Here’s my list of five things to do on Antiparos in one day. It may be a small low-key island but it certainly attracts the Hollywood crowd. Find out why…
Antiparos: Where Tom Hanks Goes
Charming little Antiparos sits in the shadow of Paros, its much larger sister island in the Cycladic islands. The population is just around a thousand folks. I love little islands, so I was excited to explore Antiparos while on assignment for the Fodor’s. Antiparos takes up 45 square kilometers complete with a 57 kilometer coastline.
Antiparos is reachable from Paros via ferry. The ferry rides are under 10 minutes, and they dock near Antiparos Town on Antiparos’ northeastern coast. The boat is cutely called a pandofla, in Greek it means slipper. It really has the shape of a bedroom slipper!
Antiparos is really beautiful. So, that’s perhaps one reason why the Hollywood elite own villas there, including Tom Hanks. Driving around I spotted the stylish properties tucked in the rocky landscape. The villas dot the island along with simpler whitewashed homes. Despite the jet-set attention, Antiparos still seemed to maintain a traditional, calm and off-the-beaten-track vibe.
Top 5 Things to Do on Antiparos
1) The Venetian Castle of Antiparos
A highlight of the trip was exploring the Venetian castle right in Antiparos’ old town. Why a castle on this little island? Like many of the Cyclades, Antiparos attracted the pirates of the Aegean. So, in 1440 the Ventians built a kastro (castle)to protect the population. During that time, the Venetian governor named Giovanni Loredano married local Antiparian Maria Sommaripa.
The entrance is a Gothic style gate near the town’s main square. There are more than two dozen houses built in the castle area. There are also three Venetian influenced churches.
Among the ruins is a circular tower that was once home to the local governor.
Many Antiparians still live within the historic castle’s vicinity. It was clear a little community still thrives in the centuries old ruins.
2) Visit Kambos and the Cave of Antiparos
Another one of the top things to do on Antiparos is head to the center of the island to visit the village of Kambos. The village has about a dozen residents, some whitewashed churches and is in proximity of two beautiful beaches Glyfa and Livadia.
Another 10-minute drive takes you to the Cave of Antiparos on Agios Ioannis hill. The ancient cave is known for its stalactites and stalagmites.
3) Eat by the Sea in Agios Georgios
In the little harbor town of Agios Giorgos you will find several charming fish taverns right by the water. I highly recommend Captain Pipinos, especially if you love fresh seafood and a view. Find my review for Fodor’s here.
You’ll also find scenes like this.
4) Visit a Beach
Visiting a beach is another one of the top things to do on Antiparos. You know, typical beautiful turquoise seas and lovely sandy stretches of beaches… Spend some time at one of them if you can. The best beaches include Psaraliki, Glifa, Livadia and Agios Georgios.
There’s also a beach called Camping Beach which is popular. That’s where folks go to camp out right by the turquoise sea.
*For a look at the camping gear and tents for your next holiday, check out GearHungry.
5) Stroll Through Antiparos Town
There’s one main road in Antiparos Town which is lined with shops, restaurants and lots of cute cafes. In recent years, many beautiful boutiques selling fashionable clothing, beach wear and jewelry have opened up here with much success.
If you have some time while you’re waiting for the ferry to head back to Paros why not sit and have a Greek coffee and enjoy the view.
I’ll leave you with a few more images of Antiparos. As you can see, it is so calm and gorgeous there you may not even notice you’re having a frappe next to Tom Hanks.
How to get to Antiparos
There is no ferry to Antiparos directly from Athens. Travel to Paros first. You can travel to Paros island via ferry from Piraeus or Rafina harbors in Athens. You can also take a plane.
From Paros to Antiparos.
There are small boats from Parikia or Paros Town, the capital of Paros island. The ferry takes about 30 minutes. There are also open deck ferries from Pounta to Antiparos which take about 10 minutes.
For more detail on the best beaches, sights and where to stay, check out my write up in Fodor’s here.
Have you ever been to Antiparos? What are your top things to do on a Greek island like Antiparos?