THE GRAND MASTER PALACE
It is one of the first buildings constructed by the Knights and it was completed in 1346. Archaeologists suggest that the temple of the Sun used to be in the exact same area. Some even claim that Colossus of Rhodes was standing here and not at the entrance of the port. The Grand Master Palace, the Castello, as called by the locals, with its gate with heavy wooden door and the two immense towers is one of the most characteristic pictures of Rhodes. The Grand Master used to live here with his courtiers and used to hold meetings with the leaders of the "tongues". Today, the Palace serves as a museum. However, of its 158 halls, only a few are open to the public. On the first floor, there are exhibits mainly from the knighthood: furniture, chandeliers, tapestries, vases, sculptures, armors, and works of art. An entire hall is dedicated to the modern Hospitallers, with photographs from their humanitarian action. The basement hosts a permanent exhibition entitled “Rhodes from the Old-Christian times to the Turkish occupation (1522)”. We suggest you see the Laocoön Group, a replica of the original sculpture which is kept today in the Vatican museum, and the mosaic floors.
THE ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM
It is housed in the old Hospital of the Knights, one of the biggest medieval buildings in the Old Town, located at the beginning of the Knights street (Museum square). Its construction started in 1440 and was completed 49 years later. Findings from Rhodes and the neighboring islands dated from the Mycenaean period to the Middle Ages are in display at the museum. In the grand hall of the first floor, you will see medieval grave columns and a roman sarcophagus, which was used to bury Master Pierre de Corneillan. In smaller rooms, coins, vases, figurines, sculptures, mosaics and coats of arms are in display. It is worth seeing the column of Krito and Timarista, dated from the 5th century BC, the head of the Sun, dated from the 2nd century BC, the crouching Venus, a statuette of the 1st century BC, and the Marine Venus, a large sculpture of the 3rd century, which was found in 1929 in the bottom of the sea near Grand Hotel. The seated lion at the museum’s yard is made of lartian stone, a kind of marble that was extracted from village Lardos.
THE JEWISH MUSEUM
It is housed in the building of Kahal Shalom synagogue. Documenting photographs from the life of Jews on the island before World War II, objects of everyday use, Jewish traditional costumes etc. are exhibited.
It is located on the northernmost part of Rhodes and was built in the years 1934 to 1936 by the Italian architect Armando Bernabiti. It is accommodated in an unusual building with art-deco features. Its basement is landscaped as an undersea cave and the fish originating from the Aegean Sea and east Mediterranean live in glass tanks of various sizes. There are moray eels, eels, turtles, gilt head breams, breams, humantins, perches, brassies, octopuses, corals, sea anemones. A unique fish species which you may see in the Aquarium is ghizani. On the Aquarium ground floor, several embalmed see monsters are at display: a zifios (beaked whale) which was washed up in South Rhodes, a huge ray, dogfish, seals, a large monk fish and a 2,000 years old skeleton of a Mediterranean seal, which was found in the port of Rhodes.
DECORATIVE ARTS MUSEUM OF RHODES
A folklore museum, exhibiting traditional costumes, fretworks, embroideries, ceramics, Rhodian plates, furniture, chests and generally past time objects of everyday life in the Dodecanese. Here, you will also see the Rhodian “speveri”, the heavy silk embroidered curtain that the locals used to hang over the bridal bed. The exhibits are placed in specially arranged areas, representing the interior decoration of the Dodecanesean house during Ottoman rule.
Small folklore museums representing the Rhodian folk house in its traditional form and displaying objects of everyday use, farming tools, ceramics, woven textiles and embroideries, costumes, musical instruments, folk art creations, etc operate in the villages of Apollona, Archangelos, Asklipeio, Afantou, Dimilia, Embona, Kritinia, Koskinou, Lindos, Salakos, Soroni, Trianta.
MUSEUM OF MODERN GREEK ART
Works of contemporary Greek painters, sculptors, engravers are displayed in three different buildings: the Municipal Art Gallery, the New Art Gallery and the Centre of Modern Art.
THE MUSLIM LIBRARY OF HAMET HAVOUZ
It was founded in 1794 and exhibits Arabic, Persian and Ottoman manuscripts. Among them, there is an elaborately illustrated Koran of 1540 and a chronicle of the occupation of Rhodes by the Turks in 1522, written by Sultan Suleiman’s doctor. The library yard is also very impressive, covered by hohlakia, the black-and-white pebble mosaic tiles.