Beach Vacations to Mykonos, Greek Islands

Beach in Plati Yialos on Mykonos, Greece
Beach in Plati Yialos on Mykonos, Greece (Robert Harding/Digital Vision/Getty)

First settled as early as 3000 B.C., Mykonos is named after Apollo's brave grandson, and the place still has an air of legend about it. This far-flung, picture-postcard island with gorgeous scenery, good shopping, and fine dining has drawn well-heeled Greeks for decades. As early as the 1960s, celebs discovered the arid isle's many charms, which include a tolerance for fun and frolic that other parts of Greece frown upon. The main town of Hora itself is a glorious maze of intense blues and whites, purposely built to disorientate the invaders and pirates who frequented the place. Paradoxically, the longer you stay in Mykonos, the more mazelike and mysterious it seems to become, enveloping you in its secrets. Mykonos' numerous blue-and red-domed churches (there are as many churches as residents), limpid waters, luminous skies, and dusk-till-dawn bars and lounges attract visitors from Europe, Australia, and the United States, and lure many of them back year after year. And even though nearly a million tourists now descend annually on Mykonos (pop. about 10,000), the place somehow retains its small-village feel. You bump into new friends over and over again at the beach, cafés, and bars, where everyone is glowing with sun-kissed joviality.

Beyond the isle's friendly nightlife and luxe lodgings are a bevy of wide, open beaches—including the well known Ai Giannis, Super Paradise, and Elia—ringed by rolling desert scenery and crystal-clear water. In fact, nature takes center stage all around the busy island, with stunning ocean views seemingly available from every nook and cranny. Outdoor enthusiasts will not be bored: Kalafati Bay and Ftelia Bay are both gorgeous spots to try windsurfing, while underwater spots like Super Paradise Beach and the nearby uninhabited island of Dragonisi make superb scuba trips. And don't forget a side trip to the ruins on the nearby isle of Delos, one of the most sacred islands of ancient Greece.


Published: 11 Aug 2009 | Last Updated: 30 Mar 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication

Best Hotels in Mykonos

$30
Average/night*
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Albatross Hotel

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