Sail into Ionian beauty Paxos for olive groves, fresh seafood, traditional festivals, caves and shipwrecks just waiting to be explored.
Endless olive groves and deep-blue shores await on Paxos, a green Ionian island of uncanny natural beauty. Varied yet always lovely beaches and charming harbours abound here, with excellent local wines also on offer. Sink into Greek culture at traditional festivals or soak up mythology on this historic island. Alternatively, if you’re the adventurous type, get active and explore caves, hike hills and dive inside a shipwreck.
You’ll be immediately struck by the greenery of Paxos, an island covered in luscious olive trees. If you thought the olives were good on other islands, get yourself to a traditional Greek taverna here and sample a bowl of local olives. Meaty, salty, fresh and a little sweet, there’s nothing better. Pair with a Mythos beer and a great view (always easy to come by here) and you’ve found the perfect way to spend an hour in Greece.
Speaking of perfect eating, wait until you get your taste buds around the seafood here. The port town Gaios, where your ferry will pull into, is still a working fishing port. That means your fish dish of fresh octopus or grilled dorado will have just been pulled from the waters that lap your table legs at any of the delightful seaside tavernas. While you’re in Gaios, visit the main square to see the memorial to the Greek War of Independence.
Hop on a water taxi and 10 minutes of joyful sailing later you’ll be on neighbouring Antipaxos. The beaches here are picturesque – white with green-topped cliffs and dazzling sandy beaches surrounded by sea as blue as the sky – while the vineyard-lined hills produce wine that’s supplied to restaurants here and at nearby islands. Grab a table by the beach and sip crisp krasi (local wine) in the sunshine, knowing it came from the trees that surround you. Sail back to Paxos with a happy glow after a day well spent.
Each part of Paxos provides a different kind of beach experience. Head east for gentle pebble beaches, perfect for a day of swimming in the crystal-clear sea. Go west and you’ll find picturesque caves and limestone cliffs, including the rocky Tripitos Arch (a former sea cave). Water taxis run between beaches in Paxos, so it’s easy and fun to hop between them all.
Paxos is a small island situated just off the much larger Corfu. How did it come into being, you ask? According to Greek myth, Poseidon plunged his trident into Corfu and pieces of land broke off. These became Paxos and Antipaxos. Poseidon wanted to create an island to share with his mistress, Amphitrite – and the pair stayed on Paxos.
The sea around Paxos is too perfect to simply look at. Board a boat tour and jump straight into the dazzlingly blue Ionian Sea to swim between mysterious caves. For an even bigger adventure, check in at Paxos Oasi Sub certified dive centre, which offers magical tours of colourful reefs and even a shipwreck. You can also take a snorkelling safari, and lessons are even available for beginners and children.
Sailing into Paxos, you’ll notice a tiny, abundantly green islet just off the harbour. This is the mysterious Agios Nikolaos. Take a water taxi over and uncover the secrets nestling amongst its trees, from beautiful little chapels to the impressive ruins of an abandoned Venetian castle.
Across the green landscape of Paxos you’ll find old mule tracks that snake through the hills and olive groves. Follow them for fabulous hiking in nature, the dazzling Ionian Sea stretching out around you. Expect postcard views of towns, beaches and harbours. Stop at villages along the way for an insight into rural Greek life, stocking up on tiropita (cheese pie in filo pastry) or melomakarona (spiced honey biscuits topped with nuts).
For the last 30 years, 2020 aside, Paxos has been taken over each summer by the sophisticated Paxos Music Festival. The extravaganza, unfolding over several weeks, celebrates classical music with concerts across the island from both famous and upcoming Greek musicians. Soak up traditional music and culture in wonderful settings, with flowing wine and that beloved Greek hospitality.
Relax in an exceptional hotel on your Paxos adventure, bookable through Culture Trip. If you need more convincing as to why you should visit Greece, check out the other Ionian Islands to see all they have to offer.
KEEN TO EXPLORE THE WORLD?
Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.