Paxos, Antipaxos, and Blue Caves: The hidden gems of the Ionian islands
Hi, my name is Ksenia – I am a skipper at the company Explore the Outside.
I’ve spent my entire summers touring the islands surrounding the Marbella Elix hotel in Karavostasi, Perdika.
I have collected extensive knowledge about the region and want to share my experiences and recommendations about the area and all its best places, including some of the most famous beaches, the bluest waters, and the best food spots.
We begin our boat cruise from Marbella Elix (at Karavostasi beach) and head towards our first stop, Lakka, the second-largest village on Paxos Island. It is situated in the north part of the island and used as a port for boats, yachts, and sailboats. We anchor in the center of the colorful waterfront village and make a quick stop for coffee/ice cream.
We continue cruising into the first cave, surrounded by stunning blue waters, and explore the inside of the biggest cave – Papadi!
Continuing our trip, we cross the imposing cliffs of Erimitis, where we stop for our first swim at one of the most spectacular bays of Paxos and my favorite beach, set below the soaring cliffs.
We continue our cruise and make a stop at the world-famous Blue Caves, which can only be reached by boat.
As we enter the caves, we’ll spend some time exploring the impressive rock formations, swimming from cave to cave, and taking photographs of the breathtaking scenery.
After our first swim, we continue to explore Ortholithos – a breathtaking passing between an impressive deep cave and a tall standing rock pinned into the crystal-clear sea.
Our last stop on the west part of Paxos is at the famous arch Tripitos, where we’ll make a stop to photograph and admire the enormous, naturally formed rock structure, which is part of a collapsed sea cave, surrounded by blue and green waters.
We continue our cruise and reach the island of Antipaxos, where we make a stop at the charming beach of Vrika, known for the soft white sand and caribbean-esque, striking blue waters. Next, we continue our cruise and head to Voutoumi beach, which is among the top 10 beaches in Europe, we make a long stop here as it’s the ideal spot for snorkeling and exploring the fascinating underwater world.
Our cruise returns once again to Paxos, where we’ll make a stop at the picturesque port of Gaios village. On our way we’ll cross the stunning narrow channel between Mongoniss and the little round islet of Caltsonisi, cruising alongside the islands of Panagia and Agios Nikolaos. At the port of Gaios, we’ll have time to wander through the narrow streets of the charming village, visit countless souvenir shops, and enjoy a refreshing lunch at one of the many traditional tavernas – my favorite is Genesis – a small family-run restaurant with fresh seafood and local wine.
On our way back we will also pass by Longos, which is the smallest of the island ports on Paxos. From the boat, we’ll be able to catch sight of the old factory Anemogiannis, which used to house an operating mill and soap factory.
If time permits, we’ll make a few more stops at beaches on our way back to Karavostasi beach and MarBella Elix hotel (e.g. Kipiadi, Kipos, Levrexio).
You can download this ultimate travel guide to Paxos, Antipaxos, and Blue Caves in a compact PDF file format.