Paros Attractions & Sightseeing
There are so many places to visit in Paros that you will surely be pleasantly surprised. Paros attractions and sightseeing will turn your summer holidays on the island into an unforgettable and joyful experience.
The Panagia Ekatontapiliani Church in Parikia
The Panagia Ekatontapiliani or Katapoliani Church is located just next to the Parikia port. It is considered one of the most important Byzantine monuments in Greece and a must-see among the top Paros attractions. It has 99 gates, and according to the local tradition its 100th gate is well hidden. Therefore, this is the reason why it is called Ekatontapiliani, meaning the church with 100 gates. It is believed that the church was built by Saint Helen (aka Agia Eleni), the mother of the Byzantine emperor Constantine (aka Saint Constantine), during the 4th century AD. Two centuries later (6th century AD) it was reconstructed by the Byzantine emperor Justinian.
From the very first moment you enter this magnificent church, it is obvious why this included in the top places to visit in Paros. The first thing that will catch your eyes is the glorious dome and the priceless Byzantine icons. In the church’s courtyard, there is a Museum of Byzantine History with very interesting and rare exhibits, such as ecclesiastical objects, precious relics, and rare religious icons from the 17th and 18th century. By visiting this museum, you will have the opportunity to get a good idea of the Byzantine and after-Byzantine history of Paros.
The Archaeological Museum in Parikia
The Archaeological Museum in Parikia was built during the ‘50s. It is situated in Parikia. The area close to the museum is probably the top sightseeing on the island since there you will have the opportunity to visit the museum, the Panagia Ekatontapiliani Church, and the Gymnasium. It should be noted that the Archaeological Museum in Parikia is considered one of the most important museums in Greece and its exhibits come from excavations from both Paros and Antiparos. They date all the way back from the Neolithic to the first Christian period.
The Folklore Art Museum of Cycladic Civilization (aka Mouseio Kikladikis Laografias) in Aliki
The Folklore Art Museum of Cycladic Civilization is situated in Aliki, Paros, just at the entrance of the village. It was built and funded by Benetos Skiadas. After 20 years of creating miniatures, Benetos Skiadas managed to produce one of the largest miniature collections in Greece.
This museum is included in the top places to visit in Paros because by visiting it you will surely feel astonished with the quality of the work, talent, and effort put by Benetos Skiadas. The museum is being divided into the external and internal exhibition area. There you will find exact miniature copies of Greek and international famous monuments, such as: the Delos Lions, the White Tower, the Monastery of Panagia Hozoviotissa, the Venetian Castle in Parikia, the destroyer ‘Elli’, the Antiparos cave, the first Paros cafe, the ancient theatre in Milos, a traditional windmill (3m height), traditional blacksmith, Tinos dovecotes, etc. All the exhibits have an outstanding attention to detail.
Inside the museum, you will also have the opportunity to see a great exhibit of various kinds of miniature boats and ships, such as naval, commercial, fishing, drifters, sailboats, steamers, triremes, and many more. All exhibits prove the never ending talent of Benetos Skiadas
The Traditional Greek Costumes Museum in Naousa Paros (aka Ellinikes Topikes Foresies)
Another great museum to visit that rates among the top folklore Paros attractions is the Traditional Greek Costumes Museum is situated in Naousa Paros, just 150m from the town’s central square. It is being housed in a lovely traditional building. It is a small, but highly interesting folklore museum where you can see traditional costumes from different parts of Greece, mostly those relating to Paros. There is also an exhibition of Paros traditional lingerie, pieces of furniture, and various household objects.The museum is being maintained and managed by the Naousa Paros Music and Dance Group.
The Marpissa Folklore Museum (aka Lagrafiko Mouseio Marpissas)
The Marpissa Folklore Museum was established by the Marpissa Women’s Society (aka Sillogos Ginaikon Marpissas) in coordination with local authorities.
Located in the Marpissa center, it will surely get your attention since it is a fully restored stone made building. Its rooms reflect in an excellent manner how a typical traditional Paros house used to look like back in the old days. It consists of a reception area, kitchen, toilet, storage room, and laboratory. The objects that you will see in this exhibition were all donated by Marpissa residents, and they are old, authentic, traditional everyday items, such as various pieces of furniture, loom, decorative items, daily utensils, etc.
The Butterflies’ valley!
If you are a naturist, then we highly recommend you to visit a spectacular sightseeing found on Paros. The Butterflies Valley (aka Koilada me tis Petaloudes) is a nature reserve with a lovely little spring and dense tree vegetation, such as cypresses, wild olive trees, pear trees, plane trees, sloes, oleanders, etc.
It is just 4km from Parikia, and it is a wonderful nature reserve with paths and stairs that will help you to explore it easier. During the summer season, this park gets ‘flooded’ with swarms of butterflies (tiger moths). Dozens thousands of butterflies nest among foliage and tree trunks. Their large numbers and impressive colours will impress you greatly. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience!