Lindos Archaeological Site (Λίνδος)




Location: island of Rhodes, Dodecanese Map

Tel: (22440) 31258 (info)

Tel: (22440) 31258 (info)

Open: Sep-May: Tue-Sun 8:30am - 2:40pm

Jun-Aug: daily 8:30am - 6pm


Description of Lindos Archaeological Site

Lindos Archaeological Site is situated on the eastern shore of Rhodes is part of the Dodecanese islands in southeastern part of Greece. Ancient acropolis of Lindos sits on top of a 380 feet (116 meters) rock. Found by the Dorians in the 10th century BC this city’s buildings are a testament of its long history. Greeks who came here built the Sanctuary (Propulaea) in the 5th century and temple of Athena Lindia in the 4th century. However the most famous resident of Lindos from the time was Chares of Lindos who designed the Colossus of Rhodes, one of Seven Wonders of the World. Stoa from around 200 BC and beautiful relief of a trireme from 180 BC was added during Hellenistic period. Byzantine church was built here in the 13th century on the ruins of the older Roman church from the 6th century. Even knights of St. John left a mark here by building a castle here.


According to tradition, the god Helios was the lord of the island and when he mingled with the nymph Rhodes he gave her her name. The god Helios and Rhodes gave birth to seven sons, the Eliades. A narrative that many associate with Lindos states that, when the Iliads became men, the Sun revealed to them that the first to sacrifice to the goddess Athena, would forever have her favor. Indeed, the Iliad were the first to sacrifice to the goddess, but in their haste they did not burn their victims before offering them on the altars. For this reason, the tradition of fireless sacrifices to the goddess Athena on the island remained. Later, however, four of the Iliads became fratricides, as they killed Tenagis and when their act became known they were forced to leave for other places. Only the two who did not take part in the murder remained in Rhodes. Ohimos, as the eldest, became ruler of the whole island. He was succeeded by his brother Kerkafos and his three sons, Kamiros, Ialysos and Lindos, who divided the island into three parts and each built a city named after him.

Another legend says that when Danaos left Egypt with his daughters, he sailed to Lindos, where he was warmly received by the inhabitants. He was the one who built the sanctuary of Lindia Athena and dedicated a statue to the goddess, before sailing to Argos. The view was honored by Kadmos who, looking for his sister, Europe, was forced to stop on the island due to bad weather.

These are the myths about the construction of the settlement and the sanctuary of Athena. Archaeological excavations in the greater Lindos area have revealed findings from the Neolithic period, the Bronze Age and the Mycenaean years. According to experts, Lindos was built after the 11th century. BC, when the island was colonized by the Dorians. During the archaic period, Lindos with the other two cities of Rhodes, Kamiro and Ialyssos, but also the city of Kos and the cities of Cnidus and Bodrum formed the so-called Doric Exapolis, which had as its religious center the temple of Triopi Apollo on the Cnidus peninsula.

In the following centuries the Lindians, either alone or in collaboration with the other Rhodians or other Greeks, became actively involved in the establishment of colonies: Rhodes in distant Iberia and Italy; Parthenope and, together with the Kos, the Hopes in Dania. The Solos in Cilicia were built by Lindians and Achaeans. Lindians also built Fasilida in Lycia, while around 688 BC. Lindians together with Cretan settlers built Gela in Sicily. According to the Chronicle of Lindos, the Lindians took part in the colonization of Kyrenia and Syvari. Diodorus of Sicily says that Lipara was colonized by Cnidians and Rhodians, as was Symi, while Nisyros was colonized by Rhodians, after an epidemic that wiped out the Kos settlers. Finally, around 550 BC. Rhodians together with many other Greeks build Naukratida in Egypt.

During the 6th BC Cleoboulos, one of the seven wise men of antiquity, lived and ruled Lindos as a tyrant. In the 5th century the Lydians minted their first coin. In the Persian Wars, after the ineffective campaign of Mardonius in 492 BC, a new campaign was organized led by Dati and Artafernis. The Persians, after gathering a large army in Cilicia, launched an invasion by sea. According to the Chronicle of Lindos, the Persians besieged the city of Lindos in 490 BC, but thanks to the miraculous intervention of the goddess Athena, Lindos was saved. After the end of the Persian wars, all three cities of Rhodes participated in the Delian Alliance, paying tribute to the fund in favor of the campaign against the Persians.