Naxos, Greece – Things to Do

Why you should visit Naxos Greece
Why you should visit Naxos Greece

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Being based in Greece, I am blessed with a choice of islands. And so I decided one summer night I would go to Piraeus, where most of the ferries depart from to the islands, and see where I end up. Being August and being Greece, I knew I could pack light.
See my Greek Island All Round Packing List for some tips and ideas about what to pack when you come to visit the Greek islands at any time of the year.
My Recommended Anti-Theft Travel Items is also a great post to give you tips and ideas of what to pack and what suitcases to use for travels to the Greek islands.
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Deciding to take it all in my stride, I packed not even my smallest wheelie bag – I threw my bikini, towel, a couple of t-shirts, a dress that scrunches up, therefore travels really well, underwear plus toothbrush into my Hynes Eagle backpack.  I arrived into Piraeus port at 4pm and wandered to the nearest ticket office.
Where does the next ferry go to?
Naxos at 6:30pm. That’ll be 31 Euros please.
(That’s one way folks, btw.  Correct at time of writing).
Gulping slightly at the fare, I bit the bullet and though why not? So I purchased my ticket to Naxos – only a one way as I had no idea when I’d be returning – and headed to the monolithic ferry looming into view at Gate 7E, literally right opposite me.
Leaving Piraeus Port heading to the Greek island of Naxos
Leaving Piraeus Port heading to Naxos

Five hours later, I was in Naxos. Upon disembarking the ferry I spied the usual motley crew of accommodation owners seeking their next ‘victims.’ I recognised one of them, Nektarias. He’d looked after my sister & I in June 2010. I wandered up to him, tried in faltering Greek to explain I stayed at his place last year.

“Oh yes!” he threw a small punch on my arm, reached for my bag and threw it into the back of his van before I could ask his prices.

“You no worry about price – me fix you good price, no worry” he reassured me, in that way that is habitually Greek: worry later.

And he did.  It was high season, don’t forget and I had a room with three beds in it, all to myself, for €30 a night.  Albeit it was located in the basement with a small window, but it was HUGE, clean, a big bathroom with A/C and being located on the ground floor – very cool. It was only a 10 min walk to the beach – which was where I spent the next two days.

Beautiful hidden beaches of Naxos - Greece
Beautiful hidden beaches of Naxos – Greece

Naxos, Greece – Things to do: hidden gems

In those two days, I received a back, neck and foot massage from some Chinese person trawling for business on the beach. It lasted a full hour and I was only charged €25.

The evenings were spend wandering around, taking photos of sunsets, being buffeted a little by the wind (yes, it was windy there with the ‘Etesian’, or ‘Meltemi’ winds) and I ended up staying three days in total – enough time to relax on the beach, travel inland to mountainous villages and generally DO NOTHING.

Sunset - Naxos harbour, Naxos Island - Greece
Sunset – Naxos harbour
Hidden inland villages of Naxos, Greece
Hidden inland villages of Naxos, Greece
Naxos churches, Naxos Island, Greece
Naxos churches

So try it – don’t book your airline ticket directly to an island, take a chance.  Come to Athens, spend a couple of days looking at the sites and alternative tours, then head to Piraeus, see where the next available ferry takes you.

Originally published in SEP 2011.  Revised and updated in SEP 2018

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The Greek island of Naxos, in the Cycladic chain, is great to hop on a ferry to from Athens and just head to to explore. Be adventurous! Find out more.
Come and explore the Greek island of Naxos. Photo © Unsplash


  1. Wow! Now that’s my style!!!! Last minute decisions!! I liked being surprised! Great deal you got on that room! Insane! Did you keep Nektario’s card?!

  2. Hi Bex, loved reading about your impulsive trip.

    My wife and I both love Naxos. In fact, we’ll be returning in a few weeks – for the fourth time. Pretty sure it won’t be our last either!

    Looking forward to relaxing once again.

    Can’t wait!

    • Thanks Rob,

      Yes, there are many, many beautiful Greek islands. It’s a country that is blessed with having so many. Naxos is one of them.


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