Paros is an elegant, stunning island in the Cyclades. It is becoming one of the more popular island to visit and it is easy to see why. Quaint villages, beautiful beaches and attractive whitewashed bigger villages provide plenty of delightful sights to be seen on this charming island.
We found Paros to have the perfect mix of sights to be seen but offer enough nightlife and elegant restaurants to keep you entertained on this island. It has been compared to some of the more popular islands like what Mykonos was before it became the more touristy type place it is today. So if you want some untouched treasures to be seen before it becomes as popular as some of its neighbours, head here soon!
There are many things to keep you occupied and fulfilled on a holiday here and so, we’ve compiled a list of things to do with photos on this blog post as to why you just have to visit Paros!
How long to stay
We stayed here for 5 nights so that we didn’t have to rush our trip. With this time-frame, it allows you to have beach days, visit the villages of the island and really soak up the charming atmosphere of this island. What it also will allow you to do is visit the gorgeous, neighbouring island, Antiparos. We’ll get onto that later.
Although not as cheap as Ios, we found the prices here more reasonable and similar to Milos. As mentioned previously, Paros has lovely restaurants and bars to keep you having fun in the evenings. You won’t want to rush your time here!
How to get there
Conveniently, Paros has its own airport with regular flights to and from Athens. Check out flight times using Skyscanner. Although flights can be pricier than the ferry, domestic flights often have no extra baggage costs which will save you a bit of money. Most people who visit the Cyclades will be island hopping by use of ferries, which is what we did. The most important thing is checking in advance which ferries arrive and depart on certain days. The timetable for ferries visiting Paros is frequent, so you should have no problem booking one in advance and you should be able to visit from lots of different islands in the Cyclades.
We used Ferry Hopper to organise all our travel around the islands and were not let down once. Just be aware that ferries will usually arrive 1-2 hours later than schedule as they have a lot of stoppages at different islands.
Where to stay
When doing our research, we found two really nice villages to choose from. Parikia is the capital of Paros and is at the port when you first arrive. It is much busier here but has a wide selection of bars, cafes, restaurants and all your other popular amenities. It is one of the more affordable areas of the island and you will love being able to explore the old quarter, windmills, narrow alleys and the whitewashed buildings. There’s also a wide range of popular beaches to visit and relax at and it’s also near the ferries to visit Antiparos.
The most popular area to stay at is the stunning Naoussa. Naoussa is a charming fishing village at the northern point of the island. It is more upmarket and offers a beautiful harbour with lovely boutique chops perched by the winding alleys of the village. At night, these areas are more lively and can get busy so a reservation at bars and restaurants may be needed. Nearby, are some excellent beaches to visit and some quaint villages you can visit during the day.
How to get about
The island of Paros is bigger than it’s neighbouring islands but thankfully, much flatter. This makes it easier for the vehicle you hire and we recommend an ATV or scooter.
We recommend Motor Land who had two bases in Naoussa and offered a range of ATV and Scooters. Paros has many sights to see and they are scattered around the island so renting a vehicle is extremely helpful to meet your exploring needs. You can even take your vehicle on the ferry to the neighbouring, Antiparos.
Places to visit and things to do
Explore the beautiful whitewashed buildings, alleyways and harbour. You’ll find amazing photo opportunities around this village.
Make your way to the Venetian castle for outstanding pictures and peer through the seven cannon ports that used to defend this Port in the 15th century.
As mentioned earlier, the capital is very popular and again has the alleys to explore. We enjoyed photos by Panagia Ekatontapiliani in particular.
The former capital of the island during the middle ages and still retains charm and character today. Life here is laidback and you will get a sense of serenity. Photograph opportunities are around every corner of the beautiful alleyways and you will even find a Byzantine trail to Prodromos. We recommend strolling around the village with a refreshing stop off at a taverna, we loved it.
A perfect little harbour and beach with plenty of choices of bars and restaurants. The beach is clean and the waters clear, a lovely chance to enjoy some relaxation and take in the beautiful views. This area is much quieter than Naoussa and Parakia so if you want a bit of peace, check out this lovely village.
Marpissa is just another one of Paros’s picturesque villages. Narrow streets, churches, windmills and the whitewashed Cycladic houses are the sights you associate with here. It’s a lovely visit if you are near Piso Livadi.
Go on a boat trip
After researching suitable boat trips, we decided to go with Michael Zeppos. We were treated with unlimited drinks and beautiful, traditional Greek food. The route you are taken on is dependent on the weather. As with all the Cyclades, the wind and waves can be strong but we’re sure that whatever route you are taken on, you will have a blast. We were able to swim in stunning, blue lagoons and explore the coastline of the island. Visiting the churches in the middle of the sea was a great experience.
There are a wide selection of beaches scattered around Paros and we have come up with a list of some of the best the island has to offer. Like a lot of the Cyclade islands, Paros is very windy so you may opt to visit some of the beaches that can be protected from the wind. With whatever you choose, you’ll find that perfect place to relax.
This beach offered clear water alongside unique rocky formations. It’s close location to Naoussa (10 minute drive) makes it easily accessible. There is two restaurants by it which makes it a lovely choice to spend a lot of time here as well as a chance to rent out sunbeds, although that can be quite expensive.
Santa Maria beach
Santa Maria beach is another one that is close to Naoussa. It can be quite crowded here during the peak months but it has the facilities to keep you here for the day like a beach bar and sun-beds. We enjoyed out afternoon here and taking a dip in the clear water.
This was perhaps the best beach of the island. Golden sands and crystal clear water and the best thing… no wind and low waves. This area of the coast is protected from the wind and is only 10 minutes away from the capital, Parakia. You have beach amenities with a restaurant and sun-bed hire available too.
Around 20 minutes away from Parakia, you can find a small, golden beach called Faragas. You’ll find clear water with awesome, rocky surroundings. You can spend an afternoon here and enjoy the bar for refreshments.
One of the most popular beaches on the island and it’s easy to see why. It stretches out far and has clear water, a sandy bottom and is shallow far out. There is a taverna which serves great food and opportunities to rent out sun-beds on the beach. A great little paradise.
Ambelas is a small fishing village with a beach offering lovely views of the port. It is a nice alternative for a place to relax with quietness when compared to Naoussa and Parakia.
Antiparos could be its own blog post so we’ll try to keep this simple. You can get a ferry to this island from Parakia, if you have no vehicle. We loved exploring the island on our ATV so we suggest getting the ferry from Pounta. It is only a 10 minute journey and very easy to do. You can find ferry details and times here.
The island itself is just so beautiful and you could quite happily have a holiday just here. It’s much quieter than Paros and is really like a paradise. It’s easy to see why celebrities like Tom Hanks choose to live here. When you arrive, make sure you visit and stroll through the Chora. A range of lovely boutique shops are to be found with stunning scenery throughout the area. We suggest making your way to the Venetian castle, even the walk itself provides lovely viewing of the surrounding area.
Exploring the landscape of Antiparos was a dream and there were plenty of relaxing pitstop breaks at beautiful beaches. If you’re planning on visiting, check them out below and watch the video at the bottom:
- Agios Georgios – A beautiful beach with calm blue waters at the southern part of the island. You can see the neighbouring island Despotiko and can even get on a boat to explore this island. There are nearby tavernas and we enjoyed eating lunch at Despotiko Cafe Bar.
- Glyfa beach – This beach was by a main road from Agios Georgios to Chora. It was very quiet and you can enjoy glorious views of Paros from here.
- Livadia beach is on the opposite side of Glyfa and is west. It can be quite tricky to get to due to the negative gradient down to the beach. Once there though, you’ll enjoy the remoteness and the spectacular views.
- Psaralyki is a gorgeous sandy beach which is 5 minutes from the Chora. It has great waters and lovely views of Paros.
Where to eat
- Yemeni Taverna – As with most restaurants in Naoussa, you will need to reserve a table in advance. The food here was incredible and we came more than once, a recommendation is the Kebab.
- Souvlaki Kargas – Keep it cheap at Souvlaki Kargas in Naoussa. A small fast food restaurant with high quality gyros.
- Ydroussa – A beautiful secret garden setting away from the busy alleyways of Naoussa. Not only is it a great setting but they offer lovely food too.
As with most restaurants in Naoussa, you will need to reserve a table in advance. The food here was incredible and we came more than once, a recommendation is the Kebab.
We hope you find this guide useful. Check out our video below which will show some of our favourite beaches shot with our drone.
Like this post? Pin it below