Mandraki Harbour

Mandraki Harbour is the main harbour of Rhodes Town for travellers and from here you can catch ferries to Piraeus, Symi, Kos, Kalymnos, Patmos, and to Turkey.

The entrance to Mandraki Harbour in Rhodes TownThe Entrance to Mandraki Harbour

The attractive Mandraki Harbour is the most northerly of Rhodes Town’s three harbours and by far the most interesting. This was the ancient ‘sheep pen’, the name in Greek being mandri, a name often used for small, encircling harbours. To the east is the Commercial Harbour, and beyond that is the Marina.

Mandraki was one of the five ports of ancient Rhodes. It was the naval port and was known as the ‘small harbour’ as opposed to the ‘great harbour’, the present Commercial Harbour. The entrance to ancient Mandraki could be sealed with chains.

Read our review of the Best Guidebook to Rhodes

Mandraki Harbour Boat Tours

Mandraki Harbour is the place to head to if you want to do any boat tours from Rhodes Town. Several boats offer island tours so ask around to find out exactly where they’ll take you and when you’ll come back. Some will simply take you to a remote beach and then return for you later in the day, while others visit several places and make a proper tour of it.

The harbour at Symi in the Dodecanese islands of GreeceSymi

There are also different options if you want to visit the nearby island of Symi. Some are for day trips only, and you won’t be allowed to take anything more than a backpack with you. If you want to take luggage and are going to Symi to stay overnight or for a few days, you must find the regular ferry boats, in another part of the harbour.

Travel Tip

If you do plan to take the regular ferry to Symi to stay there, take the one which arrives in the evening. Sailing into the beautiful Symi harbour by night is a magical experience.

You can also go to several other Greek islands from Mandraki Harbour, including Kos, Tilos, Kalymnos, and Patmos, and also to Turkey. There are regular ferries to and from Piraeus, as well.

Ferries in Greece

Ferries in Greece has an excellent and very thorough website where, in addition to checking ferry schedules and times, you can also book tickets and get lots of useful information about travelling by ferry in Greece.

The Colossus of Rhodes

Artist's representation of the Colossus of Rhodes over the entrance to Mandraki Harbour in Rhodes Town

This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Legend claims that the harbour entrance was spanned by the legendary Colossus of Rhodes, but there is no proof of this. Today twin columns bearing statues of Rhodian deer, a stag and doe, stand on either side of the harbour gap.

Mandraki Harbour Restored Windmills

Restored Windmills at Mandraki Harbour in Rhodes TownRestored Windmills at Mandraki Harbour

A row of restored medieval windmills, symbols of the days when corn was ground at the harbourside, stands along the outer quay.

View of the Old Town of Rhodes seen from Mandraki HarbourView of the Old Town from Mandraki Harbour

Fortress of St Nicholas

At the seaward end of the quay is the fortress of St Nicholas, built in the 1460s and now the site of a lighthouse. On its landward side the harbour is bordered by the busy Eleftherías Street, at the end of which is Plateía Vasileos Georgiou I. Here the Italians left a collection of interesting monumental buildings in a mix of Venetian, Gothic and Ottoman architectural styles.

Cathedral of St John the Evangelist

Cathedral of St John the Evangelist on Mandraki Harbour in Rhodes TownCathedral of St John the Evangelist on Mandraki Harbour

This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported license.

On the quayside stands the Ekklisía Evangelismoú, the Cathedral of St John the Evangelist. This was built in 1925 as a Catholic church while the Italians occupied Rhodes, and as originally called the church of San Giovanni dei Cavalieri. It uses the distinctively-coloured local sandstone.

Interior of the Cathedral of St John the Evangelist on Mandraki Harbour in Rhodes TownCathedral of St John the Evangelist on Mandraki Harbour

This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

Where to Stay in Rhodes Town

Other Rhodes pages

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  • Greece Travel Secrets recommends its choice of where to eat in Southern Rhodes, including restaurants and tavernas in Lindos, Gennadi, Pefki and Monolithos.

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  • Rhodes festivals and events include those celebrated throughout Greece like Easter and Greek Independence Day, and others that are unique to the island.

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  • Lindos is one of the main attractions on the Greek island of Rhodes, with its Acropolis, other ancient sites, beaches and historic captain’s houses.

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  • Rhodes Town museums include an archaeological museum, Byzantine museum, a museum of decorative arts, and exceptional collections of modern Greek art.

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  • The best Rhodes guidebook is undoubtedly the A-Z Travel Guide to Rhodes, including Symi, with a new revised and updated edition for 2022.

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