Island hopping through Greece is by far my favourite summer vacation, it offers everything I look for in a holiday, amazing beaches, delicious food, warm inviting locals and dreamy landscape views. Visiting one island in the country is a treat but being able to see more than one in the same trip is a true travel luxury and with such an amazing travel system it’s so easy to do! All you have to do is pick where 😉
There are a number of options when it comes to which destinations to visit but the most notoriously beautiful (and close in proximity) group of islands are The Cyclades.
This particular scatter of islands is home to some of the most famous in Greece; Mykonos, Santorini, Milos….to name a few. As to which islands make it on to your list I’ll save my ’round-up’ judgement post until I’ve written about a few more but whilst I am about to write about Paros, I’m happy to conclude that this island is an absolute ‘MUST’ visit when planning your island hop itinerary.
It was my first visit to Paros last month but it certainly won’t be my last. Having just spent a few nights here I’m sadly not in a position to share all of the best bits just yet but I have every intention of going back very soon. Let’s see this post as the starter pack for the island 😉
As with most of the islands in The Cyclades there’s no real differentiation when it comes to the best places to stay as you really need a set of wheels to explore either way. We hired our car from the airport which is something I always recommend and they gave us the option to return it to the port as we planned to leave on the Ferry. If you are an international driver who is not used to driving a manual car you will need to book an automatic way in advance as there really aren’t many available in Europe. Just an FYI!
When it came to booking a hotel we opted for aesthetics and reviews over anything else finding Summer Senses to have the perfect mix of high class service and amenities with some of the best views in Paros.
The luxury resort is perfectly secluded on a private road but just walking distance to the beach. There are 3 large pools including an insta-goals lounge pool and the restaurant served the most spoilt for choice breakfast I’ve witnessed in Greece, including a multitude of vegan options 😀
The ambience is really special at Summer Senses, it’s so serene and peaceful despite it’s large size, it would be the perfect hotel for a lengthier stay in Paros as you could easily spend entire days at the resort but with just a few days on the island we didn’t have that lazy luxury, I will just have to re-book in September for the full experience 😉
We stayed in one of their dreamy pool suites and our view was so perfectly Grecian with the ocean to the left and a scattering of pretty Greek villages to the right.
There’s a pretty sandy beach within walking distance from the hotel grounds, during peak season it’s actually the same stretch of sand that’s home to the happening Punda Beach Club. So if you are looking for the best of both worlds you can enjoy the serenity of the pool levels and the party by the Sea 😉
As for the other beaches of Paros it really is a case of eenie meanie miny mo! There’s so many to choose from all with gorgeous swimming conditions and any that feature beds/parasols/cafes etc are all marked out on the map.
We managed to see a couple of others while travelling to and from the towns but my favourites were situated by the main port so if you are ferry hopping be sure to leave a little time for a swim around the corner before returning your car!
The reason I fell so in love with Paros was because of it’s exuberating Greek Charm. The town of Naoussa embodies everything I daydream about Greece when I’m not there, the charming white stone buildings, blue dome-roofed churches, winding cobbled streets and overflowing fuchsia foliage.
The town is vibrant and full of cute boutiques and restaurants, gelato stalls and bars, there’s even two marinas that are lined with pretty outdoor dining spots.
The whole town is fresh out of a romance novel and even if you don’t sit down for a lovely dinner you can enjoy the ambience by simply going for a stroll.
Another wonderful traditional village is Lefkes. There’s less going on here and it’s wonderfully novel in comparison to other Greek villages as usually you walk uphill to see them but this scatter of white washed houses is the opposite, you drive and park UP and then wander DOWN.
There’s not too much to do with only a handful of small restaurants and cafes but it’s a really pretty place to walk around, I highly recommend it…..make sure your camera/phone is fully charged 😉
I simply adored Paros and have every intention of returning sometime soon! If you want to see everything I’ve talked about brought to life watch my latest YouTube video here: