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chalki

On the main road leading to and from the harbor you can distinguish the bust of Alexandros Diakos, the first officer to fall defending the ideals of democracy and freedom in the Dodecanese islands during WWII. Do not forget to visit the church of St. Nicholas, built in 1861, with its marvelous bell tower whose foundation leans over an arch made of ancient marbles taken from a temple dedicated to the god Apollo, as well as the ecclesiastical museum nearby. Moreover, in Emborio you can see the clock tower (donation of the Halkian community abroad) that stands before the Town Hall and the building of Hiona Vouvali, once used for storing sponge supplies.
Ten minutes away from Emborio is Pondamos beach, a sandy length of coastline framing crystal clear waters. But there is more undiscovered shoreline, as Chalki is surrounded by a string of pure white beaches (some within walking distance and other best reached by boat). Hire a little motorboat to visit the beaches of Yiali, Trachia, Kania or Areta and to the isle of Alimia.

Deeper into the mainland a ruined Knights castle on the edge of a hill guards the ruins of Chorio, the old capital, now abandoned. The hike to the stronghold is amazing and the remains are untouched. The Chalkian castle has a history of more than two thousand years. St. John's Knights constructed the major structure on the remnants of an earliest acropolis between the 14th and the 15th century. Walking up the way to the castle's foyer visitors come across ancient marbles, foundations of temples, but also the remains of walls of the Hellenistic/classical period, Byzantine churches and bigger or smaller ancient cisterns, Greek and Byzantine. It is a time travel into history. The views from the unguarded walls, over the town towards Rhodes or out towards far-off Karpathos, are breathtaking. Northeast of the castle you can admire the church of St. Nicholas and its marvelous frescoes.

Halki is an island with a prolonged and significant history that stretches back to the ancient times. The Titans were according to Greek mythology the first inhabitants of all the neighboring islands. The Pelasgians lived here for a long time, leaving numerous constructions behind, before they were succeeded by the Carians, the Dorians and later the Phoenicians. The famous queen Aretanassa of Halki lived here once, before being exiled in Karpathos where she committed suicide following her husband's death. Ruins of three temples of the god Apollo are preserved at the locality of Pefkia, today's Nimborio (along the coastline). The god was worshipped here with incomparable honors. During the flourishing period of the Athenian supremacy, Chalki paid the alliance taxes on a regular basis. The island of Halki was once allied with its neighboring island of Rhodes, particularly during the Peloponnesian War of 412BC. In the 7th century the Arabs conquered Halki and ruled the island until 825.
ACCOMODATION IN HALKI

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