Naxos in Greece
Welcome to Naxos, Greece's most popular island and the largest island in the Cyclades. The island has about 18,000 permanent inhabitants spread over 389 km2. The largest village is Naxos Town - or Chora - with just over 7,000 inhabitants. Naxos is not only the largest island in the Cyclades, it is also the greenest and the most scenic island. The highest point Mount Zas (near the village of Filoti) rises to 1,001 metres above sea level (the highest mountain in the Cyclades) and hides many lovely villages in attractive and lush valleys. Naxos has a rich history that stretches far back in time. The island was occupied by the Venetians between 1207 and 1537, the heritage of the Venetians is obvious: impressive castles, rich man's houses and the old district of Kastro in Naxos Town. The nearest neighbouring islands are Paros, Iraklia and Koufonissi.
Naxos is, unlike its neighbouring islands, a fertile island where agriculture is still of great importance. Tourism has however taken over more and more, but despite increased popularity, Naxos do not feel like a touristic and exploited island, like Mykonos and Santorini. Sure, parts of Naxos Town is exploited, but you just have to go a few hundred metres to meet the Greek everyday life. Photos from Naxos »
Naxos Town is one of the Cyclades best villages.
The beaches in Aliko on the south of Naxos is very fine.
But how can the "little" Naxos be more popular than famous islands like Rhodes and Skiathos? Because that is how it is if you believe the readers of Kalimera (the Swedish version of Kalispera). Naxos has been chosen as Greece's most popular island for many years in a row in Kalimera's annual readers' voting. (First place was lost to Crete in 2013, but was taken back by Naxos in 2014.) How can Naxos be so popular? Surely there are as many answers as there are admirers. Personally, I think the reason is that Naxos has everything you could wish for on a holiday destination, no matter what you want to get out of your holiday, you can find it on Naxos. Naxos is simply a perfect Greek destination, with some of the archipelago's best beaches, a lively countryside with many picturesque villages, a breathtaking nature that in spring is difficult to not be impressed by.
Another advantage is that Naxos is one of Greece's cheapest islands. Prices of hotels, scooter and car rentals and food and drinks is clearly below average. In other words, Naxos is a perfect holiday destination.
The island is small enough to discover in one week, but at the same time so large that there is always something more to discover the next time. The sights are many and some of them unique, including the strange stone statues Kouros. Hikers have discovered Naxos long ago, few other islands can offer as attractive hiking routes as Naxos.
Agios Prokopios is Naxos most popular tourist resort.
You can read more about Naxos using the links at the top of this page. A short summary of that information comes here:
You can go to Naxos on a package holiday from some countries.
If you are travelling independently, the easiest way is to buy a spear
seat on a charter flight to Athens, Mykonos or Santorini. Naxos has excellent
boat connections with Athens' port at Piraeus and with Santorini. The
fastest way is to fly to Santorini, the voyage to Naxos only takes two
hours by Blue Star Ferries.
There are many unspoilt villages full of Greek everyday life,
just as there is exploited tourist resorts. It makes the villages of Naxos
to become a good mix of old and new, touristic and genuine. Naxos Town
is the island's largest village and Apiranthos is the most picturesque
village. Other nice villages are Apollonas, Halki, Koronidha, Skado, Koronos,
Moutsouna, Moni, Kournochori, Melanes, Filoti and Danakos.
Naxos is blessed with some of the best beaches in all of Greece.
Most are located on the west coast, not far from Naxos Town. The beach
closest to Naxos Town is the child-friendly Agios Georgios, or Saint George
as most people say. After that lies Laguna Beach, and further away lies
Agios Prokopios beach which by many is considered to be the best beach
on Naxos. After Agios Prokopios lies Agia Anna (see picture at the
top of the page). Not far from Agia Anna lies Maragas Beach and Plaka
beach. After Plaka lies even more beaches, including Orkos, Mikri Vigla,
Glyfada, Aliko and Pyrgaki. Other good beaches are Lionas, Psili Ammos
Many think that Naxos' main attractions are the beautiful beaches
and the old quarters of Naxos Town. Other attractions are the beautiful
scenery, the Portara in Naxos Town, the Temple of Demeter outside Sangri
and the strange stone statues in Melanes and Apollonas called Kouros.
Do not miss Vallindras Kitron Distillery in Halki.
The range of hotels and pensions are enormous. If you want to
stay close to, or at a beach, you can choose Agia Anna, Agios Prokopios
or Plaka. Accommodation is also available at other beaches, like Mikra
Vigla, but the selection is not as large. If you want to stay at a beach
and be close to Naxos Town, then you can choose Agios Georgios Beach.
Of course there is also a wide range of accommodations in Naxos Town.