Paros is voted best European island to visit, beating Santorini and Mykonos

Right now, there’s no doubt we will all be dreaming of a sunshine-filled getaway to escape the realities of 2020 thus far. While many people will be will be waiting it out until 2021 and beyond, some of us are desperate to hop on a plane and looking for destination inspiration to dream of in the mean time.

Look no further then than Paros in Greece which has been voted ‘Best European Island’ in Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards 2020, beating Greek favourites Santorini and Mykonos to the title. This is the second time the stunning island has taken home the award, after initially winning in 2018. It was briefly stripped of its title in 2019, when Milos, another Greek Island, was voted best.

Paros street
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The Travel + Leisure ‘World’s Best Awards’ asks readers to weigh in on their top travel experiences around the globe to determine the crème de la crème of holidaying. Travel + Leisure explain that they base their Island awards on: ‘natural attractions/beaches, activities/sights, restaurants/food, people/friendliness, value.’ They also ask readers to vote on categories including hotels, airlines, cities, tour operators, and even car rental services.

Paros view
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So what’s so special about Paros, the little island that is often described as Greece’s ‘best kept secret’? Well, Paros is conveniently located just a few hours away from Athens by ferry, and is known for its stunning natural beaches and cosmopolitan nightlife, as well as its array of ancient monuments for history buffs to enjoy.

Top attractions on the island include the little fishing village of Naousa, along with Golden Beach (or Chryssí Aktí), which is known for its windsurfing. Nightlife fans should visit Ambelas or nearby Santa Maria, both of which are known for their bars and parties. And when it comes to history, you can’t beat Byzantine Road, which is an ancient marble footpath that connects the island’s villages of Lefkes and Prodromos.

Paros nighttime
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This really is the perfect quaint destination to get away from bustling city life, as it’s a mere 76 square miles, and often much more quiet and under-the-radar than other popular Greek holiday destinations.