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Picturesque Parga

Posted by Danielle Harvey on 12 March 2024

Parga village in sandy cove in hillside Perched overlooking the warm Ionian sea in the Epirus region, Parga is reached by flying direct to Aktion Airport, followed by a one-hour transfer by car. From the moment I arrived in this quaint seaside town, I was greeted with a glorious backdrop of rustic-coloured buildings and unbeatable sea views with local tavernas and boutiques dotted along a myriad of winding cobbled streets.

Set on the sandy verge of Valtos Beach with an interrupted view of the Venetian Castle of Parga and far-flung views stretching across to the island of Paxos is the charming five-star Parga Beach Resort, perfect for honeymooners wanting to get away from it all.

I was excited to stay at this luxurious yet relaxed retreat, open from late April until the end of October, that's home to 158 contemporary bedrooms and 60 spacious suites decorated in earthy tones. The hotel's best offerings for honeymooners are the 23 secluded new Garden Suites of which the Aura Suite with private pool became my weekend hideout. It featured a comfy super-king-size bed and doors opening on to a patio with a plunge pool – I couldn't wait to jump in! Additional highlights include sun-soaked terraces with private balconies and launching in June are 43 new Eden and Aura suites filled with furnishings hand-crafted by local artisans. These popular additions to the resort make this honeymoon destination the perfect pick for a family-moon, with children welcome and an on-site nursery, plus the Phiome Kids Club that's opening this summer.

black metal chairs on a deck under a canopy al fresco with sea views FOOD, GLORIOUS FOOD
Two beachside restaurants command prime position on the sand with a third, KOKONA set to open this summer. At Thalassa, an open-plan, seaside-chic restaurant, the delicious buffet breakfast can be enjoyed by the water's edge. Authentic Greek dishes for lunch and dinner include marinated anchovies, grilled sardines, moussaka and feta-filled salad. Don't miss the regular Greek nights here where live music, singing and dancing accompany a tasty buffet boasting traditional flavours.

I was impressed by the fashionable setting and fine dining offering at the new Alselea restaurant where Mediterranean cuisine is married with impeccable service set against the romantic castle backdrop, which is illuminated at night. The mouth-watering dishes use only the freshest and finest local ingredients including produce grown in the flower-filled gardens woven around the resort that are bursting with pops of colour and delightful scents.

The fresh fish and impeccable wine pairing served at a private tasting session on the beach was a treat and showcased the skills of talented head chef Dimitris Kaplanis and the kitchen team (beach dinners are available on request). From June, the new opening of KOKONA will serve home-cooked comfort food baked in a wood-fired oven inspired by the local Epirus region. The Dine Around program will also be on the menu for half-board guests to enjoy the culinary offerings of any of the three a la carte restaurants as many times as they wish, with a fixed amount deducted per person from the bill.

poolside with sun loungers and sea views RELAX AND REJUVENATE
Sun worshippers can lounge on the beach or poolside with drinks, snacks and gelato available from the Ammos beach bar. The new Kitron Pool Bar that's set to open this summer will serve mocktails and cocktails by the new adults-only pool plus there'll be a designated quiet area on the beach, perfect for newlyweds.
Adventure lovers can enjoy the various land and sea activities, from fun jeep tours and electric bike hire to a sunrise kayaking tour and water skiing. Eager to explore the town on foot, I headed on a guided walking tour with Anna and Evrinomi (https://preveza.edu.gr) which is the best way to view the historic castle ruins.
Water babies can charter a private speedboat (or choose another vessel in the fleet) for a day of island hopping which was a highlight of my trip. I excitedly climbed aboard with Panos Boats & Trips (https://panosboatsandtrips.com) where my skipper whisked me off to explore neighbouring Paxos, ducking in and out of spectacular caves and diving off at secluded bays on the way.

person on bed getting a massage MEDITERRANEAN BEAUTY
Couples wanting a more laid-back honeymoon with a focus on wellness can enjoy an al fresco morning yoga class on the pavilion looking out to sea, or a dip in one of the four swimming pools. Spa treatments at the Blossom Wellness Centre are not to be missed, where I enjoyed a full body massage with the experienced therapist Harris Tzortzis - a couple's massage is also on the treatment menu. There's also a state-of-the-art gym, ping pong, a games room including table tennis and an open-air beach cinema every Tuesday where favourite movies, including the classic Greek Mamma Mia, are enjoyed with complimentary popcorn.

Rates start from 120 EUR on a B&B basis in a Premium Garden Room.

mini villa with pink walls white features own pool
bedroom of hotel neutral tones doors to outside
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