Paros is by far one of my favourite hidden gems in the Cyclades islands. With its crystal blue water, its bougainvillea flowers framing every corner, its cobbled paths and its amazing food, there is something for everyone on this underrated island. Whether you are on the island for 2, 3 or 4 days we have the perfect Paros Greece Itinerary for you.
In my personal opinion, Paros is the more affordable Mykonos. There are fewer crowds, more charm and more local interaction.
This island needs to be on your Island hopping Cyclades Itinerary.
How many days do you need in Paros?
Depending on how much you want to explore the island will depend on how much time you need. You can chop and change this itinerary to cater for 2 / 3 or 4 days in Paros. I think 4 days in Paros is the perfect amount of time.
This time frame allows you to relax on the many beautiful beaches, explore the historical little villages and get lost in boutique shops.
I originally only planned 2 days in Paros but loved it so much I circled back after visiting Ios and Naxos.
2, 3 & 4 day Paros Greece Itinerary Overview
First Day –
- Parikia Port
- Lavidia Beach
Second Day –
- Kolymbithres Beach
- Monastery Of St John of Deti
- Monastiri Beach
- Golden Beach walk
- beach club?
- Aeoli for dinner
Third Day –
- Captain Bens
Fourth Day –
- Anti Paros
Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, if you decide to press on them and make a valid purchase I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you and for that, thank you!
How to get to Paros island
There are two ways to get to Paros:
Paros has a domestic airport that only takes flights from Athens international airport. The flight takes 40 minutes and you land 11km (6.8 miles) south of Paros city, Parikia.
The most effective way to get to Paros is by ferry. All islands have ferry ports that interconnect the islands. A really useful search engine/app is Ferryhopper. It allows you to compare the different boats that are departing that day with their time and price. Then you can use the app to store all your tickets.
The ferry will drop you off at the Parikia port. There you will find taxis, buses and rental shops.
How to get around Paros
My favourite way to explore any island is by walking.
But as the Greek sun can get very hot, there are other methods of getting around.
I used the bus regularly to get to different parts of the island. The price is dependent on the location, but can range from €2 – €4. If you plan on doing a lot of trips in one day, then it may be cost effective to get the €10 day ticket.
Google maps transport does not work on the island, so go to the bus station near the port and take a printed copy of the timetable or a photo from the ones on the window.
You can also pay the driver for a bus ticket if you prefer not to pay in advance.
You can rent a car if you want to go to further parts of the island where the bus can not take you. But the bus does cover a lot of ground. If you want to stick to a backpacker friendly budget, then I wouldn’t opt for this option.
ATVs are a really fun way of exploring the island but they do book out quickly as they are a popular option. So if you are visiting in high season it may be a wise choice to book them online in advance.They cost around €25 for the day.
Where to stay in Paros Greece
A hostel I recommend for everyone visiting Paros is the Paros Backpackers.
Paros Backpackers is located in Parikia and is a 10 minute walk from the ferry port.
It was, by far, my favourite hostel whilst I was island hopping around Greece.
The owner (I think his name was George!?) and the team were so friendly and accommodating. The hostel attracts some good people and I made some lovely connections there.
The biggest bonus about this hostel is its roof top. Everyone congregates there to watch the sunset and drink beers. The rooftop stays open until 12. Which is plenty of time to get to know your fellow dormies.
The hostel also has a pool and a nice seating area, a bakery opposite, towels, water and some toiletries wait on your bed and there is a hostel group chat.
I can not recommend this place enough!
What to do in Paros for 2 days
If you only have 2 days to explore Paros, then I suggest doing the first part of this itinerary to really see Paros’s charm.
Day 1 Paros Greece Itinerary
- Parikia Port
- Lavidia Beach
Depending on what island you come from, will determine how early you can arrive at the island. I recommend getting the earliest ferry to maximize your time in Paros.
Here are some examples of the timings from different islands.
Athens > Paros / 4 hours 10 minutes / 7.25am – 11.35am / €50
Mykonos > Paros / 35 minutes / 11.45am – 12.12am / €48.90
Naxos > Paros / 45 minutes / 9.30am – 10.15am / €15
Ios > Paros / 2 hours 10 minutes / 4.40pm – 6.50pm / €24
Santorini > Paros / 1 hour 45 minutes / 9am – 10.45am / €49.90
Milos > Paros / 1 hour 45 minutes / 8am – 9.45am / €75.50
As Parikia is where Paros Backpackers is located and as it is the central hub to Paros. It is probably one of the best places to start off your itinerary.
Wander the charming cobbled streets, stick your head into all the little boutique shops and admire the white washed buildings. I highly recommend stopping at Mastiha Gelato for a quick sugar attack.
They are open from 12am – 11.30pm, meaning you can have them at any point on your trip. They have loads of flavours to choose from, like limoncello, salted caramel, and pistachio.
Two interesting places in Parikia to visit are the Frankish Castle and Ekatontapiliani, also known as the church of a hundred doors.
Once you have explored enough of Parikia, then head to the bus station (next to the port). And get a ticket to Lefkes.
Lefkes is a lovely little traditional Greek village only 20 minutes bus ride from Parikia.
This charming sleepy village used to be the capital of Paros, which is quite hard to believe when you visit it.
Although there isn’t a lot to do, it is still worth a visit. Take time to wander around the picture perfect streets, get a coffee at one of the little cafes, go to ‘the instagram spot’ (which is literally what it is called on Google) and find the Church of Agia Triada.
If you are interested in the village’s history go to the Folklore Art Museum which houses tools, utensils and clothing which have been donated by local families.
There are also hiking opportunities that start in Lefkes like the Byzantine Road hike. This is the island’s oldest trail and dates back to 1,000 AD. This ancient path starts at Louki’s café and continues to Prodromos town.
On this 3.5km walk you will overlook Lefkes village and the Aegean Sea.
Naousa is a 15 minute bus journey from Parikia or a 20 minute bus ride from Lefkes.
This picturesque harbour town holds history, charisma and charm.
The Venetian fortress is an interesting place to visit first. This 15th century watch tower was used in the front lines of the war and to spot enemy attacks.
If you like seafood, then Naousa is the ideal environment for you. All along the waterfront there are restaurants that boast having the freshest catches. You might even see Octopus being hung out to dry.
Like every town in Greece, there are also beautiful churches to admire, like the Holy Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary (Agioi Anagyroi).
You can get lost wandering the cobbled streets and checking out the local bar scene.
For dinner, I suggest going back to Parikia and heading to Pepes. Just a 5 minute walk from the hostel makes the best Gyros for €2.60. The takeaway option is cheaper, so have it to go and take it to Livida beach for sunset.
For cheap eats around Paros, click here.
Located 3 minutes down the road from the hostel is Livadia Beach. This beach is protected by a bay, making the water calm and peaceful throughout the day. I recommend visiting at sunset as the sun sinks into the ocean, creating the most epic orange skies.
This is also the perfect place to eat gyros and watch the colours of the day change.
Day 2 Paros Greece Itinerary –
- Kolymbithres Beach
- Monastery Of St John of Deti
- Monastiri Beach
- Golden Beach walk
- Coast beach club
- Aeoli for dinner
Today is a big and beautiful day. There are so many incredible beaches to explore in Paros. If there is a day you wish to rent a car or ATV, I would use it today.
There is a bus from Naousa to Kolymbithres Beach that runs every couple of hours.
During high season, the bus may run more regularly, but it is always good to check with the driver or ticket office. Keep your maps open as the bus will drop you off at Ταβέρνα Κολυμπήθρες restaurant and you can walk down and along the beach.
The Kolymbithres is one of the most popular beaches in Paros. With its interesting rock formations and crystal clear water, it is a breathtaking place.
Due to its tourist pull, it can get very crowded. The beach itself is also very small, so while I recommend taking a dip and exploring around the rocks, I wouldn’t plan to stay there all day.
Monastery Of St John of Deti
Half an hour’s walk away from Kolymbithres beach is the Monastery Of St John of Deti. I do not believe there is a bus that goes between them, unfortunately.
Monastery Of St John of Deti is one of the oldest monuments on the island.
There is not a lot of history about the place, only that it was established in the 17th century and was renovated in 1806. It was then abandoned between 1833 and 1964. And then a painter was allowed to live in the monastery and restore it. The project was completed in 1982.
Right next door to the Monastery Of St John of Deti is Monastiri Beach. This is arguably one of the most beautiful beaches on Paros island.
Monastiri Beach is situated in a small bay surrounded by cliffs. The water is crystal clear with no waves. There are two different options to relax on this beach, either by purchasing a sun lounger and making use of the beach bar or getting your towel and finding a spot for yourself.
One unique thing about this beach is, there are some trees, so you can have a shady spot if you don’t fancy sweltering in the Greek sun.
Golden Beach Walk
Golden Beach and a few other beaches on the East side are classed as must-see beaches according to the Visit Paros Leaflet. However, with an hour bus ride from Parikia, is it really worth it?
Well, I think I have been fortunate to see so many incredible Greek beaches that when I turned up to Golden I was disappointed. The beach was long and busy and had that darker yellow sand. Looking back on the photos now, it is still absolutely beautiful, but at the time I wasn’t sold.
So, I did what any explorer would do. I decided to walk along the coast to the next village to get the bus home.
And this was the best decision because the scenery was beautiful!
When you arrive at Golden Beach, walk all the way down to the end of the beach (turn left when you approach the sand). There you will see a path going up some rocks.
Along the way you will see the Chapel of Chrisi Akti on the top of the hill, you will walk past Saint Stephens beach, loads of secluded little bays and a nudist beach (labeled that on Google but back in 2021 that was not labeled on Google).
The nudist beach took me by COMPLETE surprise! I was walking along the sand blissfully unaware, as I approached a male, I thought “it looks like he is shortless… o sh*he is shortless!” And then there was a second man further along who’s position made something wink at me! However, it was a stunning beach.
Further along, you will get to Punda Coast. This is a cool beach bar where the bus pulls up in front of the building.
The beach bar regularly has parties with DJs, sun loungers and a pool.
Aeoli for dinner
Back in Parikia, along the waterfront, there are loads of different restaurants with outdoor seating. I thought having this prime location would warrant a high tier price point, but fortunately I was wrong.
Aeoli prices range from €8 – €21.and they have an incredibly extensive menu.
I highly recommend the Moussaka!
Paros 3 day itinerary
Day 3 Paros Greece Itinerary
- Captain Bens Boat Tour
Captain Bens Boat Tour
The Captain Bens Boat Tour is probably one of the best day trips from Paros.
The day consists of snorkeling, swimming, sliding, beach time and plenty of food. The tour normally goes to 7 different spots, including a sea cave!
The captain blares the tunes and, yes, he did play Mamma Mia! While you relax aboard the boat.
Each location brings the wow factor. You have the opportunity to dive and jump off the boat and noodles are chucked in after you. I personally love a pool noodle. It gives me the reassurance that if I get tired I am safe. However, the water is so buoyant you hardly need it.
The captain also puts on a little seafood buffet and actually offers some “catch of the day”.
The day trip is on the pricey side of €65, but it is a fun and memorable day out. It is definitely worth mentioning to people at the hostel and making it a group activity.
Day 4 Paros Greece Itinerary
One great day trip from Paros is an adventure to its sister island, Antiparos. The name was given to the island because of how close they were to each other.
The ferry for Antiparos leaves the port in Parikia and Pounta fairly regularly and is €5 each way (Both cash and card options available). The trip lasts 30 minutes, giving you plenty of time to explore the island.
When you reach the island of AntiParos, I highly recommend renting ATVs. However, there is also a hop-on-hop off bus service that you can take. The ticket cost €6 all day (this was in 2021 and no info in 2023 if price has increased).
The bus takes you to the most popular spots:
- Panagia – Glyfa – Apandma beaches
- Soros – Agios Georgios beaches
I would encourage you to visit the caves of Antiparos. The admission is €6 and requires a good level of fitness as you will be going up and down 411 steps. The caves go down 171 metres below sea level, so you might want a light jumper when you are exploring them.
The caves are said to have been a place of worship for the Goddess Artemis. With many interesting stalactites and stalagmites.
There is also a wall of Quartz which is interesting to see in its natural form.
How do you know which is which? Well, I learnt that the stalactites are the ones at the top dropping down because they are holding on tightly.
Give yourself at least an hour to explore the caves.
After that, hop back on the bus and visit some of the beautiful beaches. Stop at the most famous beach on the Island of Soros. The water here is crystal clear with places to sit in the shade if needed. There is a popular beach bar opposite where you can purchase drinks and food.
There are many beautiful beaches on Antiparos which are worth exploring. When you head back to Chora make sure you visit the Castle castle, which is located in the heart of the village.
The castle dates back to the 15th Century with only part of the structure still standing today. The village is also a lovely place to bimble round the shops.
Frequently asked Questions
Is Paros worth visiting?
Absolutely! Paros was by far my favourite of the Cyclades islands that I explored.
Is 3 days in Paros enough?
I think in 3 days you can see a lot of the must-see spots, but the island is incredibly beautiful with so much to explore, so I feel you could always have more time.
Is it easy to get around Paros in a car?
Yes, while I didn’t explore the island this way, I know plenty of people that have rented cars to maximise their time on the island. Rental cars are easy to book in advance or on the port when you get off the ferry.
In summary, Paros is a truly magical place. There are so many hidden gems on the island to explore. Depending on time, you can easily do a 2,3 or 4 day itinerary and still want more.