Mykonos, perhaps the most famous of the Cyclades islands, holds the most enchanting dual charm; it’s both a modern-day beach paradise and a place so ancient it was mentioned in Herodotus’ writings; and mythology says it was first founded by a son of Greek god Apollo! Nowadays, this island full of hills offers some of the most breathtaking sights throughout the Mediterranean.
Due to its unique qualities, the Island of Wind also happens to be a full-blown dream; especially for those who love beach clubs, boutique hotels, and great design in general. Local business owners have really taken the time to match each place to the natural colors in Mykonos; which results in a very harmonious little place!
This Aegean gem also happens to be a major party town. While the days are relaxing and perfect to soak up the sun and colors; once the night falls, it’s a place of loud music and energetic dancing all the way to the morning!
Keep in Mind when visiting Mykonos…
– There are two distinctive areas in Mykonos: the village and the beaches. Both offer fairly different experience, and it’s important to make the choice on which area to stay before arriving!
– The island doesn’t have a lot of taxis available – in fact, there are only about 30 throughout Mykonos! Your best options are to either rent a car or a motorbike, or to hire a private driver while you’re in town, who will probably charge you about €80 for a return ride between the beach and village areas.
– This is a major tourist destination, not just in Greece but across the Mediterranean, and I’d say it’s one of the most beloved summer spots throughout the world. Because of this, and the fact that the island is actually pretty small, restaurants and beach clubs are usually full, so it’s super important to book in advance!
Traveling – How to Get There?
As a popular vacation spot for Europeans, the Mykonos airport receives direct flights from a lot of major cities throughout the continent; including big capitals like Madrid , Viena, London , Amsterdam , Zurich and Rome .
The airport is about 4 kilometers or 10 minutes away from Choros, and there are a whole lot of ways to get there: in fact, there are many local hotels that offer airport pickup, so you can plan accordingly. You can also get a taxi outside the airport after you land, and they’re about €8, and you can call one from the radio office in case there are none waiting when you arrive. There’s also a very cheap shuttle (€1.60) during the high season, but you have to check the schedules as they vary considerably every two weeks. Still, the best option is to book your transportation ahead, due to the aforementioned taxi scarcity.
If you’re already in the area, you can also easily reach the island by ferry or catamaran in the Greek mainland. Depending on the type of ship you take, you can arrive from Athens in 3 to 5 hours or from Rafina in 2 to 5 hours. There’s also a lot of sea traffic from the rest of the Cyclades, with constant arrivals from Syros, Andros, Tinos and Paros, as well as daily boats from Naxos, Ios, Santorini and Crete.
Living – Where to Stay in Mykonos?
We stayed at the Little Rochari Hotel during out time in Mykonos, and I have nothing but praise for this jewel! While the hotel is small, it’s also very cosy and roomy, and truly focused on giving out the best possible experience to guests, with great service and comfortable facilities. The moment we arrived, we felt right at home at this gorgeously designed place!
Located in the western slopes, this lovely boutique hotel offers a 180-degree view of the town, the Aegean coast and even some of the neighboring islands, specifically Delos, Tinos and Siros. The hotel is a five-minute walk from the picturesque town, yet hidden enough to offer a quiet experience during nights, when Mykonos usually lights up to endless partying. In fact, it’s the perfect spot to beam in the sunlight and just spend a lazy morning hanging around the pool, without a care in the world.
The only downside to the location? The winds! Mykonos is nicknamed the Island of Wind, and it can get so breezy even the pools end up having waves, which happens most if you’re facing the sea and in the mountain.
Much like the common areas, like the pool area and a bar, the rooms are spacious and with a very simple yet trendy design, based on the colors of the island, with a lot of white and beige and little details in bright blue. If possible, book a larger room, although most of them have balconies and terraces with a view!
The amenities are pretty standard, including car or bike rental and a breakfast buffet, plus a restaurant serving yummy Greek cuisine. Still, it’s the ambiance and very friendly service that sets this family-owned hotel apart. For more information have a look at my Hotel Review
Would you like to stay at Little Rochari. THEN BOOK IT HERE!
Eating & Drinking – The Best Restaurants in Mykonos
You’ll find the best restaurants in Mykonos around the village, but really there’s a bit for everyone all around! As an iconic southern Europe destination, the cuisine is mostly focused on Mediterranean flavors in general and Greek cuisine in particular, and you can find everything from cheap street gyros to auteur menus in the more upscale eateries in the island.
Here are some of our favorite bars and restaurants! For more information see the the full restaurant review post
Interni – The Stylish SeaFood Heaven!
Interni is one of our personal favorites, a seafood-focused restaurant, offers an eclectic menu that features a lot of flavors beyond the classic Mediterranean diet, with interesting choices like South American ceviche. The design is very sweet and trendy, and the staff is very friendly and accommodating. The ambiance here really takes the cake!
Hakkasan Ling Ling – An Asian Luxury Experience
Hakkasan Ling Ling, which opened in the spring of 2017 and is part of the growing British-Chinese chain, offers a pretty upscale Asian dining experience. Keeping up with the high standards of the original London restaurant, there’s a lot of love behind the design of this place – however, there’s a slightly unpleasant lack of personal touch here, and when we faced an issue with our meal, the staff wasn’t the most gracious.
Nice n Easy – Local Food with a View
Nice n Easy is all about traditional local food: all the ingredients are from Mykonos or the nearby islands, which makes the flavors match what they were centuries ago, when these meals were first created by Greek forefathers and long before additives. Just a few steps away from the beach and next to the iconic windmills, Nice n Easy offers the chance to enjoy a fine meal while listening to the relaxing sounds of the sea. The service and atmosphere are amazing, too!
180° Sunset Bar
This bar literally stands above other local ones: it’s a 15-minute walk up the mountain! This location makes it a great place to bask in the beautiful Mykonos sunsets, which is where the place gets its name. Once the night falls, the 180° Sunset Bar becomes a great dancing spot!
Best Beach Clubs in Mykonos
If there’s one thing that Mykonos is famous for, it’s the beach! For decades, this lovely little island has hosted millions of sun-loving tourists, who come here yearning for the Aegean blues. Considering the entirety of the local tourism focused on its sandy coast, of course the beach clubs are fantastic!
Scorpios – The Popular Boho Chic Paradise
Scorpios, my favorite Mykonos beach club, this beautifully designed place is an architectural homage to the ancient Grecian agora, which gives the whole thing a truly impressive and unique touch, harmoniously colliding with the natural setting. Scorpios features a lot of different areas for you to decide what you want your day to be like, and the food at the restaurants is really great. This boho chic dream offers activities throughout the day and night, and it’s definitely a must-visit!
Kalua – The Relaxed Paraga Spot
Kalua, a much more traditional-looking place, the design here is still a breath of fresh air. Located in beloved sun spot Paraga Beach, the location of this club gives it an edge over other places in Mykonos; it’s a bit more shielded from the island’s famous winds, so it’s a great place to spend stormier days. Besides the killer ambiance, the personal service and the great food; Kalua offers a sweet party scene once the night falls!
Santanna is located right next to Kalua. The design of this place is breathtaking, and it features a more ambitious concept: it’s full of pools and artificial islands that can offer the most personal experience during your stay. However, be warned: some of the VIP areas can be a little snobby! Still, the service is fantastic and the food is also really good, so you really can’t go wrong here.
Nammos – Design & Luxury Overload
Although perhaps the most beautifully designed Mykonos beach club, we were really disappointed coming here. As it happens with much of the island during the high season, the place is really crowded, but the space isn’t very well planned in Nammos, and it can get really difficult to just walk around the sunbeds, comfy as they may be – and the music doesn’t fit the mood and can be much too loud. Lastly, the service is very poor and almost rude.
Still, it’s a beautiful place that contains numerous beach clubs within itself, as well as suites, boutiques and restaurants.
Things to do in Mykonos beyond the Beach Clubs
For a more in-depth encounter with this beautiful island, Mykonos offers some truly exciting cultural sites. The main town, Chora, is also the center of the local life, with multiple boutiques and outdoor restaurants.
Maybe the most iconic and postcard-friendly sight here is the windmills, a 16th century reminder of how the island was once a great producer of wheat and breads. It’s also the most popular place in Mykonos for sunset-gazing!
In its westernmost side of town is Little Venice , a spot considered the most romantic in Mykonos; and it features beautiful old buildings from the time the Venetians took over. This area also includes Panagia Paraportiani, a church that has stood in the island since the 15th century; as a vivid example of Byzantine architecture.
Greece is often considered the cradle of western civilization; and the country is filled with historical gems from past centuries and even millennia. One of these is Delos, a now-uninhabited island that’s also a UNESCO World Heritage Site; that’s only a 30-minute boat ride away from Mykonos! Thousands of years ago, this was the most important Panhellenic sanctuary in the world; and it was so important in ancient Greek mythology; that it was said to be the birthplace of Olympian twin gods Artemis and Apollo.
Once the night falls unto the island, the next step is clear: party, party, party! Like fellow Southern European destination Ibiza, Mykonos’ nightlife is famous around the world, and the town is full of music and dancing until the early hours of the morning! But do not worry, there is plenty of room for a great chill dinner and some drinks too!
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