8 day Greece trip continued…Naxos!

Once we arrived in the morning from Milos on the ferry, we met our AirBnB contact who took us to our stay and arranged a car for us. This was a bit of a whirlwind and maybe not the smoothest of transactions but it actually worked out pretty well and was cheap. Once settled in we threw on our bathing suits and went straight out to find a good beach. Our first stop was Aliko or Alyko beach.

This beach is great. Clean and less packed. No restaurants or hoards of tourists here. A small grocery store nearby. Clear, clean water. Perfect for relaxing and exploring.

On our way down we did not ride along the coast because we were eager to get in the water, however, we drove up along the coast to get back to the main town center where we were staying. Our next stop was Mikri Vigla. At first glance this beach may seem crowded, and I would say most of the beaches going north on the west coast were a bit busy BUT if you walk over the rocks on the north of the beach you will find a beautiful cove! A small little beach and a shallow pool to swim in. It was beautiful. Take a look. This was my favorite beach spot on Naxos.

The cove and beach.

After these two great stops and the sun setting we headed into Hora (main town of Naxos) to clean up and have dinner. Our first night we checked out a busy tourist restaurant along the docks. It wasn’t that great so I won’t elaborate.

Near Filoti, On the way to Mt. Zas

Day 2- The Mountains of Naxos.

the only part of the climb that had “steps”.

One of the main reasons I wanted to venture to Naxos was because of it’s diverse terrain. We got up early and headed to Mt. Zeus/ Zas. The drive along the way is great. It was a cool, misty morning and on your way you can stop at one of the beautiful cafes in Filoti or Halki. We needed to be back in Hora early to get COVID-19 tests done so we didn’t stop but came back later (at the local hospital for cheap- you can book an appointment in advance). Make time to stop at all the little churches and structures along the way. Especially stop if they are open because most likely they won’t be on the way back.

There is a strip of road to park at the entrance of the Mt Zas climb. It is narrow and you need to park on the road (no parking lot), so also getting there early is a plus as you can park closer to the entrance. At the entrance you have access to water and can see where a car went off the cliff (so it does happen). I am pretty fit and this climb was not too strenuous or long BUT it is very rocky and has some steep steps (leg lifts not actual steps). In the beginning of the hike there was a path but there isn’t really a clear path either. I wouldn’t take my Mom or little ones on this hike but I still loved it. It was probably my favorite thing we did in Naxos.

I absolutely loved the Billy goats on the mountainside. All I kept thinking of was the story of the Billy Boat Gruff.

How many goats can you see in this picture?

After the COVID-19 test, we headed to Agios Georgios Beach. We actually didn’t mean to stop here on our way down the coast but it looked beautiful and quiet so we stopped. I really liked this spot and wanted to try the wind surfing but I couldn’t get anyone to join me so we just snorkeled. When you snorkel, I recommend going further out. It isn’t deep. On my way back to the beach, I got hit in the head by a windsurfer board. Now, I had on a large, hard snorkel mask so it protected my head but it gave me a fright and could have been bad.

After this beach we kept going south to Orkos and Plaka Beach. A lot of sand chairs and restaurants in this area. A bit crowded but again if you are looking to sit in a chair with a cocktail in hand this is great. Lots of kids around and plenty of fun to be had. On Plaka Beach there was a bit of nudity. FYI if you have virgin eyes or want your kids to have them. Always an eye opened for a teenage son. I didn’t take any pictures but enjoyed the hot sand. Water was a bit choppy.

Day 3- Naxos

Our final day before we flew back to Athens in the evening was filled with small stops around Naxos and some last minute shopping in Hora. We never found the Tower of Ayia but we did manage to find the Kouros of Flerio/ Fluoros. Faragi Kouros, I think? At least one of them. And the quarry.

We kept walking for a while but we never came upon an aqueduct or spring. There is an ancient site that if you are into archaeology, you will appreciate. We are talking 500 years BC old. The only thing is the signs were a bit faded so it was hard to read them but it can’t be helped in that sun. We saw these beautiful yellow butterflies whose wings looked to be flying backwards. The locusts or cicadas were serenading us. There is a shady path to the kouros. I really liked it there.

The olive branch

On our way back to Hora, we drove to Halki or Chalkeio (also known as Tragea btw) and had some amazing baklava. The church was closed 😦

Caffe Greco

After we grabbed some gifts we visited the Tower of Sanoudos and the Kastro. The view at the top and the restaurant looked fine but it was too hot for us to sit outside and stay. We viewed the Temple of Apollo from afar as it was crowded and also hot. We thought about going at dusk but there were just many people and not great circumstances during a pandemic. I really liked Hora. It has great little shops and narrow, windy, alley ways to get lost in and explore. There was a lot more to see and do (and taste) just in Hora alone so we would definitely go back. It makes me sad to see so many things that we ended up missing but we did do a lot.

We flew back to Athens on Olympic Air that evening and it ended up being a bit of a nightmare. Still I would go back to Naxos in a heartbeat. There is so much more to do and see and as the biggest island in the Cyclades, you can’t go wrong with Naxos. It offers everything- tramping/hiking, beaches, food and history. I hope y’all get a chance to go and keep checking back for the next adventure! Thanks for reading!

8 Day Greece continued…Milos!


Day 1-Athens/Milos

We took an early evening flight out of Athens. We decided to fly because it was much quicker. I don’t think the flight was even 45 minutes from take off to landing. HOWEVER…………………We flew Olympic Air. The boarding of the plane took a while so we landed late. We managed to get our rental car and checked into our AirBnB before dark but it was a late dinner and night after all. Our Airbnb host suggested a a few restaurants, including O! Hamos! but we couldn’t find it (I know it sounds silly but I guess it wasn’t lit up?) so we ended up having dinner at mikros Apoplous. It was so late we weren’t able to get a table by the water but that’s okay, our kitten company was across the main road. We had an amazing array of appetizers including Bruschetta with Stingray and Baked Feta sticks with Jam.

We had a solid two days to play in Milos. If I could do it again in a short period of time, I would have added one more day. to visit Kleftiko, which has to be accessed by boat. We thought about taking a charter boat tour out but it would have been a full day affair. However, if I could come back longer or often, I would come back annually with the family and stay in Pollonia. It just seems like a great place to make memories.

Sarakiniko Beach

As you can tell by now, I liked Milos. There is some sightseeing to be done but this was the island part of the trip, and I am going to call DAY 1- Rocky Beach Day. We visited 3 beaches. The first one, the most popular beach, was Sarakiniko Beach. This is the moon beach and it was has something for everyone. There is a sandy beach where little ones could ease it it. On the other side the rock cliff jumping for the adventurous. For solid swimmers you can go out and swim around the rocks in the cool, clear, deep blue. I didn’t see a lot of fish but I also didn’t see sharks. This may sound ridiculous but I live in Florida where there are plenty of sharks and the water is warm. If you generally don’t swim out in the deep, the water is mostly calm when you go out but stay clear of the rocks where you can get banged up. I think this was my favorite beach in Milos but not my favorite chill beach. It was beautiful.

Two levels for cliff jumpers. The only thing tricky about this is getting back on land.
In the middle is where the beach resides and on the other side of the rock on the left is where you can jump the cliffs. Plenty of moon walking to be had on the right.


I read that Papafragas was badly littered so I opted for this Mandrakia. When we came in we stopped to our left to check out Tourkothalassa beach which from afar looked gorgeous but turns out was littered. Mandrakia, Μανδράκια is the town on your right. Cute little fishing town. Medusa, the restaurant here, is supposed to be really good, but we didn’t stop here long enough to eat. We did take a quick dip in the water below where I could of swore there was some warm spring spots and checked out the small church before heading off. I didn’t really see a place where people were swimming so we made our own.


Our final beach for the day was Firopotamos Φυροπόταμος. This is a great spot to walk in and swim. The water is calm. Not as clear near the shore but beautiful out in the deep. We took the opportunity to swim far out to the left near a hole in the rock. It was a shrine/cave of sorts. The sand was rocky but not unbearable with some towels. There are a few trees but it does feel up quickly so take an umbrella if you want to stay out of the sun. In the small fishing “town” a lot of people were taking the opportunity to get their professional photos in. There’s a jumping spot off a high dock. The Church of Agios Nikolaos is here. It’s a beautiful church from the outside. It was closed when we were there though. And of course a neat treat here is a temple door but I apologize, I don’t remember its name. Finally, make sure your vehicle has decent power and tires to get up the parking lot hill. All of the cars I witnessed, including our own, had to start back to gain momentum to get up the hill when leaving.

After a clean up we took a drive up to Polonia/Pollonia and had dinner by the water at Enalion. My favorite main dish on Milos and maybe my favorite main in Greece was here. It was the Octopus. It was my one Octopus try in Greece and it did not disappoint. But it wasn’t the only good thing there. The fried goats cheese and the variety of local goats cheese were also fantastic. The squid was good too but everyone agreed my dish was the best 🙂

Day 2- Milos continued….

On day 2 we were eager to find a sandy spot to just swim and soak in the sun. Our first stop was just that- Agia Kiriaki Beach. It was blazing hot and the sun was burning our feet. There is not much shade which is fine because I needed an excuse to rent a sandbag under a umbrella! Best 12Euro of the trip spent. To the left of the chairs and sand chairs is a bar. But have plenty of cash because both are cash only. We could stayed here all day. Most relaxing beach by far. Great for the young and older. And when you are ready to eat head over to Thalassopetra restaurant and tavern. Their signature salad with anchovies is amazing, especially that homemade dressing.

Paleo Hori

Paleo Hori is your volcanic beach. The rocks on this beach are amazing. Such a variety of volcanic rock with a stunning sulfuric backdrop. Grab your boogie boards and closed water shoes. The water is more choppy and those pebbles can be painful. If you go down a little further you can find some beautiful spots without having to pay for a chair but if you want to be served yummy drinks under an umbrella, this is the place to do it. Just not cheap.

Final meal we went back to mikros Apoplous because O! Hamos! was too crowded and we just wanted to eat. This time we got a nice spot by the water. Two of us had the seafood linguini and Mousaka respectively. Ours was very good but I think their appetizers/starters are better than their mains. I only tasted the mousaka but I think it was the best of the mains. My son wanted to try the sea urchin linguini. He was okay with it. It’s an acquired taste, I think.

The next morning we were up early to catch a ferry to Naxos. At the time, we were hearing reports of massive COVID-19 outbreaks in Mykonos. I didn’t think to check whether our ferry stopped at Mykonos on our way to Naxos but it did. Thankfully, I don’t know who this guy was, but one of the ferry employees walked around the whole ferry ride and ensured people were wearing their masks. And he would stand by them and wait until they put their mask on. Barely anyone was on the ferry when we left but it was packed by the time we got off. The ferry itself was a lot more comfortable than the plane. I will say though that when we arrived in Naxos, the line of people waiting to board in the blazing sun was crazy. It looked miserable.

Check back soon to read more about Naxos, Greece’s largest island in the Cyclades, and a great one!

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