Paros was my favourite part of our time in Greece, by far. Paros was everything I dreamed Greece would be – small winding streets, white washed buildings, picturesque beaches, a small town feel. If you’re trying to decide where to go in Greece, trust me that Paros should be one of your stops (Matt and Maggie I’m talking to you!).
What to do
Our first day we woke up and went straight to the port in Parikia where we met up with Petros from Regaki Boat Trips for our day trip around Paros and Antiparos. To be honest, the first 30 minutes of the trip I was questioning what I’d signed us up for. The boat was slightly crowded, no one was talking, it was rocky getting out of Parikia, and I didn’t see how we’d make it through 8 hours.
Then we arrived at our first stop, which was some of the bluest water I’ve ever seen. We had a swim, came back on the boat, and it was just late enough to start partaking in the open bar. From then on, it was such a wonderful day. People loosened up, we all made friends, and were basically transported to the best swimming and cliff jumping locations around whilst eating and drinking to our heart’s content.
Logistics: The boat departs at 10:00 am and it costs 55 euros per person. Brunch and a late lunch are included, as well as all the wine, beer, and soft drinks you want. You get back to Parikia between 5 and 6 pm, and again I highly recommend fitting this into your schedule!
Rent an ATV for your second day, which makes the island so much more accessible. Head straight to Paros Park and hike to the lighthouse before the sun is directly overhead. The views are stunning and when we went I think we only saw about 5 other people. It took us about an hour round trip, but we sat by the lighthouse for about 15 minutes to read in the shade – and on the way back we wandered down to a little cove and took a dip!
This area is super cool and if you’re there on a Monday, Wednesday or Thursday, you should definitely check out their free open air movie theatre.
Grab lunch at Anemos Taverna before relaxing at for a bit at Kolymbithres Beach. This is one of my favourite beaches in the world, tied with Vernazza in Cinque Terre. I love stone beaches, and while this one did have sand, there was enough stone to lay out on, and the views and clear water were just incredible.
From there head inland to Lefkes. This town is quintessential Greece. Greeks seem to put so much weight into small gestures to make things lovely. If house had chipped paint or a visible water cooler, they would make sure to put flowers next to it. It wasn’t about making everything modern and new, but making the old as beautiful as possible. I really appreciated it.
In the centre of town is the gorgeous Agia Church and Kafenion where you should stop and grab a snack or at the very least a drink. The owner is so nice and the little square is a gorgeous place to sip some wine and soak in Greece.
On your way back to Naoussa, detour a bit to get to Lageri beach. Despite being one of the most famous beaches on the island, when we got there we had it almost entirely to ourselves – only four other people on the whole beach! Have a great last swim before going to home to shower and get ready for a night out in Naoussa.
Where to eat
Soso is meant to have the best food on the island. We didn’t make a reservation which is definitely needed, so can’t confirm first hand. But everyone we spoke to loved it.
Romantica was delicious and run by a local family.
Vitsadakis on the water was huge and had slightly less ambiance, but was surprisingly delicious – if you go here, get the lamb.
Paradosiaka has the best Loukoumades on the island and not a place to miss!
Where to drink
There are quite a few cocktail bars as you walk the winding streets, but our favourite was Sante Cocktail Bar. It has delicious cocktails, and was cuter than the others – it’s in the centre and surrounds a big tree that is lit up with lights and candles.
Moraitis winery is meant to be lovely and a great way to spend a few hours.
Where to stay
Your main options are Parikia and Naoussa. We stayed in Parikia our first night as we didn’t arrive until around 11:00 pm and were leaving from there at 10:00 the next morning for the boat tour. However, as soon as that was over we moved to Naoussa where we spent the next two nights. Definitely stay in Naoussa. It’s smaller, more pristine, and has so much charm. Parikia is a port town so is quite large and bustling, and much less picturesque than Naoussa.
We stayed at Bocamviglies which I would recommend. We had ocean views, a beach almost entirely to ourselves, and were only a ten minute walk from town.
Lageri, Kolymbithres, and Monastiri are advertised by tour companies everywhere on the island. You could go through a tour, but by staying in Naoussa and renting an ATV, they are incredibly easy to get to on your own. I do agree with the tour guides though, they are the best beaches on the island!
Paros was dreamy. Everyone was friendly and welcoming, the island was the perfect size and had just the right amount of people. Have you been to Paros? What did you think?? I feel like it’s still a relatively undiscovered secret and now I just want everyone I know to go so they can also see how great it is!