The authencity of Paros, Greece
Paros may be an island you’ve never heard of, as it’s still a quite unknown Greek island. That’s also the reason why I loved it! It has the similar beauty of Santorini, but not the crowds. Paros belongs to the Cyclades and is overloaded with atmospheric towns, beautiful beaches and romantic bays. In this article I’ll tell you all about this beautiful island.
For the ones who don’t know the Cyclades that well: it’s an island group in the Aegean Sea which belongs to Greece. The Cyclades exist out about 56 islands, but the major ones are Santorini, Mykonos, Naxos and Paros. A big characteristic of the Cyclades are the white houses with blue doors and frames. Especially for island hopping the islands are popular. Santorini and Mykonos are the islands which attracts the most tourists. Mykonos is the best place for parties and Santorini is the best place for sunsets. Paros is still quite unknown, but absolutely beautiful and worth a visit.
How to get to Paros
It’s very hard to arrive on Paros by flight. Easier is to book a flight to Santorini or Athens, from where you can take the ferry to Paros. During my time around the Cyclades, I took the Piraeus Paros ferry route, which connects Athens with the Cyclades. It’s currently operated by three ferry companies: Blue Star Ferries, SeaJets and Golden Star Ferries. It depends on what day and what time you’d like to go; I often used the Blue Star Ferries, which was arranged very well.
Which places to visit
There are several places to visit when travelling to Paros. The island is well known for its beautiful beaches, small mountains and cosy towns. Paros is a quite small island, which makes it easy to see a lot of the island in one day.
Naoussa is the place I stayed at during my time on Paros and I was really happy about that! I loved this small town. It has a beautiful and nice port, white houses, typical Cycladic small alleys and lots of shops and bars. From the port (in Parikia) it’s only a 20-30 minute drive to Naoussa. It’s a fishers town and you can notice this by looking at all the nice fish restaurants.
Naoussa is a place which is nice for everyone. For the ones who love culture: you can find several historical churches from the Middle Ages and you can also find some museums. For the ones who love going out: there are lots of pubs and bars where you can definitely enjoy a night out. For the ones who love beaches: you can find many beaches in the area of Naoussa, like Monastiri and Kolimbithres.
Parikia is the capital of Paros and here you can find the port where you arrive by ferry. With its 5.000 inhabitants it’s the biggest place of Paros. Although it’s a little bigger than Naoussa, it’s still a place with a lot of atmosphere. Here as well you can find the beautiful white houses in the small alleys and many nice restaurants. The place consists out of a rich history, while you can find all kinds of sights from the antiquity.
In Parikia as well you can have a nice night out and there are several, beautiful beaches. Examples are Livadia, Kaminia, Krios and Agios Fokas.
Actually, Antiparos is another island in the Cyclades, but because you can reach the island so easily from Paros , I really wanted to mention it in this article. If you would like to have real tranquillity, you’re at the right place on Antiparos. It’s a small island with only an amount of 1000 inhabitants. You can have a nice walk through the main street, where you can find some small restaurants and some shops. It’s nice to pay a quick visit here.
Same as Naoussa, Piso Livadi is a small fishers town with a really nice and cosy port. You can find all kinds of restaurants and cafés located along the port, from where you can watch the fishers boats sail in. The nice thing of Piso Livadi is the fact you can have an authentic Greek dinner literally next to the water. In town, you can also find a small beach where you can enjoy a swim. Comparing to Parikia and Naoussa, Piso Livadi is a little more quiet and unknown.
Located in the middle of the island (so without beach), you can find the traditional town Lefkes. It’s absolutely worth a visit, as the houses are so beautiful and you can find small alleys everywhere. Lefkes will probably be the most photogenic towns of Paros, mainly because of the fact that it’s located in a valley, surrounded by low hills. In Lefkes you can also find some interesting churches, which show the historical aspect of the town.
Of course Paros has more towns to offer. However, the towns mentioned above are the ones I visited during my time on Paros. I found these places definitely worth the visit and I can absolutely recommend to go to these places. Also because of the fact that every town has its own charm.
How to get around Paros
The best way to see Paros will probably be by rental car. With a car, you can easily drive from A to B and you come across places which you normally wouldn’t visit. You can also find many quads rental companies, but I’m unsure if a quad would make it around the whole island. It can be a nice option if you would like to see the area around the place you’re staying at.
I got around Paros by booking an excursion, so by bus. I stayed at Naoussa, from where I was picked up and from where we visited the rest of the towns mentioned earlier in the article. This is a nice alternative too if you don’t want to rent a car.
Where to stay
I would definitely say and recommend to stay in Naoussa! I really liked it, because it has a little of everything. You can lay on the beach, you can do some shopping and you can have a nice night out. Plus the town isn’t that big, which makes it cosy and creates a lot of atmosphere. The accommodation I stayed at, is Kanale’s Rooms & Suites. A really nice accommodation which is only a 10-minute walk from the center of Naoussa.
Is Paros already on your list?