Paros, famous Cycladic destination
When you spend June fighting the waves in the North Atlantic and the wind in Iceland and the Faroe Islands, you deserve some normal vacation also, right?
Paros doesn’t need any introduction or promotion. There are probably thousands of articles and travel guides, where to go, where to eat, where to stay in Paros. For us, it was a challenge to explore this place in our own way, without crowds and mess, so that to enjoy it as we would enjoy any other not so popular Greek island.
Paros in the end of September, why not?
To get from Crete to Paros, we boarded SUPERFERRY II of Golden Star Ferries, from Heraklion and after a short stop in Santorini, we tied up in Paros port.
What could be better than getting lost directly in the tiny and almost empty streets of Parikia? Our little explorer didn’t seem willing to sleep in his stroller, which made it a little difficult for us. Nevertheless, we walked to the castle, to the church of Panagia Ekatontapyliani, had our coffee surrounded by the white&blue houses and colorful flowers.
Then, we continued to Naoussa, noisy, beautiful and fully touristic town. Fortunately for us, the hordes of visitors did not exist at the end of September, though still there were tourists.
We enjoyed very much our walk in the port, the fishing boats, the taverns, the small stone path that allows panoramic photos of the town. Can you imagine, that Naoussa has the largest fishing fleet in the Cyclades?
The most beautiful sunrise
Finally, it was time to escape the towns and get to nature, which we like really much. Especially since we have our rooftop tent! So we drove to the beach before the carnage, opposite of Naoussa, enjoyed some playing and swimming and the beach and then spend a night in our rooftop tent.
When Ektor decided to wake us up at dawn, both of us were so lazy to get up. We stayed awake until late the previous night, drinking some wine and watching the stars. But it turned out that he did well. The sky was painted red and orange, the silhouettes of sailboats were almost motionless in the bay and the sea was so calm as if it were a lake! Simple things, simple images that fill us, this is something we like about this type of vacation.
Time for walking and exploring
After having breakfast at the beach, which was prepared by Alyona as usual, we left our car close to the monastery of Agios Ioannis Detis and started our exploration of the Environmental park of Paros.
This is one of the very few under-promoted and pretty virgin places of the island. Many tourists and even locals haven’t ever been there, because simply there is nothing to do but to walk and enjoy nature. Paros Park is lovely because it can be enjoyed by all kinds of travelers: young children, elderly people, families, companies of friends. The routes are pretty easy and short, 20 to 40 minutes. You can choose the flat paths along the beaches, or go to the lighthouse, which is a little more uphill, or do several routes if you have 4-5 hours available and start in the early morning.
We started at 8 am and got back to our car at around midday. We walked both ways, to the lighthouse first, and then up to the very last beaches, which were actually wonderful, wild and deep, which is extremely difficult to find in Paros. We don’t mention the names of the beaches so that you explore the area yourself, it is really easy and very enjoyable. The more you walk, the more you will see!
- Just keep in mind, that the other name of the Park in Greek is “Parko Vraxon”, what actually means Park of Rocks, and it is true. There are no trees all over the territory, and as a result, almost no shade. There are also no shops/cafe/drinking water, so take everything you need with you and start either in the early morning or after 4 p.m.
Lefkes and the East Coast of Paros
The most famous village on the island was waiting for us the next day. The distances are small anyway, so in these four days, we drove all over the island.
We took a walk in Lefkes with its narrow street, traditional houses, the small central square and the church of the Holy Trinity. Ektor also had the opportunity to play at the village playground with a local child, something we deeply appreciate during our travels.
We loved the village, even though it had many visitors given the time of our trip. But still, the spirit is so much more relaxing and it is worth to spend a day at this lovely village. Have a coffee at the central square or enjoy a couple of greek donuts with a panoramic view at Lefkes Donuts House.
- Those who visit Lefkes with a baby – toddler, it would be good to have a baby carrier with you. The streets are paved and there are many stairs, so it is not very enjoyable with a stroller. If you only have a stroller, you could leave it in one of the cafeterias at the square to walk more comfortably further on.
From Lefkes the road took us to Marpissa and Piso Livadi. Even quieter there at the end of September. Cafeterias, restaurants, blue sea, fishing boats and relaxed locals, enjoying the end of the touristic season.
We continued South and saw the Golden Coast. Endless, sandy beach with Surf Schools and lots of space for activities or just messy play. Finally, we reached Drios and Glyfa, where we planned to spend 2 days and 2 nights just relaxing.
Family paradise in Glyfa
Usually, we prefer low-budget accommodation, but sometimes we like just to relax with all the comfort available.
This is how we found Glyfa Village, one of the best family-friendly hotels we have ever visited. Just 2 minutes walk from the beach with crystal clear waters, built in the charming Cycladic style with simple but beautiful décor, sea views and plenty of space.
Even though most of the time we spent just playing with Ektoras, swimming and drinking wine at our gorgeous balcony with the sea view, we still explored the area around. The beach of the hotel is great, but we also loved Tripiti beach just nearby. Generally, all of the beaches around Glyfa and Drios are nice, crystally clear and not crowded (at least compared to the other areas of the island).
On the way back to Parikia, in order to take a ship to Naxos, we visited Alyki village. It has a picturesque port, many options for food and coffee. But what we liked was Piso Aliki beach with white pebbles and salt cedars that spread down to the sea.
Leaving Paros behind us, at SUPEREXPRESS of Golden Star Ferries we were thinking of all the beautiful moments we had. Unforgettable sunrises, beautiful architecture, great time in Paros Park and relaxing at the luxury apartments.
Naxos was waiting, and it turned out to be beyond our expectations. In the next article, explore it with us!