Paros is located in the center of the Cyclades, is the fourth largest island and is one of the most popular tourist destinations of the Greeks and not only. Its natural beauty, endless beaches, crystal clear waters and impressive traditional villages make the island a magnificent destination. Paros will offer you whatever you desire, leaving you free to choose the holiday of your dreams.
Paros Island Sightseeing
Parikia, the capital of Paros, is a beautiful village ,where the houses are built and decorated in the traditional Cycladic style. A well preserved 13th century Venetian castle stands proudly on a hill at the centre of the village offering an amazing view of Parikia. In the capital you can also admire an important ecclesiastical monument, the 6th century church of Panayia Ekatontapyliani, also called Katapoliani.
A colourful village, where the ruins of a Venetian fortress stand at the entrance to its small harbour. No one can believe that the marina of Naoussa was once a pirate’s den. The music from the bars, people that want to live every night to the full, all combine to create a cinematic ambience.
Be sure to visit the small island of Antiparos, which is just 4.5 nm from Parikia, with which it is connected by ferry. Its capital and harbor is Antiparos or Kastro, a picturesque settlement that spreads around the Venetian castle of the 15th century.
The cobblestone streets, the whitewashed alleys, the flowered houses and the large (central) square with the eucalyptus make for a magnificent island atmosphere, while on the hill of Agios Ioannis lies the enchanting cave of Antiparos with magnificent stalagmites.
Paros Museums & Churches
The Archaeological Museum displays exhibits from the island’s monuments (such as the Sanctuary of Asklipios and Pythios Apollonas, Delion etc.), including part of the “Parian Chronicle”, a chronological table of the 3rd century BC with references to important events and personalities of antiquity.
Byzantine Museum of Ekatontapyliani
The Parikia Byzantine Museum is housed on the ground floor of the church. Its exhibits include icons, wood-carved iconostases and other heirlooms from various monasteries and churches on the island.
In the capital you can admire an important church from the 6th century, Panagia Ekatontapiliani, also called Katapoliani. The name “Ekatontapilianí” means the church with 100 gates (“Ekato Pyles” in Greek), one of which is a secret one! Don’t miss the chance to visit the baptistery (4th century AD), one of the best preserved baptisteries in the Orthodox East, and the Byzantine Museum.
Paros Traditional Products
Like other Cycladic Islands, Paros offers a wide array of hand-made products. Visitors can purchase beautiful ceramic pottery and fine leather products from the small traditional workshops on the island.
The local products of Paros are not so different than the products in the other islands of the Cyclades but some Parian specialties exist and are worth trying.
The soft white goat cheese called mizithra is a pure delight and it is used in salads instead of the feta cheese, pure with bread, or on the pasta or meat dishes. The gouna is another Parian specialty and consists of a mackerel fish that have been dried under the sun and is served grilled, with a bit of lemon.
Finally, the traditional petimezinia sweets and the local pumpkin pie are two delicacies that must be tasted.
Wine in Paros is particularly good and quite famous in the rest of Greece for its excellent taste and aroma. Two major producers create the Parian wine: the Local Cooperative and Manolis Moraitis.
Paros Folklore Festivals and Cultural Events
Religious Feasts & Festivals
Religious festivals are the perfect occasion for many types of festivities! It also means devotion and experiencing the customs that accompany our religious traditions and are still maintained today, maintaining the link between the past and present. If you find yourself in such an event, don’t forget to taste the sweet smelling wines produced in the island’s vineyards.
A perfect occasion to visit the island is during the celebrations on August 15th, when cultural events are organised around the church of Panayia Ekatontapyliani.
Easter celebrations are quite impressive, especially in the villages of Marpissa, Marmara and Prodromos.
The Pirates Festival is a great celebration representing the raids of the pirates in Paros that were so usual in the Medieval times. Young boys dressed in traditional pirate costumes jump from the caiques (fishing boats) and run in the crowd to snatch the girls and take them away. Fireworks, traditional music, dances, local food, and wine are composing this great feast.
Paros has some of the most beautiful and popular beaches in the Greek islands. Are famous for their crystal water and relaxing atmosphere, attracting many visitors every summer. Some beaches in Paros are organized with restaurants and beach bars, while others are totally secluded. Paros beaches on the eastern side, particularly Golden Beach and New Golden Beach, provide nice spots for windsurfing and kite surfing.
The most popular are :
This small beach is surrounded by an arid hilly environment. The shore is partly sandy and partly pebbled, but the water is always crystal. This coast is not organized and receives few visitors every summer.
The closest beach to Parikia, the capital of Paros, 700 meters from the harbour divided in several different sections ,fully organized with sun beds, umbrellas and water sports facilities.
Pounda Beach is one of the most famous and most crowded beaches of Paros and reminds of the Paradise Beach in Mykonos. It is a fully organized beach located 2 kilometres from Logaras (south east of Parikia) which offers a big tourist complex with many interesting facilities such as swimming pools, restaurants, bars, shops, sea sports material, bungee jumping, etc.
Monastiri Beach is located a couple of kilometres after the beach of Kolimbithres, in a small rocky bay surrounded by huge rocky hills.The water stays at waist level for a good 100 metres and there is good opportunity for snorkeling. The sand is surprisingly deep and very sludgy.
One of the most famous beaches of Paros and is located in the huge bay of Naoussa. This beach is particularly impressive because of the huge blocks of granite boarding it, sculpted into strange smooth shapes by the sea and the wind over the centuries. Small sandy coves are lining one after another, constituting the beach of Kolimbithres (whose name means swimming pools), and sometimes, you feel like you have your own private tiny bay.
Santa Maria Beach
Santa Maria Beach is located near Naoussa, in Plastira Bay and is a long coastline divided in two soft, golden sandy beaches which offer a beautiful view on the island of Naxos and the crystal emerald waters. It is fully organized, with sun beds, umbrellas and water sports facilities for windsurfing and scuba diving.A campsite is located behind the beaches and makes it really crowded during the pick season of July and August.
Ambelas is a small yet lovely fishing village located 12,5 km far from Paros town and 5km from Naoussa. It has a small sandy beach where all the fishing boats come to. Mostly famous for the fishing port and the delicious fish taverns, Ambelas is a nice alternative if you don’t want to stay in the busy town of Naoussa.
The water is crystal clear and safe for the children. It is not an organized beach but it is a nice place for those who prefer the tranquil locations.
Logaras beach is located in the south of Paros Greece, 20 km away from the island’s capital, Parikia. It is a long sandy beach and is surrounded by bars and hotels.
Golden Beach, located south of Parikia, is considered to be one of the best beaches of Paros. It is a long golden sandy beach extending for 700 metres, famous by windsurfers for its ideal wind conditions.
Every August the Professional Windsurfing World Cup is organized on this beach, gathering many windsurfing celebrities. Golden Beach is fully organized offering plenty of windsurfing facilities.