This guided tour is your ideal opportunity to explore Rhodes, captivating West Coast and interior, home to exceptional ancient monuments, intriguing medieval forts and picturesque mountain routes. Accompanied by a professional local guide, delve into this region’s rich history and culture. Discover the mysterious ancient site of Kamiros, the magnificent castle of Kritinia with spectacular views, the traditional wine village of Embona, the scenic route of Mt. Profitis Ilias with numerous Italian heritage monuments, capturing memorable moments at the Eleousa fountain with the famous Gizani fish, a refreshing oasis in the middle of the mountains. Fountouklis area with Saint Nikolaos church and Kallithea Springs, a majestic place famous for the beneficial properties and of the waters gushing from the rocks around.
Our journey starts with Ancient Kamiros (1 hour & 10 minutes) which was a city of ancient Rhodes. It’s site is on the northwest coast of the island, 3 kilometres west of the modern village of Kalavarda. The ancient city was built on three levels. At the top of the hill was the Acropolis, with the temple complex of Athena and the stoa. The main settlement was on the middle terrace, consisting of a grid of parallel streets and residential blocks. On the lower terrace are found a Doric temple, probably to Apollo, the Fountain House, with the Agora in front of it and Peribolos of the Altars, which contained dedications to various deities. During the prehistoric period the area was inhabited by Mycenaean Greeks. The city itself was founded by the Dorians. (The entrance fee is 6 euro)
We continue (40 minutes stay) with the Castle of Kritinia, a Venetian Castle of 16th century on a hill about 131 meters above the village of Kritinia. It’s a landscape of unspoiled beauty which offers a breath taking view of Aegean sea, the island of Halki and the islets of Strogyli, Makri, and Alimia. Due to its strategic location, which allowed complete monitoring of the sea and the thus, the activities of pirates and other enemies, the site was chosen by the Knights of the order of St. John to build the castle. Today, only the shell of the castle still survives but above the entrance of it lie the coats of arms of two Grand Masters (Grand Master D’Amboise & Grand Master Origny) of the Medieval Era. Within the walls, there are also remnants of a chapel devoted to Saint John, where you can see amazing 16th century wall paintings.
We are joining the winery – olive oil tasting and local products in a Cava in Embona’s village (1 hour & 15 minutes stay) in one of the oldest Wineries in Rhodes island. The wines are produced by collecting grapes from the vineyards so you can choose from different kind of wines, all of them made in Embona.
In addition, visitors can taste liqueurs, ouzo, souma with honey, masticha and pomegranate, combined with nuts and fresh fruits, at the bar for free. Olive oil is also produced and you can find honey from local producers and all kinds of cosmetics – herbs with olive oil too.
Experience the best traditional food in a local tavern in Embona’s village, during your free time. Your tour guide will provide a few recommendations. Don’t miss checking Embona’s souvenir shops for authentic handmade goods!
We will drive after to Profitis Ilias (20 minutes stay), a 798 meters high mountain with very interesting attractions. Its a small summer resort (called Elafos and Elafina) created fresh and relaxing by the Italians in 1929, in the heart of a forest of Aleppo pines, cedars and cypress trees populated by deer, an ideal stop for photos or coffee break. On our way to Profitis Ilias we meet an old building that was the Cottage of the Italian dictator Musollini used in the period of around World War II and we capture memorable moments at the Eleousa fountain with the famous Gizani fish, a refreshing oasis in the middle of the mountains.
Continuing, we reach Fountouklis area (20 minutes stay) where we will visit a Byzantine church of Saint Nikolaos. This church dates from the 14th to 15th century and is a central square building covered with a dome. What’s important in this church is the triple composition of the frescoes in the apse.
Driving East, inside the countryside and villages of Rhodes island, we arrive in Kallithea Springs (1 hour stay), a majestic place were known from the ancient times for the beneficial properties and of the waters gushing from the rocks around. Nowadays, completely restored and tastefully refurbished, the complex of Kallithea Springs welcomes hundred of visitors daily. It is worth seeing the facilities, swimming into the clear blue water of its coves, enjoy refreshments at the coffee shop in front of the sea or visit the Photo Gallery with older photos of the island! The incomparable monumental architecture and the magnificence of the place with its unique mosaics, the hall of the Rotunda where once thermal waters gushed, refer us, nostalgically, to another era. (The Entrance fee is 3,00 euro per person).