The city of Rhodes was founded in 408 BC, when the citizens of Ialisos, Lindos and Kamiros decided to build a new and strong island capital. The city plans were drawn up by Hippodamous, and Rhodes was soon admired as one of the most beautiful cities of the period. The new city quickly developed into a financial and cultural centre, but by the time it became a Roman, and later a Byzantine dominion, it had lost its ancient glory. In 1309 the Knights of Saint John conquered Rhodes and they built strong fortifications, transforming it into a thriving multinational medieval city.
In 1523 Rhodes was conquered by the Ottoman Turks, and the Greeks had to settle outside the walls, where they created the new districts known as “Marasia”. In 1912 Rhodes, as well as the rest of the Dodecanese, were seized by the Italians. The new rulers enhanced the architecture of the city with magnificent buildings, wide roads and squares. It was not until 1948 that Rhodes officially became a part of Greece. The modern city of Rhodes is (including Asgourou and Kritika) one of the biggest municipalities in the Greek islands, with about sixty thousand permanent residents.
It is the financial and cultural centre of the south-eastern Aegean, and successfully combines a lively present with a rich historical past. There are many reasons why Rhodes is one of the most popular resorts in the Mediterranean; the natural surroundings (crystal clear seas, many parks and recreational facilities), the bright sun, and the warm hospitality of the islanders themselves. The city has an excellent tourist infrastructure and offers a wide variety of entertainment (night-life, sports, cultural events, and day trips to wonderful Lindos and the neighbouring islands). Finally, visitors have the opportunity to learn something of the eventful history of the city, visit the museums, or go sightseeing.