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Sandy beaches, turquoise waters, lush vegetation, ancient and medieval monuments, wide, tree-lined streets, large squares, parks, a superb town plan and an extensive bicycle-only network are among the distinctive features of Kos, the third largest island in the Dodecanese.


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Kos was the birthplace of Hippocrates (460-377 BC), the father of medicine, and has been inhabited since the Neolithic period (5th-4th millennium BC). In the 14th century AD, the island was captured by the Knights of Saint John who reinforced the older castles and built new fortifications. During the period of Turkish rule, the island was attacked by various invaders, whereas during the period of Italian rule (1912-1945) significant monumental public buildings were constructed. The island became part of Greece officially in 1948.
In the medieval castle located at the entrance to the port, an interior enclosure can be distinguished, with four circular towers in its corners, and another outside, with voluminous ramparts. The two enclosures are joined by a bridge over the moat that separates them.
In Eleftheria Square in the centre of the modern city, there are three enormous buildings, a legacy of the Italians: the municipal market, the clubhouse and the Archaeological Museum. At the edge of the square is the Defterdar mosque.
Outstanding among the sights in the ancient town are the market, the Doric Hellenistic temple, the altar of Dionysus, the sanctuary and colonnade of the port, the temple of Hercules, the remains of the north side of the wall, the Roman baths, the luxurious Roman villas with their rich mosaic floors, the Roman house and Roman Odeon.
The Platanos or Loggia Square is among the sites most visited by tourists.
Under Hippocrates’ plane tree – right opposite the Loggia mosque – the great doctor taught his students and examined his patients, which means that the tree is more than 2,500 years old. Its trunk has a circumference of more than 10 meters, and its enormous branches provide shade for the entire square.
The Asklepeion was built in the 4th cent. BC, after the death of Hippocrates and was the most famous one in Greece.
The island has many sandy beaches, of which the northern ones are more exposed to the wind.
- The beaches of Nomikos-Barbayianni, Zouroudi, the Boat Club beach, those of Mylos, Lambi, Karnagio, Psalidi, the beach of Agios Fokas, the Hesperides, the Thermes with hot mineral springs.
- On the north side of the island is the beach of Tigaki and also Marmari, a coast awarded a blue EU flag.
- On the south side of the island, are the beaches of Kardamena, Sunny Beach, Marcos Beach and Paradise beach, Camel, Kamari and the coast of Agios Theologos with its white sand, ideal for spear fishing.

Source: Visit Greece - The Official website of the Greek Tourism Organisation