Time Stands Still – Parga, Greece

There is so much to love about Athens. Some of the most valued antiquities in the world, incredible food, and non-stop entertainment. Sometimes, we need a break, to slow down. Your immediate thought might be Santorini or Mykonos. But Greece has so much more to offer than just beaches and the Pantheon. Parga is an idyllic village that lazily lounges on a hill overseeing the Ionian Sea. Its 4000 residents are lorded over by the Castle of Parga. On a clear day you can see the island of Corfu. While away sipping cappuccinos and savoring wines on the sea side cafes. Days could slip by as you absorb the sounds and smells of this village.

Castle of Parga

View from Parga Castle

This village dates back to the 14th century. And for many years this hamlet was wrestled back and forth between the Venetians and the Ottoman Turks until their final independence in 1913. Today, the village still captures a timeless essence. I was visiting in October past the high-season, yet still a perfect sun drenched day.

A serendipitous encounter with octogenarian Petros at the Castle of Parga confirmed the intimate and relaxed vibe of Parga. Looking sharp in a grey blazer and neat cap, he shared with me his secrets to his long life. While being married for over 50 years, he insisted that “regular flirting” and nightly Ouzo kept him young. If you tire of discovering the 100 plus churches, you can take advantage of the many beaches. Azure oceans creep over fine white sands, while green forests highlight the surroundings. At the end of a busy day of exploring the village, it is time to bed down for the night. I can strongly recommend Salvator Villas and Spa Hotel. The hotel is owned and operated by the Zigouris brothers (all five of them!). They have over a 100 year history in the hospitality industry. This hotel perched high on a hill overlooking the sea truly provides a family/friend experience. I was treated to a spectacular 5 course meal. I retreated to my spacious and pastel green room to rest up for the next day of exploring Parga. Check them out.

View from the hotel My room

Article and pictures by Ric Gazarian www.globalgaz.com