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A short ferry ride (90 minutes or take a faster hydrofoil) from Corfu, Paxos is a jewel of a place much loved by island-hopping travellers and ‘live life like a Greek’ fly-and-floppers alike. It’s only 10 km long and 5 across so really easy to get around, the people are charming and it’s still pleasantly uncommercial and laid-back.
The main town is Gaios. Sitting opposite a small island, it has an extensive and sheltered mooring with yachts and catamarans of all sizes backed up to a waterfront lined with cafes and tavernas. The pedestrianised square is a great place to sit and people-watch, and the side streets with their Venetian buildings are home to craft shops and restaurants. It’s quaint in a Hollywood-does-living-history sort of way and extremely charming. In the evenings it attracts a very cosmopolitan crowd of all ages.
It should come as no surprise then that people return year after year, not only for its ambience but also for the crystal-clear waters that wash pebble beaches, many of which are walkable distance with a nice café when you get there. The fresh fish here is really good and overall the cuisine is traditionally Greek.
If you want somewhere quieter that Gaios then check out Loggos, a smaller fishing village on the sheltered north-east coast with some picturesque beaches you need to walk or catch a boat to. It’s rather like being in a Greek fairy-tale place that time forgot – although luckily there are modern local amenities.
Our recommendation: if you’re cruising in the area, you must definitely spend an evening (or even two) in Gaios with the yachting crowd. Loggos is worth a visit, at least for lunch. If you’re coming to stay for a few days or a few weeks bring a good book or three and make a point of taking a boat trip to the caves on the west coast.
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