Mykonos, also known as Hora, is a popular Greek isle that has been gaining attention in recent years. The island is known for its sophistication and glamour, with bright white buildings contrasting against deep blue waters and bougainvillea flowers blooming freely. Mykonos is a hub for incredible nightlife, alluring white sand beaches, and a vibrant, stay-up-all-night atmosphere.
Mykonos is a popular destination for Mediterranean cruises, with at least 2-3 cruise ships arriving daily at the New Port during peak season, which falls in July and August. Despite the influx of visitors, Mykonos retains its warmth and friendliness, offering excursions to the neighboring island of Delos from the Old Port. The island has something for everyone, from stunning beaches to picturesque stone-paved alleys, whitewashed houses, country chapels, and windmills.
The town of Chora is a must-visit, with its Cycladic architecture, luxury hotels and resorts, designer boutiques, art galleries, and famous restaurants and bars. Mykonos is not only about its cosmopolitan vibe, but also its rich history and culture, with Delos Island offering a large and remarkable archaeological site. Experience the magic and beauty of Mykonos, where you can find everything you need for an unforgettable vacation.
Little Venice, also known as Alefkantra, was given its name to pay homage to its Italian namesake and was established by wealthy Italian merchants during the 18th century. One of the most iconic experiences in Mykonos is watching the breathtaking sunset over the Aegean Sea from Little Venice. This charming seaside area is adorned with an array of fishing houses, each painted in a variety of vibrant colors. To reach this picturesque location, simply follow the road from Mykonos city center towards the famous windmills landmark.
Mykonos is known for its iconic Windmills that have become an integral part of the island’s landscape. These Windmills were erected in the 16th century by settlers as a means to mill wheat. Presently, overlooking the harbor, these Windmills serve as a warm welcome to visitors. Although there were several Windmills constructed in the past, only seven of these recognizable structures remain standing today.
Discover a treasure trove of knowledge about maritime equipment and nautical navigation at the Aegean Maritime Museum. Delve into the world of seafaring and learn about the fascinating tools and techniques used by sailors of old. Afterward, marvel at the Archaeological Museum, which houses a stunning collection of ancient pottery dating back to the 9th century BC, as well as intricate jewelry and other artifacts. Don’t miss the chance to admire the well-preserved marble sculptures of Greek gods like Hercules, which are sure to leave you in awe.
Ano Mera is a serene town located about a 20-minute drive inland from Mykonos Town. This charming town offers a quieter, more relaxed atmosphere compared to the bustling energy of Mykonos Town. To get a spectacular view of the village and the surrounding areas, venture up to the Gyzi Castle. Here, you’ll discover the remains of an ancient cemetery and a local market. To explore the historic religious sites of Ano Mera, take a trip to the Paleokastro Monastery or the Panagia Tourliani. Both are fascinating and well worth a visit.
Panagia Paraportiani is an exceptional religious and historical landmark situated on the shores of Mykonos. It has a one-of-a-kind design, created by the amalgamation of five small churches, which resulted in its asymmetrical shape. Its construction began in the 14th century and, despite its slightly lopsided appearance, it remains one of the most photographed sites globally.
Elia beach, located approximately seven miles from the city center, is a beloved destination and one of the longest beaches on the picturesque island of Mykonos. Whether you’re interested in windsurfing, water skiing, parasailing, or simply soaking up the warm Mediterranean sun, Elia has something to offer. This beach is known for its secluded and tranquil atmosphere, setting it apart from the more bustling and crowded beaches on Mykonos. Don’t forget to take a leisurely stroll uphill to catch a breathtaking view of the Aegean Sea from the bay.
Delos, a diminutive island, has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage site. According to Greek mythology, the god Apollo and goddess Artemis were born on this island. The ruins that were originally constructed on Delos have never been built upon by any town or village. You can visit this well-preserved island by taking a small boat from Mykonos, weather permitting. In addition, Delos boasts a small museum filled with Greek vases and sculptures, as well as a cozy cafe for your convenience
Psarou is a luxurious beach village that is famous for its serene and crystal-clear waters and immaculate white sands. Sunbathing is a popular activity enjoyed by visitors who can rent umbrellas to shade themselves from the sun. The beach is a popular spot for celebrities and high-end clients from all corners of the world, which speaks volumes about its glamour and prestige. Due to its popularity, it is highly recommended to make reservations for hotels in the area, especially during peak season.
If you’re looking for a thrilling adventure while on Mykonos island, consider exploring the underwater world through diving. With a variety of caves and wrecks to explore, there are plenty of opportunities for divers of all experience levels to witness breathtaking underwater views. You can find diving operators located on some of the island’s most popular beaches, including Paradise, Lia, and Kalafatis. Whether you’re a seasoned diver or looking to learn, Mykonos offers a unique and unforgettable diving experience.
Unlike other ports in the Mediterranean, the Old Port of Mykonos is less developed, which means that you can find more interesting things to do by taking the shuttle to the town of Mykonos. However, if you decide to stay at the Old Port, you can enjoy sipping coffee at one of the waterfront cafes, strolling along the harbor, and exploring the shops and restaurants at your leisure. Additionally, if you need to access the internet, many cafes and restaurants offer free WiFi.
Kiki’s Tavern is an exceptional restaurant that is highly recommended by many. It is a small beach shack that serves grilled eggplant and vegetables, well-executed and thoughtful meat dishes, and unpretentious outdoor seating with breathtaking views of the water. Due to its popularity, there’s usually a queue no matter what day of the week it is.
Niko’s Taverna is one of the oldest restaurants on Mykonos Island and is a famous spot among both locals and tourists. This restaurant offers a wide variety of Greek specialities, including classic moussaka, stuffed cabbage, and grilled meats and fish.
Spilia Seaside Restaurant:
Spilia Seaside Restaurant is a restaurant and bar that offers seating inside the cove of Agia Anna. The name Spilia means “cave” in Greek. This spot provides a romantic and unforgettable dining experience overlooking the Aegean Sea. Fresh seafood from the Aegean, including oysters, mussels, urchins, and lobsters, can be enjoyed right in front of you. They accept reservations for lunch and dinner.
Il Forno di Gerasimo is a top-rated bakery in Mykonos, known for its pastries, cakes, and coffees, spinach and feta pies, and even handmade pizzas. Although there isn’t much seating available, this bakery is definitely worth a visit. Pop in for a pastry and continue your walkabout in Mykonos.
Mykonos, a Greek island, derives its name from either “a mass of stones” or “a rocky place.” An ancient legend credits the name to a hero named Mykonos, the son of a king who descended from the Greek god Dionysus.
Due to limited agricultural resources, the island was not easy to inhabit around 1,000 BC. Later, the Romans and Byzantines took over, building fortifications to safeguard against Arab raids during the 7th century. After Constantinople fell in 1204, the Venetians occupied the island, marking the beginning of a long history of sieges and battles.
Despite this tumultuous past, Mykonos gradually emerged as a prominent trade center and port city. However, the island faced an economic depression after World War I, resulting in a significant decline in population as people migrated to the mainland or overseas for work. However, in the 1930s, wealthy visitors, including famous artists and politicians, started discovering the island’s potential as a tourist destination. This discovery led to the growth of Mykonos’s tourism industry, which became a means of reviving the island’s economy and development.
Today, Mykonos is a luxurious and cosmopolitan vacation destination, attracting tourists from around the world. Its tourism industry’s growth is an industry success story, considering the island’s size and prominence as a luxury destination since the 1950s.
If you’re looking to shop, the best approach is to explore the area by foot and see where your journey takes you. For those interested in handmade leather sandals, Mykonos Sandals in Little Venice is a great option. Additionally, you’ll find a variety of unique jewelry stores throughout Mykonos, offering pieces that perfectly complement your individual style. If you’re a watch enthusiast, be sure to check out Franck Muller’s hand-crafted timepieces at their store on the island. And with plenty of small boutiques, cafes, galleries, and souvenir shops scattered throughout Mykonos, there’s something for every type of shopper to enjoy.
One of the easiest and most convenient ways to explore the attractions in Mykonos is on foot. Most of the places you’d want to visit are located within a 10-15 minute walking distance from the old port. However, if you’re coming from Tourlos, walking to town is not recommended as there are no sidewalks and the road can get busy during peak season.
If you wish to venture beyond the town, taxis are available at Manto Mavrogenous Square, also known as Town Square or Taxi Square. Taxis charge fixed rates according to your destination, which may vary depending on the season. It’s worth noting that there are limited numbers of taxis on the island, so they may be difficult to find during high season.
The island also has two bus stations, the main Fabrica in the southern section of town and the Northern bus station. The main station serves destinations such as Ornos, Aghios, Ioannis, Platys Gialos, Psarou, Paranga and Paradise, while the Northern station serves Ano Mera village, Elia beach and Kalafatis. The normal bus fare is less than two euros.
Finally, if you’re looking to visit the beaches in the southern and western parts of the island, you can take small boats called caiques. These boats are a great way to explore the island’s beautiful beaches.
Tipping isn’t a common practice in Mykonos, but it is always appreciated when given in certain situations. It is recommended to carry some extra cash with you, as some small establishments, tours, or taxis may not accept credit cards. It is important to double-check with the establishment to see if they can accept your credit card. Mykonos accepts the Euro.
In restaurants, it is customary to tip between 10-20% if the tip is not already included in the bill. For bartenders, tipping is not expected, but it is a polite gesture for excellent service. Doormen may receive a tip of €1 if you are especially pleased with their service. When using a bellhop, it is polite to tip them per bag, but the amount doesn’t need to be substantial. It is customary to tip tour guides about €2-€5 per person per day.