The Rhodos-Navarone-Peck trail

This past summer I was on the Greek island of Rhodos, it was beautiful there (I wrote about it here, here and here)! It was also the location where a lot of the movie The Guns of Navarone was filmed.

My first real fangirl crush in my teens was Gregory Peck and I still love the man. I went on a Roman Holiday pilgrimage in Rome 8 years ago, which is 4 years BB (Before Blog), so I’ve only gotten around to mentioning that in passing here. Now that I’m already 4 years into blogging (I’m just realizing as I write this that I missed my 4 year blogiversary at the end of September), I’m aware that my latest pilgrimage could also be blog post material. So, here is an account of my pilgrimage from last summer: figuring out where exactly Gregory Peck & team filmed The Guns of Navarone!

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In a movie challenge I once did here on blog, I named this movie as a favourite war movie. I can appreciate a good war movie but tend to not watch them more than once. The Guns of Navarone is one of the few exceptions, mainly due to Gregory Peck. Even though the movie is 57 years old (filmed 10 years before I was born, released 9 years before I was born) I realized while I visited the island that there are still traces to be found of the time when Navarone was filmed there. I discovered that it was mostly filmed in Rhodos city and Lindos and the stretch of land between those two towns.

Near the (extremely touristy and busy) Faliraki (halfway between Rhodos and Lindos) there is a hotel called the “Gregory Peck Beach Apartments”! Of course, I just had to drive by that… If I had realized this existed before booking our holiday, we could have rented rooms there, but in the end I think we were happier with where we were. So, I just took some quick drive-by pictures of the Gregory Peck beach hotel…

A little further south of Faliraki you can find the (also extremely busy) “Anthony Quinn bay”. Anthony Quinn bought that bay while he was filming Navarone, although I understand that in the 1980’s the land was reclaimed by Rhodos. Whatever the squabble with that was, the bay is still called “Anthony Quinn bay”. We didn’t swim there (too crowded) but I did get out of the car to take a few pictures there as well:

In the nearby Kalithea springs (right next to the cat sanctuary we visited) there were pictures on the walls commemorating the movies made there, most prominently Navarone…

I’m not sure what was exactly filmed at Kalithea, maybe this scene?

Kallithea maybe

… but cool to see the film referenced there!

I have screencapped some locations shown in the movie and I have my own pictures (and some of Mr Esther’s) that we took this past summer. Putting those side by side made me see how much of the fictional place of Navarone was photoshopped (or whatever they called that technique in the early 1960’s). Navarone is made up of parts of the town of Lindos mixed in with parts of Rhodos city, but more about that later.

The film opens in a temple, which is the temple of Lindos…

Lindos templeI don’t know if they reconstructed the temple somewhat for the film or whether more than 50 years later the temple has just fallen into more disrepair. This is what it looks like now…

Lindos temple now (3)

Here are some more pictures of the temple in the film next to my own; these columns for instance…

Lindos temple (3)Lindos temple now (9)

… or stairs on the temple grounds…

Lindos temple (5)Lindos temple now (1)Lindos temple now (8)

… which makes me suspect they put in more coast scenery in the film than I remember actually seeing there.

In this following comparison, my picture was taken pretty much on the spot where Gregory Peck himself stood! Now if that isn’t following in Peck’s footsteps, then I don’t know what is.

Lindos temple (4)Lindos temple now (10)

Early on in the movie Gregory Peck awaits some of his team at a harbour, this was filmed in the old harbour of the city of Rhodos…

Rhodos harbour (1)Rhodos harbour now (3)Rhodos harbour now (2)

When we came back to the harbour on another day, there was a boat covering the arch, but I stood on the same pier Gregory Peck had stood on (didn’t go much further, so not quite in Peck’s spot, as this pier was a private gated area that we had asked to take a quick look at).Rhodos harbour (2)Rhodos harbourRhodos Harbour now

The real photoshopping happens when you look at the fortress rock with the guns and the town at the foot of that rock. This is what we see in the movie…

Guns rock (2)

That was filmed in Lindos with that horseshoe bay, which actually looks like this…

Guns rock nowGuns rock now (1)

In the movie, the town at the foot isn’t white, like Lindos is, but dark and it’s also fortified. They had also added on a huge rock where the guns from the movie title are situated. I found an archive picture of the rock add-on:

Guns rock set

There is also a little fortress at the foot of that rocky mountain which houses the guns. That little fortress in real life is nowhere near Lindos, but is another part of the old Rhodos harbour, so this was photoshopped into the frame as well for that location.

FortressFortress now

The gate to the fortress, at the bottom of the fortress hill, is in actual fact one of the gates of Rhodos city…

There’s a shot inside the gate and while going through our pictures I found a shot of ours inside a gate which I think may be the same location:

Gate insideGate inside now (2)

There is a gate to a bridge with at the other end another gate and that one I immediately recognized from my own pictures. It was a nice spot, also in Rhodos.

Another gate was visible in the movie, which is in actual fact also a Rhodos city gate…

There was a shot of a street with at the end what I know to be a mosque in Rhodos…

Rhodos mosque backgroundRhodos mosque background now

And there was some action filmed on a square, which I think may be a square that I photographed as well. The stairs on the left in the screencap are, I think, the stairs on the right in my picture. Also in Rhodos.

Rhodos townRhodos town now

In the movie we see our hero Gregory in front of what looks like a little gazebo. It’s actually the washing place of what used to be a mosque, yet again in Rhodos…

At the beginning of the movie, the team must scale some cliffs…

During a boat tour we did near Lindos, we stopped at what the captain said were the cliffs that action sequence was filmed on…

And these scenes…

… look like they may have been filmed in the aforementioned Anthony Quinn Bay (not far from where those cliffs were scaled)…

AQuinnBay (6)

Somewhere halfway through the movie you see a wedding party walking through a very white-washed town…

Although I wouldn’t exactly know where that is, it looked an awful lot like Lindos which is completely white-washed…

A little further on the wedding party was celebrating outside on a square. While I don’t remember an open space large enough in Lindos for this to be set in (it’s all quite narrow there), there were many elements that still made it feel like this may also have been filmed somewhere in Lindos, possibly right outside town where there are now parking lots. In Lindos, but also on some other parts of the island, there were white-washed tree trunks, also seen in the movie…

VIllage (5)Village now painted treeAnd the town square, though different, made me think of the town of Psynthos where we ate lunch a few times.

VIllage (3)Village now

The tower shown at the beginning of the film even looked a little like the Psynthos tower or another tower we saw in Archangelos…

VIllage (1)Village tower now

Of course, while I was in Rhodos I wasn’t aware of most of these locations having been in the film. I did know the harbour and Lindos bay were in it, but I came across the rest of the locations when I compared screenshots I took from the film to the photos we’d taken. Normally this would be a very Mr Esther-like project, he has far more patience for this stuff,  puzzling over where what was in history and what it looks like now. It was fun combining his historical buildings fascination with my movie-love. He was helpful in finding the exact pier in the harbour that Gregory Peck had stood on or pointing out that the small fortress below the guns was actually located in Rhodos harbour. I’m thinking he may enjoy reading this post and who knows, maybe more changes / comparisons / corrections may come from that. 🙂

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My customized Richard phone

The cover for my phone is custom-made and has an image of the Crucible painting on it that my mother once made for me. This cover was signed by Richard Armitage himself when I met him last spring

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And now my phone has been customized even more! I have a new Richard (and Nina Simone) ringtone: every time my phone rings now, this is what I hear…

Is this fun or is this fun? 🙂

Say my name, over and over again

Two years ago, when Berlin Station first aired, I got a little kick out of the fact that one of the characters on it was named Esther (played by Mina Tander). And not just any character, but the woman would turn out to be a love-interest for Daniel Miller (Richard Armitage)!

Berlin Station S02E07 (13)

A year after Berlin Station I discovered Suits and got caught up in (binge-)watching that. In season 5 there was a guest character on the show who was also called Esther (played by Amy Acker), the sister of one of the main lawyers on the show (Louis Litt played by Rick Hoffman). She became a fling for the main guy Harvey Specter (played by Gabriel Macht).

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Ever since then I have been meaning to make an ‘Esther’ fan video in which Richard Armitage and Gabriel Macht say my name, over and over again. Now that I have finally finished watching the second season of Berlin Station, I finally decided the time had come. So, here it is, the video I finished making this weekend, featuring my name (said by more people than just Richard and Gabriel)…

When I was a kid, I really didn’t like my name. In time I made peace with it and now, over the years, I guess I have finally gotten used to it; I have warmed to it in such a way that I am now happy enough with it. This video is all silliness, and feels somewhat narcissistic, but it was nice hearing my name on the lips of actors I like and love and it’s been fun documenting it in this video!  🙂

Giddy!

Marta Dusseldorp, lead actress from A Place To Call Home who plays Sarah, actually saw the fan video I made recently for George and Sarah in season 5!

Marta Dusseldorp APTCH season 6

How do I know that she has seen it? She tweeted a reaction!

Last year she retweeted something I wrote and this time she actually commented and again I am stoked! I had to reply to her, of course…

I never fangirl to garner attention from the object of my affection, I never tweet to the objects of my affection (I only hashtag them) and I never ever expect a reaction. In fact, I am more than fine not being noticed, I’d be embarrassed… I just fangirl because I need to let my enthusiasm out. So, when one of your fangirl objects personally acknowledges you for something you have done because you admire the work they do, I admit, it makes me feel giddy! Thank you Marta for making my day! 🙂

2018 RA Fan challenge, part U to Z

My fifth and final set of answers to Guylty’s fan challenge! (Answers A-E here | F-J here | K-O here | P-T here)

2018 Fan A to Z


U. Have you added anything stupid/crackyhilarious to your fandom, if so, what?

Um… other than what I publish here on blog? Nope, don’t think so…


V. Your favourite fan artist/author gives you one request, what do you ask for?

A “John” shrine from you, Guylty? You know, John Thornton, John Porter and John Proctor in one lovely little shrine… with candles. (Pity Harry Kennedy wasn’t a John…)


W. A promt of AU for a piece of fan art/fiction

Fan fiction prompt – sheesh, I don’t know. I hardly ever read fan fiction anymore. I would like to find a modern retelling of North & South, though. I remember reading one waaay back when but when I searched a while back, I couldn’t find the one I meant. So, if anyone can recommend a good modern retelling of North & South, please point me in the right direction in the comments!

North & South behind scenes

Fan art – I have no idea! I leave it up to the very creative artists…


X. Is there a fellow fan who got you into either delurking or convinced you to participate in the fandom?

No one fan encouraged me to delurk but reading other blogs did awaken the idea that I could do this blogging thing as well!


Y. Choose a work of art or song that reminds you of RA.

Several songs remind me of Richard, mostly songs used in some fave ‘vintage’ fan videos. I once blogged about those here: general Richard videos, North & South videos, Vicar of Dibley videos and Strike Back videos.

I think the most Richard-y of songs for me are: ‘Sexy Back’…

…’Womanizer’…

…and ‘Jungle Drum’

My favourite piece of art reminding me of Richard is a piece of fan art: the painting my mother once made for me of The Crucible, which I now also use as my phone cover & which was signed by Richard!

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Z. A chaRActer headcanon you have?

I’m never quite sure what headcanon is, just looked it up…

Headcanon def

I guess my North & South fan fiction had the headcanon that Henry was jealous of John and tried to break him and Margaret up (but it didn’t work). That’s an old one, though. I don’t think I have that many chaRActer headcanons…


The end of the challenge!

That's all folks

It’s been fun again, thanks Guylty!