The Archaeological Museum of Kos is situated at Eleftherias square, opposite the Deffendar mosque and the market. The Museum exhibit sculpture from the Hellenistic and Roman Era, statuettes, signs, etc. The Museum consists of the main entrance, the circular collosade and three exhibition rooms (east, west and north). The first room exhibits status of the Roman Era, while in the second there are marble structures, as well as the statue of Hippocrates. The third room includes exhibits from the Hellenistic and Classical Era in general, statuettes from the temple of Demeter in Kyparissia, in particular. Visitors can also admire the statue of Demeter and statues from the Roman Era. The second floor exhibits several pots from the Geometric and the Musenaean Eras. Another part of the Museum exhibits statuettes and a mosaic depicting Dionysus. The most significant pieces are the heads of Alexander the Great and Demeter, the statue of Diana and Asculapius, the Roman statue of Hermes, as well as other famous works.
Situated 4 km west of Kos, Asklepeio is the most significant archaeological site on the island. The excavations here began in 1902, by Iakovos Zaraftis from Kos and Hertsok from Germany. Asklepeio was built in a green area full of cypress trees. During the ancient years, it served as a sanatorium and it was dedicated to Aesculapius, son of Apollo, protector of health and medicine. Many significant people taught and worked here, one of them being the father of Medicine, Hippokrates.
Due to the steep ground, Asklepeio consist of four connecting levels, called "andira". The first is characterized by ruins of Roman constructions of the 1st century AD. The second, where the medical school is said to have been housed, is known for its arches and statues. The spas were here and they were watered from the spring of King Halkon and the spring of Vournika on Mount Dikeo. The third level is where the Temple of Aesculapius of Kiparissios Apollo (4th century BC) used to be. Excavations in the surrounding area brought to light an invaluable treasury for visitor's offerings, a semi-circular platform and a small Roman temple dedicated to Neron. The fourth level was constructed in the 2nd century BC and included a large temple of Doric style along with the chambers of the patients.
The church of Agia Paraskevi is situated in the town of Kos. It is a very large church, dominating the town's centre. The church's size, along with its external beauty of beige and blue colours, are eye catching. Every year, a multitude of pilgrims come here from all over the island.
The church of Ipapandi was built by St Christodoulos. It stands on the remains of a Byzantine fortress in Pili village, west of Kos. Its walls are embellished with 14th century frescoes. Inside, one can admire a marble altar based on four pillars. Significant findings are exhibited in the Archaeological Museum of Kos. Its feast day is on the 2nd of February. From this site, the view to Kalymnos and Pserimos is breathtaking.
The International Hippocratic Institute of Kos, or International Institute of Hippocrates, stands in the area of the Asklepeio and is 239 acres. Its purpose is to conduct medical research and foster co-operation among doctors of different nationalities. It publishes Hippocrates's works and manuscripts about the Hippocratic School and grants awards for important medical reports and discoveries.
Among its aims is the creation of an international centre to be called "Hippocrates's Town". It will gather doctors from all over the world for a convention of great scientific importance every five years. It will also house a museum and a rich library dedicated to the history and ethics of medicine.
The Castle of the Knights dominates the right side of the port of Kos while it is probably the most remarkable building on the island. It was built by the knights, who came to Kos in the 14th century probably upon the ruins of a previous building, as the walls surround remains of ancient buildings, columns and other architectural parts. The castle, like the island, was occupied by the Turks, thus the Christians were not allowed to visit it during the Turkish Occupation.
The Castle's exterior construction began in 1495 with Magistrate D' Aubousson, and the existence of various carved blazons, testify that the exterior was completed in 1524, while the interior was completed in 1748, when Eduardo di Garmadino was the island's Governor.
Today, one can see parts of the walls, as well as towers, stairs, corridors and gates from the exterior and the interior of the Castle. Under the Castle's gate, parts of a circular wall were found which were built in 1391 by the knights to protect the city. The most impressive parts of the Castle are the southwestern Tower of Del Caretto and the main entrance with the three arched bridges and the mobile gate.
The monastery of Agios Ioannis stands 7 km south of the beautiful settlement of Kefalos. It is built in an idyllic setting among plane trees. Next to the monastery, its half-ruined bell-tower has been preserved. On its feast day of 29 August, many people flock here to pay their respects to the saint.
The famous plane tree of Hippocrates stands in front of the Castle of the Knights, at the centre of Kos town. It is a huge tree, with a perimeter of twelve meters, which is considered to be the largest in Europe. The inhabitants claim that it was planted by
Hippocrates, the greatest doctor in antiquity, who used to teach under its shade. According to tradition, the Apostle Paul also taught there. On this site, cultural festivals are held each summer.
The remains of the ancient city of Kos are scattered throughout the town of Kos and are divided into three archaeological zones: the central, the eastern and the western.
In the central zone, excavations brought to light findings from the Early-christian, the Geometric and the Mycenaean Eras, which are exhibited in the Archaeological Museum of Kos, along with remarkable mosaics, many of which were used for the decoration of the Castle of Knights. Excavations also cast light upon an ancient cemetery of 77 graves of young children and infants. This zone also includes the Venetian Castle of the Knights -the most dominating construction on the island- and the Roman buildings south, where one can admire the beautiful mosaics, one of then being the famous mosaic -now exhibited in the Archaeological Museum of Kos- depicting the meeting between Aesculapius and Hippokrates.
Most of the ruins of the city were excavated in the area surrounding the port shortly after a destructive earthquake in 1933. This is the eastern zone of the excavations. Among the findings are the altar of Pandemos Venus, the altar of Hercules, a Hellenistic altar in the shape of a trapezium, an arch of the 3rd or 4th century BC, surrounds by impressive columns, the Basilica in the city's orthodox cemetery (5th-6th century) and the ancient market on Ippokratous avenue, upon the ruins of which the church of Agios Constantinos is built. In the same area, one can see the beautiful churches of Agios Ioannis, Agios Georgios and Panagia Katenati. Here one can also see parts of the Hellenistic wall which surrounded the ancient city.
The western zone includes preserved monuments such as the temple and the altar of Dionysus, Thermes, "Afesis", in the ancient stadium opposite the church of Agia Anna, "Nympheon", with its remarkable mosaics and a staircase leading to the Acropolis, Odeon where many statues were found, and "Casa Romana", a mansion from the Roman years, beautifully decorated with frescoes, carved representations and beautiful mosaics. Here one can see Hellenistic gymnasium with the famous "carved street", where the ancient gyms were located.
The Venetian Castle of Andimahia stands 3 km outside the town of the same name and dominates the whole area. At the turn of the 19th century, constant pirate raids caused the inhabitants to take refuge inside, and there they remained until 1850. Then, new settlements were built northwest and southwest of the castle.
Today, its fortification walls still stand and on the inside, there are cisterns and two Byzantine churches. One of the churches is dedicated to St Paraskevi and on its feast day, on 26th of July, there is a big festival which attracts many pilgrims.