Naxos or Paros: Which Island is Better to Visit in Greece?

Naxos or Paros

Naxos or Paros?? This the exact question you may be asking yourself if you have limited time in the Greek islands. Luckily, we’ve visited both these popular destinations multiple times, and are here to help! As you’ll see in our Naxos vs Paros article, there are endless reasons to experience both islands. We cover everything from beaches to food, and so much more! 

Naxos or Paros in Greece?

In a country like Greece, it can be hard to decide where exactly to go on vacation. I mean, there are over 6,000 islands after all! 

We’ve now been to over 20 Greek islands and they’re all special in their own way. The Cyclades are particularly popular as they play host to Santorini and Mykonos.

Yet, know that there is so much more to discover than these two world famous holiday spots. We’ve actually been to Naxos three times now, and Paros twice. 

We love both of them so much that even we have a hard time deciding between Naxos or Paros. Hopefully, this Paros Naxos guide can help you figure it out for yourself!

Naxos and Paros

Paros Greece

Naxos vs Paros Location 

The first thing to know about Paros vs Naxos is that they’re actually located quite close to each other. In fact, it only takes 45 minutes to get between the two islands by ferry.

Some travelers even take a day trip from Naxos to Paros or vice versa. Read our complete guide to the Paros Naxos ferry here. 

However, for us, one day is never enough time! If you plan to visit both try to give yourself at least 3 nights on each island. 

They’re located in the central Aegean Sea and part of the Cyclades group. The fantastic Greek ferry system makes it simple to get around to other islands within the Cyclades.

You can even fly into airports of Naxos or Paros from the capital city of Athens. If you have an extra day, it’s also nice to take the ferry from Paros to its little neighboring island Antiparos

Antiparos is small and quiet, but has also become a home for stars and celebrities. For more help planning your trip, scan through our best Greece travel tips below.

Naxos or Paros Guide

Paros vs Naxos Similarities to Know

There are some things Paros and Naxos have in common. On smaller islands in Greece, it can be hard to find the daily necessities and fun vacation activities. Yet, know that you won’t have that problem in either place!

One thing we want to point out is that there are public buses available on Naxos and Paros. Nevertheless, if you really want to see everything these islands have to offer, we highly recommend renting a car.

We always use this website to compare rates and find the best deals. Check out our articles for renting a car on Paros, and picking up your Naxos rental car here.

You also may want to look into ATV or scooter rentals for short distances. Here’s what BOTH islands offer so you won’t need to worry about it before your Paros or Naxos trip.

  • International Airports
  • Ferry Access & Ports
  • Beautiful Beaches
  • Mountain Villages
  • Amazing Greek Food
  • Rental Cars
  • Bigger Grocery Stores
  • Fun Boat Tours
  • Incredible History

Paros vs Naxos

Our Favorite Things About Naxos Greece

Let’s move onto the actual islands! Our first trip to Naxos was back in 2019. From the moment our boat pulled in past the massive gates of the Temple of Apollo, we were in love!

On this visit we stayed on the awesome beach of Agios Prokopios, and used it as a base to explore the island’s west coast. While this was a great introduction to Naxos, it wouldn’t be until our next trip where we would truly experience it more fully.

Naxos Town is located right next to the ferry port and is worth dedicating an entire morning or afternoon to. Personally, we wouldn’t stay there as we preferred waking up just steps from the beach. 

When thinking about Naxos vs Paros, you should know that Naxos is the much larger of the two.  Now by no means is it a secret island destination in Greece! Tourists flock here for the impressive historical sites and gorgeous beaches all throughout the summer months. 

Still, due to the fact that it’s so large, many of the best sights are very spread out. One of our favorite days ever on Naxos was when we took an ATV adventure around the island.

We took our vehicle up into the traditional mountain villages and got a taste of the local life. At one point, we even dipped down to the beach town of Apollonas for a delicious Greek lunch! 

To us, Naxos has the perfect mix of beaches, history, and traditional vibes that we love. Here’s 10 more things to know about Naxos before your first visit.

Naxos Greece vs Paros Greece

Best Things About Paros Greece

Now onto Paros! The first time we visited Paros was actually via the ferry from Naxos… And let us tell you, this easy 45 minute boat ride was one of the best decision we’ve ever made.

Our boat pulled into the lively Parikia Port where we stayed for the first couple of nights. Just like with our first trip to Naxos, we didn’t rent a car. We would instead utilize the bus system to get between Parikia and the famous village of Naousa

After an exciting few days, we knew we had to return to Paros someday to see more. One great thing about this island is that it’s not quite as large as Naxos. This means you can rent a car to get to all the beaches and mountain towns, and circle it in one day if you wish!

Let’s actually talk about the beaches for a second. Naxos definitely has some great ones, but the beaches on Paros really stood out to us. When considering Naxos or Paros, you should know that Paros has some of the most unique beaches we’ve ever seen.

There’s everything from pebbly paradises to long sandy stretches, and a place where you can give yourself a natural clay treatment. Chryssi Akti beach has even played host to the World Windsurfing Championships.

Aside from Parikia and Naoussa, you’ll also find an abundance of small towns to stay in overnight. Two we really loved were Aliki and Piso Livadi. You should also make the trip to Lefkes Village when you’re ready to get up into the mountains.

Naxos or Paros Greece

Should You Visit Naxos or Paros?

Now that you know all about Paros vs Naxos, which is the better island to visit in Greece? Well, that all comes down to your personal preference and vacation style.

It’s easy to see that both these Greek islands offer something for every type of traveler. Whether you’re visiting the beaches, discovering history, or eating tasty traditional food, Naxos and Paros really have at all!

With that said, it may come down to the flights and ferry routes. There have been times where we chose one or the other based on the ferry schedule on the day we were leaving another island. This is especially true if you’re visiting in the shoulder season when limited times are available.

Since the islands are so close to each other, it’s really easy to plan a week itinerary to see both. Whatever the case, you’re sure to have a blast on Naxos or Paros! 

Have any questions on this article or want to share your opinion on Naxos vs Paros? Leave us a comment below!

Safe Travels,
Brigitte & Jake


Greece Travel

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  1. Jill
    May 10, 2024 / 5:12 pm

    Thanks for all info. I’m going in June and I plan to see both!

    • Brigitte & Jake
      May 10, 2024 / 5:19 pm

      Sounds like so much fun! Enjoy

  2. John Dore
    May 9, 2024 / 10:44 am

    I spent a month in Naxos back in 1972, loved it, peacefull, friendly locals, and few tourists. Not the same anymore.

    • Brigitte & Jake
      May 9, 2024 / 10:45 am

      Would’ve loved to see the Greek Islands back then! We still enjoy Naxos, but it is quite popular these days.

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