The second island in our Cycladic island hopping tour in Greece was beautiful Paros. If you haven’t already, check out my island guides here – Mykonos, Paros and Santorini . Paros was a good halfway point between Mykonos and Santorini, so it fit perfectly in our itinerary. Both Paros and Naxos are great islands as a halfway point and are an excellent choice if you want to experience the authentic Greek island life sans the tourists! We chose Paros over Naxos since it was a smaller island and seemed more doable to finish over in 2 days and also cos the pictures of the dreamy town of Naoussa completely set my wanderlust on fire! I knew I just had to visit this little gem.
Dress : c/o Spell Designs
How to get to Paros ?
Check out my tips for island hopping in the Cyclades using ferries in my Mykonos travel guide here.
As I mentioned earlier, fortunately Paros is one of the few islands in the Cyclades that has still managed to maintain its integrity and traditional character. There are very few cruise ships that come here too cos the main harbour is too small for them so they must anchor out in the bay. Paros is best known for its beaches and traditional villages. It has a bit of everything thats so characteristic of an ideal Cycladic island – whitewashed villages, blue-domed churches, sunkissed beaches, cute fishing harbors surrounded by taverna tables etc. Driving through the island gives you a taste of the Greek island life you had always dreamt of ; its so quaint and peaceful. I would move here in an instant haha!
Where to stay ?
How to get around ?
Unlike Mykonos, the public transport here isn’t sufficient if you want to explore the entire island. I would highly recommend renting a car in Paros. We had a reservation (and a fun project!) lined up with Hertz Europe, only to our dismay when we found out that Greece requires you to have an International Driving Permit on top of having a valid US drivers license. Its super easy to apply online so if you are planning a trip out, I recommend you do this asap. Since we didnt have a car, we managed with taxis and buses, but a car would have been way more convenient!
Dress : c/o Spell Designs
What to do in Paros ?
1 ) Visit the charming little town of Naoussa :
This was quite possibly my favorite part of the island and also a highlight of our trip! The sleepy little town of Naoussa is a picturesque fishing village and is known to be one of the prettiest villages in all of the Cyclades. The old harbour is the cutest harbour I have ever seen in my life with all its little fishermen boats bobbing in the water, alfresco fish tavernas and remains of an old Venetian castle all together creating such an enchanting atmosphere. The town of Naoussa itself is super charming and is very similar to Mykonos without any crowds! It has the giant cobbled stoned alleys, cute cafes, boutiques , art galleries and more. Check out my full photo diary exploring this gorgeous town in this blog post here.
2 ) Town of Parikia :
Our resort was 10 minutes from Parikia. Parikia is the capital and main port of the island, and hence the cultural and commercial hub. I did prefer Naoussa over Parikia, but Parikia also has some great restauarants, shopping and more in its town centre.
3 ) Town of Lefkes :
My biggest regret for this entire trip was not being able to visit the town of Lefkes :(. If you are ever going to Paros, I urge you to 100% add this to your itinerary. This lovely lil mountainous village is located in the centre of Paros and due to its altitude offers a breathtaking view of the island of Paros as well as Naxos in the far distance. It is known for its super traditional character and has pathways covered with olive and pine trees and lots of bougainvillea. I have also heard that here you get the chance to dine in locals houses, where they would cook up a traditional Greek meal for you!
4 ) Beaches of Paros :
Paros is known for its beaches, my favorite one on the island was Kolymbithres beach. This is undoubtedly the most famous beach of Paros and is located in the huge bay of Naoussa, or Plastira Bay. It has 7 secluded coves that are surrounded by these huge blocks of granite that have been sculpted into strange shapes and forms due to the wind and ocean over the years. It is so unique and scenic, Anush and I loved walking along the giant boulders exploring cove after cove. Other beautiful beaches in Paros include Santa Maria beach, Parasporos beach (right next to Yria hotel) and Golden beach.
Swimsuit – Montce swim c/o South Beach swimsuits
5 ) Take a trip to Antiparos :
Just 10 minutes away from Paros is this tiny little sister island; makes a fun day trip if you have the time. Sadly we didnt do this due to lack of time, but next time I definitely want to! I have heard that its super tranquil and untouched. If you do go, dont miss out on the amazing sea caves in Antiparos.
6 ) Shopping :
Parikia and Naoussa have tons of amazing boutiques and shops that are the perfect place to shop for traditional arts and crafts, including famous Parian marble crafts.The marble in Paros is known to be one of the finest in the world.
Dress : c/o Spell Designs
Fave places to eat in Paros :
Some of our fave places to eat on the island were :
1 ) Barbarossa – Handsdown one of my fave meal from the trip! The seafood is so sooo fresh. We tried the octopus, fried squid and greek salad and everything was super delicious. The taverna is located at Naoussa old port and is a great place to catch an afternoon lunch by the water or dine for a romantic sunset dinner date too.
2 ) Parasporos beach club – We went here two nights in a row, cos we loved the food so much. This cute family owned place is right on Parasporos beach and the food was all cooked to order with the most fresh local ingredients. When we went here, we were pretty much the only ones in the place as it was very early in the season. Private beach dining FTW!
3) 32 agosto – Gelatos on a stick with all natural ingredients! Definitely stop by if you are browsing around in the town of Naoussa.