Naxos Island, Greece
Greece is famous for its islands. The Greek Islands are a collection of over 6,000 islands and islets. There is a total of 78 islands connected by regular ferry, with another 40-odd islets visited by tour boats and 48 ‘inhabited islands’ being occupied by off monks, goat herds and the occasionally shipping billionaire.
Naxos is the largest Greek island in the Central Cyclades. The Cyclades derive their name from being said to ‘circle’ the island of Delos – birthplace of the god Apollo. Naxos is said to be one of the most popular Greek islands. It offers an alluring mix of an attractive port town, easy accessible beaches, and good links with other islands. There are many ferry companies that offer services to Greek islands, information can be found here.
For the first time, I discovered the island of Naxos that has numerous sandy beaches, which is the perfect holiday destination for nature lovers and those who seek quiet and beautiful place for vacation. There are more than 60 villages on this island, which most of them are on the mountains. Hora or Chora (Naxos Town) is the capital of Naxos island.
We stayed in Agia Anna village for 1 day. Agia Anna is a popular seaside destination on the western side of Naxos, south of the capital. It takes about 20-25 minutes to travel from Hora/Chora. There are many hotels, apartments, studios for rent. So, accommodation is never a problem! However, you need a car or scooter to go around, which is probably the best way to discover the island.
We later decided to base in Agios Georgios, which is nearest to Hora/Chora (Naxos Town). Agios Georgios is a more buzzing place compared to Agia Anna. Many shops and restaurants are within reach and it is only about 15 minutes away from the sea port where you can board the ferry.
It’s probably everyone’s concern to have accommodation pre-arranged. Yes, it is a better idea especially during peak season. However, in September, there are less tourists so it could be a good idea to shop around on the day itself. There are plenty of studious, houses, hotels, and apartments for rent, which is great to compare the prices before you decide which one to go for.
So, what are the things to do in Naxos? Well, here are some suggestions:
1) Stroll in Chona/Hora (Naxos Town) – to get a taste of the island, walk through the winding alleyways to admire the whitewashed houses, with their potted flowers, and colourful doors and shutters. It is truly a calming and rejuvenating experience.
2) Check out Naxos Portara – Portara is the landmark of Naxos. It is a great marble gate of a an unfinished temple dedicated to god Apollo.
3) Venetian Castle and Museum – The museum of Chora is at the heart of the castle. There is a large number of artefacts of Naxos.
4) Naxos Windsurfing – Naxos is well-known for windsurfing especially during summer when the wind blows from the north. Mikri Vigla, Agios Georgios, Plaka, and Agious Prokopios are famous spots.
5) The Old Town/Market – it is a charming little place that is full of secrets! You will discover some old-style houses, small shops, tavernas and bakaries all tuck away in this old town.
6) Rent a car, scooter, or quad to go around the island – we went to the North of the island one day, stopped by villages and admired the view of Naxos from the top of mountains. Do stop by Apollon – it is 35km north of Naxos Town. Apollon is a very picturesque fishing village with a bay with sand and a longer bay with pebbles.
There are plenty of tavernas and restaurants, I think for me, the best traditional food and wine are found here! I had Greek salad – simple but tasty! It was served with a generous portion of Feta cheese!! The whitebaits are just as gorgeous! These go down well with a glass of local red wine! We finished our meal with a simple dessert of Greek-style yoghurt with drizzles of Greek honey!!
As for the south of the island, I personally think that it is less picturesque than the north. However, Damalas is the village that I most like. There is an old pottery workshop called Libertas, which is well known for the traditional way of production. The family owns it for many generations now (1890) and insists on the old tools as far as the progress allows. An olive press in the old style can be visited behind the workshop as well.
7) Enjoy the sunset and indulge yourself with a Greek dinner – the most amazing sunset that we have seen so far would probably be on this island! The colours are just too amazing to be described! Never have I ever seen anything like this! As for dinner, traditional and authentic restaurants or tavernas can be found either along Agios Georgios or in the Old Town.
oh WOW!! looks like you had a great time my friend! 😀
I have never been to Greece btu have to say after your own personal photos from your trip I would love to go! BEAUTIFUL is too mild a word!
It was my first time there and the stunning views blew my mind away! You should go one day.
My dear, you take such stunning pics. So that's where you 'disappeared' to, you lucky gal! Thank you for the feast – a feast for the eyes!
Thank you! Hehe, I like the way you said 'disappeared' .. it was a gorgeous place! More to share soon!
Greece is so beautiful. Love all the stunning pictures you took. Too bad we can't go there so we just feast our eyes with it 🙂
Thanks Gertrude. Maybe you should visit one day, it's well worth!
Both the architecture and scenery are magnificent!! or was it the skill of the photographer? 😉
I think it's the architecture and scenery that enable me to capture them! 🙂
Ok, Greece is now on my 'travel to' list for sure! Just need to save more $$. The pics are so beautiful. The sky's so clear & blue, the ocean's so green & the villages/towns are so charming.
Definitely to be on your 'to travel' list! If you need any info, please let me know. And yes, the sky is always blue and clear so as the water!!
It's beautiful! Wonderful shots! How many days were you there for? Did you go to other islands? Would love to visit Greece one day. My friends recommended santorini.
Thank you! We were in Naxos for 3 nights 4 days – just the right number of days to discover the whole island. Initially, we wanted to go to Paros and spend a day there but that didn’t happen! After that, we went to Santorini (which I will post about it soon). I think there’s no comparison between Naxos and Santorini – both are just too different! Santorini is so unique and beautiful! I would say that the views in Santorini is just priceless!
I can't wait to see the pictures! How long was ur Greece trip then? and how many other islands did you visit?
The post of online, so, no more waiting.. hehe. I was in Greece for only 10 days and visited only 2 islands.. hmm.
Oh this makes me miss Greece so much! It's gorgeous! I've never been to Naxos, but I went to Athens, Rhodes and Mykonos all of which were out of this world. Beautiful pictures by the way 🙂
Yeah, I agree, it's just gorgeous! You should visit Naxos, very laid back and relax!
Very nice post! I was in Greece too but in july. In Santorini and Paros. It was wonderful, I've post a lot of pictures. Paros and Naxos are'nt vey different. Ve want to g back to Paros next year, but also to Naxox, Mykonos and Delos! We love Greece, the blue colors and the food (Greek salad, seefood, greek cheese and honey… Like you!). Thank you for the pictures and the advices. Have a nice sunday…
Yeah, I saw your posts about your trip to Paros and Santorini! The photos are amazing!! I would love to check out other islands too.. I am like you, love the blue colours, and the food.. for me, esp Greek yoghurt and Salad! I bought 2 bottles of honey!!! 🙂
Oh ! Your post brings back so many good memories…
You captured everything so well !
Soooo nice pictures ! The backstreet or back lane so clean and beautiful….not forgeeting the sunset view. Lucky you
Yeah… the little winding streets are just too pretty not to capture!
Stunning photography! Wow! Definitely adding Naxos Island to my VISIT ASAP list, haha.
Thanks for dropping by! Yes, you should add Naxos Island to your list, simply amazing! 🙂
wow lucky you! Greece looks so beautiful, fantastic photos!
I was just in Naxos in early July. It was my favorite Island of the 5 we visited. On our trip we were very fortunate that one of the guides ( it was a biking trip) lived in Naxos for many years – she was able to really give us insight into this gem of an island. She also knows many of the shopkeeper and restaurant owners so our experience was incredible. I have a few posts from our Greece adventure on the Food411 directory blog if you are interested – one outline all the restaurants- which were hand selected by locals.
Thanks for your comment! I can tell that you had a great time in Naxos. I will check out your Greece adventure posts.
Very good and interesting article and photos of Naxos Island! I was there a week ago, and had my accommodation at lovely Sofi Pension in Chora/Naxos town as usual 🙂
Thank you for dropping by! It was my first time to Naxos and definitely think it's a nice place.
Hello, Your pictures are beautiful. I am going to the cyclades this summer with my boyfriend and was undecided what islands to go to. After seeing this post I think I will spend 3 days in naxos. Thank you!
Thanks for your lovely comment. I am glad that my post has helped you to decided to go to Naxos. I think you will enjoy Naxos! Let me know what you think!
Photography is no doubt is awesome but more importantly its the execution that is great!!!!!
Thanks for dropping by and your comment. 🙂