Naxos Sights & Attractions
Due to its long history, this is an island with many interesting sites and monuments. The Marble Gate of Portara, the statues of Kouros and the temple of Demeter are some of the most important monuments from ancient times. Other important sights are the Kastro of town (castle) and the Church of Panagia Drossiani.
In general, the island of Naxos is crossed by many hiking paths and routes leading to fantastic sights and picturesque villages.
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You can see below the best Sites in Naxos: Ancient sites, Museums, Churches, Castles and more points of interest. You can filter them by category and location.
After seeing all sights, don't miss to check All Things to Do in Naxos (best beaches, villages, restaurants and more)
Portara (or temple of Apollo) is the trademark of Naxos. This is the first sight of the island that you get as the ferry approaches the port. It is the unfinished gate of a big temple dedicated to Apollo.
Kastro (Castle) is the most picturesque quarter in Naxos Town. It is actually the part of the old town. Around this castle, the modern part of the town has been constructed.
Not to miss: Castle walking tour and sunset at Portara
Recently restored, this ancient temple is dedicated to Demeter, the goddess of grain. It dates back to the 6th century B.C. and it was discovered in 1949. A small church to Saint John stands next to the temple.
The giant statue of a young man (Kouros) can be seen outside the village of Melanes. It lays on the site where it was excavated.
The Kouros of Apollonas dates from the 8th century BC and it lays on the site it was discovered. Archaeologists believe that it depicted a young man or Dionysus, the god of wine.
Built upon the steep rock, seemingly hanging a few kilometers away from the bright blue waters of Agiassos bay in the southwest part of Naxos, the whitened chapel of Agios Sozon attracts many visitors as it shines brightly under the sun.
The Archaeological Museum is situated in the quarter of Kastro, Naxos Town. It is housed in a superb 17th-century Venetian mansion, which used to be the Jesuit School of Commerce before. This really interesting museum exposes a collection of objects and artworks dating from the late Neolithic period until the early Christian times.
This beautiful church is standing near the little village of Moni, on the island of Naxos. This is an Early Christian church, one of the oldest churches of the island, dating back to the 6th- 7th century. It has round smooth shapes and a dome. The interior is decorated with beautiful wall paintings.
Mount Zas is the tallest mountain in Naxos and generally the Cyclades islands. Due to its altitude and the rich flora and fauna, this place is popular for trekkers and birdwatchers.
The Cave of Zas is located at the western side of Mount Zas, at an altitude of 600 meters. According to the Greek mythology, God Zeus was raised here as he found shelter in the cave while he was prosecuted by his father, Kronus.
The Monastery of Christ Fotodotis is located on top of a hill with fantastic sea view. Originally established in the 6th century BC, the architecture of this monastery looks like a fortress.
The Jesuit Monastery of Kalamitsia is located at a distance of 2 km dirt road from the village of Melanes. The monastery is deserted today but worth to visit for the amazing nature.
Agios Mamas is also one of the oldest churches of Naxos, dating from the 9th century. The church of Agios Mamas is famous for its fine cross, sculptures, and murals and it is dedicated to Agios Mamas, the patron of shepherds.
Routsouna waterfall, a spectacular 20-meter plunge, is the result of two important streams that run north and south of Keramoti. You need a 45 minutes hike to reach the falls.
Rina cave is a beautiful sea cave located at the beach of the same name. It can be accessed by boat from Panermos beach or from a day cruise from Naxos port.
This traditional watermill is in a lovely location, between Mesi and Ano Potamia, on the banks of a small river. It worth the visit to see the landscape and a walk following the river's path is a must.
The ancient temple of Dionysus is located close to Glinado village, in Iria position. As Naxos was the residence of god Dionysus according to the myth, it comes as no surprise that there is such a temple on the island.
Vallindras is a distillery in the mountainous village of Halki, the old capital of Naxos island. The distillery was established in 1896 and it is still run by the same family. Today, it also works as a museum with interesting tools and equipment.
Bazeos Tower is one of the most prominent sights in Naxos, located on the main road that connects the Chora with the mountainous villages of Halki and Filoti. Dating back to the 17th century, the castle was built in this peculiar location as an attempt to provide safety to its residents from the frequent pirate attacks.
The Folklore Museum of Kaloxylos village offers the opportunity to learn more about the local history and culture with the exhibition of thousands of object. A place not to miss and under the auspices of UNESCO!
Quite close to the picturesque village of Halki, in the path that leads towards the Monoitsia settlement, visitors can find a small yet impressive church that is dedicated to Saint George.
Besides Apollonas and Melanes, the locals discovered yet another impressive Kouros in a lying position within a field in the Flerio area.
Located outside Gallini village, the monastery tower of Ipsilotera was built in 1660 by a local nobleman, Iakovos Kokkos. The monastery is located inside the walls of a tower, used for the protection of the region from enemies and pirates.
The exact year of its resurgence is not known, however, it is estimated that the imposing tower was built during the 17th century and is an architectural example of the post-Byzantine era. Following the tradition of other buildings of the tower genre that were extensively built around the Cyclades during the years of the Venetian and Ottoman sovereignty, the tower of Agia was originally the resort home of the Kokkoi family.
One of the most impressive archaeological findings in Naxos are the remainings of the ancient aqueduct that can be traced in various locations on the island. Relevant research shed light on the origins of the constructions and placed the aqueduct’s creation in the Archaic period.
Close to the village of Ano Potamia, there is a hiking path leading to Epano Kastro, also known as the Castle of Tragea. This path is not easy but totally worth it when you reach up there.
Another fantastic Venetian structure of the 17th century in Naxos is the Tower of Kokkos family, built atop the small river located in Lierado, a quarter of Potamia settlement. The concrete path leading to the tower is of moderate difficulty, while the verdant surroundings add a dreamy vibe to the experience.
Naxos is one of the rich with marble deposits on islands of the Aegean Sea, known since ancient times as artifacts as old as the Neolithic Ages have been uncovered in the nearby area. Many quarries can be seen in the area of Kinidaros.