‹ Back to site

 Print this page

Paxi Travel Guide
Paxi Name

The name "Paxi" in Greek is a plural form referring actually to a complex of islands, the largest of which are Paxos and Antipaxos. Nevertheless in common talk the names Paxi for the former and Antipaxi for the later have prevailed.
There are several theories regarding the origin of the name Paxos.

According to Strabo the name derives from the Phoenician word "Pax", which describes the island's geometrical trapezoid shape. Another version supports that the island took its name from the expatriated people of the Sicilian town "Paxounda" who settled on it. Other theories focus on the Greek etymology, so Paxi could mean the island of plates or it could derive from the ancient verb "pixo" (future tense of "pignio" which means "coagulate"). Lastly, there is a version indicating that "Paxi" comes from the phrase "Paxosas thyras" which means "closed gates" because of the natural closed form of the port of Gaios, the port of Paxos island.

Inhabitance History

Homer is the first to refer to Paxi islands stating that they were inhabited by people from the Greek mainland. Paxi were possibly inhabited since the prehistoric era although the first settlers on Paxos are believed to have been the Phoenicians who had founded a colony in Kefalonia; thus the name Paxos is believed to derive from the Phoenician word "Pax" which meant trapezoid in shape.

In the 2nd century B.C. the islands came under Roman Rule until 1386 when they passed to the Venetians. The constant menace of pirate raids led in 1423 to the construction of two fortresses, one on the islet of Agios Nikolaos opposite Gaios and another one at Lakka to the north. During the Venetian Era the cultivation of olive trees on Paxos and vineyards on Antipaxos was established. The allied fleet of the Spanish, the Venetians and the Pope in 1537 won a great victory against the Turkish fleet. Barbarossa attempted to avenge and sieged Corfu but eventually retreated and destroyed Paxi islands. In 1571 the Turkish fleet attacked, killed as many as could and burned the islands.

In 1797 Paxi were delivered after 411 years of Venetian domination to the French democrats whose authority remained on the islands until 1799 when the Russians and the Ottomans conquered Corfu. In 1801 the autonomous state of the seven united islands was established under the sovereignty of the Sultan and the Russian protection. The State lasted only for 6 years, till 1807 when the islands were granted to Napoleon with the Treaty of Tilsit. In 1814 English troops conquered Paxos and established the Ionian Union in 1815.

During the Greek Revolt of 1821 the locals supported the revolution by providing men and arms. In 1864, along with the rest of the Ionian islands, Paxos was united with the Greek state and from there on they bound their future together (Balkan Wars, First and Second World War, Civil War).

Paxi Mythology

According to the Ancient Greek Mythology Paxi island was detached from Corfu when God Poseidon hit the later with his trident (also the emblem of Paxi) in order to create a private place for him and his mistress Nereid Amphitrite.


The capital and main port of the island is the settlement of Gaios. Between Gaios and the islet of Agios Nikolaos, which protects the port just like the islet of Panagia, a natural canal with calm waters is formed giving the impression of being in a lake or fiord. Gaios took its name from the homonymous Apostle who, along with Apostle Crispos, visited the island in the 1st century A.D. Gaios is an interesting and picturesque settlement whose buildings and structures reflect the beautiful and harmonic influences of the Venetian architecture. It is worth visiting the English Governor building, the Museum of Paxi and the Church of the Ascension.


On the northern part of Paxi the settlement and natural port of Lakka is found. People from Souli who were chased by the Turks of Ali Pasha settled there and formed this settlement. At Lakka the highlight is a unique lighthouse made of stone in 1832 with a height of 36 metres, standing almost 108 metres from sea level. The place is popular as it has to offer a lot of facilities like taverns, shops, bars and accommodation options.


Longos is a small picturesque fishing village and harbour, located on the north-eastern coast of the island at about 7km north from Gaios. It is a wonderful preserved traditional and tranquil settlement surrounded by beautiful natural scenery. You will also find there some taverns and bars, mini markets and rooms to let.

Western coast

The western coast of the island of Paxi is extremely steep with vertical rocks ascending many metres above sea level and creating cliffs, sea caves and stony arcs. Except for the astonishing cliffs and caves on the western part a lot of beaches are found most of which are absolutely secluded due to the island's geomorphology and, thus, they are best accessed by boat.


Despite the climate which brings remarkable rainfalls, the geomorphology of the ground does not favour the reserve of water, so the locals carved a lot of cisterns in the rocks to hold the precious resource and supply the wells they built themselves. The most important cisterns are encountered above the church of Agia Eleousa, at Boikatika village and the biggest of all is found at the path after Fanariotika village.

Sanative springs (spa)

Since the ancient years sanative sulphur springs have been gushing from the ground of Paxi and pouring into the sea. In Ozias, Giannas and Glyfada the most important springs are found and, as such, pools have been constructed there in order to provide treatments of skin and rheumatic diseases.


The island has a few inhabitants but it is very famous for its two magnificent and of unique beauty beaches called "Voutoumi" and "Vrika". Although small the island has lush vegetation and many vineyards that produce a delicious dark red wine. On it is also found the church of Saint Emilianos and an English water reservoir which dates from 1833.

Historic Folklore Museum of Paxi

The Museum was founded in 1996 by the Cultural Club of the island and is housed in a neoclassical building constructed in 1906 in Gaios. Its exhibition includes findings from the Prehistoric Period, the Classical Period until the Second World War. Also among its valuable exhibits are the Decree of the Ionian Parliament for the union with the Greek State in 1864 and the book of the Austrian Archduke Lewis Salvator where he describes in detail Paxi islands during his visit in 1884-1885. The visitor can also admire a distinctively reconstructed room which represents a house of the early 20th century.

Eat & Drink
TYPE: Restaurant,   STYLE: Mediterranean & International Cuisine
Location: Mpogdanatika

TYPE: Bar - Restaurant,   STYLE: International
Location: Magazia

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Longos

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Longos

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Lakka

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Lakka

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Gaios

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Mediterranean & International Cuisine
Location: Gaios

TYPE: Beach Bar,   STYLE: International
Location: Lakka

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Lakka

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Mpogdanatika

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Longos

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Traditional Greek Cuisine
Location: Antipaxos Island

TYPE: Taverna,   STYLE: Fresh Fish & Seafood
Location: Antipaxos Island

TYPE: Club,   STYLE: International
Location: Gaios

TYPE: Bar,   STYLE: Cocktails Bar
Location: Longos

TYPE: Café & Bar,   STYLE: International
Location: Longos

TYPE: Café & Bar,   STYLE: International
Location: Gaios

TYPE: Bar,   STYLE: Mainstream
Location: Longos

Practical info
General Info

Paxi and Antipaxi are located in the Ionian Sea south from the island of Corfu. Paxi Island is covered with olive groves while Antipaxi with vineyards. Olive oil production, soap manufacture and fishing had been the main pillar of the local economy until the mid sixties. Today the island's economy is supported mainly by tourism and fishing. The climate is temperate Mediterranean with rains during winter and cool summers.

The national prefix for Greece is +30 if you are calling from abroad. All numbers in the capital Athens start with the prefix 210 and are followed by 7 digits (e.g. 210-3227400).
The Area Code for Paxi is: +30 26620.
If you wish to call abroad, you have to start by dialing the other country's national prefix (i.e. 0049 for Germany, 0044 for England etc.) and continue with the area code and the number where you wish to call.

Euro €
Euro Coins: 1 and 2 euro coins (gold and silver color), 10, 20 and 50 cents (gold color) 1, 2 and 5 cents (copper color)
1 euro = 100 cents / centimes.
Euro Bank Notes: Are available in 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500. It is not always easy to receive change for 200 and 500 Euro Notes.

Getting There

There are ferry boats and hydrofoils operating routes from the port of Igoumenitsa on the mainland and from Corfu to Paxi.
From the port of Igoumenitsa the trip to Paxi lasts about 1,5 hour.
From Corfu's new port the Ferry reaches Paxi via Igoumenitsa and the trip lasts approximately 3 hours and 15 minutes.

Ferry Boats
Ferry Boat from Igoumenitsa to Paxi: +30 2665 24090
Ferry Boat from Corfu to Paxi: +30 26613 65200

From Corfu to Paxi the trip lasts about 1 hour:
Paxos Flying Dolphin: +30 266220 32269, 32441
Petrakis Lines: +30 26610 31649, 38690
Paxis Island S.A: +30 266220 32401, 32245

There is also a sea taxi service, "The Paxos Express" operating routes from Parga, Igoumenitsa and Corfu (Corfu Town, Cavos, Lefkimi).
For more information please visit: www.paxosseataxi.com.

From Italy there are routes operating from the ports of Brindisi, Ancona and Bari to Corfu and Igoumenitsa.
For accurate timetables and ticket costs visit:

Paxi Port Authority Tel: +30 26620 32259
Igoumenitsa Port Authority Tel.: +30 26650 99460, 99400
Corfu Port Authority Tel.: +30 26613 65200

From Athens you can take the long distance bus (KTEL) to Igoumenitsa and from there the ferry boat to Paxi.
You can always use your private vehicle to reach Igoumenitsa instead of the KTEL Bus service.

KTEL Athens to Igoumenitsa Tel.: +30 210 5125954
KTEL Athens to Paxi via Igoumenitsa Tel.:+30 26620 32245
For accurate timetables and ticket costs visit: http://www.ktel.org/

There is no airport on the island of Paxi but you could reach Corfu by plane and from there take the ferry boat to Paxi.

For more information on flights, please visit:
Athens International Airport Eleftherios Venizelos: www.aia.gr

Olympic Airways
For accurate timetables and ticket costs visit Olympic Air website www.olympicair.com.
Athens Office Tel.: +30 210 355 0500, 8018010101

Local Transportation

You may bring your vehicle along with you on the island with the ferry boat or you could rent one on the island. There is also the option of taking a taxi.

Taxi service Tel:

If you wish to visit the inaccessible parts of the island, sea taxis leave every day from the port of Gaios to daily excursions around the island and to Antipaxi island as well.

Sea Taxi
LAKKA EXPRESS: +30 26620 31789, 6977623033

The island of Paxi boasts a good network of bus services so that visitors can explore the beauties of the island without having to bring or rent a private vehicle.

Bus Service Tel: +30 22620 32245

The distances on the island are not too long, so you can rent a car or a motorbike and discover the scenic landscapes of Paxi island. The road network is not well maintained and it can be tricky, so attention is always required.

Local Services

There are a few bank branches and ATMs on Paxi island located in Gaios (the port of the island).

Banks exchange all major currencies, traveler's cheques or Eurocheques. Post offices exchange cash, but not traveler's cheques, and usually charge lower commissions than banks. Travel agencies and larger hotels exchange cash and traveler's cheques but usually charge a higher commission. Credit cards are accepted in shops and restaurants, however, in local cafes, especially in villages you will probably have to pay in cash.

The Greek post office is called ELTA. Post Boxes in Greece are YELLOW for normal post, usually with 2 slots for INTERNAL POST (meaning inside Greece) and post for ABROAD. RED Post Boxes are rarer and they are used for URGENT mail. REGISTERED mail is always handled and given a receipt for at the POST OFFICE.

The Post Office branch on Paxi is located in Gaios.

Paxi Post Office Tel: +30 26620 32256

Paxi Police Station, Gaios, Tel.: +30 26620 32205

Useful Numbers

International Press can be found in Gaios.


The health centre of Paxi is found at about 1,5 km outside Gaios on the main road going northwards.

Paxi Health Centre Tel: +30 26620 31466

Pharmacies are found in Gaios and Lakka. Pharmacists are well-qualified to deal with the majority of minor medical complaints or to prepare prescriptions. For your convenience, find below an indicative list with pharmacies.

Trifonas Adreas Tel: +30 26620 32200, Gaios
Dimitradis Ilias Tel: +30 26620 33018, Lakka

Protected calm waters

Lakka settlement is located at the north coast of Paxi and it is a popular spot for yachts and small boats because its natural port is well protected from the winds. The beaches Harami and Kanoni are set on the west side of the cove of Lakka. They have both pebbled coasts, which turns into fine sand as you enter into the water. The sea bed is not steep, the waters are calm and there is abundant natural shade by trees. It is ideal for families as, apart from the calm waters, the place has everything at a hand's reach: rooms to let, taverns, shops, cafes and bars. 

Absolute tranquility, indisputable beauty

Mongonisi is a small islet located almost 4 km south from Gaios and is connected by a small bridge with the island of Paxi, so narrow that it is enough only for one car each time. As soon as you pass through this small bridge, you follow the road to the beach. The shore is not very large but sandy with calm cool waters deepening gently. Swimming in this cove surrounded by the beautiful green scenery is an exciting experience. On the beach is also found a small tavern for those who would like to combine swimming with lunch or light meal.

One of the most popular beaches on Paxos

Levrechio beach is located almost 7 km north from Gaios on the east coast of Paxi and very close to the picturesque Loggos village. The coast is covered by white pebbles and its deep crystal clear blue waters are suitable for snorkelling and diving. Although the place is surrounded by a natural green landscape, there is no particular natural shade on the beach apart from some olive trees on its upper side. Levrechio offers great beach life and is ideal for families.

Definitely a hidden gem

The beach is set on the east coast north from Gaios and is not easily accessed for it is found after a few minutes' walk from Levrechio beach passing through the olive groves. An alternative way to reach Marmari would be taking the road from Gaios to the north (Loggos) and follow the road to the coast line. One of the two coves found after Levrechio to the south is Kipos and Levrechio. The coast is pebbled and the sea bed is not steep, though it gets deep. It is not crowded but quite tranquil and quiet and also surrounded by olive trees offering natural shade.

Easy access & total relaxation
Location:Kaki Langada

This one is a small, sheltered pebbly beach located just a few km north from Gaios on the east coast. It is not crowded although set just below the main road with easy access and a parking space at the background. So if you are looking for something quiet and relaxing, then choose Kaki Langada to swim in clear cool waters and enjoy your day on the beach. Kaki Langada also offers abundant natural shade and a canteen operating on the beach during high season where you can buy snacks, water and refreshments.

What else to ask for?

This famous and thus quite crowded beach is located on the east coast of the island about 8 km north from Gaios. The shore is large and pebbled with deep cool clear waters. The place is well organized with water sports, umbrellas and sunbeds and even a bar and two taverns. You will also find nearby various smaller coves in case you need to escape to a more private beach to continue your day.

Glowing emerald transparency
Location:Antipaxos Island

Vrika is a famous and magnificent beach set on the north coast of Antipaxi which is just 10-15 minutes away from Gaios by boat. The beach is sandy with shallow crystal clear waters that glow in  a marvellous emerald green colour you won’t believe your eyes! On the beach are also found two nice taverns if you like to extend your daily excursion and enjoy a meal there too.

The well protected bay
Location:Antipaxos Island

Voutoumi beach is also one of the beaches found on Antipaxos and it offers a fine pebbled coast surrounded by large cliffs that seem to embrace it gently. Voutoumi is one of the favourite spots for visitors from the surrounding island and especially Corfu, or even Italians who come here to enjoy the fantastic turquoise waters. The beach is also ideal for families due to its shallow waters and it is suggested for snorkelling due to the interesting seabed. Voutoumi is often visited by yachts, small boats and sailing boats that shelter in its picturesque protected cove. A tavern nearby is the only thing that is found in the area.

The definition of untouched!
Location:Antipaxos Island

Mesovrika is found on the island of Antipaxi, between the most popular Voutoumi and Vrika beaches. Its coast is pebbled and large rocks are scattered to some parts. Mesovrika is also among the favourite destinations for yachts and sailing boats while the views it provides to Paxos are just incomparable. There are no facilities or amenities on the beach apart from the small taverns at Vrika and Voutoumi.

The hotspot for sailing and yachts!

Kipiadi beach is located on the east coast of Paxi about 7 km north from Gaios and after Kontogiannatika village to the east. It is engulfed in a beautiful cove with lush vegetation of olive, cypress and pine trees. The shore is pebbled and the waters have a beautiful clear turquoise colour. To reach it you have to walk a little from the dirt road above it where you can park your vehicle. There is no natural shade or beach amenities, so you better be prepared with an umbrella and water supplies if you want to enjoy the place for long for it is a semi secluded spot. It is also suggested to reach Kipiadi with a boat and not by car so as to enjoy the magnificent surrounding coves and have a panoramic view of the area.

A unique hideaway for privacy

Pounda beach is located at the eastern coast of Paxos, a little southern from Longos village. Access to the beach is possible through a small path taking you off the main road. Pounda is a very charming beach, completely unorganized, so visitors should bring with them all necessary supplies. The place is mostly ideal for couples and small groups of friends as the waters are not suggested for young children.

Right next to the epicentre of Paxos

Just 500m south from Gaios on the road to Mongonisi you will encounter Plakes beach. Plakes is a pebbled beach with clear waters while its coast is not very wide and there is no natural shade. Plakes beach took its name from the stony plates set on its one side, right next to the sea. The beach is preferred mostly by those who settle nearby and want a shore right at their feet. In the surrounding area a variety of taverns and accommodation options are found. If you follow the coastal road to the south, you will meet another small and charming beach, Spiatza beach.

A green paradise right opposite Gaios
Location:Agios Nikolaos

Agios Nikolaos is the small islet found across Gaios and it is covered with thick vegetation. The islet's landmarks are the old Venetian Castle and the windmill, from which the views are mesmerising. The beach on Agios Nikolaos is a secluded haven, ideal for nature lovers and absolute tranquillity. In order to get there, you can take a small boat or a water taxi from Gaios. Just mind to take supplies with you as the islet does not offer any amenities.

The perfect place for the entire family

Longos beach is the coast of the homonymous village, on the north eastern part of Paxi. The beach is quite small, though convenient as it is ideal for both children and elders and is easily accessed. Longos is not an organized beach but you will find many taverns and other amenities in a hand's reach. Longos is also suggested for fishing and snorkelling activities.


Local Specialties & Recipes
Scorpion fish "Bourdeto"

Onions are sautéed with olive oil in a big pot along with paprika and pepper. Tomato paste, garlic and water are added. After the sauce is ready the cleaned fish is put in the pot. Salt, pepper and water are added and the whole mixture is cooked for about 15 minutes. A very tasty and "spicy" dish with fish.


The fish is cleaned and salted and then floured and fried with olive oil in a pan. As soon as it is ready, it is removed and vinegar, sugar, sliced garlic, grounded rosemary, black raisins and water is added in its oil. The mixture is boiled until it thickens. The sauce is poured over the fish and the dish is served in a clay vase. Weird and tasty although not so healthy!


The lamp's liver is cut to pieces and sprinkled with salt and peppe in order to be sautéed with onion in olive oil. White wine, sweet red wine and water are added to boil with the mixture. In a separate casserole the rice is prepared. When the liver is ready the rice is added along with grounded graviera cheese, parsley and eggs.
Thin sheets of dough are spread to cover the bottom of the pan and are coated with butter. The mixture is then added and covered again with sheets of dough. The pie is cut to proportions and baked in the oven.

Local Products
Olive Oil

The olive oil of Paxi is of high quality but nowadays the production is limited. It was also used by the local soap and shampoo manufacturing company for products based on olive oil.


From the vineyards of Antipaxi a fine quality delicious red-black wine is produced that you must absolutely taste when you visit the islands of Paxi & Antipaxi.

Summer Festivals

Every year in June the Spring Festival is organized by The Paxos Festival Trust and the Cultural Association of Paxos emphasizing on contemporary music.
In September each year the International Festival takes places with a more classical repertoire and the participation of local and foreign musicians.

Religious feasts

Usually the religious feasts, after the morning church services, are followed by traditional music, dancing, food and drink, offered at an open feast.  On the 29th of June Agios Gaios is celebrated in the presence of the Bishop and the Corfu Philharmonic. There is a ferry boat operating routes from and to Corfu especially for the day.

Free bread, olives, onions, boiled potatoes and wine are offered with the escort of an orchestra playing traditional music in the open feast of "Neroladia" held in the middle of July.

Every July a distinctive celebration called "Varkarola" is held. Small boats cross the canal between Gaios and Agios Nikolaos and the choirs placed in them sing traditional songs called "cantades" while fireworks illuminate and colour the night sky.

On the 18th of July the festival of Agios Emilianos is held on the island of Antipaxi.

Prophet Elias is celebrated in Lakka on the 20th of July.

Just like in every corner of Greece, the celebration of Panagia (Virgin Mary) is held on the 15th of August on the homonymous islet right opposite the port of Gaios with a church service and an open feast with beef broth and wine follows.

Cycladia Tips
Useful Tips for a Pleasant Stay

Try to avoid the direct exposure under the sun for extended periods of time, especially from 11.00 to 16.00. You should often use a high factor sun cream or oil to get the maximum protection and get a nice sun tan.

You should be very careful when you drive a motorbike because the roads can be tricky (narrow and winding)while they are generally not well maintained or sufficiently illuminated.

Amazing Daily Excursions

You must definitely take a daily sea excursion to Antipaxi and swim in the unique, exotic, transparent emerald blue waters of Vrika and Voutoumi beaches. Sea taxis also operate the round of Paxi and you will have the opportunity to visit and swim into absolutely secluded and magnificent water caves not accessed by road.

Best Sunset on Paxi

Do not miss the opportunity to watch the astonishing view and the sunset on Erimitis. This is a breathtaking spot located in the middle of the west coast of the island, set on the top of vertical high rocks over the Ionian Sea.

Snorkelling & Diving lovers

If you are a diver or you enjoy underwater activities, Paxi and Antipaxi have a beautiful seabed worth exploring. Dive into the exotic waters of the islands and take an underwater journey you will always remember!

Shops & Galleries

no results