It goes without saying that Parga is one of the most picturesque holiday destinations in Greece mainland.
Parga is located in Epirus administrative region, in western Greece, and it is famous for its exotic beaches, breathtaking natural landscape and traditional architecture. Perched on the foothills of a verdant hill, it boasts an amazing view to the Ionian sea.
Although Parga is a traditional settlement in Greece mainland, it definitely has the ambiance of an Ionian island. From turquoise waters and pristine mountains, to elegant architecture, Parga will make you question whether you are on an island or not...
So, it’s not exactly unexpected that people love Parga, right?
Stay with us to find out 5 (really important) reasons why!
1. Parga’s beautiful landscape
The first things that will catch your eye, as you approach Parga by ferry, are the Venetian castle and the colorful traditional houses, insulated by lush greenery. Nestled in a verdant cove, at Preveza municipality, Parga is a natural paradise, filled with the colors of the buildings, the sea and the nature!
In Parga, you don’t have to choose between holidays on the mountain or by the beach. Amphitheatrically built on the foothills of a verdant hill, yet by the sea, Parga combines them both! What’s more, right in front of Parga, there are tiny exotic islets, which you can visit by boat. But more on that later…
2. The imposing Venetian castle
The main attraction in Parga is, hands down, the Venetian castle!
Built in 1792 by the Venetians, the Castle of Parga, as it is also called, was strategically constructed for defensive purposes. Around the castle, there are 8 towers that boost the castle’s defense, while lower on the hill, there are traditional houses sitting around the Venetian castle.
Visiting the castle is like entering another era! Supplies galleries, bastions, arched alleys, hidden passages, warehouses, forts… It’s not a stretch of imagination to picture the glorious battles that once took place here!
Today, inside the castle there are also two main buildings, hosting events such as exhibitions and theatrical performances, as well as a cafe. And when the night comes, the castle is even more impressive, as it is lit up!
Fact: You can reach the Venetian castle, through narrow alleys starting from the port of Parga.
3. The exotic Parga beaches
One of the reasons why Parga is wildly famous is- what else- its beaches. There's no denying it: Parga beaches are some of the best Ionian beaches -they have turquoise waters and a wild natural setting that never fails to capture the visitors. The Dalmatian-like coastline of Parga forms many little coves, where you’ll find some of the most beautiful beaches you’ve ever seen!
Sarakiniko beach Parga
Nestled in a sandy cove 12 km from Parga main town, Sarakiniko is, according to many, the most beautiful Parga beach. It has fine white sand and mesmerizing turquoise, crystal clear, waters, while it is organized with umbrellas and sun loungers. Insulated by lush greenery and an olive grove, Sarakiniko boasts a wonderful natural landscape, ideal for couples and families! What’s more, around Sarakiniko you’ll find many accommodation options, traditional taverns and facilities.
Valtos beach Parga
Stretching for 3 km, Valtos is the biggest beach in Parga! Located under the hill, where the Venetian castle is sitting, Valtos beach has an idyllic backdrop. It is a long sandy beach with pebbles and clear waters, while, thanks to its location, it is protected from the strong winds! Valtos beach also has water sports facilities, meaning you can test your talent in surfing, water skiing, diving and many more, if you’re feeling up to it!
Ammoudia beach Parga
Ammoudia is a large sandy beach, with cyan-hued water and a beautiful natural ambiance. Swimming in its mesmerizing waters, you might feel a fluctuation in the temperature of the water. This is because Ammoudia beach is sitting where the mouth of Acherondas river is! Acherondas river is the perfect spot for extreme sports, such as canoe kayak and rafting, as well as horse riding. Ammoudia beach also covers all the bases when it comes to water sports: diving, water ski, jet ski and sailing are just some of the water sports you can do there!
Lichnos beach Parga
Tucked away among the olive groves, Lichnos beach is undoubtedly one of the most impressive Parga beaches. Large and sandy with crystal clear blue waters, Lichnos beach is the perfect beach option for those who want to relax in the nature, yet have access to all the amenities. What’s more, in Lichnos beach you can enjoy water sports, such as scuba diving, water skiing and windsurfing.
Tip: Close to the beach you’ll also find hotels, taverns and a mini market.
Alonaki beach Parga
If you seek a beach with a wild natural backdrop to immerse yourself in relaxation, visiting Alonaki beach is your best bet! Nestled in a rocky, yet verdant cove, Alonaki can be reached through a dirt road. Once you get to the beach, the view will leave you in awe! Just imagine hills carpeted with trees, turquoise clean waters, endless sand and lush greenery… It’s the absolute exotic paradise!
4. The picturesque Panagia islet
Located right in front of Parga port, Panagia islet is the trademark of Parga and one of its main attractions. On this tiny verdant island, there is a cute whitewashed chapel, part of the castle that the French built in Panagia islet in 1808.
The best way to reach Panagia islet is by a small boat from Parga. Nevertheless, there are many people who chose to swim to it. Are you willing to give it a try?
Even if you choose not to visit it, though, its view alone will steal your breath!
Tip: The tiny chapel on Panagia islet is a popular spot for weddings, thanks to its romantic location! So, if you’re planning to tie the knot, definitely consider it as a wedding location.
5. Parga’s proximity to Sivota
Also known as the “Caribbean of Greece”, Sivota justifies its reputation! Sivota is an enchanting traditional settlement located on the south part of Thesprotia district. It is surrounded by natural landscapes, coves with turquoise waters, rocky islets and beautiful beaches. It’s a total summertime favorite!
The only way to experience the best Sivota has to offer is to rent a little boat and sail to the coves and islets around Sivota, such as Mavro Oros and Agios Nikolaos. Get ready for many “jaw to the floor” moments!
6. The variety of activities to do in Parga
The thing about Parga is that it boasts the same verdant natural landscape as the Ionian islands, so nature exploration is a total must!
To start with, Parga is one of the best hiking destinations in Greece!
There is a wonderful hiking trail from Parga to Valtos and from Valtos to Ali Passa fortress in Anthoussa, through which you can explore the nature. The best part? You can combine hiking in Parga with a dip in the sea!
Apart from hiking, Parga is a great destination for water sports. From water skiing to sailing, there are many options for water adventures. Besides, doing water sports in the exotic waters of Sivota is a unique experience!
7. Parga’s close distance to the Ionian islands
Well, this is a big plus!
Because you can make Parga a part of your Ionian island hopping itinerary! Starting from Parga, you can visit Ionian islands such as Corfu, Zakynthos, Kefalonia and Paxi. If you want to live the ultimate Ionian experience, the best thing to do is to book a hotel in Corfu or in another Ionian island. Having it as your island hopping base, you can explore the Ionian islands group at your own pace!
To sum up, Parga may be a mainland destination, but it is an island destination at its essence! Mesmerizing turquoise waters, sandy coves, wild natural landscapes and verdant islets create the ideal environment for the most epic Greece holidays ever!
And isn’t that what you want?