Naxos Travel Guide by Santorini Dave
Naxos is a beautiful Island with a variety of activities to enjoy, from gorgeous beaches to traditional living in the hill and mountain villages. Naxos is renowned for its long, sandy beaches with shallow, turquoise water, and Plaka is the best of them all. Plaka Beach is the longest, uninterrupted beach on the island and features soft, golden sand and excellent swimming.
The north end of the beach has the bulk of Plaka’s tavernas, beach clubs, and hotels, while the south end has fewer amenities and a more tranquil atmosphere. Naxos’ most recognizable landmark is the Portara, the oversized marble gate of the never-completed Apollo Temple. The temple ruins sit near Naxos’ ferry port on the islet Palatia, which is connected to Naxos Town by a raised footpath and is the best place for watching the sunset on the island. The area is open 24 hours a day and is free to visit. Dating at least to the 6th century A.D., the Church of Panagia Drosiani is the oldest and most important church in Naxos and among the oldest in the Balkans.
This small, stone church features a cross-shaped layout with a large dome featuring two depictions of Jesus Christ Pantokrahtoras, while the altars and walls are filled with original frescoes of the Virgin Mary, St. George, and more. The frescoes on the walls are the originals and were buried under 2 layers of newer frescoes that have since been removed to museums. A few cave-style chapels branch off the main room, where monks and nuns secretly taught local children Greek language and Orthodox religion during the Ottoman rule.
Located on the hiking trail between Moni and Haalki, the church grounds offer sweeping views over the Tragoa Valley. Family-friendly Agios Giorgios Beach is a lively beach with gold and white sand and shallow, calm water that is perfect for children. This busy beach is lined with casual restaurants, beach clubs, and shops, plus a water sports center at the south end.– Santorini Dave
Learn all about Naxos, a Greek Island, greenest & the largest of the Cyclades in the South Aegean Sea, famous for its sandy beaches with shallow turquoise water in this Travel Video Guide by Santorini Dave
The closest beach to Naxos Town, Ahyos YorYos is convenient to most of the island’s best hotels on foot or a short bus ride away. The Naxos ferry port sits at the northwest side of Naxos Town near the footpath to the Apollo Temple. The bustling port brims with casual tavernas, cocktail bars, souvenir shops, and boutiques. In the mornings, you’ll find local fisherman hauling fresh catch and strings of octopus drying in the sun.
In the evenings, this is one of the best spots to catch the sunset, especially from one of the balcony restaurants or rooftop bars. Late at night, this is the nightlife hub of the island with a handful of bars and dance clubs open until the wee hours. Halki is the most charming of Naxos’ mountain villages.
If you only have time to explore one village, make it Halki. This is the former capital of the island and is filled with rich history, neoclassical architecture, Byzantine churches, Venetian towers, and a colorful maze of lanes. The local spirit kitron, is made here in the Vallindra distillery, which has been operating since 1896.
The tours there are free and include samples. The pedestrian lanes of Halki are filled with workshops and handicraft boutiques, serving artisanal cheeses, traditional textiles, local produce and products. This village offers a handful of delicious restaurants, cafes, bakeries, and bars.– Santorini Dave
Top 10 Things to Do in Naxos, Greece
Top 10 Things to Do Discussed in the Video Include the Following
- 0:05 – Alyko Beach
- 0:47 – Vivlos
- 1:23 – Agios Prokopios Beach
- 1:58 – Seafood
- 2:32 – Agia Anna Beach
- 3:10 – Apano Kastro
- 3:31 – Zeus Mountain
- 4:05 – Plaka Beach
- 4:31 – Portara
- 5:18 – Chora old town