PAROS



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Paros - Lefkes and the central and southern loop - Kostos and Lefkes

Kostos and Lefkes

Shortly after Marathi the road crosses a ridge and turns southwards above a wide and fertile valley sloping down to the west coast, with Naxos visible on the horizon. The attractive villages of Kostos (7km) and Lefkes (10.5km) lie below, taking advantage of the relatively abundant wa ter and the hidden position, set back from the coast. They grew rapidly in the 16th century as the population began to concentrate here, fleeing from the coastal scourge of piracy. Lefkes, which has the more picturesque setting, was the capital of the island under Turkish rule, up until 1832. It was designed as a walled ‘kastro-type’ settlement, within a ring of houses forming an enceinte which now defines the centre of the village. The churches often con tain spolia or have fine 17th century carved portals, such as that of Aghia Paraskevi, the village’s oldest church which, though rebuilt, was originally a 15th century foundation. Some of the most memorable architecture in the village dates from the turn of the 20th century, such as the neoclassical Kafeneion, on the delightful plateia, and the ‘Priest’s House’, a short way to its west, with poly chrome façade, moulded and coloured niches, acroteria, and wrought-iron balcony. Below the plateia the church of Aghios Spyridon incorporates ancient architectural elements, as does the fountain below it. Aghia Triada, the large church which dominates the village from the east, dates from 1830–35 and contains some of the icons from the three smaller, older chapels which it replaced. The iconostasis and throne in the interior are in local marble.
   In the protected valley between Lefkes and Kostos, planted with centuries-old olive groves, the modern road passes a Byzantine bridge at a point 500m north of the village: this lies on an ancient route which joined the west coast at Parikia with the east coast at Marpisa. The stone paved segment from Lefkes east to Pro dromos can be easily followed on foot: the walk takes about 40 minutes. Another pleasant walk is to the monastery of Aghios Ioannis Kaparou, immersed in vegetation fed by a spring, in the deep valley directly below the summit of Mt Aghii Pantes, 2.5km southwest of Lefkes.


Travel Guide to Paros & Greece


Kos Island is part of the Dodecanese Island Group, Greece.


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access

Paros Island, the Cyclades.
By air: Olympic Air operates two 35-minute flights between Athens and Paros daily. The airport is 10.5km from Parikiá.
By boat: There are generally two daily car-ferry connections (4hrs 30mins) to Paros from Piraeus (most regularly with Blue Star Ferries) in the summer, with frequency drop ping in the winter. This is augmented in the summer months (late June– late Sept), by up to four high-speed services daily (minimum 3hrs journey), divided equally between the ports of Piraeus and Rafina for Athens. These services provide an average of three onward connections daily to Naxos , Ios and Santorini.
Paros Travel Guide

eating

Paros Island, the Cyclades.
Paros, -Levantis, on Agora Street in Parikiá, is one of the best places to eat in the Cyclades, for food that is refined and yet still Greek: the setting is simple and unpretentious, the cuisine sophisticated and delicious, and the service attentive and pleasant. More expensive and with a refined menu which offers nonetheless some excellent dishes, is Daphne in Gravari Street. Amongst the myriad eateries around the three harbours of Náousa, the easternmost taverna on the north shore, Glafkos, has excellent seafood and welcoming service. Le Sud is also good for more var ied and sophisticated cuisine. In Léfkes, "I Pezoula tis Lichoudias", is tiny, and undoubtedly a little artificial, but some of the home-made Greek dishes are nonetheless traditional and of local inspiration.
Paros Travel Guide

further reading

Paros Island, the Cyclades.
Thomas Hope’s Anastasius, or Memoirs of a Greek, first published in 1819, is partly based on Nicholas Mavrogenis (see p. 34–35) of Paros and his world and times. The book caused a sensation when it was first published in London; Byron privately admitted that he wished he had been its author. A paperback edition was reissued in 2001, by Elibron Classics. Paros: History, Monuments etc. by Yannos Kourayos (Athens 2004) is an exemplary guide to the island’s antiquities—clear, authoritative and to the point. For the remarkable figure of the Marquis de Nointel and his Christmas mass in the Cave of Antiparos, see: Henri Omont, Relation de la visite du Marquis de Nointel à la grotte d’Antiparos (1673), Bulletin de géographie historique et descriptive, 1892 (4), pp. 4–33, and Albert Vandal, L’Odyssée d’un ambassadeur. Les voyages du Marquis deNointel (1670–1680), Paris, 1900. Theodore Bent, The Cyclades, or Life among the Insular Greeks (1885), reis sued 2002 by Archaeopress, Oxford in the ‘3rd Guides’ series, contains his descriptions of making the earliest excavations of prehistoric Cycladic remains on Antiparos.

Paros Travel Guide

lodging

Paros Island, the Cyclades.
Paros has no shortage of smart places to say: but for simplicity and unpretentious comfort, the following can be recommended. The intimate, family-run Hotel Dina in the heart of Parikiá, could not be more central, and is inexpensive, comfortable and quiet (T. 22840 21325, fax 23525, www.hoteldina.com). On the edge of Náousa, Yades Studios provide tasteful accommodation with help ful management (T./fax 22840 51072, www.yades. gr). Beautifully appointed, and with full facilities, is the excellent Hotel Petres (T. 22840 52467, fax 52759, www.petres.gr; open Easter– mid-Oct). The hotel is set back in the hinterland to the south of Náousa, but with beautiful views north over Plastiras Bay.
Paros Travel Guide

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