The island of Rhodes is a wonderland of immense beauty and intriguing history. To explore all of this, why not travel to Ialysos on your next adventure? The ancient village is just waiting to be explored, and has so much on offer for tourists who are keen to discover a little more culture throughout their holiday.
Top Tip: If you’re a nature lover, this blog post can tell you everything you need to know about where to find natural beauty in Rhodes.
History of Filerimos
Mount Filerimos is just eight miles outside Rhodes, and stands out from the surrounding landscape at 267m high. The mountain is home to an archaeological site, where a temple dedicated to Athena Polais once stood. Remains of this ancient temple still stand tall to this day.
When Christianity was first introduced in Greece, the temple was converted into a basilica dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The church was then known to house the icon of the Virgin of Filerimos, which was brought to Rhodes from Jerusalem in the thirteenth century. But, under the rule of the Knights of St. John in the fourteenth century, a monastery was built, which is where the icon is kept today. Tourists love to marvel at this alleged miracle-working icon!
The Best Bits
Though the whole site is centuries old, it remains a popular attraction for many tourists, mainly due to its rich history and religious importance. Here are the parts of Mount Filerimos that you definitely don’t want to miss.
This building is one of the main attractions of Mount Filerimos since it is renowned for its history and architectural majesty. The structure of the building truly is spectacular, with a magnificent exterior as well as stunning designs on the inside. Each area in the church has a sense of a rich historical past, particularly the main room where the icon of the Virgin of Filerimos is kept.
The monastery that stands today was built by the Italians after the original was destroyed by the Turks during their occupation. Old monks’ cells still lie just behind the building, and their walls are decorated with mosaic depictions of saints. It is a wonderful, unique spectacle and definitely worth a visit.
The Via Dolorosa and The Cross
If you find yourself atop Mount Filerimos, you will notice there is a pathway that leads towards the west. This is known as the Via Dolorosa or Way of the Cross. It represents the journey Jesus embarked upon, starting at the place where he was sentenced to death and ending at Mount Golgotha. The pathway is alive with stunning natural beauty, and you can also admire the holy icon-stands and bronze reliefs that are scattered along the route.
A magnificent concrete cross stands 16m tall, right in the middle of the small square that the Via Dolorosa leads from. Amazingly, you can actually climb up its staircase (on the inside of the cross) all the way to the arms to take in the beautiful views.
Views from the top of Mount Filerimos are like nothing else. The immense turquoise sea, the cloudless sky and the deep greens of the fields interspersed with dots of white buildings…it is simply beautiful. The whole landscape feels almost surreal, and being high up on a historic highland is one of the best ways to enjoy it.
Where to Stay
Matoula Beach – This stunning 4-star hotel is in the perfect location; just five miles from Rhodes and 100 yards from the beautiful Ialysos Beach. The rooms are spacious with a private bathroom and fabulous garden and sea views from the balcony. The hotel also has its own private pool, and a high-class restaurant where traditional dishes are served to guests.
How to Get There
If you’re flying from the UK, Rhodes Airport is the nearest to the resorts. The journey will be just under four hours, and there are eight airlines to choose from that fly direct. With 32 flights per week going from London to Rhodes, you will be sure to find flight times that suit you.
From the airport, you should consider pre-booking a Shuttle Direct transfer to Ialysos. The driver will be able to get you there promptly and you will avoid public transport and taxi queues at the airport. Pre-booking a shuttle is certainly worth doing if you want to make your journey as stress-free as possible.
About Shuttle Direct
At Shuttle Direct, we provide reliable transfers for our customers and pride ourselves in our quality customer service. Our drivers are friendly and attentive, and will always make sure that the transfer to your destination is hassle free. Booking online is easy, and we have several options available when it comes to transport. Whatever your personal requirements might be, we have a shuttle service for you.