Halki is in the west of Rhodes, just 5 miles from Monolithos peninsula. There are two versions for the name of Halki. It was named so after the copper (halkos means copper in Greek) processing workshops, or it comes from the word "kalhi" or "halki" that means shell or cockle. Geographer Stravon referred to Halkia as "Halkia", while Thucysides called the island "Halki". In the early Christian period (4th till 6th century BC) important villages grew at Halki. The Knights of Rhodes (14th century) gave Halki as a feud to Assanti family from Ischia. Then they built their castle on the ruins of ancient acropolis. Among the coats of arms the one of the Great Magistrate D' Aubusson (1476-1530) has been repaired. He repaired the fortress after the devastating raid of the island by the Venetians. In the middle of 19th century Halki, although under Turkish rule, reaches its apogee: With Simi, Kalymnos and Kastellorizo they developed their commerce and sponge diving, while school are established and the education of the people grew rapidly. In the last years of the Turkish rule and during the Italians' rule, the traditional privileges were removed, commerce and sponge diving were badly hit and emigration started. In 1912 the Italians conquered Halki, first militarily and then politically after 1923. In the 2nd World War Halki fought and became famous thanks to heroes such as Alexander Diakos and Captain Diogenis Fanourakis.
Church of Aghios Ioannis and Monastery of Aghia Triada: Within the castle, with wall paintings.
Halki - Agios Ioannis AlarkasHalki - Agios Ioannis AlarkasMonastery of Aghios Ioannis Alarkas: (West of island) : The most important place of worship on the island. The icon is dated 1835 and bears the letters «ΙωΑΧΣΠΘ», but the Monasteries must have been built much earlier. A short distance away are the Monasteries of Agia Triada Stavrou tou Xylou and Panagia "Ettrias" (Odogitria).
Early Christian basilicas:
At Niborio, a basilica with mosaic floor, at the Viglimia a three-aisled basilica, at Limenaria atree-aisled church with marble decoration, at Koka a tree-aisled hurch with architectural features from various periods, and two basilicas on the little of Alimia.
Notable wall paintings: At the churches of Aghios Nikitas(Amali), Taxiarchis Panormitis(Koka), Aghios Georgios, Panayia Enniameritissa and Aghios Andreas (vincinity of Antramasos), Aghios Zacharias(Foiniki), Aghia Triada, Panayia Portiani and Metamorfosi tou Sotiros(Horio) and Aghios Nikolas(Kastro).
Churches without wall paintings: Aghios Nektariso(Horio), Panayia (Horio, there is religious festival on15/8), nameless church near Prtiani (Horio), Aghios Nikolaos (Niborio).
Nimborio Harbor: Built at the foot of a mountain it is today the only inhabited region in Halki. The houses, "Italian" architectural style and neoclassic, two-floor with tiled roofs, with five windows, one big door in each floor and pediments with "eye", reach the sea and the whole village has an air of island elegance.
Aghios Nikolaos bell tower (Nimborios): It is supported on an arch that contains ancient marble pieces from the temple of Apollo.
Roloi (The Clock): A donation of people from Halki living abroad, a building in front of the Town Hall, it is a sample of excellent architecture with twin side staircases and rich decoration.
Post Office: Built in the familiar architectural style imposed by the Italians throughout the Dodecanese, with curves and geometric patterns.
Halki - Town HallHotel Halki (left of the harbor): An excellent sample of past elegance, that used to be a sponge storehouse.
Kifes: Old sheepfolds made of big stones and a second layer of external wall, scattered throughout Halki.
We can see ancient pieces with architectural elements with inscriptions built in the house walls and the bell tower of Aghios Nikolaos.
Excellent honey is produced as well as wax, bread, cheese and other diary products made at "kifes" the characteristic elliptical stone houses of shepherds.
Fort of Knights of St. John (15th cent.): Built in NE of island, above well-preserved castle dating from Hellenistic period, and close to remains of ancient city.
Funerary monuments: More than 20 graves and a number of finds were uncovered in 1930 in the only systematic excavation carried out on the island.
Arapi Cave: Ancient grave.
Indications of an ancient settlement (Horio): Ancient fragments were found incorporated in the wall of the cemetery, where large, hewn stones, walls and ceramic ware attest the existence of an ancient settlement.
Isodomic wall (Horio- 4th cent. BC): At entry to castle, above the Aghia Triada monastery, we see the inscription «ΙΣΑΝΔΡΟΣ ΙΑΡΑΤΕΥΣ».
Doric capital (Horio- 4th cent. BC): At Monastery of Aghios Konstantinos.
Altar (Foiniki): At Church of Ai-Zacharias, with a bucranium relief.
Kammenos Spilios (Burnt cave) (8km from Niborio): In 1658 the Venetian Morozini, to take revenge on the Chalkians, who had informed the people of Rhodes of his presence, thereby ruining his plans for a surprise attack, murdered the people hiding in the cave by setting a fire at the mouth of the cave.
Three windmills: Recently repaired, built high up in the left-hand part of the island, they offer a magnificent view of the harbour.
Horio (Abandoned village) (1 hour from harbour): The old capital of Halki, built on a carefully selected site to avoid pirate raids. There is a castle in the region (14th-15th cent.) and many stone-built houses, now half-ruined, and a cemetery.
There are no museums or collections exhibited on the island of Halki Dodecanese. However, if you are interested in history, you can visit the Medieval Castle in Chorio, the abandoned village Halki, situated in the center of the island.
The Medieval Castle was built in the 14th century by the Knights of Saint John and protected a lot the inhabitants, mostly from the attacks of pirates, who were plundering the Aegean from the ancient times till the middle 19th century. The Castle of Chorio has strong and tall walls and stands on an impressive position, right on a top of a rocky hill and from there you can see the whole island.
Another historical site to see on Halki is the Burnt Cave, on the northeastern side of the island, where you can go with excursions boat. The Burnt Cave stands on the slopes of an abrupt rock and was the site of a terrible act of war in the middle 17th century.
In 1658, the Venetian admiral Morozini set the cave on fire to kill all the inhabitants of Halki that had been hidden there. This way, Morozini took his revenge because the inhabitants of Halki had informed the people of Rhodes about his attack and Morozini hadn't managed to conquer Rhodes.
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