Mykonos is a Greek island that receives over 2 million tourists annually although it has less than 10,000 permanent residents. Mykonos is a summer European hotspot because of its stunning beaches, great weather and nightlife party vibes.
Did you know that Mykonos is also called the Island of the Winds due to the strong Meltemi winds year round? If you are planning a trip to Mykonos, make sure to take a light jacket with you as the winds get intense after sunset, especially if you travel outside of peak summer season.
What to Visit
Mykonos Town or Chora is a must visit during your trip to the island. It is the historical centre built in Cycladic style and is the perfect place to get lost amongst the stonewashed buildings, cute gift shops and restaurants. Mykonos town is very small and can get very crowded during high season! If you want to avoid bumping into the large tour groups that visit the island during the summer months, it is best to go very early in the morning (6-9am) or just before sunset.
You’ll notice that all buildings are white with either red, blue and the occasional green roof and doors. The reason for this strict colour code dates back many years when it used to represent your profession! Sailors used to paint doors blue, farmers used to paint doors and windows green, and red was for everyone else!
Mykonos town is also a nice spot on the island to have lunch, dinner and go shopping. Here you’ll find both local shops to buy souvenirs as well as clothing, convenience stores, and mini supermarkets.
Little Venice is one of the most romantic spots you’ll find on the island and is perhaps one of the reasons it got its nickname from its Italian counterpart. This postcard-like area of Mykonos resembles the city of Venice due to both the colour and position of the buildings that used to be inhabited by the island’s most successful sailors. The homes were built so close to the ocean that waves will unexpectedly soak you on a windy day. The sunsets in Little Venice are breathtaking! Grab a seat in one of the bars along the water to watch the sun go down in an array of beautiful colours while hearing the waves crash against the shoreline.
The windmills in Mykonos are an iconic symbol of the island. From the 16th to the 19th century they were used for grain production. The grain was used by local farmers, sold to bakeries or exported and sold abroad. The windmills literally fed the local population until tourism became the main source of income on the island. They are located right next to the old town and get quite crowded during the day (a morning visit is best!)
Platis Gialos – This beach in Mykonos is probably one of the most popular areas for visitors to spend the day in the summer. It is a fully organized beach with beds and umbrellas for rent. The beach itself is clean with golden sand and blue waters – but be aware that it does get very crowded during peak travel season!
Psarou – Another very popular beach on the island with white sand, blue waters and water sports! Psarou is a very trendy and located in an upscale area so prices may be slightly higher than other places on the island. As it gets quite busy, make sure to reserve your table at the restaurants along the beach ahead of time.
Agios Sostis & Panormos Beach – If you are looking for more secluded and calm beaches, the north of Mykonos may be your best option. We found the beaches in this area to be significantly more spacious with much fewer people than in the south. In order to get to this area you will need your own vehicle!
Where to stay
Mykonos has a huge variety of hotels and villas, ranging anywhere from 50 euros to over 5000 euros a night! If you have a mid-sized budget and are looking for a combination of luxury without breaking the bank, try Deliades Hotel, which is where we stayed. It is a small hotel located in Ornos, not too far from the airport. The hotel has a small parking lot in front of the property which is very convenient! The hotel offers a continental breakfast and has a fully serviced bar and pool area. You can also upgrade to the reasonably priced suite which has a private pool!
What to eat
When it comes to dining, Mykonos has an endless option of restaurants to choose from, whether you are looking for cheap eats, mid-range or fine dining.
$$ – Captain’s – Food For Sharing
Avli Tou Thodori
$$$ – Noa Greek Restaurant Mykonos
$$$$ – Narcissus Mykonos
Jackie O’ Mykonos
Renting a car is the best way to move around Mykonos, especially if you want to visit the less populated spots on the island. You can book your car online as most big rental companies (Hertz, Avis) have their offices located inside of the airport. You can pick your car up right after you land and drop it off at the airport before your return flight. Prices range anywhere from 30-100+ euros a day depending on the type of vehicle you choose. The island also offers scooter rentals which is a great option as parking may be tricky in some areas.
There are very few taxis on the island so you may have trouble with availability if you plan on moving around this way. The island does have bus service, however, public transportation is limited and does not run too regularly. If you are looking to visit as much of the island as possible, a private vehicle rental is best.