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Naxos, Greece

Listed under Islands in Cyclades Islands, Greece.

  • Photo of Naxos, Greece
  • Photo of Naxos, Greece
  • Photo of Naxos, Greece
  • Photo of Naxos, Greece
  • Photo of Naxos, Greece
Photo of Naxos, Greece
Photo by mikelyvers
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It seems that each island in the Aegean has its own very interesting background story, Naxos is no different.

The biggest island in the Cyclades complex, it has a number of great beaches to fit everyone.

The story has it that on his way back, Theseas, after slaying the Minotaur in Crete, stopped in Naxos and then took off leaving Ariadne behind. There Dionyssos, the protector of the island, fell in love with her. However she was not seduced by him and in her despair she fell of a cliff.

Another myth suggests that the King of Gods, Dias, was raised in one of caves on the biggest mountain of the island, giving it the name, Zas.

Because of its strategic position in the middle of the Aegean sea, Naxos was a prime target for several conquerors, first the Venetians, then the Ottomans. But none of these regimes was able to have a deep influence on the inhabitants of the island. They revolted against the Ottoman Empire in 1821 among the other islands and eventually became part of the Greek State in 1832.

Nowadays, Naxos is more famous for its beaches, Agia Anna, Agios Prokopis, Kastraki, Mikri Vigla, Agios Georgios and Plaka. Most of these beaches get pretty crowded during the high season but you can always find a spot. They are several people renting sun beds and umbrellas and you are bound to see one or two people walking up and down the beach with a donkey selling fruits. From personal experience it is not worth renting a sun bed but you will need an umbrella. If you bring your own, make sure it is set firmly in the sand because the wind is quite strong and it might blow it away.

As in any other Greek island, the night life is great. There are numerous clubs, cafes and tavernas that are open till late in Hora and the surrounding villages. If you are not scared of the steep cliff and are willing to drive on non paved roads you will discover a number of little villages that seem to have been stuck in the past.

Once you get there try to get someone to tell you stories from their lives, trust me they will be more than happy to share. Most of the islanders do speak English and you will not have trouble getting around.

For a selection of the best places to stay in Naxos visit The Hotel Guru.

Written by  Pat Papadopoulou.

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