Paros is the third largest island in Cyclades. Located in the heart of the Cyclades in less than 3 miles west of Naxos, has about 14,000 inhabitants. Paros was a historical crossroad of maritime routes between the Aegean islands and the Greek mainland. That's responsible for the temporal development of the island. Paros is characterized by the mountain hamlets with all elements of the Cycladic architecture, the white color on the cubic houses, small blooming balconies, and within the built couches and other "furnitures".
The "Hundred Gates" Church - Parikia
The church of Virgin Mary of the "Hundred Gates", according to centuries-old traditions is built by St. Constantine and St. Helen. It is one of the most important monuments of Cyclades and the whole Greece. Guests can admire the unique dome, ancient Byzantine icons and other religious items. Characteristic is the white precinct 8.5 meters height and 252 meters perimeter, which was protective in the face of any kind of attacks. Apart from the church of Virgin Mary, the island's capital Parikia is a wonderful destination because of its castle and integrated Cycladic beauty.
It is the second town of the island after Parikia and gathers much of the island's tourism while preserving local color. The most impressive part is the picturesque old harbor with the colorful boats of the residents and the ruins of the Venetian castle of Naoussa, which combined, create a wonderful picture. On the harbor is concentrated the nightlife of cosmopolitan Naoussa, with the fishermens warehouses having become wonderful and taverns bars and clubs.
Lefkes village is located at the highest point of the island, with a feature breathtaking view, lush vegetation and also architecture. It was once the capital of the island, which is testified by the impressive buildings of the 15th century you can see the main road, which of course you can walk alone, as the cars have to be left at the entrance of the village. On Lefkes worth visiting the marble Church of the Holy Trinity and St. John the caper.
The Archaeological Museum is located in Parikia in its exhibition are objects from the Neolithic period, the Bronze Period, the Classical and the Hellenistic Period. The Byzantine Museum is housed in the church of Virgin Mary of the "Hundred Gates" and exposes images, relics and other religious items. Finally in Lefkes you can visit the Folklore museum which composes a complete picture of residents' life but also the Aegean Folklore Museum.
On the whole island there are many secluded and also organized beaches too, all easily accessible. We chose five trying not to get lost in the dozens. We start from the "Monastery", ideal for children due to shallow waters and low wind. "Kolimbithres" is the most famous beach of Paros and consisted of small, calm bays. Totally organized with beach bar and restaurant is the Santa Maria, where you can spend a whole day. Those who are looking for calmness better avoid it. Really large and one of the most beautiful of Paros is the Golden Beach, ideal for water sports because of strong winds. Finally, three bays to choose in "Faragas" where you can get and park very easily.
In Paros you can reach by ferry boats leaving for the capital, Parikia, from Piraeus and from Rafina. The services are very often during the summer months. By ferry boat from Piraeus, the journey takes about five hours, while by high speed, also from Piraeus takes about three hours. Paros is connected with other ports like Amorgos, Ikaria, Mykonos, Santorini, Rhodes, Crete, etc. Of course in Paros you can reach by air. Paros Airport is located 9 km from the capital, Parikia, while flights from Eleftherios Venizelos are very frequent and their duration is 35 minutes.
For Paros we propose car trips to discover even the best kept beauty. You can either transfer it withthe ferry boat, or rent one. Cheapest way is the bus, with the frequency to be quite good, depending on the period of course.
Paros has a history in entertainment as is was one of the first islands of Cyclades developed tourist. The main centers are Parikia and Naoussa because of the choices they offer. In both, during the summer months most of the roads are close for the cars in order to help pedestrian walk among dozens of bars and clubs. You will not be disappointed, of course, those looking for more calm atmosphere for their drink. Finally take at least one night in one of the less known villages for a unique and authentic experience.
Flavors and shopping guide
During your stay in Paros you will have the opportunity to try numerous products that will surely amaze you. You will easily find in shops with local products, but also in supermarkets, the famous Parian cheeses: "xynomyzithra", "touloumisio" and ricotta. Well known are the vineyards of Paros which offer to wine lovers the white wine "Monemvasia", "Mantilaria" red variety, and other varieties, such as and "Vaftra" and "Aidani". Finally, to sweeten yourself, try, and take with you pastelaries and "zacharompaklavades".