Things to do in Mykonos

Things to do in  Mykonos

The birthplace of gods

When it comes to the Greek islands, few places are able to meet idealized expectations like the island of Mykonos, with its stark-white buildings and beautiful beaches on the azure waters of the Aegean Sea. Now one of the more cosmopolitan destinations in Greece, Mykonos also serves as a convenient jumping-off point for nearby attractions. The neighboring island of Delos—the alleged birthplace of Artemis and Apollo—scratches that mythology itch with its treasure trove of ancient ruins, including the Temple of Apollo, Sacred Way, and Terrace of the Lions. Visitors who decide to book a tour have the choice of a catamaran, yacht, sailing boat, or even cruise ship to explore the nearby uninhabited island of Rhenia and its paradise beach; and guided scuba diving and snorkeling trips are popular ways to enjoy the region’s clear blue waters. Back on Mykonos island, there are two main communities: Mykonos Town, or Chora, is a sea of charming whitewashed houses and winding streets originally intended to confuse invading pirates. Though the town has developed rapidly, its original style is intact and evident in the medieval houses and wooden terraces of Little Venice. Inland, the small village of Ano Mera has a different energy, with a 16th century monastery and traditional tavernas still steeped in the old Mykonian spirit. After all the sightseeing tours, soak in Greek island spirit against a sunset backdrop to end any day in this Cycladic gem.

Top 14 attractions in Mykonos

Mykonos Town (Chora Mykonos)

From the sea, the sun sparkles off the jumble of whitewashed houses and churches lining a maze of narrow, winding streets in Mykonos Town (Chora Mykonos). This picturesque Cycladic town, perched on a harbor in the middle of a wide bay, serves as the island’s commercial hub—its traditional buildings now occupied by shops, cafés, galleries, and Greek restaurants.More

Little Venice

Situated in Chora Mykonos (aka Mykonos Town), the waterfront quarter of Little Venice is one of the island’s top sunset-viewing spots. Rows of whitewashed old fishermen’s houses—now occupied by bars, shops, and restaurants—back onto the seafront, their brightly painted red and blue balconies jutting out over the water.More

Church of Panagia Paraportiani

The flower-bedecked Church of Panagia Paraportiani is a highlight of your walk through Mykonos’ picture-perfect Little Venice. Built between the 14th and 17th centuries, the island’s most photographed church is comprised of five whitewashed chapels across two floors that once guarded the entrance to the town’s castle.More

Armenistis Lighthouse (Faros Armenistis)

With its stark white tower perched atop the Cape Armenistis cliffs and views stretching out over the sea, the Armenistis Lighthouse (Faros Armenistis feels a world away from the lively streets of nearby Mykonos town. Though the lighthouse is no longer in use, it remains an impressive landmark and a popular spot to admire the sunset.More

Mykonos Windmills (Kato Mili)

The whitewashed windmills lined up on a hill overlooking Mykonos Town are a signature island sight. Capped with wood and straw, the 3-story conical windmills were built in the 16th century to mill flour. Out of the 16 preserved windmills on the island, seven are found in the area of Kato Mili overlooking the Chora Mykonos harbor.More

Panagia Tourliani Monastery

Most visitors come to Ano Mera, in the interior of Mykonos, to see the Byzantine Panagia Tourliani Monastery, fronted by an ornate bell tower with triple bells. Its interior is perhaps even more impressive, with carved marble and wood, Byzantine frescoes, crystal chandeliers, a gilded pulpit, and a wooden altar screen with scenes from the New Testament.More

Mykonos Cruise Port

The cruise port of Mykonos offers easy access to both the town itself, called Chora, as well as the rest of the island and its sun-drenched beaches. Take time to get a little lost in the town’s maze of charming streets and traditional buildings full of shops, cafés, and restaurants before heading back to the ship or hotel.More

Paradise Beach

By day, Paradise Beach is a water sports hot spot, with swimsuit-clad revelers enjoying banana boat rides, Jet Ski jaunts, and scuba diving excursions. Come late afternoon, its legendary party scene gets going as fun-seekers flock to the beach bars and clubs for music, dancing, drinking, and fun.More

Kalafatis Beach

Recognized with the prestigious Blue Flag award, sweeping, golden Kalafatis Beach (often written Kalafati Beach is Mykonos’ water sports epicenter. Choose between activities from scuba diving to windsurfing to stand-up paddleboarding and water skiing—or soak up the rays on one of Mykonos’ quieter stretches of sand.More

Ornos Beach

Tucked away from the buzzing nightlife of Mykonos Town, Ornos Beach is draped around a sheltered bay whose calm water makes it a popular family swimming spot. A generous selection of seafront restaurants, tavernas, and resorts offer plenty of amenities for a day in the sun or a longer stay on the island’s quieter side.More

Manto Mavrogenous Square (Plateia Manto Mavrogenous)

Looking out over the Old Port and marking the entrance to historic Mykonos Town, Manto Mavrogenous Square (Plateia Manto Mavrogenous) is the lively epicenter of the island of Mykonos. The square boasts shops, restaurants, and cafes along its seafront promenade, while its white-painted, blue-shuttered buildings make for a pretty photo op.More

Terrace of the Lions

The Terrace of the Lions, built around 600 BC to honor Apollo, is today the most iconic image of Delos island. Nearly a dozen of the squatting guardian cats once lined the Sacred Way, but only seven have survived. The ones you see today perched atop piles of brick and rubble are replicas; see the originals in the site’s museum.More
Mykonos Folklore Museum

Mykonos Folklore Museum

Housed in the old captain’s house on the seafront of Mykonos town, the Mykonos Folklore Museum transports visitors back to the 1800s, offering a unique glimpse into 19th-century life on the island. Take a peek at a typical period bedroom, kitchen, and sitting room, decked out with traditional oil lamps and vintage furniture.More
Aegean Maritime Museum

Aegean Maritime Museum

Maritime history buffs will find a trove of fascinating exhibits at the Aegean Maritime Museum, housed in a traditional 19th-century Myconian villa in the heart of Mykonos town. Admire model ships, nautical maps and navigational instruments, ancient coins, and a gigantic 19th-century lighthouse lantern, which stands in the museum garden.More

Trip ideas

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All about Mykonos

When to visit

Mykonos parties from June to September, welcoming hordes of sun-loving, hedonistic holidaymakers. It’s particularly popular during the late-summer Xlsior gay jamboree and Biennale arts festival. If you’re looking for hot sun, visit in July or August, when you’ll get temperatures as high as 84°F (29°C) paired with cooling breezes at the beaches. For more space and a less frenetic pace, visit in the spring, for pleasant temperatures and quieter resorts, or in fall, when the sea is still warm.

Getting around

Exploring Mykonos Town (Chora) involves a lot of walking; its tiny lanes are traffic-free. To reach major beaches and other popular spots, catch one of the frequent buses from the town’s South Station (Fabrika) or the Old Port station. You can also find taxis at the town’s main square or book tours that include transportation. The easiest way to explore the island, however, is to rent a car or moped; just be aware that peak-season rates are high, and in-town parking is limited.

Traveler tips

Take a break from Mykonos Town in the early evening, and head north (in a rental car or on a scooter) to Cape Armenistis, a steep, deserted headland crowned by a 19th-century lighthouse. It’s a perfect place to experience one of Mykonos’ sunsets—and most spectacular views—in peace. Climb to the old structure to enjoy panoramic views of the sea and the neighboring islands of Tinos, Delos, and Syros. The headland has strong breezes, so hold on to your hat.


People Also Ask

What is Mykonos known for?

One of Greece’s Cyclades islands, Mykonos’ claim-to-fame is its frenetic nightlife, welcoming of the LBGTQ community, and glam nature. These sit comfortably alongside its classic Greek culture and landscapes: cue whitewashed villages, blue-domed churches, wooden fishing boats, and simple tavernas huddled among hip hotels and restaurants.

What can I do in Mykonos for a week?

From hidden coves to golden sweeps, Mykonos is primed for beach vacations. Dedicate several days to lounging at beauties such as Psarou or Lia beach before discovering wider Mykonos. Browse boutiques in trendy Mykonos Town, admire the island’s windmills, and join in the wild beach parties and nighttime clubbing scene.

Is Mykonos safe for LGBTQ people?

Yes. Mykonos is regarded as one of the world’s top LGBTQ destinations. Although local life remains fairly traditional, the tourist scene first embraced gay visitors in the 1960s. Today, the vast majority of hotels are LGBQT-friendly, and the island is home to countless LGBTQ bars, nightclubs, parties, and events.

What is there to do in Mykonos during the day?

Most Mykonos holidaymakers spend their days on the beach, recharging for the raucous night ahead. To start the party early, hit bar-lined Paradise beach, or escape to one of the island’s quieter bays. Alternatively, enjoy lunch at a seafront Little Venice eatery, go snorkeling, or sail to see Delos’ classical ruins.

What should I not miss in Mykonos?

No Mykonos vacation is complete without sampling its party scene. At dusk, begin with cocktails in downtown Mykonos—the 180 Degrees Sunset Bar serves drinks alongside sunset views. Then, join the throngs at the frenetic Tropicana Beach Bar at Paradise Beach before hitting Cavo Paradiso’s heaving dance floor and outdoor pool.

What can I do in Mykonos aside from party?

Plenty. Ride a ferry to the islet of Delos to roam the ruins of its ancient Greek temples, theater, and houses and to explore its statue-filled museum. Alternatively, carve through Mykonos’ aquamarine waters on a catamaran cruise, or strike out inland to discover sleepy villages, secret beaches, and the island’s iconic windmills.

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