Indestructible Leather Sandals From Rhodes

Whenever we go anywhere different, I always like to get a souvenir; a little memento of our trip. It doesn’t have to be anything big or expensive and in fact, most of the time, it’s just a postcard of the place. I stick these in a journal / scrapbook with a few notes reflecting my thoughts of the place.

Yes, we have this blog now and I have my photos but I can’t bring myself to completely abandon the paper and pen method – my scrapbook is tangible. It feels real.

Rhodes Leather Sandals

Rhodes is famous for handmade leather sandals

Anyway, there were so many souvenir opportunities during our recent day trip from Fethiye to the Greek island of Rhodes, I completely forgot to buy a postcard (very annoying!) but we did come back with some other goodies.

Walk around Rhodes Old Town and you won’t get too far before you see shops selling handmade, leather sandals. These are traditional Rhodes shoes and, unlike a lot of tacky souvenirs you see in tourist areas, these shoes are actually quite attractive (if you like that kind of thing) and practical.

We needed new shoes for a wedding we were going to a few days later so we ventured into one of these shops.

Traditional Handmade Leather Shoes, Rhodes

The shop was crammed with leather sandals and bags

‘My twin brother and I make all these shoes ourselves. Ours are the best on the island,’ said the shop owner. Of course they’re the best on the island – as are the shoes in the other shops that look exactly the same as your shoes. But hey, we were in a good mood. Let’s go along with this.

We tried a couple of pairs on each while the shop owner told us all about his shoes. These shoes will last us at least ten years. We’ve got to rub vaseline into them on a regular basis to soften the leather. They take a while to wear in but it’ll be worth it. Shop owner’s current pair of sandals are 8 years old and he doesn’t want to let them go. They’re so comfortable. His son wears the style Barry is trying on. He’s had his years, too.

While we were being fed all this information about these magic sandals, I glanced down at the shop owner’s feet. Reebok trainers! His son then appeared and the shop owner introduced us to him – he was also wearing Reebok trainers. ‘Oh, the weather isn’t warm enough yet to wear our sandals,’ they laughed.

‘Right,’ we laughed back. And we bought some anyway. 15 Euros for a pair of leather sandals isn’t bad and they match the dress I was wearing for the wedding. We’ll get back to you in ten years and let you know if we’ve still got our sandals!

Handmade Rhodes Leather Handbags

would you buy the bags or the shoes?

We didn’t buy a belt or a leather handbag but they were all there, filling the shop with that lovely leather smell.

In another shop, we bought an oil painting done on canvas; a painting of an area just south of Lindos. We can’t tell you the price of that because it was a wedding present and they sometimes read this blog so they might see it.

There are loads of shops selling these oil paintings – all the same price and all very affordable. You know us – life on a budget.

We arrived back in Fethiye at the end of the day armed with two pairs of Greek leather sandals, an oil painting and of course, the usual duty free goodies that make you very popular with your friends.

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  1. Haha! I’m sure they’re the best! =) I bet they will last for 20!

  2. Nisrine M. says

    Interesting. They make similar sandals and purses in Morocco! They are quite sturdy and hip too.

  3. Sounds like you had a fun day out, Julia! Love those sandals tho they would be too flat for me!

  4. @ Belinda: We’ve got blisters! They’ll last a long time if we can’t wear them. 🙂

    @ Nisrine: Ahh, we saw purses too in another shop. I really liked most of the things I saw.

    @ Claudia: Are you a heels person? We trudge about everywhere so the heels had to be sacrificed a while ago. 🙂

  5. Not a joke. I’m from Slovenia. Was on Rhodes on the Greek weeding in 2006. For a week – excelent time. I bought one of those sandals. Excelent instrument. So I beg you to give me an address of the shop. I know the shop has two entrances on two different streets. On the foot side of the leather there is the trademark TWINS. On the last third way from top of an old town to the old harbour. Thanks in advance.

  6. @ Anonymous: Wow! That was a coincidence that you found this post! 🙂 And it’s lucky we picked up a business card from there, too. Hope you don’t mind but we republished your comment without your email address as we didn’t want you to get lots of spam. We’ve sent you a contact address for this shop to the email address you gave us. Good luck!

  7. I purchased a pair last year while visiting, I loved them, but I need another pair. Could someone send me their shop contact info? I’m hoping to order by mail if possible.
    Thank you!

  8. @ euonymSonya: Hey, they’re popular these sandals, aren’t they?! 🙂 We have a ‘contact us’ page (bottom of the left column). Send us a message on there and we’ll send you an email address, privately. We just don’t want them to get spammed (they haven’t got a website) so we don’t want to put it on here as we didn’t ask them.

  9. Not sure if you are still interested in sandals from Rhodes but I found your website whilst desperately trying to find a replacement pair. Today my 27 year old pair of flip flops bought in Lindos finally fell apart, I am bereft! I am hoping my local cobbler can repair them as I can’t bear the thought of a summer without them. Last ten years? They should be very proud.

    • Hi Wendy, thanks a lot for your comment.

      Aww, hope your cobbler can repair your Greek sandals. Ours didn’t last too long but we probably didn’t look after them as well as we should have done! 😉 We’ve not been to Rhodes for a while so definitely due a revisit, soon.

  10. Hi there!
    Someone from the Netherlands heren also sad because of My Rhodes flipflops have been broken after 10years. Need new ones desperate, my summer this year wasn’t the same…..
    Can I also please become the emailadress you talk about? Much gratitude!

    • Hi Tammy

      Sorry to hear about your Rhodes sandals. Unfortunately, the previous comment was done in 2011 and we don’t have the email address anymore. Sorry we can’t be of help to you. Hope you find some more soon. 🙂

  11. Hi! I know this was from 6 years ago so not sure if you remember, but do you know the name of this place? I was in old town Rhodes and bought sandals from a shop that looks exactly like your pictures and am really wondering if it’s the same place or not. I went last summer and bought a pair of sandals and am dying for another pair! Do you remember the name or website I could order them from? Thanks so much

  12. Ah, never mind I just read the other comments that you no longer have the email. I may dig around my receipts from my trip and see if I can find it, thanks anyway and great post!

    • Thanks a lot for your comment, Natalie. the famouıs Rhodes leather sandals keep cropping back up. Might have to purchase another pair and maybe even a handbag next time we’re on the island. Hope you can find your receipts. 🙂

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