Welcome to Antiparos! It’s an island right in the heart of Cyclades, less than one nautical mile from Paros. It’s a destination that combines harmonically beauty with history and nightlife with moments of relaxation and peace. You will find landscapes with exceptional beauty and picturesque villages with white washed houses and light blue details. There is no question as to why Tom Hanks chose to buy a house in Antiparos and spend his summers here as well as many other Hollywood celebrities.
Antiparos is definitely a treasure island. There are so many things worth visiting. The days spend there will leave you a sweet memory. Chora is the main town of Antiparos. It has a nice harbor and a port. The dominate colors around are the typical Cycladic ones. White and light blue are catching the eye of the visitor along with the vivid pink color of the bougainvilleas around. You can’t find a more summerish background than this! Walking around the paved alleys you will come across a lively place with many tourists and friendly locals. All the restaurants and the cafes are full with people and the smells of the food are mixing with the scent of the flowers.
Sightseeing in Antiparos
In Antiparos you will find the oldest stalagmite in Europe! Antiparos cave has an arched entrance 20 meters wide and about 8 meters high. The enormous stalagmite is right in front of the entrance and it is estimated to be 45 million years old. Walking down to the heart of the cave with 411 steps (more than 100 meters deep) you will be amazed by the spectacle in front of your eyes. All around there are breathtaking formations of stalagmites and stalactites.
Leaving the underworld behind us, let’s move above the sea level. North of Antiparos there is a little islet called Saliagkos. The settlement found there is the oldest one in Cyclades. Archaeologists have estimated that the village was inhabited between 4,300-3,700 B.C meaning the Late Neolithic era of the Aegean. The findings are thousands letting the scientists understand better the life style and culture of the people. The ancient tombs have sunk underwater after the rise of the sea level. The civilization in Saliagkos is unique and isolated in the Neolithic era. Around the area aren’t any other similar settlements or other signs of continuance of the tradition of this settlement the next years. The inhabitants of Saliagkos were the only ones who were into livestock farming.
Antiparos has also a Venetian Castle. The castle was built by the Venetians in the 15th century. It is a fortified settlement similar to other medieval ones in Cyclades but there is one difference. The castle isn’t built on a high location like it is common. Actually, the fortification constitutes a settlement itself that is a single autonomous residential unit. The whole complex was arranged around a square courtyard in the middle of which rose a central tower. The base is what remains today of this tower.
Time to distant ourselves from civilization and the busy alleys of Chora. Let’s visit Despotiko, an uninhabited island across Antiparos. During the antiquity Despotiko was heavily populated. The remnants of the civilization back then are apparent and the process of restoration and excavation at the ancient sanctuary are still in progress. The island is pristine and peaceful and its dandelion coastline offers many sandy beaches which are reachable by boat. The most beautiful one is called Livadi beach that has magnificent silver sand.
Of course we would have a bonus tip for the romantic souls! The chapel of Prophet Elias is built on the top of the highest peak of Antiparos. Going up to an altitude of 300 meters the panoramic view is mesmerizing. Depending on the visibility you may discern many of the neighboring islands like Sifnos. Locals say that here you can enjoy the best sunset on the island.
Beaches of Antiparos
Where are you going to work on your tan? Where are you going to refresh yourself and find shelter from the heat of the Greek summer? Antiparos has a long list of beaches where you can spend your days relaxing.
First let’s take a dive in the crystal clear waters of Glyfa beach. It is the ideal place for those who enjoy windsurfing. The sandy beach attracts many sport lovers and families. The beach is one of the busiest in Antiparos. Nearby you can find many restaurants or taverns to grab a bite. As the sun goes down it is high time to visit Sunset beach or Sifneiko. It is a tranquil paradise with crystal clear waters and golden sand. Like its name suggests this is the beach where you can witness amazing sunsets and enjoy a few moments of complete serenity.
Moreover, there is Psaralyki beach that actually consists of two sandy beaches. The waters are shallow and safe for the kids to play. Both of the beaches are popular and are partly organized. Visitors usually choose the place as there is enough space for beach tennis and perfect weather conditions for windsurfing. Passing the two beaches of Psaralyki you reach Panagia beach. Panagia beach is one of the most picturesque beaches of the island and less crowded. The big trees that are grown there offer natural protection from the sun.
Faneromeni beach is the place to be for those who love to explore a rich seabed. It is a small bay and secluded. If you seek for some peaceful hours then Faneromeni is the one for you. Another small beach is Fanari. It is naturally protected from the wind. This makes it safe for little kids. The light blue waters are end up peacefully to the sandy shore. Lay under the shady from the trees there and listen to the relaxing noise of the water running. Yes, this is the sound of summer! What about having a picnic on the beach? Sounds very nice! Monastiria beaches are two silent beaches secluded and complete distant from the hustle and bustle of the others in Antiparos. The blue waters make a fine contrast with the little greenery found around on the cliffs that circle the bay.
For more exotic beaches with peculiar landscape you could visit the little port of Ai Yiorgis on the south eastern coast of Antiparos to hop on a boat. Put on your list the beach called Epitafios and a sea cave called Spilia tis Fokias. Epitafios beach is not a typical beach. It has vertical white crags emerging from the coast and ending up into the turquoise waters. Spilia tis Fokias in Greek means Seal’s Cave. From the name given to the place it is apparent that during your excursion you will be fascinated after seeing the heads of the seals leaping out from the waters.
Antiparos should definitely be on the top of you bucket list! Visit the little island in the heart of the Cyclades this summer! Those who have visited Antiparos are referring to it as the secret holiday paradise of the Aegean. Once you step foot on Antiparos you should complete the tour with a visit in Paros as well. The brothers of Cyclades are totally seductive. Find out more about Paros here!