Beach holidays on the island can be diversified by a trip to the Valley of the Butterflies. It is located 30-40 minutes from the capital of Rhodes. The best way to get there is by car, because the sightseeing buses may not wait for you. And you want to enjoy the local beauty to the fullest, without rushing anywhere!
Such a trip suits nature lovers and quiet walks along the forest paths.
Butterflies come here during the mating season and tourists can observe them from June to September. But it is important to remember that the insects are very shy, so you should keep order and quiet in the area. In no case do not wave your hands in front of them, so that they flew up for a beautiful photo. Violation of the rules of staying in the park is punishable by a fine. Frighten a butterfly gets stressed and may die.
Butterfly Valley Guide
The valley is located in the reserve, which is 6 km long. Here you will walk along green groves, streams and waterfalls. In addition to butterflies you can see nimble lizards, slow crabs and turtles.
You can walk through the territory on foot or take a ride on a small steam train that moves along the gorge up to the monastery.
If you decide to walk around the park on your own, there are stairs hollowed out in the rocks, wooden handrails, viewing platforms and rest areas for ease of movement. There's a cozy tavern in the center of the Valley where you can grab a delicious snack and a refreshing drink or an invigorating coffee.
At the end of the trail (after about 40 minutes of walking) is the monastery chapel of "Our Lady of Kalopetra". It was built by a Turkish lord for his daughter when he found out that the air here was very healing. Bonus: there is a gorgeous view of the island and the sea.
There is also another cafe nearby, and you can walk back to the exit after another rest.
Such a walk won't take long, but it will fill you with the power of nature and peacefulness. Next, you can get in the car and explore the surroundings of Petaludes.
Outside the park you can visit the Museum, which talks about the unique ecosystem of the reserve. There are also souvenir stores and an alpine restaurant.
Not far from the Petaludes Valley is a contact zoo. Here you can see and feed ostriches, piglets, lemurs, camels, llamas, donkeys and other animals. Buy carrots, lettuce, and cabbage in advance. Such a trip is especially enjoyable for children.
There are also small traditional-style villages along the way that are worth a stroll along the streets.
Best time to visit
The ideal time to admire the butterflies is July and August. During this period they are especially plentiful. The rest of the time, chances are you won't see any butterflies. But it's nice to just walk here at any time of the year, breathe the fresh air and observe nature.