanese islands. Located northeast of Crete, southeast of Athens and just a few miles off the coast of Turkey, it is well connected through an international airport that offers direct flights to major European cites. Throughout its history, its strategic location has made it a prized possession of numerous empires and nations.

Life in Rhodes moves at a relaxed pace. The population density is low and family roots run deep.

Within the main city of Rhodes, the walled old town earned UNESCO World Heritage status and is one of the largest and best preserved medieval districts in all of Europe. The “new” town is an architectural mix of Venetian, neoclassic and modern. Beyond the city are olive groves, vineyards, green valleys and hot spring resorts.

Beach resorts are cosmopolitan playgrounds offering windsurfing, kite surfing and yachting. Many beaches have merited Blue Flag designation for their clean, clear waters.

Rhodes offers buyers seafront residences, captain’s houses, traditional village homes and modern retreats. Within the old town, heritage properties that have been restored according to local preservation guidelines are especially desirable. Development is regulated. New housing projects are typically limited in number, keeping real estate prices stable.

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