Are you wondering what to see on the beautiful island of Paros when you’re not at the beach? How about visiting the most beautiful village on the island? Lefkes Paros is a gorgeous hillside village and the epitome of the Mediterranean Greek island mountainous settlement. Standing gloriously on the hilltop with dramatic views over Naxos and other nearby islands, it is considered the most beautiful village of Paros.
Lefkes village combines the friendly Greek locals’ village atmosphere, delicious tavernas, and amazing vistas with impressive past and stunning architecture.
This place is a must-see while in Paros Greece and I have you covered on the essentials plus the local tips and personal picks.
Where is Lefkes Paros?
Lefkes (Λεύκες) is on the eastern side of the island, overlooking Naxos. It is around 10 kilometers from both the Paros towns of Parikia (port town) and Naoussa (20 minutes drive).
Paros Airport mainly services Paros flights to and from Athens and is a 30-minute drive (20 km) away.
Being in the central hilly area of the island, Lefkes boasts great views to lower settlements and even some of the neighboring Greek islands.
Where to stay in Lefkes Greece
If you’re not big on nightlife and want to have an entirely peaceful holiday, the hillside villages of Paros offer superb views and food, with beaches never far away.
Accommodation is cheaper than in Parikia or Naoussa, but you can find high-quality accommodation here as well. Here are three superb options.
The Olive Mill Guesthouse – a romantic, quiet (soundproofed), self-contained guesthouse with breakfast, free parking, wifi, and very comfortable beds. The guesthouse is a historic building and it has been recently renovated. The Airport Shuttle is a real bonus.
Agiasi Villas – Two minutes (uphill) from the village center is a large sparkling pool and three and four-bedroom houses, some of which have private hot tubs (inside and outside). Agiasi Villas is brand new and excellent value accommodation of a high standard with wonderful extras.
Villa Luxury Magic View– just another perfect, contemporary Cycladic villa with a large private pool and endless views of the Aegean Sea! Described by guests as the “most magical place on Paros,” I think you’ll be hard-pressed not to cry on the day you have to check out. Perfect for families and groups.
Things to know before getting to Lefkes Village Paros
Paros Island is one of the larger Cycladic islands, set in the heart of the Aegean Sea.
Paros port and Parikia, the capital of Paros, are serviced by daily regular and speedy ferries from Athens and the surrounding islands of Naxos, Mykonos, Tinos, and Syros.
Car rental is affordable (around €30 off-season, €50 peak-season) and is the best option to discover the island.
The only problem is that if you arrive in the peak summer season, you can’t be sure to hire a vehicle (and almost certainly not an automatic car) – you need to book a car rental a few months in advance.
Paros Island is among the prettiest islands in the Cyclades, too. As Lawrence Durrell would put it, comparing it to its neighboring island of Naxos – “If Naxos is a vivid parrot, then Paros is a white dove”.
Home to whitewashed cube houses, lively seaside villages, vibrant towns, and a variety of beaches, Paros is the essence of easy-going luxury.
Lefkes village was the first capital of Paros, built in the 15th century away from the dangerous sea shores, where the dreaded Aegean pirates were raiding the coastal settlements during the Middle Ages.
You can feel the passing grandeur in its many crumbling neoclassical mansions, whitewashed houses, imposing churches, cobbled streets, and wide squares.
Nowadays it has become a popular day trip destination, even a destination in its own right during the Easter holidays when colorful flowers cover the surrounding fields.
Lefkes Village is also a creatives’ retreat, with many writers, poets, painters, and sculptors spending their time away from the crowds of the island’s coastal areas.
Chances are big that you will stumble upon the same (stunningly beautiful) site being painted by one and photographed by another person at the same time.
In all of its glory though, Lefkes is as authentic as one of the Greek islands’ main villages can be!
Who should visit Lefkes?
Anyone seeking a break from mass tourism and having fewer tourists in their holiday photos.
⛪ Individuals and couples looking to explore Paros villages and the famous church of Agia Triada.
📸 Everyone who is after perfect photographic scenery of both island landscape and traditional Greek village.
🥾 Hikers, as the trails are 1000 years old and some of them even paved.
🎭 Families looking for culture, tradition, authenticity, and activities.
🍲 Foodies, as Paros Lefkes has some of the best tavernas on the island.
When is the best time to come to Lefkes Paros?
The area around Lefkes Paros is agricultural and people follow natural cycles, as well as the tourism season of the coastal areas.
The most rewarding time to visit is between Easter time during the spring (late April) and late October – days are long and the visitors are keeping the village vibrant.
Despite being on an island with a warm Mediterranean climate with very hot summers, Lefkes is located 300 meters above sea level and never gets too hot.
However, you might want to avoid the rainy season from December until the end of February.
If possible, avoid mid-July to the beginning of September, when the island’s visits are peaking and prices tend to be higher than during the rest of the year. I love the weather in May and June in Greece.
The best time for a day trip is either early morning until early afternoon or late mid-day (fantastic golden hour mellow sunlight) until the night.
Most tavernas, shops, churches, and other points of interest don’t open before 9 or 10 am but stay open late.
How long to stay in Lefkes Paros?
Anything between a few hours to a 3-day stay.
Staying in one of the Cycladic mountainous villages has a charm of its own, especially early morning and late evening when the day trippers have gone.
You’ll have enough time to visit the Byzantine churches dotted between olive trees and pine trees, the folk art museum, and walk a Byzantine paved footpath dating from a thousand years ago.
Golden Beach (Chrisi Akti) is just 10 km away if you miss swimming during your stay in Lefkes.
How do you get to Lefkes Paros?
Car rental is the most effective way to get to Lefkes before the tour buses arrive.
If driving from Parikia (and the ferry port), the road will go through the plains of central Paros island, and about halfway, you will pass by the ancient marble quarries at the foot of All Saints Mountain (Mt Agioi Pantes).
(Paros marble, used in many ancient monuments and medieval churches, was one of the world’s finest marbles, comparable to the marble of Carrara, Italy).
Leave the rental car on the parking lot southeast to the center and explore Lefkes on foot, as many of the narrow alleyways are pedestrian-only.
Alternatively, join one of the Paros island tours or a Lefke walking tour (below).
The road from Naoussa follows the eastern road southwards and passes by Tsoukalia Beach, a place worth a stop for a quick dip into azure waters and a sandy beach.
ATV Rental in Paros
It’s easy to rent an ATV or Quad Bike in Paros, it’s a cheap and more fun alternative to driving. For both car and ATV rental, check with the rental company if you’ll need to show them an International Driving License.
Getting a local bus to Lefkes Paros
Paros is a relatively large island, the bus service is well organized and follows the schedule.
🚌 Line 1 connects Parikia (where the Paros ferry arrives) with Lefkes and the terminal in the town is next to the port, while the village bus stop is just off the center. Departures are frequent from 7:30 am until 8 pm.
🚌 Line 5 connects Naoussa with Lefkes 10 times a day, from 9 am until 11.30 pm.
The local bus service on Paros is air-conditioned, punctual, and a good alternative to driving, although planning multiple stops around the island might prove challenging.
🚌 Tickets are from €2.
Getting a Taxi Paros to Lefkes
🚕 Taxis are available all around the island and a fare from Parikia or Naoussa to Lefkes shouldn’t be more than €30.
Take a Guided Tour
If your time is short and buses, taxis, and waiting around in the heat isn’t where you’re at on this holiday, consider a guided tour of Paros that takes in Lefkes. Here are the three best options:
This 4-hour tour covers all of the most amazing parts of Paros and includes (of course!) a walking tour of Lefkes. If your time is short on Paros, this private tour will ensure that you see the most charming aspects of this Cycladic island.
The tour is fully cancellable up to 24 hours before your booking, includes hotel pick up and drop off, and is highly reviewed.
This 1-hour walking tour of Lefkes can also include a hike to the highest point of the village which has panoramic views of the Aegean Sea and over to Naxos.
The tour is not cancellable once booked and has a maximum of 15 people on each walking tour of the many interesting and less well-known parts of Lefkes.
Sail from Naxos to Parikia on Paros, then onwards to Naoussa, before going overland to Lefkes. Swim, snorkel, and relax on Paros beaches and on the way back to Naxos.
The tour is fully cancellable up to 24 hours before your booking, is 6 hours long, and is a private tour for up to 9 people.
9 best things to do when visiting Lefkes Greece
1. Explore the streets and alleys of the village
Contemporary Lefkes is a spectacular hilltop mix of long-gone imperial splendor, evident in neoclassical revival houses, and traditional island cubic architecture set along its narrow alleys.
Walking them, soaking up the vibe, the colors and the scents is the essential activity upon arriving to the village. Take a picture of a time standing still.
Appreciate the street style of planting the small trees, colorful flowers, and herbs in large tin containers previously preserving feta cheese.
Think how that deep violet bougainvillea would look in front of the entrance of your home!
Enjoy the folk architecture making the most of the corners, squares, and arched passageways. The narrow streets served as a maze for confusing the attackers, usually pirates.
2. Visit the last windmills of Paros Greece
Whitewashed windmills were operating in Paros well into the 1990s when more modern methods were finally introduced.
These wonderful structures dotted around the hills surrounding the village have been renovated now and look wonderful on the slopes of the highest peak of Paros on Mt. Agioi Pantes.
Look for them right behind the village’s main church.
Tip: Buy a clay windmill souvenir while the mountainous breeze still turns its blades.
3. Shop the local products of Lefkes Paros
The things you can pick up in Lefkes Paros are usually handmade souvenirs and artisans’ products. Purchasing them enables the artistic and creative community here to survive.
So, go for local artifacts in one of these great shops:
Oneipa concept store – great little store behind a vaulted stone entrance. Greek products from traditional straw and wooden taverna chairs to contemporary designed jewelry.
Keramiko – beautiful pottery workshop and atelier, just outside the village. Go for the glazed pomegranate, a symbol of health and best wishes in Greece.
ART&SILVER @ bric à brac – jewelry shop with selected handmade pieces.
Blackrose – a beautiful souvenir shop, with items for all tastes.
Scarabee Jewelry – Beautifully designed corner store with handmade jewelry. (I’m a sucker for all kinds of blue stones)
4. Walk the historic Byzantine Road around Lefkes Paros
Like the neighboring islands of Tinos and Naxos, the mountain villages of Paros had their networks of pathways covering the island like a web, enabling quick transport between fields, neighboring villages, and ports for commercial activities.
One such path, existing for more than 1000 years, is the Byzantine road that connects Lefkes with the traditional villages of Prodromos and Marpissa and goes all the way to the sea near the beach of Piso Livadi.
There are several different paths starting from Lefkes, from easy walks to proper hikes, passing many traditional sights along the way.
🥾 Route no.1 (5km, easy, around 3 hours) starts in Lefkes and goes down the Byzantine trail halfway to Prodromos.
🥾 Route no.2 (9 km, moderate, around 5 hours) continues the Byzantine trail to the monastery of Ag. Kyriaki and Rachi Hill.
🥾 Route no.3 (15km, 5 hours) goes all the way to Prodromos village zig-zagging through the mountainside.
An easy 3.5km walk between Lefkes and Prodromos is my pick though. You will see the most countryside without spending a whole day hiking. So leave your rental car for a few hours and go exploring Paros on foot. I promise it will be one of your most memorable days on holiday.
The scents of flowers in spring and wild herbs during the summer are accompanying you next to the stone walls separating olive groves along the way.
Stone-covered donkey trails, stone bridges, terraced gardens, and medieval churches are common sights on these trails and the hike is best enjoyed early in the morning.
The best way is to hike downhill to the next village, enjoy a rewarding drink and a snack and then take a bus back to Lefkes.
Make sure to bring along proper shoes, sunscreen, a hat, and water.
5. Explore the local churches and monasteries
The second most important beautiful Byzantine church on Paros, after the Panagia Ekatontapiliani in Parikia, is Agia Triada Church (The Church of the Holy Trinity) in Lefkes.
The Imposing building of fine white marble reigns over the surrounding countryside since its adoration in 1835.
The church is one of the top attractions of Lefkes and is famous for its Greek/Byzantine architecture and two bell towers that frame the front of the temple. The interior is impressive, styled in a three-aisle pattern, ending with an extraordinary altar.
Although not as nearly old as your average Greek Byzantine church, Agia Triada has valuable frescoes, painted ceilings, and arched vaults.
The whitewashed monastery of St. Kyrriaki near the windmills of Lefkes, built in 1665, is a well-maintained example of medieval fortress-monasteries of the Aegean islands.
A path is leading to it from the village, but some hiking is required.
Worth a visit also is the Church of Agia Katerini and Panagia Ypapanti Church. In fact, you can’t help but come across churches wherever you wander in Lefkes.
Tip: The visit is free of charge, but if you want to go as the locals do, light up a candle and leave a coin in the box.
6. Soak up the village vibe
Greek villages are all about drinking the morning coffee in one of the cafés on the central town square, ears dropping on what the daily gossip is around the vegetable shop or mini market. Lefkes Agia Triada Square is a colorful and intimate place to do that.
You will make the best of photographs as Greek kafeneion is one of the last bastions of rural authenticity.
Local tip: Agiazi café serves delicious orange pie.
7. Eat in Lefkes Paros – Which Lefkes Restaurants to pick?
One of the main reasons tourists, but Paros’s locals as well, visit Lefkes is the excellent food and homey atmosphere in local tavernas. Some good options for food and drinks while you are visiting Lefkes:
“Chrisoula – the tastes of companionship” cooks everyone’s favorite Greek food among all Lefkes Paros restaurants.
With great views towards the neighboring islands and the Agia Triada, this place is best enjoyed with staple taverna dishes in front of you.
Go for zucchini balls with tzatziki, pastitsio, village-style sausages, and chips with feta cheese.
Tip: Go for beer during lunch and the house Rosé during the evening meal.
Handmade ice cream at Meli. The ice cream parlor Meli (honey in Greek) makes fresh tastes daily and offers many homemade sweets that go best when coupled with a scoop.
Don’t miss it after a long hike!
Tip: Baklava and vanilla ice cream go hand in hand!
More Lefkes restaurants specialties:
Ramnos café for great smoothies, waffles, and other sweet treats.
Klarinos tavern for traditional Greek cuisine, great meat dishes at affordable prices, and sweeping views.
Lefkiano restaurant for shrimp pasta.
8. See the August Feast in Lefkes Greece
The single most interesting event in Lefkes is Karavolas festival. It’s also celebrated in Naoussa as the feast day of St. John. it’s only a quarter of a century old, but it’s a big deal in Lefkes.
This huge late August feast is the most important fair of Paros, where the main theme is the giant snail dishes cooked in a variety of ways (all sorts of other dishes and vegan options are available).
Drinking, dancing, live music, and shopping last until the morning and is an event not to be missed! You’ll find it beside the Community Center – it will be under the pine trees.
9. Visit the Museum of Popular Aegean Civilization
Email: email@example.com Phone: +30 2284041827 Open: May to September
This museum is variously translated as all kinds of variations on the themes of the everyday culture of Paros. It doesn’t matter what it’s called so long as you know to find it inside the Lefkes Village Hotel.
The museum shows the everyday routines and local tools of Aegean islanders over the last century or two.
It’s a wonderful informative folklore museum that is divided into several sections: the poetics of land, the poetics of craftsmanship, and the poetics of life celebrations. I think it’s the best way to complete your visit to Lefkes.
The Most FAQ about Lefkes Paros
Is Lefkes worth a visit?
At only 10 km equidistant to both Parikia and Noussa, Lefkes is most definitely worth a visit on any itinerary to Paros Island, Greece. Lefkes was connected by ancient pathways known nowadays as the Byzantine Route.
This mountain town has not only Byzantine monuments but neoclassical buildings and a winding series of alleyways designed to confuse pirates. In addition, Lefkes is a stunningly beautiful village, with Cycladic architecture festooned in bougainvillea.
How to get from Naoussa to Lefkes?
There are four ways to travel the 11 kilometers (6.8 miles) between Naoussa and the mountain village of Lefkes on Paros Island, Greece. The most popular way for locals is to drive or use the KTEL bus system. Tourists can hire a car, ATV scooter, or motorbike or alternatively take the cheap and efficient bus system. A taxi costs about 30 Euros but has the advantage of being fast and hassle-free. A final way to get from Naoussa to Lefkes in Paros is to walk which will take approximately 2 hours and 15 minutes.
What does Lefkes mean?
Translated directly from Greek to English, “lefkes” means “white one” but the meaning of the Greek language word for Lefkes village on Paros Island is Λεύκες which means “poplar trees” because of the poplar trees that once dominated the valley landscape.
What is the population of Lefkes Paros?
In the 2011 census, Lefkes, Paros had 545 residents. The latest census data from the 2021 Population-Housing Census shows that the only region of Greece that increased its population from the 2011 census is the Southern Aegean, which includes the Cyclades island of Paros.
However, it’s only a small jump from 309,000 to 324,000, but it’s possible that this number has not declined, or has even increased slightly since the 2011 census.
Where to park in Lefkes Paros?
If you are driving a car, it’s best to park in one of the two parking lots at the entrance to the village (directly off the two entrance roads of Epar. Od. Parikias-Marpissa and Epar. Od. Parikias-Pisa Livardiou ). This is because much of Lefkes Paros has been closed to all but pedestrian traffic but there are two much smaller public parking lots further into the village.
If you have hired an ATV/Quad or Scooter/motorcycle, you can head further into the village to these public parking lots or until you see the ‘pedestrians only’ notices, and park on the side of the road (but not on a yellow line).