Located to the northeast of its sister island Antiparos, Paros brings out the best in the Cyclades: Fresh, local food, great beaches, world-class kite surfing and perfect summers weather. Its natural beauty and luxurious whitewashed villas make Paros one of the hottest destinations for summer in Europe. Our team on site in Paros is ready to accommodate your needs, whether it be personal chefs, masseurs, Greek lessons or island hopping excursions. Opa!
Paros (/ˈpɛərɒs/; Greek: Πάρος; Venetian: Paro) is a Greek island in the central Aegean Sea. One of the Cyclades island group, it lies to the west of Naxos, from which it is separated by a channel about 8 kilometres wide. It lies approximately 161 kilometres south-east of Piraeus. The Municipality of Paros includes numerous uninhabited islands totaling 196.308 square kilometres of land. Its nearest neighbor is the municipality of Antiparos, which lies to its southwest.
Historically, Paros was famous for its fine white marble, which gave rise to the term “Parian” to describe marble or china of similar qualities. Nowadays, abandoned marble quarries and mines can be found on the island, but Paros is primarily known as a popular tourist destination.
Paros’ geographic co-ordinates are 37° N. lat, and 25° 10′ E. long. The area is 165 km2 . Its greatest length from N.E. to S.W. is 21 km, and its greatest breadth16 km. The island is of a round, plump-pear shape, formed by a single mountain 724 m sloping evenly down on all sides to a maritime plain, which is broadest on the north-east and south-west sides. The island is composed of marble, though gneiss and mica-schist are to be found in a few places. To the west of Paros lies its smaller sister island Antiparos. A car-carrying shuttle-ferry operates all day (to and from Pounda,5 km south of Parikia). In addition a dozen smaller islets surround Paros.Paros has large number of beaches including Chrissí Aktí (Golden Beach, Greece) near Drios on the east coast, at Pounda, Logaras, Piso Livadi, Naousa Bay, Parikia and Agia Irini. The constant strong wind in the strait between Paros and Naxos makes it a famous windsurfing location.
Culture and Nature
Paros is by size the third island of the Cyclades group, combining natural beauty, culture and fun. The visitor can start his tour from Paroikia’s harbour, have some time to relax in the nice little coffee-shops lining the island’s picturesque alleys and then stop by the Archaeological Museum of Paros to get an idea about the history of the island that has been populated since the beginnings of the Late Neolithic Period, due to its location in the central Aegean
Paros has been inhabited since at least the Neolithic Ages, that is around 4000 BC, but in all likelihood much earlier,possibly dating back as far as Paleolithic times as found evidence would suggest. During these Stone Age times, caves were providing shelter for small groups of people who lived off the fruit of their labours. Fishermen, hunter/ gatherers and quite possibly some of the first farmers were the people who initially colonised these islands between 4300 – 3900 BC.
During the Cycladic times or early Bronze Age (3200-2000 BC), the island began to flourish. On the sites of Kastro in Parikia, ruins of villages from Bronze Age were found. Ancient tombs, decorated with what we now perceive as classic Cycladic sculpture, from that time have been found all over the island as well
During 800-700 BC
During 800-700 BC Paros began to flourish. It started to trade with the Phoenicians and even colonizing other islands, for example Thassos, the island famous for its metal deposits. During that time, the literature and sculpture started to grow and many temples were built. Moreover, this era was also famous for Paros’ satirical and somewhat sarcastic poet Archilochos. He was the first who used personal elements in his poetry. At that time, Paros also became famous for its’ marble. Nowhere else had been found marble of such high quality. it became highly prized and was used by recognized sculptors such as Agoracrotis, Scopas and Thrasymedes in their work of arts.
Paros disastrously sided with the Persians, the results being the eventual victory of Athens, dispatched fleet under the leadership of Themostocles, which forced the Parians to surrender and ally with Athens. In 338 BC Paros came under the authority of Phillip Of Macedonia.The ancient graveyard on Parikia’s seafront dates from this period.
When Paros became a part of Roman Empire it continues to produce amazing works of art until it became an island of exile. During the Byzantine ear, Christianity started to spread and there were growth in building of churches and monasteries, including what id considered to be one of the most important Byzantine monuments in Greece, the Church of a Hundred Doors or Ekatontapyliani.
During the Second World War, Paros was invaded by the Germans, whose occupations took a heavy toll, forcing many of the inhabitants to seek their fortunes elsewhere. However, since the 1960’s the island’s invaders have been rather more welcome, as Paros started to develop into a tourist destination with its glorious sandy beaches, bustling night life and renowned cultural scenes.
Visit absolutely stunning beaches
Paros is blessed with some of the best beeches in the Aegean. Some of the best beaches in Parikia are Livadia – long wide stretch of white sands; Krios – a small sandy beach; Marcello – a long wide expanse of golden sand with crystalline waters; Souvlia- this beach is perfect when the south wind or Sirocco is blowing; Parasporos – a big white stretch of sandy beach, perfect for surfing. Other popular beaches are located in Naoussa. For instance, Kolymbithres this is a not a beach as such, rather a series of small sandy beaches; Agios Yannis Detis this stretch of seafront is also known as Monastiri due to the small monastery located on the rocks just to the right of what is possibly the most beautiful beach in Paros; Santa Maria is the most popular and well know beach in Paros; Laggeri can be described as a “secret” beach. Molos, Logaras, Golden Beach, Tserdakia, Pounda are beaches located in the Eastern Paros and well known for golden/caramel sands and crystal clear waters. Other beautiful beaches such as Farangas, Aliki, Agios Nikolaos , Pisso Aliki, Voutakos, and Pounda are located in the Southern Paros.
Meet the villages
Wander through beautiful traditional villages like Náoussa, a colourful village, where the ruins of a Venetian fortress stand at the entrance to its small harbour. Léfkes is located at the highest point of Páros and enjoys stunning views of the island. The village is located in the mountains and is surrounded by a rich green landscape. It has very well preserved Cycladic and neoclassical buildings, beautiful squares and narrow marble alleys. Additionally, you can visit Márpissa, that was founded in the 15th century. It is a traditional village with a distinctive medieval character, located on a hill, a few kilometres away from the famous beaches of Loyarás and Písso Livádi. You can also visit the impressive Monastery of Ayios Antonios (17th century) on the hill of Kéfalos, where the ruins of a 15th century Venetian castle stand, and enjoy a wonderful view of the sea.
Visit Religious Festivals
Religious festivals are the perfect occasion for many types of festivities! If you find yourself in such an event, don’t forget to taste the sweet smelling wines produced in the island’s vineyards. Paros is in fact one of the oldest Mediterranean wine-making areas, with its own protected designation of origin wines. Another perfect occasion to visit the island is during the celebrations in August 15th, when cultural events are held around the church of Panayia Ekatontapyliani. Easter celebrations are pretty impressive, especially in the villages of Márpissa, Mármara and Pródromos. In autumn locals pay tribute to their “rakidia” a locally made spirit and celebrations culminate in the Feast of Ayios Georgios Methistis, when the new wine made that year is uncorked for the very first time.
Sport activities in Paros
There’s a fascinating aspect of summer holidays when combined with seawater activities on Paros. Most beaches on this wind-swept island – covered mainly with fine sand – are located next to modern and well-equipped facilities for all kinds of water sports, offering their sporty visitors some carefree and stimulating fun-time. Paros offers a large number of water sport activities such as beach soccer; beach volleyball; diving; pedalo riding; sailing; waterslides; waterskiing, underwater fishing, kayaking and surfing.
The Church of Panagia Ekatontapilliani
The Church of Panagia Ekatontapilliani is one of the best-preserved churches in Greece. It is also one of the earliest Christian churches in the country, built around A.D. 300 by Saint Helen. The church also was constructed on the ruins of the ancient Temple of Demeter. Inside, there is a Byzantine museum with pieces from periods of Paros’ history.
Frankish Castle, which now sits in partial ruins, is in the heart of the old town of Parikia. The castle was constructed in the 1200s by Venetians using materials from the ancient Temple of Demeter, which can be identified within the castle’s structure. Frankish Castle is located at the highest point of Parikia, allowing visitors a magnificent view of the surrounding town
Visit islet of Antiparos
Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the small islet of Antíparos, lying southwest of Paros, which can easily be reached from Poúnda or Parikiá by boat. The Hora (Main Town) of Antíparos is built around a 15th century Venetian castle. The stone paved streets, the whitewashed alleys, the houses decorated with thriving pink and purple bougainvilleas and the central square in the shade of eucalyptus trees create an enchanting atmosphere. On Áyios Ioannis Hill lies the cave of Antíparos, distinctive for its marvellous stalagmite and stalactite formations whereas sun-kissed beaches will offer you unforgettable moments of serenity.
Visit Tango Mar
Looking for somewhere special to go for an evening out or a great beachfront location in the summer months? George Sardis’ “Tango mar” is open from April to October offering a wide selection of unusual and tantalizing dished crated for you by chefs Bora (from Brazil and Italy) and Harry (from Sctland) who have become well known for their culinary talents since ” Tango mar” opened in 2006. Located beside the water right at the end of Livadia beach in Paroikia, with an unbroken views across the entire Bay of Paroikia. Tarongo mar is situated in an idyllic spot, perfect in the summer months for light lunches and refreshments by the beach and with an elegant indoor spaces for cooler evenings.
Visit Delfini Beach Restaurant
Delfini Beach Restaurant is located in Souvlia, a lovely beach between Parikia and Parasporos. Most locals call this beach Delfini, a name given from this particular restaurant. With a line of tables right along the coast, the location offers amazing view of the town and the port of Parikia. Wooden pergolas above the tables offer shade in summer days and visitors can enjoy their meals in a pleasant atmosphere. Delfini Restaurant offers a wide choice of hot and cold dishes, all made with fresh products and cooked according to traditional Greek or international recipes.
Visit Anna George Tavern
The Anna and George tavern is located on the way from Marpissa to Logaras, one of the most beautiful beaches on Paros. The tavern has been in business for more than a decade and gets pretty popular with locals and tourists. A family-run eatery, the tavern serves tasty Greek meals. Trellis architecture on the ceiling overhung by vines and wooden chairs and tables covered with charming checkered table cloth complete the picture-perfect scene. The tavern serves some amazing appetizers and the meat dishes in particular are reputed to be some of the tastiest on Paros.
Visit Franca Scala
The Franca Scala Restaurant is one of the upscale dining places in Parikia, the capital and main port of Paros. The restaurant, owned by Frangiskos and Moschoula Petropoulos, opened in 2009 and it is housed in a beautiful Neoclassical building located at a street corner at the end of Market Street, opposite the Pirate Bar and the church of Agia Triada. Previously a creperie and jewelry shop, the building was extensively refurbished and named after the Franks who occupied the area in the 13th century. The cuisine is mainly Mediterranean and Greek and fresh ingredients from the island are used to prepare a variety of classic dishes that are served in elegant and spacious dining areas. The indoor dining area is used year round and is a stylish room done up in white: white walls and furniture contrasting beautifully with brightly colored screens. High ceiling gives the appearance of spaciousness and there is a long bar at the rear end of the restaurant. The outdoor dining is on a beautiful balcony and fills up pretty quickly in summer. It has an attractive decoration and visitors can enjoy the meal while listening to the sound of the water lapping on the coast. The cuisine of Franca Scala was kick started by a highly accomplished chef from Athens, who brought with him a wealth of experience from some of the top restaurants of the Greek capital.
- Alta Vista
- Azure Bay
- Blue Marine
- Edge On The Horizon
- La Blanche
- La Luna
- Santa Maria Beach House
- Santa Maria Retreat
- The House Of Kakti
- The Palm Oasis
- The Pepper Tree
- The Refuge
- The Sea Vineyard
- Waterfront Court
- Waterfront Gate
- Waterfront Mansion