A travel guide to Paros island, Greece including the best beaches, best food and hotels
If Mykonos is considered to be the party island on the Cyclades and Santorini as the romantic one, Paros’ image seems still undefined and full of potential.
Although less visited than nearby islands, there are many amazing things to do in Paros, Greece that make this island definitely worth a visit!
Like most Cycladic islands, Paros architecture is all about white houses and churches with blue rooftops. But besides picturesque villages, what else Paros has to offer?
Being surrounded by water, many of the best activities in Paros Island involve water, but not all! This island is full of wonder and it will surprise you how many unique things there are to do on Paros.
Don’t get me wrong, the beaches in Paros are definitely one of the Paros highlights. After all, what is Paros known for but beaches!
Still, the food is to die for, and I love just wandering around the towns and enjoying all the blue and white buildings. And the amazing nightlife is one of the best activities in Paros for visitors.
Below are all my favorite fun things to do in Paros Island, recommendations for where to stay and some great ideas for day trips!
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Useful Travel Information About Paros, Greece
✈ Book cheap flights to Paros, Greece with Skyscanner
☘ Book ferries to Paros with Ferries in Greece
❖ Best hotel deals with Trivago
$ Get the best tours and activities in Paros, Greece with GetYourGuide
➳ Rent a car at the best rates with DiscoverCars
✎ Never leave without travel insurance. I get mine at HeyMondo. It is reliable and easy to set up.
How to get to/from Paros
Paros can be reached by plane or ferry. There are plenty of quick domestic flights from Athens to Paros, but I highly recommend getting a ferry so you can experience the full beauty of the island!
For more information, read my guide on how to get to Paros.
Ferries to/from Paros
|Athens- Paros (One-way or Round Trip)|
|Mykonos – Paros (One-way or Round Trip)|
|Santorini- Paros (One-way or Round Trip)|
|Naxos – Paros (One-way or Round Trip)|
Where to stay in Paros, Greece
If you don’t know anything about the island, be sure to check out my guide on where to stay on Paros which outlines the best neighborhoods depending on your budget and travel style. I also have articles on the best luxury villas in Paros, the best luxury hotels in Paros, and the best resorts in Paros for every budget.
1. It’s all about water sports!
Watersports are one of the best things to do in Paros, Greece.
Luckily Paros easily crystallizes itself as the sporty island, and water sports can be done on nearly every beach of the island!
Kite surfing can be done in Pounta, Golden Beach and Molos, Windsurfing in Pounta, Molos, Antiparos, New Golden Beach (Tserdakia), SUP in Antiparos, Golden Beach, Paros Park (my favorite place!). Scuba Diving is offered in Pounta and Aliki.
If you have the space, you can even bring your own inflatable kayak for whitewater!
Before heading to Paros, I read in many guides that “regular” surfing could be done in Paros. But: there was not one single “surfable” wave for 2 weeks!
However, the very wide range of other eligible water sports compensated this first deception. If you are not that much into water sports, get a pair of goggles and discover the blue underworld of the sea by snorkeling.
2. Hiking & Swimming in Paros Park
Where to stay: Katikia Malatesta
Wondering what to do in Paros for nature lovers? Head to Paros Park, one of my favorite places on the island!
This natural park on St. Ioannis Detis peninsula near Naoussa offers a wide range of Paros Island activities: hiking to the lighthouse or a cave, discovering the headquarters of the Russian fleet, water sports at its finest, or relaxing at the small Monastiri beach…
This remote beach is protected from the winds and is equipped with sunbeds for 3,50 € per day and has a beach bar offering light healthy food.
At night you can watch a movie at the open-air cinema, or if you’re lucky to see a concert at the open-air theatre. All of this right next to the beach and respecting the idea of cultural and sustainable tourism.
Paros Park is a unique place on the island and most definitely one of my favorite places to visit in Paros!
3. Santa Maria: Town of Water Sports
Where To Stay: White Dunes Luxury Suites ****
Santa Maria Beach is one of the best beaches in Paros.
It’s a center for watersports (diving, snorkeling and windsurf) and has a quiet, not yet crowded golden sandy beach with gorgeous views on the neighbor island Naxos.
If you walk a little along the coast, you may discover your own private beach, as I did.
If you don’t want to miss any of Paros’ hidden beaches, then I’d take a Paros Bus Island Tour.
The area is also known for being home to some of the best luxury hotels in Paros.
4. Go hiking… in spring!
In spring and autumn, when the temperatures are still to bear and the island not invaded by tourists, Paros is ideal for hiking.
Hiking routes are well indicated and offer impressive views on the sea and the neighboring islands.
I don’t recommend hiking in the summer months (June/July – September) since it gets extremely hot during these months and hiking in the mountains of Paros could harm your health.
5. Party in Naoussa!
Where to Stay: Stelia Mare Boutique Hotel ****
After so much hiking and swimming, what comes better than a great Greek party near the sea?
Naoussa… this lively white port town is ideal if you’re looking for a night out. Many restaurants along the sea offer the catch of the day of the Mediterranean sea.
Enjoy your after-dinner cocktail in one of the many rooftop bars before heading to one of the numerous clubs in town.
If you are looking for an original souvenir: Naoussa has also a lot of shops with beautiful Greek designer jewelry.
Where To Stay: Villa Byzantino
If you are looking for a day off the beach, Lefkes is a perfect option. Situated in a breathtaking valley, this white little town remains cool when Parikia or Aliki are boiling under the Mediterranean sun.
Take the Byzantian Route to discover the hidden spots of this charming village.
Many public squares in marble invite for a “Frappé” (coffee with milk and crushed ice) and to watch the Cycladic daily grind.
On the way to Lefkes, you’ll pass along Marathi Marble Quarry where the famous Paros’ marble comes from. Many Greek masterpieces such as the Venus from Milo have been sculpted in this finest marble variety.
An elderly warm-hearted couple sells self-made marble souvenirs. You should definitely pass by to say hello to them 😉
The Marathi Marble Quarry is quite difficult to reach with an ordinary car, but a guided visit is included in this Paros Bus Island Tour.
This area is also great for renting luxury villas in Paros.
7. Rent a Scooter!
Although local public transportation is cheap and brings you the main spots of the island, a scooter will allow you to discover the hidden jewels of Paros. And it is definitely more breezy than a bus without aircon!
Stay away from the rental agencies at the port. If you walk for 10 min you’ll find scooters for 15€ a day and quads for 20€ i.e. on the Periferiaki street at Iannis’ car rental.
8. Eat out!
Eating out in Paros is cheap and it’s definitely a must to discover the local delicacies. My favorite place was, upon local recommendation, Coralli Restaurant Paros, near the camping at the end of the harbor bay in Parikia. I repeated twice!
Food was amazingly fresh and a price-quality relationship was great: Tzaziki and fish roe salad for 3€ each, 1/2 l of local wine also 3€ and the best Greek yogurt on the island was served with cherries for 0,60€!
Don’t forget to try the local specialty: the sun-dried fish!
A little bit more expensive, but with great, if not unique views on a desert beach and its crystalline bay, is Siparos Seaside Restaurant near Santa Maria.
This seaside restaurant all in white gives you that special Ibiza feeling while tasting modern interpretations of the traditional Greek cuisine. Flavors are intense and all-natural.
Ask for the homemade Baklava filled with ice cream!
9. Wander in Parikia
Parikia, the capital of the Cycladic island, is the nervaltic center of the island. Whereas Golden Beach and Naousa are coveted tourism destinations, Parikia managed to maintain some of its local and authentic vibes.
I particularly loved to stroll through its quaint streets by nights when all the shops are open and temperatures still mild. Hers you’ll find souvenirs, clothes and artisan crafts.
Sitting on a terrace in a white cobbled street, surrounded by bougainvilleas, while enjoying a refreshing drink is just pure bliss!
10. Visit Panagia Ekatontapiliani
By now, you might be wondering what to do in Paros, Greece for history buffs. The answer is to visit the Panagia Ekatontapiliani!
The Panagia Ekatontapiliani is one of the most important Byzantine monuments. The church is located in the city center of Parikia. It is also known for being the Church with the Hundred Doors.
However, so far only 99 doors could be found and the legend says that when the 100rd door will be found, Istanbul will belong to Greece again. Entrance is free
11. Day Trip to Antiparos
The small island of Antiparos is just located in front of Paros island. It is the perfect day trip from Paros, in case you are staying a little longer on the island.
You can either go by jetski or you take the ferry which departs every 30minutes from Parikia and takes only 10 minutes.
Antiparos is known for its pristine beaches and for being very calm. That is why it is a coveted home for several celebrities. I recommend to enjoy the relaxing beach vibe and explore its caves.
More day trip options from Paros:
In addition to Antiparos, Paros Island is perfect situated to enjoy some of the best islands and cities in Greece.
Although it’s hard to get tired of what to see in Paros, if you have time to do more day trips or even a weekend excursion, below are some of the best options, all of which can be reached by ferry.
12. Enjoy Stunning Sunsets in Parikia
Where to Stay: John’s Rooms & Studios
Enjoying the sunset is one of the best things to do in Paros. The sunsets here are stunning!
I’ll let the pictures talk by themselves!
13. Explore the best beaches in Paros
The pristine beaches in Paros are hands down some of the best in Greece. These beautiful beaches are some of the best places to visit in Paros and the perfect way to spend an afternoon – or five.
Two of the best beaches in Paros are Kolymbithres Beach and Chrissi Akti Beach.
Kolymbithres Beach is known for it’s unique granite rock formations, that are perfect for photographers.
Chrissi Akti has gorgeous clear water you can see the golden sandy sea floor through. Due to the sandy, the beach is also called the Golden Beach!
For families and watersports, I also recommend Pounta Beach, Paros.
14. Indulge in the best restaurants in Paros
One of the biggest Paros highlights for me was the food. Greek food in general is absolutely delicious, and Paros has some great restaurant options.
One of my favorites is Markakis Restaurant, right by the Piso Livadi Beach. They serve traditional Greek food that is to die for. They even have a large vegan selection if you are unable to eat seafood!
Speaking of seafood, another great option is Safran Restaurant in Naousa. I loved my grilled calamari and refreshing watermelon salad.
15. Enjoy Paros Nightlife
Anyone looking for evening things to do, Paros, Greece has you covered. Head to Parikia or Naousa for your pick of fun nightclubs.
Greece can be very laid back, so it’s surprising how crazy the nightlife scene can get here. And there is always lots of dancing and music.
One of the best things about Paros’ nightlight is that many of the bars and clubs have a large outdoor section (often overlooking the water), and many are ideal for watching the sunset!
If you’re wondering where to go in Paros for the best nightlife! A few of my favorites are Bebop, Pirate Bar, and Linardo. Bebop and Linardo both have stunning views over the water, while Pirate Bar is a little more lowkey, despite being in the heart of Parikia.
I hope this Paros blog post with all my Paros highlights has inspired you to book a trip to this beautiful island! Did I miss any great Paros attractions? Please let me know your favorite things to do in Paros, Greece in the comments!
Short FAQ About the Best Things to do in Paros, Greece
Does Paros island in Greece have an airport Or is it only accessible through ferries?
Yes! It is called the New Paros airport. There are direct flights from a few places, including Athens. However, ferries remain the most popular way to get to Paros and there are more options for cities to come from.
How many days should I spend in Paros?
I recommend spending at least 2-3 days in Paros if you want to do as many things to do in Paros as possible.
What is Paros known for?
Paros is most known for its beaches and it’s exciting nightlife.