Mykonos Travel Guide
So you’ve seen Santorini, and toured around Oia and Fira. But you want something more lively, more vibrant — perhaps someplace where partying is a way of life. Fortunately, there exists just such a Greek island for you. Known as one of the top tourist spots in the Cyclades area, Mykonos has a lot to offer. Let me tell you about places to visit in my 3 days in Mykonos.
How to get to Mykonos
There are two ways to get to Mykonos: flight and ferry. The ferry wasn’t cheap, though it was decidedly more scenic, it also took a lot of time, so we took the flight instead.The airport is located around 3 kilometers from town, so it’s an easy ride to and fro. If you opt for a ferry, you may land either at the old port right beside Mykonos town or the new port a little farther off.
Things to do in Mykonos
Windmills. The windmills have always been one of the iconic Mykonos tourist attractions.This is partly because these structures can be seen no matter where you are in the Mykonos town! There are 16 wheat mills in all. They were mostly built in the 16th century, though some of them were constructed all the way into the 20th century. Wheat was once a principal source of income for inhabitants of the island, and this is commemorated in the museum contained in one of the mills.
Little Venice. Mykonos has had a long history with Venice, and even its famous windmills were partially built by Venetians. Little Venice, true to the name, is a romantic little neighborhood that stands on the edge of the Aegean Sea. It has cute old houses too, and it’s definitely one of things to see in Mykonos that you wouldn’t want to miss.
Delos. This is one of those love-it-or-hate-it places. If you’re a history buff and you like stories from ancient times, you would definitely enjoy it. If not, Delos would appear to be a mostly empty place with ancient artifacts strewn around. This UNESCO site is fabled for its rich religious history, being hailed as the birthplace of the twin Greek gods Apollo and Artemis.
Streets and Shops. Sometimes, you don’t have to head anywhere specific in Mykonos to enjoy the sights. Just strolling around the streets, feeling the sun’s rays and the salty breeze of the sea, and checking out the many cute shops would be enough tourist activity to last you a day!
Paradise Beach. This six-kilometer stretch of pristine sand was once famous for being a nude beach, and even today many beach-goers still prefer being topless. Wearing a full swimsuit is not out of place, however, and nowadays the beach is famous for being a great place to party while enjoying the azure sea!
Platis Gialos. This is another of the famous beaches in Mykonos, known for the golden sands. Take an afternoon off under an umbrella, lie down on a sun bed, or foray into the crystalline waters. There are also lots of establishments around for refreshments.
Aside from these two, there are more than a dozen other beaches in Mykonos so you can take your pick! Right beside the Paradise Beach is Super Paradise, for those who want less of the party atmosphere. There is also Elia, one of the longest in the region. In reality, Paraga is in two coasts — the southern one is more serene while the northern one is more commercialized.
For the life of the party
Mykonos, in stark contrast to Oia and Fira, is draped with a party atmosphere that only becomes more apparent as the clock chimes midnight. The nightlife usually lasts until 8AM, so the place typically attracts younger crowds. The area, especially Little Venice, also caters to the older wine-and-dine crowd, so it is a popular spot for all walks of life. While we do prefer the sights and feel of Santorini, the food in Mykonos is plentiful and awesome!
Perhaps because of its tourist popularity, the public bus transport system here works quite well. You don’t have to drive around yourself like we recommended in Santorini. Late night trips might be hard though, since there are limited taxis. You can either bring around an ATV, or stick to the bus schedule. If you go on a low season like we did, the bus ceases operation quite early! We had wanted to go to Super Paradise, so we ended up having to either call a cab or drive ourselves. Taking a taxi from the town is quite easy, but you may have to wait awhile for other places. Besides, when you’re in town, you can walk around it quite easily.
Despite its carefree vibe, you’d best watch out when you go out shopping. Things are a lot more expensive in Mykonos compared to other places like Santorini. A dress we bought in Santorini, for example, costs 10 EUR more in Mykonos. Even fridge magnets are overpriced, and the taxis, too! A ride to the airport is already 12 EUR, even if it’s just 10 minutes away.
If you plan to explore on foot, you will better appreciate the beauty of Mykonos town. Venture out, however, and you might run the risk of being lost. The streets are winding and confusing, which the locals say was a measure set since the olden times to stop pirates pillaging the area. After some time you might get used to it, but not before making a lot of wrong turns.
And here’s a tip: if you want to print anything (documents, boarding passes, etc.), go to the photo shop! It took forever for us to figure this out, as the people we asked mostly didn’t know where to point us.
Where to eat
The first establishment we tried was the Catari Ristorante Italiano, where we were served by Oscar. The food was amazing, and so was the interior — everything was shipped from Italy for a true Italian feel!
Next up on our recommendation is Captain’s, which is located in Mykonos town. We had their octopus bites in red sauce (16 EUR), zucchini and tomato fritters (7 pieces for 5 EUR), chicken bites in lemon sauce (11 EUR), seafood trachanotto (16 EUR), and grilled cheese with pita and diced tomatoes. The portions are big enough for sharing, so it’s great value. As a plus, the resto is located fronting the water so it’s perfect for an early morning coffee!
We also tried Souvlaki Story, where we had the meal mix combo for 2. It had huge portions, and had everything I wanted! The servings felt like they could feed 4 people each! We had perfect hangover food, and the experience was a nice way to try out the local cuisine. From gyros and souvlakis to tzatziki and Greek salad, Souvlaki Story has it all! The resto has 2 branches that are both open almost 24/7, closing only for around 2-4 hours a day. The area is also clean, and the staff are fast and awesome!
Finally, there’s Bakalo, an eatery in Lakka. For the ultimate traditional taste, this is your go-to place. The design is classy too, so you’ll have a memorable time.
Where to stay in Mykonos
We stayed at Dimitra’s Pension House, which cost us around 40 EUR a night for two people. It has the best location, right near Little Venice and near a bus stop. Our host was also lovely, making us feel at home right from the get go! We did have a little snag upon checking in as we had to find the host first, but it was smooth-sailing after that.
If you’re the type who loves to stay up all night to party out, then Mykonos is a must-see. It is a curious mix of historic origins and modern-day living, with all the pros and cons of a touristy place. Nevertheless, it’s an enjoyable trip that will appeal in one way or another to all travelers, no matter the preference.