Paros, Greece | Paros is a small island that is part of the Greek Cyclades chain. It is often a stopping point for travelers on their way to more famous islands, like Santorini or Mykonos. If you find yourself on Paros (which you should), you will arrive on a ferry boat in the town of Parikia. There is a lot of great things about Parikia, but a beach is not one of them. In this post, we’ll share two ways you can get from the port town of Parikia to the beaches of Krios and Marcello.
Parikia is the largest town on the island of Paros and home to the island’s only port. The port brings so much life to the town, and the streets are always bustling with people coming and going. The main strip of bars and cafes line the waterfront and face the bay on the west, making it the perfect spot to catch sunset.
If you wander away from the water, you’ll find yourself in a maze of white buildings overrun with bright pink Bougainvillea flowers. As you stroll through the streets, you’ll find local artisans selling handmade leather sandals and boutiques filled with the cutest island fashion from Greek brands. Be sure to save a few Euro for pistachio ice cream in a homemade waffle cone at Vanille.
After sunset, the strip comes comes alive with vacationers eating late dinners and drinking the night away. Most of the bars and restaurants are open until at least midnight, with most staying open until 2 or 3 AM. That said, I would certainly not call Parikia a party town. It’s more of a late-night pub scene for the jet-lagged tourists who accidentally slept in until 11 AM.
Beaches on Paros
Parikia is a great place to stay, but it is definitely not known for its beaches. There is a tiny stretch of sand on the south end of the main strip, but that’s as close to a beach as Parikia gets. If you’re looking to hit the beaches in Paros, you’ll need to venture to other parts of the island.
There are a few options for beaches on Paros. Some of the best beaches are on the north and east sides of the island, but the easiest option is to head across the bay to Krios and Marcello. The beaches — which which have two names but really blend into one — are nothing special, but they do offer the beach essentials: a stretch of sand, cool blue waters and endless sunshine. The beaches look across the bay to Parikia, so you can watch the ferries coming in and out of port. Though not fabulous, these beaches will do.
There are only a few restaurants along the beaches to get food and drinks. On Krios, you’ll find Peter’s Cafe. Though not much more than a snack shop, you can grab a quick bite or cappuccino freddo and lounge on one of their many free beach chairs. Peter’s chairs were plentiful around 10:30 AM, but seemed to be full by noon.
Just past Peter’s is a much higher-end establishment, which is the restaurant and bar for Paradiso Boutique hotel. Here, you have to pay for beach chairs, but there were plenty available. If you’re looking for a swankier vibe with cocktails and beach-side service, this is the spot for you.
If neither of those options strike your fancy, pack a cooler of beers and some feta, because that’s really your only other option.
Now let’s talk about how to get there!
OPTION 1: Walk from Parikia to Krios and Marcello Beaches
Part 1: Parikia to Livadia Beach
Your journey beings in Parikia. From port, head east around the bay (to the right if you’re facing the water). There is a sidewalk that follows the bay and takes you to the little beach town of Livadia. The sidewalk comes and goes during this stretch, and you may find yourself walking on the beach or the street occasionally. Just keep following the water until the sand ends at Tango Mar restaurant, marking the end of Livadia Beach.
TIP: If you’re looking for more variety and/or better prices on breakfast or lunch, you might want to consider stopping here for a meal. There are more cafes to choose from here than on Krios & Marcello, and the prices are a bit more competitive.
After the beach ends, the road that you have followed along the water will curve inland and tempt you to follow it. Don’t. Instead, follow the small footpath along the water. You’ll soon be able to visibly see the next town and see where the path connects. This section still shows up as a walking path on Google Maps.
Part 2: Up & around the bluff
Looking onto the bluff, you’ll see a rocky dirt path that leads up the hill, hugging the water to your left side. Continue along this path. You won’t be able to see where the end leads, but it will get you there. Be careful as some of the rocks are slippery. I wouldn’t call it dangerous, but don’t venture too close to the edge.
The bluff will peak and as you start to head downhill, you’ll see the beaches come into view as you approach Krios Campgrounds. (When we were in Greece, this was as far as Google Maps thinks you can go before you have have to go up and around on the main road. Now it appears as though Google Maps recognizes this as a walking route, but it may depend on the exact directions you’re searching for.)
Keep on trucking along the path. You’ll eventually come across a wire fence on your left (water side) that will force you inland a bit. Eventually you’ll run into a small concrete building.
At the building, the path will continue upward, but there will be a staircase leading down to the left toward the water. Take the stairs down and they’ll pop you back out along the water and on your way to the beach. If you’re making the hike back, you’ll see that these stairs are marked with a red arrow pointing you back to Parikia.
Follow the rocky path down a slope between the fence and the water. Eventually the path will give way to the beach, and you’ve arrived at Krios Beach! Keep walking and Krios Beach will become Marcello Beach.
TOTAL TIME: TIME
OPTION 2: Ferry from Parikia to Krios and Marcello Beaches
If you’re unable to or uninterested in making the walk from Parikia to Krios and Marcello, you’ll find the ferry to be a quick and simple alternative.
Directly east of the main ferry port (to the right if you’re looking at the water) and right across the street from Grēgórēs restaurant is a small stand that reads “Martselo Beach”. You may also recognize the spot as being right next to the departure point for the ferry to Antiparos, which is also clearly labeled with a large sign.
Here at this booth, you’ll find a sign that explains everything you need to know, which is:
- The ferry departs Parikia every 30 minutes (roughly on the hour and half hour, but it’s not exact)
- The ferry costs 3 Euro each way.
- The ferry stops at Krios Beach, then Marcello Beach before returning back to Parikia.
- The total route takes about 30 minutes.
From Parikia, you can buy one-way or round-trip tickets from the person at the booth. If you are boarding at Krios or Marcello and don’t yet have a ticket, you can purchase them on the boat. Tickets are cash only, and exact change is preferred (they may not be able to break large bills).
TOTAL TIME: 15 minutes each way
Returning to Parikia
After you’ve spent a fun day on the beach, it’s time to head back to Parikia. The return journey is the same, just reversed. (Crazy, I know!)
If you choose to walk back, head back toward the bluff and look for the red sign pointing you back to Paros. Take the stars up, and then turn right on the path to retrace your steps back to Parikia.
If you are taking the Ferry, you can catch the ferry at either Krios or Marcello. Coming from Parikia, the ferry stops first at Krios. The Krios stop is at the farthest end of the beach, past Peter’s as far as you can walk on the beach. The stop at Marcello is at the far west end of Marcello Beach.
Since the ferry stops at Krios, then Marcello, then Parikia, it makes the most sense to catch the ferry from Marcello so you can travel non-stop back to Parikia. The ferry usually gets to Marcello at the 15 and 45.
TIP: It takes about 10 minutes to walk from Peter’s cafe to the Marcello stop, which is about as long as it takes the ferry to get from the Krios stop to the Marcello stop. Once you see the ferry approaching Krios, you can start walking briskly to Marcello and walk right on.
Staying in Parikia doesn’t mean you have to stay in Parikia. We hope you enjoy this quick and easy day trip from Parikia to the beaches of Krios and Marcello.