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Ideal duration: 2-3 days

Best Time: June-August Read More

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"Childhood home of Zeus"

Naxos Tourism

Largest of Cyclade islands, Naxos is located about halfway between the famous islands of Santorini and Mykonos in Aegean Sea. Underrated island of Naxos is both rich in ancient history and natural beauty with long sandy beaches throughout the coastline and mystical interiors packed with white-washed-cube houses, mountains, farms, olive groves, traditional little villages and ancient temple ruins along with over 100 Byzantine churches. In a nutshell, the island has everything available on some of the most famous Greek islands minus the bustling crowds.

Naxos town or popularly known as Chora, is the main village of Naxos. It is known for its stone staircase, and hole-in-the-wall shops spread unevenly across maze-like alleys. There are other numerous green villages in Naxos, like Melanes, Filoti, Kastro, Koronos, and Chalki, having ancient churches and monasteries along with farmlands, vineyards and olive groves. Home to stunning white sand beaches, Naxos is popular for activities including hiking, swimming, snorkelling, windsurfing and kitesurfing.

The best beaches of Naxos are located on the island's west side. There are also plenty of trails connecting different villages in Naxos, including the Mount Zas trail, Arias Springs/Cave of Zas trail and Aghia Marina trail. Naxos is accessible by air or by ferry from Athens, and the journey is equally beautiful as that of the destination. The entire island is just spread over 40km and can be covered entirely in 90 minutes.

Must Know Before You Visit Naxos

  • Getting Around: The best way to explore Naxos is by renting a car. There are 1 day AC bus tours starting at just 25-30 Euros available that can be booked locally.
  • Public bus transport is reasonable, starting from 1.80 Euros. Renting a scooter or ATV is quite popular as well, costing up to 15 and 30 Euros per day. Renting a car costs up to 15 Euros per day.
  • Accommodation: Numerous accommodation options are available at different price ranges. For beach lovers wanting a relaxed stay, book a resort or hotel near Agios Prokopios or Agios Giorgios beach. For water, adventure enthusiasts staying near Orkos and Mikri Vigla could be the best option. For people looking for a convenient setting in the heart of the city, there are several options available, from guest houses to B&Bs in Chora.
  • Must-Try: Naxos is known for its cheese. Try Naxos cheese with phyllo, honey, and sesame seeds.
  • What to Wear: Avoid synthetic fabrics and prefer flowing, airy pants or jumpsuits over dresses; shorts over skirts due to the windy weather of the Greek islands. Prefer comfortable flats being mindful towards the rugged landscape and cobbled streets of the island.
  • Most restaurants and tavernas open from noon till 1:00 AM at night, and there are a few cafes that open at 10:00 AM for breakfast as well.
  • Almost all restaurants need to reserve a table in advance.

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Shopping in Naxos

Shopping can prove to be a lovely activity with basic options in Naxos. There are plenty of family shops on the Island ranging from little bakeries, mini-markets to art galleries and souvenir shops. A perfect shopping experience can be attained in Kastro, the old quarter of the main town of Naxos. It has numerous tourist shops including some ceramic shops and bookstores as well. There are many shops around the main town but plenty of mini markets can be seen in tourist places near Agios Georgios, Agios Prokopios, Plaka, Agia Anna and others.

Nightlife in Naxos

Naxos has a handful of dancing options available but if you are someone who enjoys the drink in peace and quiet with jazz in front of view, Naxos might be your place. Most hip lounges and pubs are around the main town and some with the view are up on the Kastro or down by the water.

History of Naxos

According to Greek mythology, Naxos was home to the god Zeus in his childhood who was raised here in secret to prevent him from being eaten by his Father, Cronos, like his other 5 siblings. Zeus' son Dionysus was also believed to be raised in Naxos. The Thracians are believed to be the first inhabitants of the island during 4000 B.C. and the island was named after their leader, Naxos.

The island was then ruled by Careans, Ionians, Athenians, Spartans, Macedonians, Egyptians, Rhodians and Romans for long periods of time until in the 13th century when the Venetians made Naxos its capital.

Suggested Itinerary for Naxos

Day 1: Start by wandering around the narrow streets of the capital Chora and explore small shops and cafes on the waterfront. Head off to the western side of the island, by afternoon, to explore the beautiful villages of Plaka, Agios Prokopios, Maragas and Agia Anna. To explore water activities like kitesurfing and wind-surfing, visit Mikri Vigla beach. By night, enjoy nightlife around wall-embedded small pubs at Chora.

Day 2: After taking a morning swim, start early by heading out to the mountainous villages of Naxos. Visit the small picturesque villages of Sangri, Halki, Filoti, Aperathos, and Koronos. 

With more time, one can explore the nearby islands of Santorini, Mykonos and Paros.

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Naxos Photos

 Agios Georgios Beach, Naxos, Greece
 Agios Georgios Beach, Naxos, Greece
 Agios Georgios Beach, Naxos, Greece

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