According to legend, Dionysus, the god of wine and revelry, married lovely Ariadne on the Cyclade’s largest isle of Naxos. The ancient Greeks built a temple in his honor that partially remains today in the village of Glinado near the island’s capital city of Chora. Dionysus would have loved the lush vineyards of this romantic Greek isle, located between Paros and Mykonos in the deep blue Aegean Sea.
Naxos' sandy beaches include Plaka, Agios Prokopios and Orkos. They provide long stretches of soft eggshell-colored sand; while the winds along the western coastline at Mikri Vigla and elsewhere create ideal conditions for kite surfing and windsurfing. The highest mountain in the Cyclades, Mount Zas, sits proudly at the island’s heart.
A large marble Portara, or gate, welcomes visitors at this intriguing port city. One of the island’s most charming villages, Apiranthos, in the north, is paved with the island’s fine white marble. The town’s strong Venetian influence can be observed in the ornate balconies and coat of arms above the doorways. A charming windmill and old tower can still be seen in partial ruins.
Vacationers can find the perfect marriage of land and sea, traditional villages and lush valleys, amid this idyllic Greek island paradise known as Naxos.
What To Do
Go windsurfing around the sublime waters of Naxos.
Visit one of the island’s oldest churches, the Church of Panagia Apeirathitissa, in Apiranthos, plus three impressive museums: the Archaeological Museum of Apiranthos, Museum of Folk Art and Geological Museum.
Explore the ruins of a Venetian Castle in Chora.
Take a hike amid the glorious scenery and ancient ruins of the Cyclade’s most mountainous isle.
When to Go
The driest months in the Cyclade’s lushest isle run between April and September, peaking in July. January sees the most rain, while February is the coolest. Temperatures generally remain between 60 F and 80 F on Greece’s beguiling, authentic isle.