JUNE 2024

You can easily do a self-guided daytrip to Naxos, if you are staying in Paros. We were originally going to visit Naxos on an overnight stay, but we felt like it would be better not to move around with suitcases due to my herniated disk. Of course, I still wanted to see Naxos, so we booked a day-trip with the ferry. We only got to visit for five hours, but I was still really happy with this little day tour. Of course I would have loved to stay longer in Naxos and do some hiking or visit the beach, but I will save that for next time.

Ferry information

The cheapest way to visit Naxos from Paros is by ferry. There are several tour operators serving this line, of which Blue Star Ferries has the cheapest option at € 15 one-way. Seajets has more ferries doing this route, but it comes at a higher cost at € 33 one-way. We took the Blue Star ferry at 11:45h and returned at 17:30h. It only takes 45 minutes by ferry, so you will have about five hours of exploring. We stayed in Naxos Chora and found this plenty of time to enjoy the town at a relaxed pace. If you also want to visit some beaches, you should factor in some more time, and maybe rent a car to make the most of your day.

Naxos Chora

Naxos Chora is the main town of Naxos, it is only a five minute walk from the ferry, so the perfect location for a day-trip. We were surprised at how different Naxos felt to Paros. Naxos has the highest mountain of the Cyclades, so it attracts hikers too, while Paros has more of a luxury vibe. Naxos Chora had a really artsy feel, with lots of galleries, arts and local handicraft stores, which we loved to explore. Naxos is bigger than Paros, so we did note that there was some more traffic, but the pedestrian zone is big enough not to be annoyed by it. From what we had seen of the main city, it is a little less perfect than Paros, but that definitely comes with it’s own charms!

From the ferry it is also a five minute walk to the ruins of the Temple of Apollo. It is free to visit and the walk over there is very scenic, as the footway that brings you to the temple is enclosed by sea. Apparently, it also is a good spot for sunset and gets quite crowded at that time. We visited in May during the day and did not find it crowded at all.

If you are not tired of good views, you can do another little hike up to the Venetian Castle of Naxos. The streets up there are super narrow and cute. We had lunch at Aviatian 1739, which can be found next to the castle. This restaurant really made the most of the views as they have a large terrace overhanging the view. Food was good too, but mainly go for the view!

Naxos Chora is filled with lots of cute cafes, tavernas and bars. You will be spoiled for choice. Some of them are overlooking the sea and the harbor, like 520 Cocktail Bar Restaurant, picture below. Prices are usually reasonable.

There is no shortage of bougainvillea in Naxos, though it was a little less extreme than in Paros. A really good bougainvillea can be found in Flamingo restaurant, isn’t this the most romantic setting?

Naxos bougainvillea

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