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Rhodes Dodecanese Guide Page 17

filermos church

The monastery Our Lady of Filermos is a beautiful structure covered with bougainvillea, converted by the Knights from a 5th century basilika church and restored by the Italians. (right)

A flight of steps lined with cypresses leads up to it. The coat of arms of the Grand Master d'Aubusson adorn the monastery and its domed chapels.

Under this Frenchman, the monastery had both Orthodox and Catholic altars. A path leading uphill from the monastery is lined with Stations of the Cross. In 1941 the Italians shot down a huge cross erected on the summit in 1934 by the Italian governor for fear that the Allies would use it as a target. Now there is a 52 foot cross there, financed by the Lions Club.

Ancient Ialyssos 5km inland from the fork at Trianda is open Tues to Sun 8am to 7pm;3euros. On a pine-covered hill, it was founded by Byzantine hermits during the 10th century. Foundations of 3rd century temples to Zeus and Athena, built on top of a Phoenician shrine are to the west.

The Ai Yeorghis Hostos is a subterranean chapel with frescoes built under the ruins of a small Byzantine church. Ixia is a big cluster of hotels.

Inland Rhodes

Valley of the Butterflies

Inland Rhodes is mostly hilly and still has a lot of trees, despite disastrous fire not long ago. Petaloudhes (Butterfly Valley) is 7km inland from the west coast road between Paradhisi and Theologos, and consists of a canyon divided into two parts. You must buy a ticket at the booth at the entrance to either (the ticket good for the other side as well). It is open May-Sept daily 8:30 to sunset; spring and autumn1.50euros; mid-Juneto mid-September 2.20euros.

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