So, let us continue our journey on the west coast and talk about Monolithos Castle In Rhodes. Just like the castle in Kritinia, this castle is also a wonderful place to see and is packed with history and wonderful views.
Again, it offers peace, tranquility and a real look at the ancient times on the island.
Monolithos and the castle are located approximately 70 Kilometers south of The City Of Rhodes and 5 Kilometers from the small village of Sianna.
Its sits tall and proud on the hill at 236 meters and looks over the coast line, out over the Aegean Sea and protects the neighboring village of Monolithos.
The Castle And Its History
The castle was built by The Knights Of St John in 1480. Its purpose was to be the same as Kritinia Castle, and this was to protect the west coast of Rhodes from invasion by pirates.
Because of the location of the castle, standing tall on the peak of the hill – it was named accordingly, as the word Monolithos actually means ‘The Lonely Rock’!
The Castle Of Monolithos was challenged many times during battle, but it was never breached. This was mainly due to the strategic location, and the aggressors of the past were unable to deal with the high elevation of the hill it was built on.
Monolithos Castle, Kritinia Castle, Rhodes Medieval City and the Citadel of Lindos were crucial location for The Knights as they ensured overall command of the waters around the island. This offered a solid protection for the inhabitants on Rhodes during the 14th Century.
Monolithos Castle Today
As with most ancient structures, the castle itself lies mostly in ruins today, but this is not a reason for putting you off visiting. There are still some areas that are standing strong of the original structure and they have been kept in good condition.
Once you enter inside the huge walls of the castle you will come across two medieval chapels. One of them is The Chapel Of Agios Giorgios which unfortunately lies destroyed for the best part. The other is The Chapel Of Agios Panteleimon which is quite good condition and said to have been built in the 15th Century.
A lot of people refrain from visiting Monolithos as it is a little out of the way. Many choose to stay in the areas where there are more attractions nearby and they miss out on this breathtaking place.
Although a lot of this ancient site lies in ruins. It is well worth making the trip. The history here is amazing and you can really feel what went on here.
The Views From The Castle Of Monolithos
A huge attraction for this location is the views. They are simply amazing. The clear blue sky and waters are not to be missed. Also, from the castle you can see two very small islands (islets actually) namely Gria (Γρια In Greek) and Stroggylo (Στρογγυλο) right opposite. These sit just off the coast!
From here you can also see very clearly Petrokopio Beach in the small village of Fourni. The is a beautiful white pebbled beach and has crystal clear blue water. Another place you may like to make a stop!
You can also see many other small islets further out to sea and you can see the island of Chalki too. Have your camera ready, you will regret it if you don’t.
Enjoy the video here. A couple of minutes of beautiful views with some really nice capturing music!
Getting to The Castle
Well, like I have said, the castle sits on the top of a hill at 236 Meters.
With this in mind, it is quite obvious you will need to do a little walking. Do not worry though, it is not too strenuous!
To access the castle, you need to ascend some steps which have been carved in to the rock surface. I just want to make you aware of a couple things here.
First of all, take your time. The steps can get a little slippery at times and it is easy to lose your footing.
Second, be prepared for people stopping in front of you as they make the climb. Although some people stop to take a small rest, others simply stop to take photographs as the views are quite superb.
The last time I made the ascent it took me about 10 minutes, just to give you an idea! It is steep, but it is not something to put you off.
Another point of interest is, as you tackle your way to the top of these steps you will see lots of small rocks (thousands actually) all piled up! A lot of people have asked me what they are and why they are there. This is just something that people have chosen to do, and those who have visited have left them in situ as a momento for their visit. Maybe you would like to do the same?
It is forbidden to collect any of the stones or rocks and take them away from the castle. There is a sign clearly visible that tell you so. Please do not remove any of them from this location. If you are caught you will have big problems!
Entrance And Parking
You will be pleased to know, entrance to the castle is free. There are no fees whatsoever and you can park your transport there free of charge too.
If you travel by car, you will find you can park quite close to the start of the steps at the foot of the hill in the parking area. Of course, sometimes it can be quite busy, but you will always find space.
Also, at the entrance area to the castle you will see a small outlet where you can buy refreshments and something to eat. Be sure to take water especially in the high season. It can get very hot and you will need to keep hydrated
For your information the castle is open for you to see 7 days a week and 24 hours a day. Of course be careful if you visit at night. as it is easy to slip when you are negotiating your footing in the dark!
Watch This Video And See Monolithos Castle To Some Beautiful Music
I personally love it here. I like the tranquility, the views, the history and the feeling of freedom and open space that it offers. I would recommend everyone visiting Rhodes makes an effort to see Monolithos Castle.
Yes it is a little off the normal tourist path, but well work making the effort to see it.
Let me know if you have any questions. Ask them in the comments’ area below and I will get back to you. Maybe you have seen this amazing castle yourself? I would love to hear about your experiences.
Thanks for reading!