Bike & Hike in Naoussa Bay
A Paros Hikes original: Ride into scenic coastal landscapes, explore awe-inspiring rock formations up on the hills and right by the water, visit a small 17th c. monastery by the sea to reach an old lighthouse at northernmost Cape Korakas for arguably the best sunset on the island! Harder option (Alt route) includes longer ride and Naousa town & harbor short tour.
Our signature Bike & Hike private tours combine casual cycling with walking/easy hiking, with a swimming break & a memorable picnic. Bicycles are provided for a cool morning or afternoon/sunset activity.
We set forth at the Kolymbithres junction on a secondary asphalt road by the water, following a route with great views both to the rocky, barren hillsides overlooking the sheltered bay N-NW and the rugged Agios Ioannis Detis Peninsula loomimg in the distance.
Our first stop is at the foot of Koukounaries Hill, a rocky outcrop with strane-shaped granite boulders overlooking azure, shallow waters of Plastiras bay. Following the team’s own pace, we hike (or even scramble) to the hilltop, to discover the remains of a Mycenaean acropolis (fortified settlement) dating back to prehistoric times. More note-worthy though, is the spectacular panoramic views of the calm bay waters below, the island’s mountains ahead, and the white stacked houses of Naoussa in the distance.
Up next is the scenic Kolymbithtres beach, with more granite boulders eroded by centuries of wind, salt and sun and hovering over clystal-clear but rather warm waters. We walk around to find the more striking examples of this natural sculpture, and even take a refreshing dip, weather permitting.
Back on the road, we cycle on alternating asphalt roads, cemented trails and country lanes, mostly close to the water or on somewhat higher ground, catching glimpses of the rocky, rugged hump of the Detis peninsula ahead. In springtime we pass by fields of wild barley and flowers, which turn to golden brown as summer marches on. The little monastery of Agios Ioannis Detis slowly comes in view, perched like a white dove on top of a rocky outcrop over the bay.
We enter Paros Environmental Park at the neck of the peninsula and park the bikes to explore the surroundings of the monastery of Agios Ioannis (17th c.), used as a shelter for consumption-stricken Naoussians in the old days, and an alternating pirate or navy outpost due to its a strategic location. After taking in the special ambiance and magnificent views all around, we continue on foot on a rocky, sometimes stone-paved trail towards the 17th c. lighthouse at Cape Korakas (‘the crow’), the northernmost point on the island. We follow a serpentine uphill route through the beige granite and grey gneiss boulders to the wilder N-NW shore. Our ascent to the lighthouse affords splendid panoramic views to the open sea and the surrounding islands (Antiparos, Sifnos, Syros, Tinos, Mykonos, Naxos)… and probably the best sunset view on Paros! After our optional “Taste of Paros” wine picnic, we head back to Monastiri beach down hillsides sprinkled with purple sea lavender.
Our cycling back from the monastery lends a different E/SE perspective to the bay of Naoussa, with the white-washed houses in the background and the small islets and sandy coves in between.
A longer alternative version (B:20km/H:6-7km, 5h30m) begins from the port of Naoussa and includes a short walking tour of the fishing harbor and the traditional center of Naoussa village.
Questions or more info? Ask us!
In a nutshell [Coastal rides & impressive rocks] BikeHike/views/seascapes, easy to moderate, distance B:15km/H:5-6km (Alt B:20km/H:6-7km), duration 4h (Alt 5h) w/o stops, elevation ±80 m.