paxos, paradise in the olivegroves
Paxos (Paxi) and little sister Anti-Paxi are two of the smallest inhabitated Ionian Islands, approximately 7 km south of Corfu and 8 sea miles east from Parga on the Greek mainland. The largest is Paxos, it covers an area of some 25 square kilometres and is one of a cluster of picturesque small islands set in the Ionian Sea. Paxos is covered with endless olive groves and Anti Paxi is one large vineyard!
Main sources of income are tourism, olives and fishing. Olive oil and wine are of very good quality.
According to Greek Mythology Paxos was created by Poseidon. He was looking for a quiet place for himself and his beloved Amphitriti. With his trident he tore off the southermost part of Corfu, thus creating Paxos. He lost his trident which the Paxiots later found and made their emblem.
Paxos has no airport,can only be reached by Flying Dolphin, ferry or Yacht and that most likely is the main reason that so far this island has escaped the strain of modern-mass tourism and stil can be considered "a little piece of heaven"; timeless Greece.
Paxos is a small island, with relative short distances between the villages Gaios, Loggos and Lakka. It is small enough to escape the tyranny of the motor car, except in August, the busiest time of the year. There's a regular busservice between the villages and a lovely way to explore the island is by foot or bike. Taxi service is good and not expensive. Gaios, Loggos and Lakka have taxi ranks. The sea taxis show you the other side of the island and it's a fast way to get around.
The three largest villages are Gaios, Lakka and Loggos. Dotted all over the island are small hamlets and tiny villages with nams ending on "ika" distracted from the names of their inhabitants; Bogdanika from Bogdanou or Bogdanos, Kontogianika from the family Kontogiannis etc. etc.
Along the 46km of coastline many beaches are to be discovered; some are only accessable by foot or boat. The east coast has many individual small pebble beaches and secluded coves. The most important are Giannas, Kloni Gouli, Kamini, Kaki Lagada, Kipiadis, Marmaria, Levrechio, Glyfada, Monodendri, Orkos, Kanoni Harami and Avlaki. Mongonissi in the south, is a larger sandy beach with facilities. Anti-Paxos has gorgeous translucent turqoise waters and beautiful white sandy beaches.
Paxos is a walkers paradise and it offers a surprising variety of scenery, from ancient olive groves to pine-covered outcrops and breathtaking cliff scenery. The villages are linked by shady tracks trough olive groves and you will pass old churches, deserted olive presses, small hamlets and old windmills, sometimes ending up at a quiet beach or a lovely viewpoint. The coastline offers fine walks or climbing up the steep slopes of the west coast to watch the waves crash against the sheer cliffs, with caves and arches som hundred feet below. The eastern coastline is gentle with many beaches. There are some good walking guides and maps available.
Panayri-festivities: on the 15th of August the feast of the Dormition of the Virgin Mary is celebrated. In the morning, the faithful gather at the Monastery of Panayia and the festivities last all day and night winding up with dancing on the square in Gaios. End of August - early September the annual International Music Festival takes place in Gaois. In February the islands Patron Saint Charambalos is honoured is his church in Bogdanatika.