At a glance
Call it the Tom Hanks effect. Until the Hollywood star bought a holiday home on Antiparos, this Cycladic isle lay serenely next to its buzzing big sister Paros, a secret hideaway for its few bohemian faithful. Archaeologists and historians visited for the ancient treasures of Despotiko, and day-trippers from Paros took advantage of the deserted beaches, but it was only when Hanks started visiting that Antiparos evolved from hippy to hippy-chic.
Like Mykonos, it now boasts a busy pedestrian way through the heart of town where everyone who is anyone can be found sipping cocktails at one of the hole-in-the-wall bars or shopping for beachwear at eclectic boutiques. And, like Mykonos, it gives visitors the chance to snap selfies with various celebrities – Tom and Rita could be dining at the next table, while Steven Spielberg’s yacht is likely moored just off-shore and Madonna is probably expected for (macrobiotic) lunch.
But that’s where the similarities with Mykonos end, as despite its new-found fame, much of Antiparos remains blissfully unspoilt and ripe for exploration, from its sandy bays and awe-inspiring caves, to its peaceful olive groves in which nestle not the ranks of maisonettes seen on neighbouring Paros, but rare architect-designed homes peeking modestly (and expensively) from their landscaped Mediterranean grounds.