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Lindos
Λινδίων
Acropolis of Lindos: the restored stoa
Acropolis of Lindos: the restored stoa
Location
Lindos is located in Greece
Lindos
Coordinates 36°05′N 28°05′E / 36.083°N 28.083°E / 36.083; 28.083Coordinates: 36°05′N 28°05′E / 36.083°N 28.083°E / 36.083; 28.083
Government
Country: Greece
Periphery: South Aegean
Prefecture: Dodecanese
Mayor: Emmanouil Pallas
Population statistics (as of 2001[1])
City
 - Population: 3,633
 - Area: 178.900 km2 (69 sq mi)
 - Density: 20 /km2 (53 /sq mi)
Other
Time zone: EET/EEST (UTC+2/3)
Elevation (min-max): 0 - 5 m (0 - 16 ft)
Postal: 851 07
Telephone: 22440
Auto: ΚΧ, ΡΟ, PK

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 the fishing village and small resort of Haraki.

Above the modern town rises the acropolis of Lindos, a natural citadel which was fortified successively by the Greeks, by 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 coastline.

Contents

History

Lindos was founded by the Dorians led by the king Tlepolemus of Rhodes, who arrived in about the 10th century BC. It was one of six Dorian cities in the area known as the Dorian Hexapolis. The eastern location of Rhodes made it a natural meeting place between the Greeks and the Phoenicians, and by the 8th century Lindos was a major trading centre. Its importance declined after the foundation of the city of Rhodes in the late 5th century.

In classical times the acropolis of Lindos was dominated by the massive temple of Athena Lindia, which attained its final form in around 300 BC. In Hellenistic and Roman times the temple precinct grew as more buildings were added. In early mediaeval times these buildings fell into disuse, and in the 14th century they were partly overlaid by a massive fortress built on the acropolis by the Knights of St John to defend the island against the Ottomans.

Landmarks

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Acropolis

View from the acropolis of Lindos

On the acropolis of Lindos today parts of the following buildings may still be seen:

  • The Doric Temple of Athena Lindia, dating from about 300 BC, built on the site of an earlier temple. Inside the temple is the table of offerings and the base of the cult statue of Athena.
  • The Propylaea of the Sanctuary, also dating from the 4th century BC. A monumental staircase leads to a D-shaped stoa and a wall with five door openings.
  • The Hellenistic stoa with lateral projecting wings, dating from about 200 BC. The stoa is 87 metres long and consisted of 42 columns.
  • The well-known relief of a Rhodian trireme (warship) cut into the rock at the foot of the steps leading to the acropolis. On the bow stood a statue of General Hagesander, the work of the sculptor Pythokritos. The relief dates from about 180 BC.
  • The Hellenistic staircase (2nd century BC) leading to the main archaeological area of the acropolis.
  • Remains of a Roman temple, possibly dedicated to the Emperor Diocletian and dating from about 300 AD.
  • The Acropolis is surrounded by a Hellenistic wall contemporary with the Propylaea and the stairway leading to the entrance to the site. A Roman inscription says that the wall and square towers were repaired at the expense of P Aelius Hagetor, the priest of Athena in the 2nd century AD.
  • The Castle of the Knights of St John, built some time before 1317 on the foundations of older Byzantine fortifications. The walls and towers follow the natural conformation of the cliff. A pentagonal tower on the south side commanded the harbour, the settlement and the road from the south of the island. There was a large round tower on the east facing the sea and two more, one round and the other on a corner, on the northeast side of the enceinte. Today one of the towers at the southwest corner and one to the west survive.
  • The Greek Orthodox Church of St John, dating from the 13th or 14th century and built on the ruins of a previous church, which may have been built as early as the 6th century.

Some scenes of the well-known film, The Guns of Navarone, were filmed here.

Excavations

Doric Temple of Athena Lindia

Excavations were carried out at Lindos in the years 1900 to 1914 by the Carlsberg Institute of Denmark, directed by K.F. Kinch and Christian Blinkenberg. The acropolis site was excavated down to bedrock and the foundations of all the buildings were uncovered.

During the Italian occupation of the island (1912–1945) major restoration work was carried out on the Lindos acropolis, but it was poorly done and was harmful to the historic record. The north-east side of the Temple of Athena was restored. The monumental staircase to the propylaea was rebuilt and many of the columns of the Hellenistic stoa were re-erected. Large surfaces were covered with concrete. Bases and inscribed blocks were taken from their locations and placed along the restored walls.

Judged by modern standards, this work took insufficient note of the evidence available from the excavations and in its methods did damage to the remains themselves. In recent years Greek and international archaeologists under the supervision of the Greek Ministry of Culture have been working to restore and protect the ancient buildings on the site.

See also

References


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Lindos is a medieval village on the Greek island of Rhodes.

Lindos village and acropolis
Lindos village and acropolis

Understand

Lindos provides a mix of history, beaches and the marina. It has only 700 inhabitants, who are outnumbered greatly by tourists. The village has many historic houses known as "Captains" houses, often dating from 16th, 17th or 18th century. The village is made up of a network of cobbled streets - all of which is entirely pedestrianised. The only modes of transport allowed are donkeys, mopeds and bikes. The houses are like small whitewashed boxes and sit beautifully on the hillside making it the most beautiful place on the island. The charm of this village is maintained by a preservation order which forbids any unauthorised building work to change it.

Get in

Bus service from Rhodes city (56 km or 35 miles away). A ticket costs 4.50 euros one-way. Lindos can also be reached by boat from the Mandraki harbour in Rhodes. Good tour operators for Lindos include Kosmar, Direct Greece, Olympic Holidays and Libra - all of which have a wide range of apartments and villas for all different family groupings.

You can park outside the city. There are blue "non-free spaces" intermixed with free spaces beyond the large "supermarket" parking. To get to the city, once you are at the "supermarket" parking, go down and after a while you'll have to choices at the last parking plaza: enter the city through a small side street, or go down to the beach, walk to the other end and climb up to the city.

Get around

Lindos is a small town, so walking around on foot is a decent option. However, as Lindos is built on the side of a steep hill, the roads can be quite difficult, and climbing up to the acropolis is definitely an effort. There are two alternatives. A bus will bring you down from the main arrival bus stop outside the center of the city to a square closer to the sea - it's not far, but quite a change in elevation. If you wish to go on top of the acropolis, you can rent a ride on a donkey for about € 6.

Castle
Castle
An old church in Lindos
An old church in Lindos

Visit the ruins of the Acropolis and the (still unfinished as of mid-2009) reconstructed temple of Lindian Athena. Entrance fee to the Acropolis itself is € 6, but you do have a nice view from there. It's open till 1840 from March to December (according to staff, don't trust the outdated tourist guides...). There is also the remains of an Ancient Amphitheatre carved into the slope of the Acropolis.

You can visit Kleoboulous's tomb, a small stone structure at the tip of the bay.

You can also see St Paul's Bay where the saint supposedly crashed on the island and brought Christianity with him.

And of course, the town itself is worth sightseeing, with its traditional old Greek architecture. Some houses, known as "Captain's Houses", are supposedly extra beautiful - if you can find them (and enter them). There are also old churches spread around, there is a tour going around them - otherwise most of them are closed (and hard to find).

Do

The town has one of the few sand beaches on Rodos. This also mean they can be quite crowded, and unfortunately, there is trash (cigerette buts...) to be found. The bay also seem to have a rather high density of boats (mostly touristy stuff, including a glass bottom boat, but still...).

Eat

Lindos has many restaurants, all catering to tourists, and featuring food from every nationality you can think of. All staff are English speaking and menus are written in English. Most bars serve breakfast up until mid-afternoon so there is plenty of variety and choice. In terms of convenience food, there are several snack bars and several 'crepe houses' serving both sweet and savoury crepes - made fresh before your eyes - at very reasonable prices. Supermarkets stock an excellent array of foods and lots of imported English food so you will never be stranded without your favourite item, if you for some odd reason prefere English instead of the local cuisine.

One of the better Tavernas is the Acropolis View Taverna, where all the food on the menu is barbecued and tastes delicious, using local meat from Rhodes. Also worth a try is Maria's Taverna.

Drink

Lindos has a wealth of different bars catering to all tastes. Many have rooftop gardens where you can watch the sun go down (or come up!) as you drink.Lindos By Night Bar especially has several roof gardens where you can watch the night go by! All bars are welcoming to children and there are many who have restaurants also. There are two nightclubs within the village itself and an open air club which can be accessed by a short taxi ride and which stays open until the very early hours of the morning.

Sleep

There are a large number of studios, apartments and villas - most with spectacular views - and all very close to the centre of town. You are best to get self-catering accommodation within the village itself for the best experience of Lindos as some of the Lindos hotels are located outside of the village meaning that you will need transportation to get you to the beach, restaurants and nightlife.

  • Luxury Lindos Villa - Tel: (UK) + 44 (0)1234 823 274 Luxury Lindos Villa . This is a family friendly villa with a private pool located with child safety in mind. It has great access to the local beaches and is in close proximity to the shops found in Lindos. Rooms with balconies afford great views of the South Aegean Sea and Navarone Mountains. All the facilities are of the top quality expected in a luxury villa.

Another very good bar is the Courtyard, which as the name suggests has a courtyard and a very smart clean inside area with two open floors which give splendid views of the Acropolis. This is the only bar in Lindos to have live bouzouki music, this is on a sunday night.

Get out

Frequent buses run from Rhodes city all up and down the east coast of the island, including to and from Lindos, though they can be slow because of frequent stops. For drivers, the road between Lindos and Rhodes city is a modern highway.

Contact

There is an Internet cafe in Lindos called Lindianet, www.lindianet.gr.

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