About Ixia Beach
Ixia, on the Greek island of Rhodes, was one of first purpose-built resorts to be developed on the island, back in the 1970s. Its main pull is that it gives guests the best of both worlds: proximity to Rhodes Town, which lies just a 10-minute drive away, and an out-of-town beachside location. It is a low-key, family holiday destination, straggling along Leoforos Ialyssou, the busy main road joining Rhodes Town to the island’s west coast. Many of the island’s top hotels are located here, and the coastal road is overlooked by a continual line of big, modern, concrete, 4 and 5-star hotels, many of which are set in landscaped gardens equipped with pools and sunbeds. Some also offer excellent conference, meeting and business facilities, making them suitable for conventions. Unlike the sheltered east coast, there is almost always a gentle breeze here, and the sea often has moderate waves, making it popular with windsurfers.
Ixia has a long, narrow pebble beach, lying next to the main road. Tamarisk trees and palms have been planted at intervals along the coastal pavement, though they do little to screen bathers from the traffic. There are sunbeds and umbrellas for hire, and good watersports facilities. The sea here often has moderate waves, making it popular with windsurfers.
Beyond the beach:
Just 3km (2 miles) away, the island’s elegant capital, Rhodes Town, is contained within impressive medieval fortifications and is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The cobbled streets of the atmospheric old town lead through a labyrinth of souvenir shops and tavernas, across leafy squares overlooked by mosques with proud minarets, and up to the monumental 14th-century Palace of the Grand Masters.
Ixia Beach is suitable for kids, though the busy main road calls for supervision. The better hotels have an underpass leading directly from their grounds to the beach, and several of the larger hotels also offer a kids’ club, a playground, supervised activities and babysitting on request.
Above Ixia, 6km (4 miles) inland, ancient Ialyssos sits atop Mount Filerimos. Here one can visit the ruins of two temples, including the Monastery of Filerimos. From mid-June to late September, the green valley of Petaloudes (‘Butterfly Valley’), located 25km (16 miles) southwest of Rhodes Town, is worth checking out for its black-and-white striped butterflies. Alternatively, there are also organised one-day boat trips departing from Rhodes Town. These take visitors to either the unspoilt Greek island of Symi, northwest of Rhodes, or to Marmaris in Turkey to explore the bustling bazaar and the Marmaris Castle Museum above the harbour.
Book in to the 5-star Sheraton Rhodes Resort (www.sheratonrhodesresort.com), set within landscaped grounds. There are 400 spacious rooms and suites, a choice of swimming pools, a health and fitness club, tennis and squash courts, a hotel beach with watersports facilities, and a shopping arcade.