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Our most recommended things to do in Naxos

Naxos: Highlights Bus Tour with Free Time for Lunch and Swim

1. Naxos: Highlights Bus Tour with Free Time for Lunch and Swim

Explore the wonders of Naxos island on this guided bus. Visit the valley of Gyroula and the marble quarries of Apollonas. Stop at the villages of Chalki, Apiranthos, and Damalas along the way. Start with a pickup from a variety of locations on Naxos and first travel to the green valley of Gyroula. You will visit the marble temple of the Goddess Demeter, one of the most important ancient monuments on the island. The next stop will be the tiny village of Damalas. Learn everything about the old procedures of olive oil production at a restored olive press museum. Afterward, visit a traditional workshop of a third-generation potter and know the secrets of his art dating back to ancient Greece. Continue to Chalki, an ancient commercial center and a place of beautiful Venetian architecture. You will have approximately 50’ free time to explore by yourselves. Don’t miss the oldest distillery of the island – Vallindras distillery - located right in the middle of the village, the sophisticated ceramic art galleries and the cozy shops with souvenirs and local products. Next, make a long stop (approx. 1,5 hours) at the famous village of Apiranthos located at the foot of Fanari mountain. Admire the beautiful views of Venetian Towers, marbled alleys, cozy tavernas, verandas, and traditional shops. Here, you will have free time for lunch – it is highly recommended to taste the local recipes of “rosto” and “kalogiros”. Driving past Koronos village and the famous emery mines, you will reach Apollonas. Get free time at the picturesque fishing village to go for a quick dip and enjoy a coffee or desert by the seaside. End your tour with a visit to the infamous “Kouros”, an unfinished marble Statue of 11 meters, lying in the same spot for more than 2500 years! Drive along the west coast, one of the most beautiful routes on the island with an amazing view of the ocean, and be returned to your pickup point.

Naxos: Catamaran Cruise and Snorkeling with Lunch & Drinks

2. Naxos: Catamaran Cruise and Snorkeling with Lunch & Drinks

Embark on a full-day catamaran tour starting from the port of Naxos. Enjoy lunch with drinks on board and visit the highlights of the Aegean Sea. Swim and snorkel at an island beach or relax on the pristine shores. Meet our friendly crew at Naxos Port and board your catamaran for the day. The cruise sets sail at 8:30 AM and heads to the first stop of the day. As you glide along the water, admire stunning views of the Naxos coastline and enjoy a complimentary hot or cold drink and a snack. After 2-hours of sailing, arrive at the first stop, which is one of the most famous landmarks of Naxos Island. Spend some time exploring then cool off from the heat in the crystal clear waters of a secluded beach. You can also go snorkeling in search of colorful marine life, or chill out in the shade. Head to the next stop of the day where you can swim, snorkel, and soak up epic views. The exact location depends on the day’s weather and passengers’ preference. During the 30-minute sail to the island, sunbathe on deck and sip on a refreshing beer or wine to keep you cool. Once you have worked up a bit of an appetite, dine on a delicious, freshly-prepared Greek lunch. Spend some free time relaxing after lunch then visit the final destination of the day for more water activities. At the end of an unforgettable adventure, enjoy fruit and coffee onboard whilst marveling at the last of the coastal view as you sail back to Naxos Port.

Naxos: Highlights Full-Day Tour by Bus

3. Naxos: Highlights Full-Day Tour by Bus

The first stop is Demeter temple, a spectacular recently restored ancient temple from 530 BC. Apart from the impressive monument, you'll have the chance to visit the archeological museum located in the same area, and to check out some findings from the site. Continue the tour to Damalas, a cute little village in the heart of Tragea Valley where you'll enjoy a demonstration at the only remaining traditional pottery workshop and the traditional restored olive press. Then drive to Chalkio, a neoclassical village where you can walk in picturesque alleys, visit the traditional citron distillery/museum, and have an espresso while taking in the classy atmosphere. Head then to the famous village of Naxos, Apiranthos, the “marble village," and stroll down marble cobbled streets and take loads of photos. Drive towards the north part of Naxos island to end up on the northeast edge in Apollonas, a small typical Cycladic village. Have a swim or just relax at one of the cafes by the sea. On the way back, stop by the impressive Kouros, a colossal unfinished statue from the 6th century BC, before returning to Chora, taking in gorgeous views along the way.

Naxos: Half-Day Cooking Class at Basiliko Family Tavern

4. Naxos: Half-Day Cooking Class at Basiliko Family Tavern

Learn about the traditional cuisine of Naxos, Greek food, or satisfy you passion for cooking with a traditional cooking course at a rural village. All dishes are made from local and fresh ingredients and with pure organic products. Learn all the secrets of herbs and aromatic plants. At the end, the cooking lesson turns into a feast as you enjoy the dishes you have prepared, along with local wine and traditional music. The lessons will take place in small or large groups, in couples and families, upon agreement, at the times and days you choose. If you choose to, walk along the river and get to know some of the beauties of the village. Make the most of more than a simple cooking lesson, but a rich experience, as you cut vegetables and fruits from the garden or even make cheese together with the villagers!

From Naxos: Delos and Mykonos Full-Day Boat Trip

5. From Naxos: Delos and Mykonos Full-Day Boat Trip

Sail across the Aegean Sea from Naxos and visit the uninhabited island of Delos to explore the most sacred of all the Greek islands from ancient times. Get 3 hours of free time to wander around the ruins and see the excavated artifacts in the small museum. Hire a private professional guide upon arrival if you wish to upgrade your experience, or join one of the guided groups formed on the spot upon landing. Then, cruise to the jetsetter island of Mykonos for a further 3 hours of free time. Use the time to explore Mykonos Town and stroll the pretty alleys of the romantic Little Venice district.  Climb the hill to see the famous windmills up close and get spectacular views of the surroundings. Sail back to Naxos in the early evening at the end of an amazing day at leisure.

From Ag Anna: Rina's Cave and Ano and Kato Koufonisi Cruise

6. From Ag Anna: Rina's Cave and Ano and Kato Koufonisi Cruise

Leaving at 09.45 from Agia Anna port and return at 19.30. We ll sail along Naxos West coast and in approx 1,5h we ll reach Rina 's Cave. We ll stop there for 2 hours where you can swim in the cave ,dive from above if you are adventurous enough,step at the nearby pebble beach with the unique water spring is located.It s a magnificent place approachable only by sea! Next stop will be Kato Koufonisi and we ll have a splendid bbq lunch break wih a variety of delicacies ,home made by local naxian products and plenty of options for vegeterians/vegans accompanied with local wine, water and soft drinks.Enjoy a traditional potato salad, tzatziki, pasta, fresh bread, and souvlaki for lunch. Choose the vegan menu to enjoy dolmadakia and butter beans instead. Next stop will be Ano Koufonissi for a 2hour stop,where you ll be free on your own to stroll in the village,swim at the nearby beaches or get at low cost a sea taxi to take you for a brief visit to other beaches. We 'll depart at approx 17.15 and we ll be back at Agia Anna s port at 19:30

Naxos: Sailing Cruise with Lunch and Drinks

7. Naxos: Sailing Cruise with Lunch and Drinks

Start the sailing adventure from the port of Naxos and discover the wonders of Aegean sea. Sit down to a delectable lunch full of authentic Greek flavors. Stop to swim and in turquoise waters. Relax with fresh fruit, snacks, and drinks. Meet your crew at the Naxos Port and board the yacht in the morning. Admire stunning views of the Naxos coastline and enjoy a complimentary hot or cold drink and a snack on the way. Stop at breathtaking costal paradise and have some free time to explore or jump into the water and snorkel through schools of sliver fish. Sunbathe on the deck or sip on a beer or wine on the way to small idyllic island where you can swim, snorkel, and soak up coastal views. Once you have worked up a bit of an appetite, dine on a delicious, freshly-prepared Greek lunch. Spend some free time relaxing after lunch before visiting the final stop of the day for more fun in the sun. Have fruit and coffee onboard while enjoying the views on the way back to to the port of Naxos.

From Naxos: Round day trip to Mykonos Island

8. From Naxos: Round day trip to Mykonos Island

Depart from Naxos port in the morning and after approximately 2 hours of sailing, arrive at Mykonos Island, one of the top must-see destinations in the world. On arrival, enjoy 6 hours of free time on the cosmopolitan island. At Mykonos Town, you can begin your exploration from the picturesque old harbor, a great area with many restaurants and cafes right next to the sea. Continue with the winding alleys of the town and take pictures of the whitewashed houses with their blue windows and colorful bougainvillea. Walk to the neighborhood of Matogiannia, home of chic shops and bars. Discover wonderful jewelry, leather goods, pieces of art and the most famous designer labels on the market. Don’t miss the archaeological museum, one of the most photographic iconic buildings on the island and of course don’t leave without enjoying a cocktail while admiring the magnificent view from Little Venice. You can also rent a vehicle or use the local bus to visit one of the island’s beaches, famous for the golden sand and crystal clear waters. You can also head directly to the beach bars, such as Super Paradise and join the never-ending party. In both cases, don’t forget to keep an eye on the time and make sure you are back at the boat 15 minutes prior to the departure time.

Naxos: Full-Day Small Cyclades Sailing Cruise

9. Naxos: Full-Day Small Cyclades Sailing Cruise

After meeting with your guide and boat in the morning at the marina, set sail to the Small Cyclades at 8:30 AM. Venture towards a top-secret location, so as not to end up with other boats around you while you swim. Your exact destination will be selected during your sail to the south coast of Naxos, and will be determined by weather conditions. Either way, you can expect secluded beaches, turquoise shallow water, and a lot of fun. Make three stops during the day for snorkeling and exploring the area, with some time set side to eat as well. Each spot will boast a particular feature, whether it's the color of the water, its tranquility, or its abundant sea life. Be prepared to swim, sail, relax, and lose track of time on your beautiful day at sea. Later in the early evening, you can expect to return back to Naxos' main port at around 6:00 PM - 6:30PM.

Naxos: Naxos Town Food Tour with Included Tastings and Wine

10. Naxos: Naxos Town Food Tour with Included Tastings and Wine

Immerse yourself in the culture of Naxos through its cuisine on this guided food tour. Walk through quaint old alleyways and aromatic markets while sampling some local treats. Meet your guide in front of the town hall to start your tour. Walk through the narrow alleys of the Venetian Old Town on your way to the local food markets. Pass by colorful fruit stands and take in the bustle of the marketplace. Catch the scent of herbs and spices wafting from the food stalls. Stop and sample some local delicacies. Savor some Naxian cheese with a glass of wine. Try a traditional potato dish and a variety of phyllo pastries. Learn about the local food, culture, and history from your guide. Finish off your tour at the foot of the Temple of Apollo, where a stunning Aegean sunset awaits you.

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Frequently asked questions about Naxos

What top attractions are a must-see in Naxos?

What are the best day trips and excursions from Naxos?

The best day trips and excursions from Naxos are:

Heraklia, Cyclades

Insider Tips: Planning a trip to Naxos

Martina and Jürgen, the authors of PlacesofJuma, share their travel experiences from around the globe. With a passion for photography, they are constantly in search of the most stunning destinations and places.

What should I do on my first trip to Naxos?

There are so many unique things to do in Naxos, but on your first trip, be sure to visit its namesake capital town, also known as Chora. Among the highlights of this picturesque town are its charming alleyways, whitewashed houses, traditional Greek architecture, and the ancient castle, Kastro, which dates back to the 13th century. A must-visit is the Temple Gate Portara, an impressive ancient monument sn a peninsula next to Naxos harbor, serving as the island’s symbol.

What are some hidden gems to see in Naxos?

A hidden gem on Naxos is the picturesque fishing village of Apollonas, located in the northern part of the island. Even the journey along the coastal road to get there is a beautiful experience. Apollonas has a fantastic beach for swimming and waterfront tavernas offering fresh seafood and local favorites. A favorite of ours is discovering the Kouros of Naxos — ancient monumental sculptures carved from huge blocks of marble that can be discovered in remote locations on the island; one of them is on the way to Apollonas.

How much time should I spend in Naxos?

Spending a week on Naxos is ideal for exploring the island's most beautiful spots, enjoying several days on its stunning beaches, and having ample time to visit charming Chora with its historical sites and winding streets. You'll also have the opportunity to explore picturesque villages like Apollonas and Filoti. Naxos offers excellent outdoor activities, including hiking in mountains like Mount Zas, the highest peak in the Cyclades. This allows you to experience a well-rounded mix of relaxation and adventure while savoring the island's treasures.

What food is Naxos known for?

Naxos is known for its delicious regional specialties. One of them is Kokoras me Makaronia, a traditional dish where braised rooster is served in red sauce. Another culinary treasure of Naxos is Melachrino, a moist walnut cake often enhanced with cinnamon and spices — a must for dessert lovers.

What is the best way to get around in Naxos?

There are various transportation options available in Naxos. The island has a public bus network that connects some of the major locations, such as the capital, Chora, and a few vacation resorts. However, to explore the more remote areas and attractions of the island, the best transportation option on Naxos is to rent a car, scooter, or quad is highly recommended.

What are the best months to visit Naxos?

The best months to visit Naxos are June and September. June offers pleasant temperatures and fewer visitors, allowing you to enjoy the sights and beaches in peace. It's also a great time for hiking. September is equally wonderful with warm temperatures and ideal swimming conditions. In June, you can experience the Festival of Agii Apostoli, a traditional event in Melanes, and in September, the Festival of Theoskepasti takes place in Komiaki and Potamia. These festivals provide insights into local culture and traditions, making these months not only climatically pleasant but also culturally enriching.

What are the best neighborhoods to visit in Naxos?

In Naxos, there are several great areas for accommodation. Two highly recommended places to stay are Naxos Town and Agios Prokopios beach. Naxos Town, also known as Chora, is the island's capital, renowned for its charming alleys, historical landmarks, and the lively atmosphere of its taverns and cafes. It's the best destination on the island for food and shopping. Agios Prokopios, on the other hand, is a beautiful coastal stretch located right next to Naxos Town, offering some of the island's best beaches. Here, you can fully enjoy the sun, sand, and sea, all while being just a short distance from the old town.

What are the best neighborhoods for food?

The best neighborhoods for good food in Naxos are undoubtedly Naxos Chora, also known as Naxos Town. Here, you'll find by far the most taverns, restaurants, and cafes serving delicious Greek dishes and fresh seafood. The narrow streets of the old town are lined with excellent restaurants. Moreover, there are some really cool rooftop bars with sea views located within the Kastro area.

What are your top tips for a person traveling to Naxos?

• Book your ferry tickets well in advance, especially during the peak season, to ensure you secure a spot.

• Enjoy the most beautiful sunset in Naxos right at Portara, the famous temple gate in Naxos.

• Sample the seafood taverns in Apollonia, located in the far north of Naxos, to taste the best seafood and local specialties.

• Take the opportunity to hike on the well-marked trails of the island and explore the highest mountain in the Cyclades, Mount Zas, to experience the impressive views.

What are your top 5 favorite GetYourGuide experiences in Naxos?

• Naxos: Half-Day Cooking Class at Basiliko Family Tavern

• Naxos: Highlights Bus Tour with Swim Stop at Apollonas

• Naxos: Half Day History and Culture Guided Tour

• Naxos: Naxos Town Food Tour with Included Tastings and Wine

• Naxos: Full-Day Small Cyclades Sailing Cruise

What is one thing that surprised you about Naxos?

I was surprised by the size of Naxos — the largest and greenest island in the Cyclades with an impressive variety of unspoiled landscapes. Beyond the coastal areas, there is an abundance of picturesque mountain villages, each with unique charm and character. The fact that Naxos has so much more to offer than just beaches positively surprised me.

What are the best neighborhoods for shopping?

The best options for shopping in Naxos are undoubtedly located in Naxos Town. A highlight there is the Old Market Street. Here, you'll find a variety of shops, boutiques, and souvenir stores offering local products, crafts, jewelry, and fashion. Additionally, the Old Market Street is incredibly charming, providing not only a shopping experience but also a great opportunity for capturing beautiful photos.

What neighborhood should I stay in when I visit Naxos?

Agios Georgios is an excellent choice for a stay in Naxos. This neighborhood not only offers one of the most stunnig beaches on the island but also a great selection of accommodations, including hotels and apartments, many of which provide sea views. Agios Georgios is also within walking distance of the main town of Naxos Town, allowing you to easily explore the bustling streets, restaurants, and attractions of the city while staying in a quieter environment.

Other Sightseeing Options in Naxos

Want to discover all there is to do in Naxos? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Naxos

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 1,547 reviews

Both our guide and bus driver were great! awe toured the island and stopped along the way for photo ops. Our guide was great at answering questions and giving us information along the way of the people and the island. We stopped at a farm/winery for lunch which we got typical Greek fare and wine. After lunch a presentation was given on how the wine is made. Upon returning we had the option to go back to the cruise port where we started or be let off in town.

We thoroughly enjoyed this experience during our 3 day stay on Naxos! Extremely fun, and a great way to get immersed in the culture! Host is super kind, and you can tell how much passion she has for teaching, and her guests! The family welcomed our group in like we belonged! It was a wonderful time! The food was delicious at the end, and we enjoyed the little hike as well, and dancing! Highly recommend!

Our tour guide was exceptional! Her knowledge of the area provided us a greater understanding about Mykonos answering questions we had. She made our day very enjoyable. Our driver was great and knew just where to go for all our photo opportunities.

Outstanding experience for our family! We enjoyed a relaxing sail and swim, with a delicious lunch. Would definitely recommend for beautiful views and a ton of fun!

Great experience with great people. The wine flows freely, so best to book a ride.