Holidays in Naxos
Naxos is the largest of the Cyclades islands, and is located in the center of the Aegean Sea, making an ideal destination for holidays for visitors from all over the world.
The history of Naxos began 6000 years ago, a fact that is proven by the archeological sites and monuments that have since been found on the island.
Naxos was an island with a great economy and was an important trading center, and therefore was a cultural center of Cyclades until the last years of the Cycladic civilization. Because of the fertile and prosperous earth, the wealth of Naxos was derived from agricultural products as well as from emery rocks (smyrida or smyrigli as it is called locally) that were mined in the mines of the island.
The capital town of Naxos is Chora (Hora) which welcomes its visitors from the moment of arrival. The dominant “Portara” stands at the left side of the port, where in the ancient years, used to be the Temple of Apollo. This gate is the only remaining part of this temple.
Chora consists of two suburbs, the New and Old Town, Nea and Palia Poli. The Nea Poli is built around the medieval castle and has all the modern comforts and amenities of a modern city, catering for all visitors and tourists. At the interior of the castle is located the Palia Poli (old town), which is ideal for exploring and strolling at all the hours of the day. The picturesque coble stoned alleys, with the arches and the whitewashed houses with flowers in their yards, awaken the exploror in everyone, inspiring a nostalgic back to the future trip.
Naxos is an island that has many beauties and interesting sites to be proud of. Sites such as the Archeological Museum in Chora which houses impressive findings not just from Naxos, but also from the islets Donousa, Koufonisia and Keros are very interesting and impressive. Also if you travel around the island you can see ruins of ancient temples and Byzantine monasteries that are ideal for visiting and which provide a different insight in the history of the island.
If by any chance you visit the hamlet of Apollonas, at the north side of the island, you will have the chance to see up close the huge statue of the ancient Kouros (young man) that lays unfinished at the place where its carving was originally started.
In the island are many beaches ideal for swimming and relaxation. Some are organised and ideal for entertainment and water sports, while others are isolated such as Plaka, Psili Ammos, Agios Mammas, Mikri Vigla and Agios Prokopios to name but a few.
Fans of trekking and exploring can participate in excursions that start from Chora and end at the tallest point of the island at the mountain Zas, where you will also find a cave of the same name. During this route you will see the traditional villages Sagri and Filioti and you will arrive to Apeiranthos, the birthplace village of the politician Manolis Glezos.
Returing from this interesting excursion you will pass from two beautiful and picturesque villages – Koronida which is famous for the woven and embroidery linens made by the Women’s Association and Apollonas which has a most wonderful sandy beach.
On a daily basis excursions to various areas on the island are organised, which offer the chance for visitors to see Naxos’ beauty and gather an insight to the way of life and traditions.
Naxos is very well organized in tourism and offers all the modern comforts and amenities. It has luxury hotel complexes, fully equipped studios and apartments, rooms and camping facilities that can cater and satisfy every visitor.
The traditional tavernas and ouzeries are the place you will sample local delicacies and specialities such as Naxos cheese, fresh fish and lobsters and classical Greek cuisine. There are of course plenty of bars and clubs that will add an alternative tone to your entertainment, giving you the chance to enjoy a drink or two dancing in Greek or to more mainstream tunes.
Naxos is connected by sea with the ports of Piraeus and Rafina, and with the airport Eleftherios Venizelos in Athens. During the summer months, there are more frequent ferry services to and from the island.