Naxos Island, Greece

It wouldn't be a real adventure without a few things going sideways, right?

Ancient square stone doorway with the cityscape in the background
Naxos, Greece (2022)

Well, we definitely need a Naxos round 2.

It wouldn't be a real adventure without a few things going sideways, right?

We originally planned to explore the many beaches and villages along the coast of this small island, but ended up spending most of our time in and around the capital and main harbour town, Chora (Naxos Town).

Which, don't get me wrong, was an absolute delight.

A wrench in the plans

The first two days in Naxos I (Alexia) was out sick with a stomach bug (Alek had it a couple days prior when we were in Athens). Asides from a few short walks into Naxos Town, I spent most of those days recovering in our super cute AirBnb (which was run by a really nice woman also named Alexia!).

Finally on the third day I was feeling good. Ready to hit the road and explore the island, Alek and I rented a couple scooters from a shop down the road. Alek has riding experience from his previous trips to Asia and I've had my motorcycle license for almost 8 years. Granted, it had been a number of years since I've had a bike (circumstances necessitated selling my V-Star a while back). But we were confident and excited for our day of beach hopping.

Maneuvering out of Naxos Town was supposed to be the hardest part. Not only are the roads rough and uneven, riddled with potholes and gravel, but people drive chaotically here. We focused and made sure to get out of the main part of town in one piece.

Aaand, as soon as we hit that final turn onto the main road out of town... I went and crashed my scooter. Over-confident and under-prepared for how sharp a turn I was about to take at the speed I was going on a gravel road, I skidded out into oncoming traffic. F*ck yea. That felt real good.

To be honest, the biggest thing that hurt at the time was my ego.

I immediately got up, grabbed the scooter and ran to the side of the road, exclaiming "I'm fine, I'm fine!" to all witnesses. Alek, who was ahead of me, had seen me go down in his mirror. After thinking "well, guess she's dead", he turned around to come collect the body.

I was ready to get back on that scooter and keep going, determined not to let this ruin our plans for the day, when Alek pointed out the trails of blood running down my arms and legs. Well, sh*t. Road rash on the arms was something I was ready to just deal with, but when I took a closer look at my leg I realized I could see parts of my knee that were supposed to stay on the inside.

Finally conceding to go to the hospital, I hopped on the back of Alek's scooter and he dropped me off to fend for myself at the small medical centre where none of the staff spoke English. He went back to deal with my abandoned scooter on the side of the road, which was a little scuffed up itself.

!! CONTENT WARNING: Blood and medical images

Collage of images showing scooters and Alexia's road rash and wounds
"The Incident" Naxos, Greece (2022)

After a surprisingly efficient hour spent at the hospital where I was Frankensteined back together, Alek came back on his scooter to collect me. Off we went (with me riding b*tch this time) to a nearby beach for the rest of the afternoon.

Reckless and stubborn to a fault. I made sure we got our beach day.

Absolutely worth it.

We made the most of our last two days, but we will definitely be back to Naxos again to explore more of this beautiful island.


Naxos Town (Chora)

Views of Naxos Town from the water and two different street views
Naxos Town (Chora), Naxos, Greece (2022)

This small town is so laid back and charming! Beautiful stonework streets wind through whitewashed Aegean-style buildings, and around every corner we found another kitty (or ten) to greet us. Cafes, restaurants and bars along the harbour offer locally caught fresh seafood and a surprising amount of Italian food... what I suspect to be a lasting influence from years of Venetian occupation during 13th century.

But, stemming long before Venetian rule, Naxos offers some very important history. It’s believed to be where the gods Zeus and Dionysus both grew up, and is the site of many other well known Greek myths. In 4000-1000 BCE, Naxos was the most important centre of civilization of all the Cyclades.

The Portara of Naxos (the Great Door) is a beautiful square doorway close to the town and is what remains of the ancient Temple of Apollo.

Chapel of Agios Ioannis Theologos

Alek and Alexia sit in front of a small white chapel built into the side of a hill
Chapel of Agios Ioannis Theologos, Naxos, Greece (2022)

This beautiful little white chapel is built into a cave on a hill that overlooks the town and harbour of Chora. We visited during the daytime (it was closed so we couldn't go inside). The view was gorgeous and there was no one else there. This would be an amazing spot for a sunrise or sunset.

(Lol at me with my satanic cat tattoos posing in front of churches, forgive me.)


A church procession walk through the street with a ceremonial floral arrangement
Good Friday in Naxos, Greece (2022)

We were in Naxos for Good Friday, the start of Easter weekend. Being an overwhelmingly Orthodox Christian country, Greece takes Easter very seriously and it was neat to witness some of the local traditions in Naxos that evening.

Our advice to you:

  • Visit Naxos
  • Don't crash your scooter

Looking forward to the day we can return here!

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