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Naxos / St. George Hotel Recommendation - Outdoor Pool & Convenient to Beach

Our group of 6 are planning a DIY tour of Naxos for September 2018 ( specifically 9/5-9/17). Plan to use Naxos as our home base for day tripping to a few other Cyclades Islands during our stay.
Please share any hotel recommendations you may have for Naxos. We are especially interested in the St. George area due to it's close proximity to town and beaches. Prefer an outdoor pool and beaches within walking distance. Regarding the budget.....we are hoping to stay in the 100 euros range per night if possible.
Feel free to share any restaurant recommendations for the area as well plus Cyclades day trip ideas.
Thank you in advance for your feedback.
Live to travel!
Tess

Posted by
2893 posts

I am not clear ... are you saying you want accommodations with pool & beach for €100 TOTAL... for 6 people??? If that is the case you are in the wrong continent! You need to be in S. E. Asia for that kind of price. Please come back and clarify!

Posted by
61 posts

Janet...my apologies for the confusion. We are looking for 3 separate rooms for our group of six. My husband and I have traveled in Italy, Ireland and Spain with the same set of friends. Hoping now to explore this part of the world. Please share your feedback.
Regards,
Tess

Posted by
2893 posts

So you do mean €100 per ROOM, with a pool? That's do-able. Will think on it, & get back to you.

Yes, St. George is the place to stay, particularly in september. It's an ideal time ... the crowds have left, but Naxos has a large permanent population so it doesn't have a "closing-down" feeling... Naxos town will be buzzing, lots of locals out dining, socializing. And you've picked a great week -- the mountain villages are having some wine harvest festivals in Early September ... there's a "local produce" shop right on the town seafront row, where the young staff can fill you in on that. But more later ... No rush!

BTW, Naxos is one of the very few islands that does have "day trip" possibilities, because there's a company that runs dedicated excursion vessels. There's a day trip to Santorini, one to Delos/Mykonos, and one to Antiparos. Paros island itself can be done on a regular ferry schedule (arrive about 11:30am, last boat back to Naxos about ?9:30pm?).

IF you wanted different islands, you'd have to move physically to another island for a short stay -- that's why they call it "island HOPPING" not "island home-basing." A lot of people come to Greece wedded to the home-base idea, from having stayed in Tuscany and Umbria. In such places, you can rent a villa, and every day drive off 20 miles in a different direction, & return in the evening. In Greek isles, no can do! If you drove off 20 miles in most directions -- you'd drown! And Naxos is one of the few that has other islands close-enough to make it do-able & worthwhile for an excursion company. (All too many people book themselves for a long stay in Santorini, thinking they can day-trip... but it's really way out there by itself.)

Posted by
61 posts

Janet,
Thank you so much for the feedback and look forward to hearing your thoughts on hotel options.
We would love to stay true to our target of 100 euros per night per room. In our perfect "Naxos World", the hotel would have an outdoor pool for lounging in the sun plus be within walking distance to a nice beach and the town of Naxos. Alas this maybe to much to expect in our price range but I know the forum is a great resource for recommendations.
While searching a few booking sites, I have ran into the issue of our travel dates (9/5 - 9/17) being to far out in the future. Would you recommend I contact hotels directly for availability? I fear this is still a very popular time for travel and many hotels may already be booked.
So excited to read your confirmation on Naxos for day trips. Please share details regarding the company that runs the excursions if possible.
For our trip, we plan to fly into Athens then immediately make our way to Naxos. A few days to explore Athens will be added at the end of our Naxos stay. For the legs of the trip between Athens and Naxos, would you recommend a domestic flight or high speed ferry? The cost of the ferry appears to be slightly lower plus more schedule options. Of course the length of time difference will need to be taken into consideration but would love to hear your thoughts on the matter.
Thank you again in advance for any and all feedback you can provide.
Any information you can share would be greatly appreciated.
Tess

Posted by
1015 posts

You are way too early to be looking for booking engines for Sept 2018. Wait until November and then start your search. Even that might be too early so if the booking engine says no rooms available thats probably because its still too early. Nevertheless this is a good way to ascertain hotels that might work for you. You can narrow down your search by location, images and reviews. Anything 8 or above is going to be quite good.

How firm are you on the pool. St George beach is lined with hotels in every price range but few of them have pools. Those that do are going to be way above your price range.
Lovely small studios with sea view however can be had without a pool for half of your budget.
The only hotel that I know of that meets your criteria is Hotel Spiros. Its back a couple hundred meters from the beach but upper units have sea view. Its really only a two minute walk to the beach. It has a good reputation.

Other hotels with pools, right next door to Spiros Hotel Galaxy. A bit closer to the beach Naxos Resort Beach hotel and then Nissaki. These are all way over your price range. I believe there are a few smaller hotels with a pool but I have never visited them so can't help.

I guess this begs the question why would you want to lounge at a pool when you have St George beach which is beautiful. You can rent a sun lounger inexpensively for the day. My wife has a wonky back so we no longer rent loungers we just go to one of the beachfront bars and buy a drink. You get shade, beautiful views comfortable chairs and as long as you are buying a drink occasionally you are welcome to stay for hours.
St George Beach Hotels Naxos http://www.flickr.com/photos/stanbr54/sets/72157632162394787/
St George Beach Naxos http://www.flickr.com/photos/stanbr54/sets/72157632113170279/

In September I certainly agree with your decision to be near Naxos town as this is the most interesting part of Naxos with the nmost to do. Its where the excursion boats depart, the ferries arrive and the bus transportation commences. Be sure to take a trip in the mountains to visit some of the villages. Chalki and Aparanthos are our favourites.
Naxos Mountains and Villages http://www.flickr.com/photos/stanbr54/sets/72157632110674306/

You can use regular ferries to do a day trip to Paros. There are two excursion boats that do Delos and Mykonos in a day, Santoirni in a day and the small Cyclades islands. Every travel agency in town will have a poster advertising these excursions. Its best to wait until you arrive before booking so you can gauge the weather forecast for any particular day.
Day trip Delos and Mykonos http://www.flickr.com/photos/stanbr54/sets/72157637922138466/

However if your absolute needs are beach, pool and less than 100 euros you may have to look out at Plaka, Anna or Prokopious beaches about 7 km from Naxos town.

we just booked Three brothers with sea view on Plaka beach for late September for 45 euros. No pool but you can walk 100 meters down the road to Aegean Palace pool day use facility and use it for no charge as it is owned by the same people as Three brothers.
Plaka beach tavernas hotels https://www.flickr.com/photos/stanbr54/sets/72157655106193251

Naxos Town http://www.flickr.com/photos/stanbr54/sets/72157632094558042/
Trip around Naxos http://www.flickr.com/photos/stanbr54/sets/72157634605629689/

Posted by
2893 posts

Hi Again, Tess!

With Rick's space restriction , will limit this to hotel advice...
You are right -- FAR too early to book 14 Months ahead! -- Sept 2018. Right ow family-owned hotels (small office staff) are busy-busy with the High Season Flood of July-Aug. September is the "cool-down" phase, to tidy things & tend to their own lives (children into school, Athens MD appts). Also, they don't yet know what rates they'll need to set for 2018. My guess is that October they'll be ready to handle your booking request.

With this gift of time, use it wisely. Don't go thru booking.com etc -- contact hotels directly. They'll be pleased -- this saves them the 5% agency charge. Also, direct contact lets you foster a bond with them. Newcomers don't yet understand that, for Greek family-run places, this is not just business, it's personal. They interact on a human & genuine level with those who write showing a love of Greece and appreciation for their special isle or area.

This approach that has worked splendidly for me: On hotel websites, do NOT use a fill-out form... instead, use the e-mail. Write a fairly formal letter (Greeks value manners) Starting "Dear (name if possible)", Owner/Manager, Hotel XX. Begin by expressing enthusiasm for visiting their beautiful island, what praise you've heard about their place. Then ask if they may have room for 3 couples who are excited about a wonderful stay with them, as the highlight of your First trip to Naxos & Greece. Say you realize t it's too early to confirm bookings for September 2018, but by writing early, you hope we'll be first in line for 3 of your wonderful rooms (ideally with sea-view balconies or patios). Say you trust they'll get back to you right after busy season with info on 2018 rates and room-list Say that upon learning re rooms/rates you'll immediately confirm, providing credit-card information to secure reservations ("although you plan to pay in cash during your stay"-- they LOVE that). Close by wishing them a happy August 15th holiday** [Aug 15 is 2nd biggest Greek holiday of entire year, after Easter]and you look forward to their reply. . When I've written such letters "cold" (usually January, for a May trip), I've ALWAYS received warm & friendly responses ... and SO often it's led to terrific stays, and repeated visits to small hotels, & lasting friendships. My Naxos landlady meets me at ferry w. hugs & kisses, we share family photos, snacks & laughs galore.

Early September is still mainly considered High season, so rates are higher than May-June, but on Naxos, way less than Santorini or Mykonos!!! As for St. George hotels with pools ... it's hard to get one right beach, for historic reasons. When Naxos first began developing tourism, it was for the budget traveler, so most property directly on the sand has small 3-story family-run places with 10 -30 rooms, sea views, few with pools. Thus, when an upscale market developed, not much room for pool hotels... OF more than 100 hotels probably 20 w. pools total, many far from sands.

Overview: UPSCALE Hotel Nissaki, town end of beach, pool area not that attractive ... Far end: Naxos Resort Beach Hotel, back 100 yards, well Landscaped pool area MODERATE - beach Midpoint, back about 150 yards, Hotel Spiro, lovely large pool area, u need to specify to get sea-view rooms. A half-dozen others 100-150 yards off beach. These Hotel lists show which ones have pools, but vague about how close to beach: http://www.thegreektravel.com/naxos/hotels.html & http://www.naxos-island-greece.com/naxos-hotels/naxos-hotels.html Google for hotels' own websites -- if they are vague about location, may be way back. One way to check: on booking.com put "Agios Giorgios Beach Naxos" dummy booking 1 room Sept 25-29 or so, Just to access Google Map... Then click on balloons nearest beac to see if your hotel is one of them.

Posted by
974 posts

Agree that you are way to early to be booking for 2018. Most people are still thinking about booking for 2017!

St. George Beach is probably your best bet for accommodations and Sept. will be off-season and you'll get very good rates for accommodations. Check out Studios Naxos and deal directly with them rather than a third-party booking.

Janet is right about talking directly with accommodation's owners via emails. Just tell them what you are looking for, budget and they can come up with a nice offer rather than thinking you are getting a great deal with booking.com, trip-advisor other third-party sites. You can use those sites to search for accommodations and when you find something that fits your needs see if there is a web site for that particular accommodation. For the most part they'll have their own website with lots more info, better customer service and more than likely a better offer!

While Studios Naxos doesn't offer a pool it's within a few meters/feet of the beach and offers excellent views of the beach, bay and distant coastline of the island.

Lots of options for tavernas. Too numerous to mention but one of my favorites is the Good Heart right on the waterfront. The owner speaks very good English, in fact spent time in Canada but decided it was too cold and dreary to stay and returned to Naxos.

You can ask the owner to see "what's good today" and have the opportunity to see the food being prepared and mix-and-match a order rather than a straight "tourist-oriented" menu. There'll have pans filled with food ranging from meats, seafood, potatoes, rice, vegetables and lots of other options for a "do-it-yourself" dish.

If you'd rather not walk to far there is a nice town square behind St. George Beach area with lots of small and locally-owned shops, markets and tavernas nearby.

Lots of other options for shopping, markets and tavernas in and outside the Old Town area.

Do you really need a pool!? St. George Beach is lovely and with it's white sand beach and off season of September you'll pretty much have it to yourself.

Don't over-spend on an accommodations anywhere in Greece, especially off-season. You can save lots of $$ and Euros by researching and use the extra money for more important things in Greece . . . like Greek Food!

Posted by
11450 posts

Loved janets advise and comment re greek family run hotels. We were so welcomed by our "hotel family " after reserving via emails.. ( several as we asked a few questions etc ) . They made our stay.. and we all got amazing rooms. ( even our adult kids who could only afford the cheapest room got the best cheapest room.. balcony and sea view for 45 euros) . We booked the most expensive room, but it was big enough for three of us.. had a roof top patio that was HUGE .. and the views to die for.. . Lady of hotel packed us home baked goods for our daytrip out of town, they drove us to port , they were amazing.

Posted by
31511 posts

I stayed at Hotel Grotta in Naxos, and quite enjoyed my stay there. Based on my experience, I'd certainly recommend it. It's in a great location, the staff are wonderful and they serve a nice breakfast. There's a small indoor pool but I can't remember if they also had an outdoor pool.

In order to find a hotel in the desired location and price range, I'd recommend contacting one of the Greek travel agencies listed on Matt Barrett's Greek Travel website. I found them to be very helpful and they can also set up Ferry tickets, transfers, excursions, etc.

Posted by
61 posts

If you're willing to stay outside of, but near to, Chora, I suggest that you look at the Plaza Beach Hotel (where I'm sitting at the poolside bar at this very moment). It's 10 to 15 minutes from the port in Chora by a 15-euro taxi ride, or 25 to 35 minutes by the two--euro, very comfortable, public bus. It's one of the few Naxian hotels that's on a beach and has ocean-view rooms and a pool (I'll bet that this one is the biggest on the island). In addition, while much of the northern Plaka is wall-to-wall apartments, hotels, and tavernas, the Plaza Beach has more breathing room. It certainly will be more expensive than most accommodations, but it's still quite reasonable – especially compared to, Santorini or Crete (we're going to both of them in a week or so).
Btw, Janet is a great source for all things Naxian. She and several other posters on this forum got my wife and me to consider Naxos as an alternative to Santorini for a multi-week stay, and I am so glad that we did. We have little experience on other Greek Islands, but this one seems a wonderful combination of neolithic, ancient, Byzantine, Venetian, modern Greek, and other history; stunning views; great local food; friendly people; and just the right combination of plenty of things to do and plenty of opportunities to do nothing.

Posted by
2893 posts

Thanks Jonathan for the great tribute, but I can't take all the credit!! It's true I'm a dedicated Naxophile (13 visits in 12 trips!), but I'm bested by a great friend, "stanbr" -- in fact, first met him & his wife online on another forum about Naxos, then in person on Naxos 11 years ago, and have had reunions there ever since. He's the one with the FAB photos ... so much better than any of mine that I shamelessly use links to his Naxos albums. He's also always discovering "hidden gems" like a hillside ruin of a 15th C. monastery -- and forever finding new restaurants as well.

My own experience on things Naxian that can help is in 2 opposite areas: (1) what it's like for a woman traveling solo, and (2) for a diverse group of 4 - 6. I've been there on my own, and also when shepherding a small flock of newbies. Great for both ... first, because Naxos doesn't have much package tourism, but instead almost all independent travelers, you're likelier to strike up acquaintances with congenial folks with no set agenda. And if you are in a small group, the island offers so many attractions for different interests, you can all split up for a day, do vastly different things, and meet up for dinner. I remember one memorable day when one friend and I spent hours sitting in a hillside olive grove, gazing up at Mt. Zas and filling our sketchbooks ... a couple rented a motorcycle and zoomed all round the island... and a 5th person took a long bus ride and found a nudist beach (she called it being a "naturist" hmmm).

Posted by
61 posts

To all who have provided feedback...thanks so much. Plus a special shout-out to Janet and Stanbr !
Reviewing the options, our group of 6 have decided to up the nightly hotel budget in order that we may consider hotels in the range of Hotel Nissaki and Hotel Galaxy. After all, it will be our first trip to Naxos so we might as well go all out.....LOL. Per Janet's wonderful suggestion, I have already reached out to several hotels regarding when September rates will be available. I am sure we will be able to find a fabulous location.
Would love restaurant and outing recommendations for Naxos.
Really looking forward to our Fall 2018 trip to Greece but for now also researching a Spring trip to the south of France and Italy.
The best part of retirement is travel and playing with the Grandkids !
Regards, Tess

Posted by
2893 posts

Well, it's your budget so, as the Brits say -- push the Boat out!! Of the 2 you mentioned, I find Hotel Galaxy a far walk back from town, also back from the beach a ways AND it faces on the busy road and (this is just me) seems a lot of concrete paving all over the place. Nissaki is closest hotel to town ... although the little strip of beach in front of it is not really good for getting in the water, you need to walk down the beach about 50 yards. If u are a pool person, My choice would be Naxos Resort Beach hotel... back from the beach but owns the property all the way to the sand & its pool surrounded by nice landscaping.