Tag: Castle of Neratzia

The Castle of the Knights in Kos Town

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Castle of the Knights

The exterior wall of the Castle of the Knights of St John, viewed from the opposite side of palm-tree-lined Finikon street in Kos Town …

 

 

Castle of the Knights of St John

… and part of the castle interior, viewed from the elevated walkway that extends along the perimeter of the castle’s tall stone walls. Visible in the distance is the Bodrum area of Turkey.

 

 

Seaside stronghold: When I was a little kid, my friends and I used to build makeshift forts and treehouses and compete for control over the territory. “I’m the king of the castle, and you’re a dirty rascal” was a familiar taunt back in those days. It’s too bad our parents never took us to Kos, because we would have had the time of our young lives visiting the Castle of the Knights in Kos Town.

One of the most popular tourist attractions in Kos, the castle was constructed sometime in the 15th Century by the Knights of St. John, who used stones and marble recovered from the ruins of an ancient city that was devastated by an earthquake. It took them more than 120 years to finish building the stronghold, which was the second castle to be built on the site. (The first one was built in the early 1300s and later got completely destroyed). There actually is a castle within a castle — the outer wall was built between 1495 and 1514 to provide extra fortification for the original castle built more than a half century before.

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Greece holiday pic of the day

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Castle of Neratzia on Kos

Tourists explore the grounds inside the Castle of Neratzia in Kos Town

 

 

Greece holiday pic of the day

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Castle of Neratzia in Kos Town

Tourists explore the Castle of Neratzia in Kos Town on Kos

 

Greece holiday 2010: Kos

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Bougainvillea in Kos Town

A giant wave of bougainvillea cascades over a stone wall in Kos Town

 

Starting point: Kos wasn’t on our travel radar for 2010 until I discovered it would be the easiest (that is, the fastest) island to get to after our overnight flight from Canada arrived in Athens. And when I realized it would be a convenient starting point for island hopping to Patmos and Samos, two islands we really wanted to see, I immediately booked two tickets to Kos on Aegean Airlines.

We spent only three nights on Kos, but that gave us enough time to relax and recover from jet lag, explore colourful Kos Town, and spend a day bicycling around, visiting the Tigaki area and the Asklepieion. (We had hoped we’d have time to take a day excursion to Bodrum, Turkey, but it just didn’t work out.)

Things we liked the most about Kos:

The ruins. At home, we can’t walk very far without passing a Tim Horton’s coffee shop or a McDonald’s. In Kos Town, you can’t walk very far without encountering historic ruins and monuments from centuries past, like the castle overlooking the harbour.

Cycling: Kos is a great island for bike riding! There are dedicated bicycle lanes on some of the main streets in Kos Town, and it’s an easy bike ride to some of the island’s beach areas, including Tigaki. We also rode the bikes to see the Asklepieion, rather than take the little tourist choo-choo train that makes regular trips from Kos Town.

What we liked the least about Kos:

We knew Kos would be extremely touristy and commercial, but we didn’t expect to be hounded and hassled as much as we were whenever we walked past restaurants in Kos Town, or strolled along the harbour past the excursion tour boats. I couldn’t begin to count the number of times restaurant staff actually came running — and I do mean running! — out to the street to urge us to stop in for a meal. Some even followed us part way down the street, with one fellow actually pestering us for nearly two blocks! It happened so often it was ridiculous, not to mention extremely annoying.

At some future date I hope to post a more detailed report of our short visit to Kos. In the meantime, you can find plenty of information about Kos at the kosinfo.gr website and on travel-to-kos.com.

 

St Constantine Hotel in Kos Town

We stayed at the St Constantine Hotel in Kos Town. Convenient location, pleasant & helpful staff, decent breakfast, OK room

 

a street in Kos Town

It took about 15 minutes to walk along this street to get from the St Constantine Hotel into the heart of Kos Town. The street is lined with shops, tavernas and cafes all the way.

 

fishing boats and tour boats in Kos Town harbour

Colourful fishing boats and tour boats in Kos Town harbour

 

a church in Kos Town

A huge church in Kos Town

 

tavernas and shops on a street in Kos Town

Tavernas and shops on the street leading to the big church

 

one of the beaches near Kos Town

The view toward Kos Town harbour from one of the beaches just a short walk away from the St Constantine Hotel

 

lounge chairs on one of the Kos Town beaches

Colourful lounge chairs and umbrellas on one of the Kos Town beaches

 

the palm tree lined street outside the castle in Kos Town

Palm trees line Finikon Avenue outside the Castle of Neratzia in Kos Town

 

the castle at Kos Town

Inside the Castle of Neratzia at Kos Town

 

the castle in Kos Town

Inside the Castle of Neratzia in Kos Town

 

A street in Kos Town

A street in Kos Town

 

ruins in Kos Town

There are archaeological ruins in Kos Town practically everywhere you walk

 

archaeological ruins in Kos town

More archaeological ruins in Kos town

 

Mary's House restaurant in Kos Town

Mary’s House restaurant in Kos Town, where we had an amazing dinner — friendly hosts and an absolutely wonderful food!

 

The bicycles we rented to explore Kos

The bicycles we rented to explore Kos, seen here at a stop along the coast during our ride to Tigaki and the Asklepieion

 

tall grasses near the coast on the way to Tigaki

Tall grasses near the coast on the way to Tigaki

 

dunes near the beach at Tigaki on Kos

Vegetation on dunes near the beach at Tigaki on Kos

 

one of the sandy beaches near Tigaki

Lounge chairs along one of the sandy beaches near Tigaki

 

The Asklepieion ruins near Kos Town

The Asklepieion ruins near Kos Town

 

Kos Town and Bodrum Turkey

The view toward Kos Town and Bodrum Turkey from the hillside at the Asklepieion

 

fishing boats in Kos Town harbour

Fishing boats in Kos Town harbour

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