|Greek: Δωδεκάνησα, Dodekßnisa, meaning "twelve islands"|
are a group of Greek islands in the Aegean Sea, off the southwest coast of Turkey. They have a rich history, and many of even the smallest inhabited islands boast dozens of Byzantine churches and medieval castles.
The current Greek administrative region of the Dodecanese (a subdivision of the South Aegean periphery) consists of 163 total islands of which 26 are inhabited. Twelve of these are major, giving the chain its name. The most historically important and well-known is Rhodes (Rodos), which for millennia has been the island from which the region is controlled. Of the others, Kos is the historically most important; the remaining ten are Astipalea, Kalimnos, Karpathos, Kassos, Kastellorizo, Leros, Nisyros, Patmos, Simi, and Tilos.
Other notable islands in the chain include Agathonissi, Halki, Lipsi, Pserimos, and Telendos.