"Rhodes Museums - guide to Rhodes Archaeological museum, Palace of the Rhodes Knights and other museums."
Even if you think that visiting Rhodes museums is not at the top of your list on the day of your visit to beautiful Rhodes town, there are two museums without which your day simply wouldn't be complete.
They are the Archaeological Museum and the Museum of The Castello. These two are definitely part of the Rhodes Top 5 sights and will be one of the highlights of your day in Rhodes.
Being situated inside two of the most impressive buildings from the period of the Rhodes knights (the Hospital of the Knights and the Palace of the Grand Master), these two Rhodes museums add to your Rhodes experience with both their exhibits and the ambiance. You can locate them both on our Rhodes map.
In this article we’ll talk mostly about the Rhodes Archaeological Museum, to find out more about the Palace of the Grand Master you can read our article on Palace of the Grand Master.
We’ll also be mentioning some less known museums that you might consider if this is your second visit to Rhodes.
|TIP: Do not try to see everything in one day as you might become numb to all these amazing things you’re seeing!
Archaeological Museum Rhodes
You will find the Archaeological Museum of Rhodes in the old town, just at the beginning of the Street of the Knights (Ippoton) in Museum square.
It is about 10-15 min walk from the cruise ship dock and there is no transportation needed to reach it as it is within a pedestrian area of the Rhodes Old town.
It is noticeable by the numerous arches on the front of its building, which used to be the Hospital of the Order of the Knights of St John. Put aside at least about 45 min to see this sight.
Construction of the Hospital of the Knights in which the museum is situated, began in 1440 by the Grand Master that was currently in rule.
As you walk through a dark entrance vault, you will enter a large square courtyard surrounded with a 2 storey colonnade and arched loggias. Walking around, you will have a chance to see some stone sarcophagi and sculptures, as well as old catapult stone ball projectiles.
After you’ve seen the ground courtyard, proceed up the stone stairs to the rooms which contain archaeological displays.
This Rhodes museum houses artefacts from various historical periods. Some of the most interesting and important exhibits to see include:
- The pottery items dating from prehistoric times found in caves on the islands of Kos and Kalymnos
- Mycenaean jewelry and pottery found in tombs in Ialysos on Rhodes
- Numerous Rhodian vessels which were used as wine jugs
- The sculpted body and head of a “kouros” (Greek for boy/man) found at Kameiros from 6th Century BC
- A collection of female statues from the Hellenistic period
- The marble head of the sun god Helios
- The statue of a nymph or Aphrodite… just to mention a few.
Probably the most famous work kept in the Rhodes Archaeological museum is the marble statue of the little Aphrodite of Rhodes.
Here, the goddess is shown crouching, taken by surprise whilst taking a bath. Notice how her hair is presented in stone as she pushes it back with her hands!
|DINING-ROOM TABLE TIDBIT: This statue, also called the “Marine Venus”, was celebrated by the famous writer Lawrence Durrell in his travel book “Reflections on Marine Venus”. Durrell made Rhodes his home in the second half of the 1940s.
Another thing that left an impression on us when visiting the Rhodes Archaeological museum, one of the top five Rhodes sights, is a big room on the first floor which was once used as a dining-room (refectorium) of those who staffed the hospital.
Although there is nothing really to see in the room, if you tune in your sensors well, the mysterious air of this room might just for a second transport you back to the times of the Knights of Rhodes.
The Rhodes Archaeological Museum is open from:
Tuesday – Sunday, 8 am – 4 pm.
There is an admission charge.
Full admission: approximately €3
Reduced admission: approximately €2
For more photos from the Rhodes Archaeological museum click here.
Rhodes Museums: The Museum of the Castello
Towering over the old town of Rhodes, you can’t miss the Castello or the Palace of the Grand Master.
Once you are at the Archaeological Museum, go all the way up the Street of the Knights (Ippoton) and you’re there.
There is no need for transportation to reach this one of the Rhodes Museums, as it is in Rhodes Old Town, which is a pedestrian area. It takes about 15-20 min to reach it from the cruise ship dock.
Put aside at least 45 minutes to see it.
Whether you are taking one of the cruise ship organized tours or exploring Rodos old town on your own, the Palace of the Grand Master will be a spot you cannot miss!
Although a big portion of the Castello was restored in the 20th Century, it is still a big attraction and lets your imagination soar with thoughts of how life used to be back in the Middle Ages.
To find out more about what you can expect to see inside the Museum of the Castello, click here.
Museum of the Castello is open:
June – October
Monday 12:30 pm – 8 pm
Tuesday – Sunday 8 am – 8 pm
November – May
Closed on Monday
Tuesday – Sunday 8:30 am – 3 pm
Admission charge: €6
Rhodes Museums: Municipal Art gallery
This gallery is located in the old town of Rhodes in Symi square. Entering the old town through the Freedom gate (Eleftherias gate), you’ll find it situated in one of the first buildings to your right. Distance: 15-20 min walk from the cruise ship dock.
This gallery has on display a nice collection of some of the most famous Greek painters of the 20th Century.They continuously rotate the artworks from a total of approximately 700 to always have a selection of about 100 on display for public viewing.
It is open everyday (not Sundays) 8 am – 2 pm. Admission is free.
Museum of the Decorative Arts (Museum of Folk Art)
This Rhodes museum is found in a building that used to be an armory for the Knights of St John. Located in today’s Argyrokastrou square, it is not far down from the Rhodes Archaeological Museum building.
Distance: 10-15 min walk from the cruise ship terminal.
Here in this Rhodes museum you will find collections of artefacts such as carved wooden containers, pottery, costumes (some well preserved embroidered items), ceramics and furniture.
This Rhodes museum is open from Tuesday – Sunday, 8:30 am – 3 pm.
There is an admission charge.
Rhodes Museums: Modern Art Museum
This Rhodes museum is located in the center of the old town down the main Socratous street.
It houses a collection of Greek art (sculptures, paintings and drawings) from the 20th Century.
This museum is open Monday – Saturday, 8 am – 2 pm.
Admission is free.
Rhodes Museums: Muslim Library
Found in the Rhodes old town, in Arionos square close to the mosque of Sultan Mustafa.
It was started by a local Turkish Rhodian in the 18th Century, and has a large collection of Arabic and Persian manuscripts.
It is open Monday – Saturday, 9:30 am – 4 pm.
Admission is free.
Rhodes Museum: Jewish Museum
This Rhodes museum is located in the old town, next to the Kahal Shalom synagogue.
If you wonder how to reach the Jewish quarter and the synagogue in Rhodes, here’s some directions:
- If you enter the Old Town through the Panagias gate, which is the first gate in the Rhodes wall when coming from the cruise dock, turn right and walk down Pindarou street.
- Just before you reach the square with the fountain with hippocamps (sea-horses), turn left down Dossiadou street and you will find the synagogue and the museum.
It houses a collection of Jewish artefacts such as costumes, religious garments and various other items obtained from around the world that have ties with Rhodes. There is also a collection of photos to view.
For more information click here.
The museum and synagogue are open everyday, except Saturday.
April – October, 10 am – 3 pm.
Rhodes Museums: Byzantine Museum
If you are standing at the entrance of the Archaeological Museum, with your back to it, just to your left on the opposite side you’ll find the church of Panayia Kastrou which houses this museum.
It’s quite an impressive gothic structure on the inside and contains a collection of Byzantine icons and murals from various other churches that were destroyed.
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