The island of Rhodes is shaped like a spearhead, 79.7 km (49.5 mi) long and 38 km (24 mi) wide, with a total area of approximately 1,400 square kilometres (541 sq mi) and a coastline of approximately 220 km (137 mi). The city of Rhodes is located at the northern tip of the island, as well as the site of the ancient and modern commercial harbours. The main air gateway (Diagoras International Airport, IATA code: RHO) is located 14 km (9 mi) to the southwest of the city in Paradisi. The road network spreads from the city along the east and west coasts.
In ancient times, Rhodes was home to one of the Seven Wonders of the World – the Colossus of Rhodes. This giant bronze statue that once stood in the harbour was completed in 280 BC but was destroyed in an earthquake in 224 BC. No trace of the statue remains today.
In 1309 the Byzantine era came to an end when the island was occupied by forces of the Knights Hospitaller. Under the rule of the newly named “Knights of Rhodes”, the city was rebuilt into a model of the European medieval ideal. Many of the city’s famous monuments, including the Palace of the Grand Master, were built during this period.
In 1912, Rhodes was seized from the Turks by the Italians, and in 1948, together with the other islands of the Dodecanese, was united with mainland Greece.
Historical sites on the island of Rhodes include the Acropolis of Lindos, the Acropolis of Rhodes, the Temple of Apollo, ancient Ialysos, ancient Kamiros, the Governor’s Palace, Rhodes Old Town (walled medieval city), the Palace of the Grand Masters, Kahal Shalom Synagogue in the Jewish Quarter, the Archaeological Museum, the ruins of the castle of Monolithos, the castle of Kritinia and St. Catherine Hospice.
Lindos (in Greek: Λίνδος) is a town and an archaeological site on the east coast of the Greek island of Rhodes, in the Dodecanese in southeastern Aegean Sea. It is about 55 km south of the town of Rhodes and its fine beaches make it a popular tourist and holiday destination. Lindos is situated in a large bay and faces Kalathos Bay and the small resort of Haraki.
Above the modern town rises the acropolis of Lindos, a natural citadel which was fortified successively by the Greeks, the Romans, the Byzantines, the Knights of St John and the Ottomans. This makes the site difficult to excavate and interpret archaeologically. The acropolis offers spectacular views of the surrounding harbours and coastlines.