If you want a romantic place to get away from it all, Rhodes in the off-season is your place! A companion and me spent a week in Rhodes, exploring, backpacking, eating, beach combing, shopping, and generally have a fantastic time.
We were living in Turkey at the time and rented a car in Ankara and drove to a beautiful Turkish hamlet call Marimus, which is surrounded on three sides by high hills and mountains. The side that faces the Mediterranean Sea is partially enclosed by high cliffs that form a harbor that is at once peaceful and serene. We got there in mid-afternoon and spent the night at a cozy little hotel on the beach. That night we watched the moon rise out of the ocean between two mountain peaks and cast a beautiful dim white light over the town! Talk about romantic!
The next morning we climbed—backpacks in tow—aboard a ferry for the approximately three-hour ride to Rhodes. A word of caution: the seas can be choppy in this area of the Mediterranean so if you are prone to sea and, or motion sickness, keep the Dramamine near by.
We disembarked in Rhodes in good repair, passed briefly through customs, and were on our way. Because we went to Rhodes in the off season (Middle of October), we had our choice of hotels. And those that were not closed offered comfortable accommodations at a reasonable price. We chose a hotel on the beach of course!
We rented a motorcycle for the week to get around the Island, but could have just as easily rented a car; we thought the motorcycle would be more fun! Except for a couple of overcast days, the weather was perfect, and the temperature while cool in the evening, was comfortable during the day. We never needed more than a reasonably thick sweater or sweatshirt to keep us warm on our walk during the evenings.
The motorcycle allowed us to see both the town and the surrounding area economically. The town is rich in history; the buildings in the older sections of the town were straight out of a medieval history lesson. Lots of them have been converted into enchanting little shops and, or restaurants and have been lovingly preserved. We also got out of town and went on day trip into the countryside. We found plenty to keep us busy, and in the course of a week visited scores of little hamlets tucked along the coastal roads. We stopped at one little shop and picked up hand made woolen Greek sweaters for a song. We also picked up crafts and a few linens. But because we were backpacking we were limited in what we could buy.
The food was mouthwatering wherever we stopped. Greek chicken, pasta and freshly backed bread were our stables, but I absolutely feel in love with Gyro’s. Authentic Greek gyros are far more tasty then the fair we are used to here in the U.S. There was a little kiosk right down the street from our hotel where I would eat breakfast and lunch (if we were in town). I would consume at least four gyros packed with fresh onions and yogurt. The lamb was flavorful, fresh, un-pressed, and melted in my mouth! I think I can still taste it!
A week in Rhodes was not enough time to see and experience everything, but its all we had. If you are looking for a laid back, romantic place to connect with that special someone, you can’t do much better than Rhodes.
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