We arrived to Paros just about 7pm,got to our room,changed and went out. We booked a 4 room mixed dorm in Paros Backpackers Hostel. It’s actually a very cute hostel with a pool and a big common area.
Our main evening goal was to find a tour office where we can book a bus tour for the next day. We found the office we were looking for called Polos Tours and we booked the tour for €37/person. We then went to a cute little restaurant called the Albadros and had an amazing red snapper. It cost €33 for 2 snappers and it came with some salad and boiled potato. As we walked on the street after dinner, we found a few very nice bars on the beach. The first one was very empty which was a surprise since it was Friday but we had 2 drinks. One of them was Negros, which is basically Campari, Gin and vermouth. Oh my Jeez! It was so strong and bitter,we could barely drink it. The other one called Japanese iced tea which is a melon based liquor with lime, vodka,gin and triple sec. That was yummy! Right next to us we saw a very cool bar with hammocks outside so we decided to have a drink there too. We got 2 mojitos and just chatted till past midnight. Cocktails are generally around €7-9.
I straight away fell in love with Paros. It’s so much nicer than Santorini. It’s so cute with its little boats and beautiful and compact little streets and white washed Greek houses. It’s like a small treasure box.
Next morning we got up early and went to the main square to start our tour. The tour basically took us around the town we are at (Parikia). We met our lovely tour guide Uta, who was born in Germany and moved to Paros 42 years ago 😳😳☺️ She is funny, entertaining and extremely knowledgeable about the whole island and its surroundings. We started here with the Venetian castle, then visited the fortress that is actually pretty amazing and finally the church with 100 doors. That’s is where Uta told us that it was a name day for Stavros yesterday and it was a big celebration everywhere. That is what we saw yesterday. She also told us that Greek people don’t eat the basil that grows by churches as it’s a holy herb in their belief as Mary found the 3 crosses under the basil bushes. Once in a year when it’s the name day of Stavros, they all go to the church and as they leave, they get a bunch of basil. After a good walk around we took the bus to Punda which is a small port where we took a small car ferry to Antiparos. If I say Paros is like a treasure box, Antiparos is even cuter. Its like your go to the most special little village shop and buy one of those very cute little treasure box with a blue top. Very fragile and you really have to be careful when you open it. Then you open and bumm… it’s magical, you can not take your eyes off it. That’s Antiparos. Gorgeous,little island. We spent an hour there wondering around and we had half an hour free time so we sat in this little bar just by the Main Street. 1m away from us a bunch of Greek men played some sort of Greek board game, just laughed, had loud conversation and just seemed happy with no stress or worry. It was amazing. As soon as we got back to Paros, our next trip led us to Pisso Livadi where we could have a little swim and some lunch. It’s also called ‘the golden beach’ as it has a small, 1km golden beach. As it is inside the marina, there was no waves, it was all quiet and the water is just crystal clear. We had a quick lunch, really nice savoury crepe filled with ham, bacon,cheese and tomato for €7. The next stop was Lefkes, which is a cute mountain village. It is positioned in a way that pilots couldn’t see it from the sea as it is hidden by the small mountains. It was always safe. We had a quick wonder around in this beautiful place where I took like a million photos as every corner looks like a postcard ☺️. Then got back on the bus to go and see the last stop, Náoussa which is a very small fishing village. During peak season unfortunately it is very similar to a little Mykonos with lots of tourists, bars, restaurants, etc. But when the season goes, it turns back to a really small fishing village. We got back at 5pm, sat by the pool a little and then went to see the sunset by the castle. Unfortunately we didn’t get up to the castle in time but still had a little view before the sun went down. We stayed there for a while just soaking in the colours of the sky, the beauty and our drinks of course 😆
After the submerging beauty, we had a little walk, bought our ferry ticket to Amorgos that cost €33/ person but this is the fast ferry at 10.30am. There is a cheaper one for €27 but that’s a slower one and it only leaves at 10pm. We didn’t want to lose a day so we bought the slightly more expensive one.
We ended up in a restaurant for dinner where we had beautiful Greek live music. We stayed for a while just to listen then had a walk by the sea and went back to the hostel. We wanted to have a bit of a sleep as lately we couldn’t get much. Back at the hostel we did our own thing for a while, Mieke wrote her journal, I checked and deleted pictures I didn’t need and then slowly slowly went to sleep.
The information we gathered during the day were:
- You know about the white houses with blue tops. Now the blue isn’t but the white colour is mandatory. Ages ago they had a problem inside the houses with some sort of bacterial issue on the walls that made people sick. So the leader decided if they use lime wash inside and outside, it will get rid of them and he was right. Since then having white hours is a must. They use cobalt for blue colouring
- If you ever see coloured houses in Greece, those are from the Venetian style house from that era
- All these houses have very little windows. The reason is simple – it keeps the heat in during winter and the cool during summer
- The olive trees are planted around the island now are the new type of trees that needs only about 3 years to have olives and the oil. The old ones needed 50-70 years to have the olives on. They used to say: ‘ you plant olive trees to your grandchildren ‘
- Every island around the Cyclades have something individually special on them. Paros is famous for its white marble, Naxos for its potato (which is apparently the best), and then an other one for its pottery and so on
- Everywhere around Paros you see these beautiful white marbles. Some of them arrived from Santorini ages ago
- Apparently they say the people of Naxos are a bit closed and they are very friendly themselves, Paris’s people are very open and friendly and very unreliable 😁
- Mel Gibson has a house in Antiparos ☺️
- Greek people don’t celebrate birthdays BUT namedays
- Water supply is very limited on the island and you can not drink tap water. Since they don’t have enough water, rainy season is a very important time. Most people have a rain collector and that’s what they use for general things (washing up, washing, showering, etc). It is forbidden to use water to wash your car so don’t be surprised when you see lots of dirty cars. They aren’t lazy to wash their cars, they are not allowed
- Antiparos and Paros used to be one land but the big volcanic eruption in Santorini centuries ago made them drift apart
- Tourism is the worst in August, there are thousands of people, hard to move on the road and find space on the beach. The time we are here now, that is end of September is the best time to visit
- When Uta came 42 years ago, there were no roads, they only had 2 cars on the whole island. Uta’s car was the 3rd. That time people used donkeys and muse to travel on small dirt roads. Now it is very different…
- You can see on one of my photos the octopus drying. Basically if you see smaller octopus, that’s from Greece. The bigger it is the more certain that it is probably from Thailand. What they do is, they catch the animals, then they kill them and then hit them to a rock for 20 odd times to break their muscles. Otherwise it would be too chewy. After they do that they leave them dry for 24 hours on a tree or wooden sticks. That is because if you ever had grilled octopus, they need to dry it otherwise if it’s too wet, the fire can’t catch it. It’s almost like wet wood in the fireplace…