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Quick Facts: Mykonos
Pronunciation Me-koe-noce
Transportation Air, fast boat, catamaran, ferry
Main Attractions Beaches, nightlife, museums, shops
Food Excellent restaurants of all kinds
Accommodations Many and varied in price

Mykonos Characteristics


A typical, rocky, dry, barren and usually windy Cycladic island, Mykonos has 85 sq. km of land mass and 81 km of coastline. Mykonos lies 110 nautical miles from Piraeus (6.5 hrs by ferry) and 71 from Rafina. Mykonos' closest Cycladic neighbors are Tinos, Naxos and Delos. Mykonos grew from the sole departure point to Delos into one of the five most popular islands in Europe. Mykonos produces barley, wine, figs and manganese.

Excellent beaches, a colorful cosmopolitan atmosphere, sophisticated nightlife and careful attention to the needs of the international set bring a wild and zany crowd to Mykonos. It's full of beautiful people, expensive eateries, party-seekers and gay couples. Mykonos became famous for establishing the first nude beach in Greece.

There are over 400 small chapels and 14 major beaches on Mykonos many of which try to be as self contained as possible. Mykonos becomes overcrowded from mid July to the end of August, so be sure you have a room waiting if you go during that season.

Island Features

greek island of mykonos myconosEven though Mykonos is the premiere gay destination of the Mediterranean you don't have to be gay to go to Mykonos and have a great time. There are tons of heterosexual singles there too. Some may disagree, but I know there are far more straight people than Gay on Mykonos. All co-exist peacefully and with tolerance. Mykonos is a great place for singles of all persuasions to mix, and also a wonderful island in general.

Mykonos is more expensive, along with Santorini, than a typical Greek island but on average less so than NYC, Paris, London, and Ibiza, St. Tropez, the French Riviera. Mykonos is more fun, too, and a lot safer than a big city. Sophisticated, tolerent people come here to let their hair down and generally party in a casual atmosphere.

greek island of mykonos myconosMany cruise ships also visit Mykonos as well as private sailboats. Even though Paros and Tinos are the Cycladic Ferry Hubs, Mykonos is in a class by itself with many connections. Over 15,000 hip Greeks from all over Greece prefer to live on Mykonos year round in addition to the local population, half of which is of recent Albanian origin. So many came to work in the hotel construction trade that even the mayor is a naturalized Greek of Albanian extraction.


greek island of mykonos myconosMykonos Town has a little something for everyone if they are looking for fun. The atmosphere is infectious. Come with a frown and you'll probably leave with a wistful smile. I don't often dance on the bar top, but I did in Mykonos Pierros' Bar and I felt good about it too.

I have been to Mykonos 12 times and spent a lot of that time lost in Mykonos Town. When they decided to make it confusing to pirates they did a darn good job at it. There's a map below to help you find your way around. If you are going to Mykonos I highly recommend purchasing one of these recently introduced, in English, SKYMAPS from a kiosk in Athens or wherever you can find one. ( They cost about €5. and are much more detailed and professional looking than what you see in the map section below. (Skymaps exist for other islands, too, and they have more info and maps on the back.)

greek island of mykonos myconosSince this is my travel guide I'd like to tell you that you won't get lost in Mykonos Town, but you will. Actually that's a good thing because Mykonos Town is a really beautiful place and you'll discover charming sites everywhere you look. The good news is that if you go down hill you will eventually reach the harbor and if you ask people for the "lee-mann-knee" you'll reach it faster.

Asking for Directions on Mykonos

The Harbor in Greek, or how to ask for it, is something you should learn, even though everybody on Mykonos speaks English and probably went to The L.S.E. or The New School or F.I.T. but these work on other islands too:

  • lee-mann-knee: harbor
  • ef-hari-sto: Thank You– even easier: F. Harry Stowe.
  • Para-Ka-LO: Don't mention it
  • Pou Ee - ne: Where is?

Mykonos Harbor or Limani

The Limani is your friend so orient yourself to its reassuring presence. Stand in the middle of the Limani and face the harbor... Don't move! Look out through the arms of the quays and you look due west. There are no beaches that way. Look to your right or north and you'll see the dock where you arrived. That's North!

greek island of mykonos myconosSomewhere in the middle is the small town beach of Aghia Anna and a block past that on your right hand side Bus Stop # 2 which takes you to one half of the island. That's the easy part. Different beaches are reached from different bus stops, I personally recommend renting a scooter as its a lot more convenient but costs more money.

I'll take you on a mini-tour. We start with Bus Stop No. 2 because its right there on the harbor.

The Bus Stops

greek island of mykonos myconosBehind you is the town and just to your right is taxi square, more of a triangle really, with a kiosk which is probably worth a fortune to its owner. Walk over to the kiosk and buy something from the pretty girl (or is it a pretty boy) and you'll see a street immediately to its right. That's Zouganeli Street which sounds Italian rather than Greek, it becomes Panarandou St. a block up and veers left to sharply left. Jag again at the Matina Hotel. Continue on up Rochari St. to the cement outdoor ancient style theater. Pass that bearing left to the main drag, Aghiou Ioannou, and turn right to Olympic airways 2 blocks up. Bus Stop # 1 is a block over to the right. Now, that's so easy a child could do it.

Mykonos Town: Kato Myli  & Little Venice

greek island of mykonos myconosI'll continue our graphical tour of Mykonos town from the higher vantage point of Kato Myli, site of six thatched windmills and worth the short walk. You can see five of the windmills above the town as well as the white capped waves of the open Aegean. From Kato Myli (left) you can get a good view of Mykonos Towns' confusing labyrinth of streets and the harbor below. Just to the right of Kato Myli is another promontory and on it Little Venice. Little Venice was built as close to the water as possible with little doors enabling the seafaring islanders to step right into their boats. Little Venice has turned into cocktail bars and is a good spot to watch the sunset.

greek island of mykonos myconosNear by and pictured left is the famous Paraportani Church which is really four little churches melded into one and often photographed. Art students from the Fine Arts School haunt this area. Just opposite the asymmetrical church is the Folklore Museum. It houses old curiosities, traditonal room furnishings, Greek odalisques prints. Lena's House is a branch of the Folklore Museum. It is a middle-class home with everything intact. The Archaeology Museum is near the quay.  

greek island of mykonos myconosNext to Little Venice is the Fortress. It's easy to dismiss. The warren of streets south has a big tree lined open area, strewn with festive lights and which is filled with tables and chairs. Oily waiters with cousins in New Jersey are anxious to serve you dinner or lunch. Try the Astako or lobster.

A little to the right are the docks for Delos, the Town Hall, Customs building and Public Free WC Facilities.

Drinking and Dining

There are lots of restaurants, my favorite is the B at Mavrogenous 11, Tel: 27086. You'll probably need to make reservations. Sure, it's owned by a friend of mine, buts it's good anyway. The Appaloosa is one of the few restaurants on Mykonos that has mostly locally grown produce and ingredients. It's open all year long and is where Greeks eat. It is not a taverna, you could call it Progressive Greek or even nouvelle cuisine. Mavrogenous Street is just off taxi square and named after a Female Admiral Heroine. Tell Babbis Harry sent you.

The Appaloosa is not the only good restaurant in town. There is a lot of variety; some good, some bad.

greek island of mykonos myconosJust on the right is fairly common type of establishment on Mykonos and throughout Greece for that matter: a little souvlaki or gyros joint, good for a filling, quick snack and an inexpensive way to dine if on a budget. For a meatless version (even cheaper) order the ECOLOGIKO or ecological souvlaki.

Traditional Greek Food in Mykonos Town

Antonini's in Taxi sq. has genuine Greek Food at decent prices. Behind City Hall by the Delos Dock: Nico's Taverna and Maky's are both non-pretentious fairly priced and authentic. A bit fancier; the Phillipi Hotel in the center of town is considered to have the best traditional food and also serves international cuisine. Seating is in a pleasant garden.Tel: 22295, Kalogera 32. For fresh fish without the fanfare and extra prices, try Kounelas at the end of the waterfront.

greek island of mykonos myconosPictured is a traditional restaurant with paper over cloth tablecloths. Anytime you see a cloth tablecloth and fluted wine glasses you'll pay extra and not necessarily be happy about it. Learn the difference if you're on a budget or value a euro.



Types of Food in Mykonos Town

  • Sesame Kitchen, at Three Wells or Tria Pigadia, Tel: 24710
  • International Cuisine in Mykonos Town
  • Edem with pool side seating near the central Panachrandrou Church. Tel: 22855
  • Katrin's also central, has French cuisine and nouvelle but is pricey. Tel: 22169
  • Tex-Mex Cuisine in Mykonos Town: La Mexicana, Kalogera 14, Tel: 27602
  • Thai-Chinese Cuisine Dynasty, Lymni Sq., Tel: 24194

the Avra is a pleasant spot to dine inOne of the places where you can enjoy some of the delicacies of Greek and International cuisine on Mykonos Island.

Open March - November: every day from 7 PM to 1 AM.

The Avra (Avra means 'Breeze') Restaurant provides excellent food, efficient service, intimate ambiance and reasonable prices, satisfying even the most demanding customers.

Situated in the middle of town, Avra Restaurant can be easily found as it is located directly behind the Alpha Bank on Matogianni str. (main street).

how to get there mapNiko, the owner and manager with over twenty years of experience as head chef in many major restaurants on the island, brings his reputation and unique talents into the Avra kitchen, priding himself on quality. Traditional decor has been carefully arranged creating a comfortable setting throughout. The customer may choose between the busy front street-terrace, the more intimate surroundings of the warm interior, or the beautiful private garden perfect for outdoor dining on warm summer nights. For the added convenience of customers, a small bar is available where cocktails or aperitifs can be enjoyed while waiting for a table. Situated in the middle of town, Avra Restaurant can be easily found as it is located directly behind the Alpha Bank on Matogianni str. (main street). Avra Restaurant - GardenKalogera str.84600 Mykonos, Greece e-mail: For reservations call: (+ 30 ) 22890 22298

Nightlife in Mykonos Town

greek island of mykonos myconosThe nightlife is easy to find but harder to get away from. If you are gay, I am pretty sure you already know where to go.

If you aren't gay then you may enjoy Pierros, just back from the waterfront and a lot of fun with wild dancing.

For a quieter time over in Little Venice are the Veranda Bar and Kastros with nice sunsets, classical music and cocktails.

greek island of mykonos myconosIn between is Bolero with thumping dance music and wall to wall people. The Piano Bar above taxi square is nice if you can get a seat and Astra Bar where the Gucci shoe wearing crowd goes. For Greek music Mykonos Dancing Bar is always good. The famous Greek bar 9 Muses (and one of the first Bars on Mykonos) has plenty of attitude to go around and more.

The Island's rhythm

If you aren't a big beach person, already finished your book, and stay on Mykonos more than three or four days then you'll no doubt spend a lot of your time during the daylight hours walking back and forth along the harbor and thinking to yourself, "what should I do now?"

Well the obvious thing to do is what everybody else is doing and that's sitting down and pretending that they are actually doing something. Harbor side are a variety of outdoor cafes to drink or snack in and hone your people watching skills day or night.

Of course, unless there are three or four cruise ships in port for a few hours, don't expect much activity before one or two in the afternoon as most normal people will be sleeping after a night of frenzied, ecstatic gyration (or worse).

Most go to the beach. The beach stays hot (as in sunburn hot) until 8:30 pm. After a shower and nap, hit the bars and restaurants around 10 or 11 pm. It's cooled off a bit by then and everyone is fresh and ready to start over with an evening of fun.

I will give you a tip as to where to stay if possible. Try to stay in town but out of the center because its noisy in town late at night due to the festivities. Also if approached upon disembarkation, to let a room make sure its not up in the isolated, ugly sprawl of holiday apartments that has sprung up on the hills around the town.


greek island of mykonos myconosHistorically Mykonos was overshadowed by its close (30 min.) island neighbor Delos, which was, in its ancient heyday, the capital of the Aegean (or Cyclades anyway) and still well worth a visit today. In its most infamous period over 10,000 slaves could be sold in a day on Delos. Other days the inhabitants could be purified by the jealous Athenians and enslaved themselves. But (forgive me) what comes around, goes around, and today Delos is uninhabited.

If you look at an Aegean map you'll see that the Cyclades Islands roughly form a circle or Kyklos and from whence the name Cyclades arises. Since there is no letter 'C' in Greek it should be spelled Kyklades . . . but no one does.

The ancient Ionians first colonized the island of Mykonos and built three settlements of which little is to be seen. One is southwest of Mykonos Town (also referred to as Hora) on the isthmus near Korfos. Another, dating from 2000 BC is at Dimastos and the third at Panormos the big bay in the north, finally at Lino, near the airport are Hellenistic walls and a tower. Finds may be seen at the harbor side Archeological Museum in Mykonos Town (8:30-3, closed Mon, fee).

All 3 of these cities were destroyed by a war between foreigners: the occupying Romans and the invading Persians under Mithridates. The Roman Strabo noted that most of the male population of Mykonos was bald and bald men were laughingly referred to as Mykonians all over the Empire. Much later, under the Byzantines, Hora arose. Then came the Dukes of Naxos and later with the Venetian  occupation, Hora gained a no longer visible defensive wall. At Old Castle or Paliokastro, Governor Ghizi built a fort which still exists. The Venetians ruled from 1207 to 1537 at which point Mykonos surrendered to the Turks and came to be a pirate island and was settled with pirate families who ran a very profitable business in pre-owned merchandise. However, they were very active in the 1821 War of Independence against the Turks and contributed 22 ships led, once again, by lady Admiral (as on Hydra) and national heroine, Manto Mavrogenous whose bust is in the main square.


Hints from Harry

Mykonos is not your typical traditional Greek island, so think about alternative choices to Mykonos if you want  a strict family atmosphere with no temptation.

If you are traveling with your other half, and not looking for companionship then you may want to avoid places in high season (July-August) known for their pick-up scenes, like Mykonos. The rest of the year Mykonos is great but in August the better looking your companion, the more annoying things become.

Sunsets are best from Kato Myli and Little Venice.

It takes time to get used to the constant sun and wind if you are arriving fresh with a snow-white tan from a northern clime and no base coat. Go to a tanning salon two or three times before leaving home, it will make a difference. I used that system before I moved here and it was worth the money, but I have fair skin and burn easily. Anglo-Saxons seem the most common victims of this lobster syndrome. So pace yourself, use the sunscreen, wear the hat. You won't look like a boiled crustacean later and you'll be able to shake your booty with subtle nuance.

Be sure to read Useful Information page for more hints about Mykonos.


Mykonos Town Map

The Complete Details

Other Mykonos Pages:
About Mykonos | Beaches | Useful Tips

Helpful Information
Transportation Facts
  • Daily flights to Athens, Santorini, Rhodes, and Thessaloniki
  • Fast boats and catamarans connect with Tinos, Rafina, Piraeus, Syros
  • Two ferry quays with connections to Rafina, Andros, Piraeus, Paros, Santonrini, Amorgos, Thessaloniki, Patmos, Crete, Lipsi, Samos, Ikaria, and Skiathos
  • Buses cover the island, but do not serve the airport. Taxis are available. Cars and motorcycles rentals are available.
  • Caique leave Hora for several beaches.
Island Resources
  • Police 2289 022 235
  • Port Police 2289 022 716


Ikaria - Armenistis
New Maisonettes

Price: €209,000
 -  125 m2
Bedrooms: 3  Baths: 2


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