Rhodes is not an island you can see on foot. You need wheels of some sort: public bus, group-shared taxi, rental car, or organized bus tour for around-the-island excursions. Rhodes city is a different story. Walking is the only and most pleasurable mode of transport; you'll need a taxi only if you're going to treat yourself to a meal at one of the farther-flung restaurants. The fact is that even taxis are not allowed within the walls unless you have luggage and are arriving or leaving.
Public buses provide good service throughout the island; the tourist office should be able to help with a schedule of routes and times. Buses to points east (except for the eastern coastal road as far as Falilraki) leave from the East Side Bus Station on Plateia Rimini, whereas buses to points west, including the airport, leave from the nearby West Side Bus Station on Averof. Buses for the eastern coastal road as far as Falilraki also leave from the West Side Bus Station. Island fares range from 1€ within the city to 20€ for the most remote destinations. The city bus system also offers six different tours; details are available from the tourist office.
By Bicycle, Moped & Motorcycle
Even where there are strips set aside for bicyclists, it can be risky cycling on Greek highways. You must have a proper license to rent anything motorized. We can recommend several outfits that rent motorbikes and bicycles: Bicycle Center, 39 Griva (tel. 22410/28-315); Mike's Motor Club, 23 Kazouli (tel. 22410/37-420); and Moto Pilot, 12 Kritis (tel. 22410/32-285). Starting prices per day are roughly 15€ for a mountain bike, from 25€ for a moped, and 40€ to 70€ for a motorcycle.
In Rhodes city, the largest of many taxi stands is in front of Old Town, on the harborfront in Plateia Rimini (tel. 22410/27-666). There, posted for all to see, are the set fares for one-way trips throughout the island. (A sample fare to Lindos is 40€ one way; add at least another 20€ if the taxi waits for you.) Since many of the cabdrivers speak sightseer English, a few friends can be chauffeured and lectured at a reasonable cost. Taxis are metered, but fares should not exceed the minimum on short round-the-city jaunts. For longer trips, negotiate directly with the drivers. (I found Semis Limo Service to be reliable and friendly: email@example.com.) Better yet, Triton Holidays , at no extra charge, will arrange for a private full- or half-day taxi with a driver who not only speaks fluent English, but will also respect your wishes regarding smoking or nonsmoking en route. For radio taxis, call tel. 22410/69-800. There is a slight additional pickup charge when you call for a taxi.
Triton Holidays agency can arrange for car rentals, both at the airport or in town. Apart from the array of international companies -- among them Alamo/National (tel. 22410/73-570), Avis (tel. 22410/82-896), Europcar (tel. 22410/21-958), and Hertz (tel. 22410/21-819) -- there are large numbers of local companies. The latter may offer the lowest rates but have only a handful of cars, so they may be unable to back you up, in the event of an accident. Be certain that you are fully covered, for all minor scrapes as well as major accidents, before signing anything. An established Greek company, with some 300 cars -- reputedly the newest fleet on Rhodes -- is DRIVE Rent-a-Car, now part of the Budget chain (tel. 22410/21-690; www.driverentacar.gr). It has an excellent reputation for personal service, as well as low prices from about 40€ per day, depending on the season and demand. Keep in mind that some of the more remote roads on Rhodes require all-terrain vehicles, and Rhodian rental-car companies usually stipulate that their standard vehicles be driven only on fully paved roads.
By Organized Tour & Excursion Boats
Several operators feature nature, archaeology, shopping, and beach tours. In Rhodes city, Triton Holidays, as one of the largest and most reliable agencies, specializes in trips designed for independent travelers. Triton offers day and evening cruises, hiking tours, and excursions in Rhodes, as well as in the other Dodecanese islands and in Mamaris in Turkey. We recommend the full-day guided tours, either the one to Lindos (50€) or the "Island Tour" (60€), which takes you to small villages, churches, and monasteries, and includes lunch in the village of Embonas, known for its local wines and fresh-grilled meat. There is also a fascinating half-day guided tour to Filerimos Monastery, Valley of the Butterflies, and the ancient city of Kamiros for 50€. Along Mandraki Harbor, you can find excursion boats that leave for Lindos at 9am and return around 6pm, costing about 50€, as well as daily excursions to Simi for 64€ round-trip. For an in-depth island experience, Triton Holidays also offers a combination package of car-rental and hotel accommodations in four small villages around the island (Kalavarda, Monolithos, Prasonisi, and Asklepion), ranging from 4 to 10 nights.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.