Rhodes – the fortress of Agios Nikolaos – Mandraki

Rhodes – the fortress of Agios Nikolaos – Mandraki

In the place where, according to medieval tradition, one of the seven wonders 

of the ancient world was located, the famous Colossus of Rhodes


 (a bronze statue of the Sun), a work of the statuette of the statue of Charity (3rd century BC), was built in 1464-1467

the fortress of Agios Nikolaos, commissioned by the Grand Master R. Zacosta.


The construction of this fortress in a place where there was probably an ancient one construction, 

but also byzantine or early knight church of Agios Nikolaos (it is named after him
the fort), marked the end of the centuries-long fortification process of the medieval city of Rhodes

which had begun in the 7th century, with the construction of the proto-Byzantine fortress.


During the period preceding the conquest of Rhodes by the Ottomans (1522), the fortress 

of Agios Nikolaos underwent continuous renovations aimed at its maximum reinforcement.


During World War II the Italians used the fortress of Saint Nicholas to protect the port of Mandraki.


Time, the sea and the human factor caused severe strikes at the fortress of Agios Nikolaos, so a special restoration program of the Ministry of Culture was considered necessary starting in 1998.


The lighthouse located on the roof of the tower is one of the oldest and most historic lamps in the Mediterranean, operating since at least 1675. The modern lighthouse was built in 1863 by the French Ottoman Lighthouse Society. 

During 2004-2005 the lighthouse stone turret on the roof of the Zacosta main tower was completed, and in late 2006 the lighthouse was relocated and reopened under the responsibility of the Navy Lighthouse Service.


The fortress of Agios Nikolaos, however, is not the only ornament of Mandraki, once the main port of the city of Rhodes, where excursion boats and yachts are today. 


The well-known bronze deer at the entrance of the port, the restored old windmills, 

as well as the magnificent architectural buildings of Italian rule in the area around Mandraki, 

compose a very picturesque ensemble that fascinates travelers.

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