Largest of the Cyclades islands, Naxos is also the greenest and most fertile, the island producing wonderful buttery potatoes, a local liqueur known as kitron, made from the leaves and stems of a fruit that looks like a very large, pale lemon, olives, grapes, oranges, lemons, vegetables, wine, and cheeses made from sheep and goats' milk and meat.
Its main town and harbor (called Hora by locals) has a beautifully paved pedestrianized waterfront (behind its narrow frontage road), with a long line of canopied ouzeries, cafes, tavernas, grills, shops, a large bookstore and a smaller used bookstore with several languages represented on its shelves, liquor stores with local products, tourist offices, a bakery, banks, and the telephone office (OTE); the Old Market Town is farther back, with narrow lanes and arches beneath the long Venetian castle that sits atop the town.
To the south about fifteen minutes by bus or car, there are some seaside resorts, which have gotten rather built up, beyond which are more than ten kilometers of nearly continuous sandy beaches, some with dunes, flanked by a sandy track. There are a couple of beach campgrounds equipped with their own markets located close to tavernas; during the last ten years, quite a few rooms places have sprung up where there were none before. Inland from Hora a half hour is the beautiful Tragea Valley with its olive orchards, quiet village of Halki with its combination of Venetian and neoclassical architecture, and Filoti, the island's largest village, spread out on the slopes below Mt. Zas , the Cyclades' highest peak (1000meters).. A short drive up the mountain leads to the marble village of Apiranthos, rich in tradition of several kinds and architecturally beautiful. Interesting villages are scattered around the island, along with Byzantine churches and chapels, Venetian pyrgoi (fortified mansions or towers), and some lovely countryside, both rugged and not.
Hiking possibilities abound on Naxos. Though Naxos is known for its traditional music, commercialisation and excessive electrification set in some years ago. There's much to see and do on this island which feels much bigger than it looks on a map, which is still much less touristic than neighboring Paros.