Greece: The serenity of Paros

Paros, Greek Islands

Driving into the interior of the Greek Island of Paros, the landscape just gets greener and greener. After the busy glamour and stark beauty of Santorini, the ancient terraces of olives and not a tourist in sight is a quiet relief. It was easy to get a room for the night right off the ferry.
Paros, Greek Islands

Paros is part of the Cyclades island group and only eight kilometres from much larger Naxos in the Aegean Sea. In ancient times it was celebrated for its white and translucent Parian marble.

Through a gap in the hills the village of Lefkes appears, a cluster of white, flat-roofed houses surrounded by olive trees, cypresses and a grove of rich green umbrella pines.

Paros, Greek Islands

As with many Greek villages, Lefkes doesn’t look like much until you start exploring the winding streets. Huge agaves with flower stalks as tall as trees; two chairs sitting outside a blue door in a white street overhung by a Bougainvillea vine. That’s the beauty of Greece.
Paros, Greek Islands

In the main town of Parakia the locals are friendly and glad to see tourists. There are squat Cycladic windmills like sentinels on the hilltops and yellow grass sighs around a great block of weathered marble: all that is left of an ancient Hellenistic tower.

Paros, Greek Islands

The seaside town of Naoussa lies lapped by gentle waters beside its curve of golden sand. On the waterfront a fisherman was getting his hair and moustache trimmed on deck.

Paros, Greek Islands

The light played on the hulls of fishing boats. Flags and palm fronds fluttered in the breeze. I could hardly read the sign of the fish restaurant – it was so weathered – but a row of fresh octopus draped on a rack out front and fresh flowers on the tables drew me in.

Paros, Greek Islands

A delicious meal of seafood, grilled vegetables and manouri cheese confirmed my choice. I spent an hour wandering the quiet streets and playing with the local cats. Bliss in Greece.

Paros, Greek Islands

By Natasha von Geldern

I adored the quiet charm of Paros. What is your favourite Greek Island?

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20 Replies to “Greece: The serenity of Paros”

  1. Katie @Tripbase

    Santorini of course is stunning but everyone know about it! Koufonisia (when I went there) was a tiny island with hardly anything on it. we had to catch a boat to the nearest restaurant – on the neighbouring island!

    Reply
  2. Andrea

    I’ve only seen Santorini but would love the chance to explore more. This looks so peaceful and wonderful. I love that shot of the boats!

    Reply
  3. Sophie

    Looks so appealing, especially in this rainy part of the world. The cats and the blue door, such an iconic image of Greece – love that shot. I’ve never been in the Cyclades, but a friend of mine takes her children to Antiparos every year, imagine it’s much the same, only smaller…

    Reply
  4. Cherina

    Paros is one of my favourite Greek Islands too! I love how peaceful those small mountain and coastal villages are. Lefkes is so pretty. Did you hike the Byzantine Trail that starts from Lefkes?

    Reply
    • Natasha von Geldern Post author

      We had Wandering Kiwi Jnr in tow so hiking requires a bit more consideration. I did read about the Byzantine Trail when I was there – did you do it?

      Reply
    • Natasha von Geldern Post author

      I know, impossible to resist taking lots of cat photos (yes there are many more I didn’t inflict on the public).

      Reply
  5. Vicky

    Dave and I spent 8 days in Greece last year – 3 of which we spent on Santorini and absolutely loved it! Truly paradise! Have not been to any of the other Greek islands yet but it’s definitely worth a trip back!

    Reply
  6. Andrew Darwitan

    It’s really surprising just how quiet Paros is, despite being a common route connecting the superstar islands of Mykonos & Santorini. I really adore the coastal town of Naoussa and the labyrinth-like alleys with bougainvilleas-decorated houses. And Lefkes, of course. So eerie, so quiet… feels like you’re the only one exploring the mountain village.

    Reply

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