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A taste of Mykonos, Greece

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

I thought that I would take a break from my Asia trip for the moment to write a bit on Greece. I love Greece. There is nothing like the combination of the warm mediterranean sun and the unique terrain, culture and food of Greece. Having been to Mykonos a number of times over the years, I wanted to take a moment to share a little information and a few photos.

Mykonos, Greece

Mykonos, is a Greek island that lies about 2.5  hours by boat or  a short plane ride from Athens. Those times can vary, depending on the type of Ferry/boat you take. I have always taken a boat to the island. Athens is actually inland from the sea, so you have to take the train out to the Pireaus port to board the Ferry's. This link HERE, will take you to a travel guide for additional information. Many people actually fly into Mykonos from the states, but you must transfer in Athens.

Mykonos, Greece

I first became interested in Mykonos after seeing it in the famous and wonderful movie by the name of
"Shirley Valentine". If you haven't seen it, then you should, it's amazing. Unless of course, you're one of those dudes who can't stand anything less than three kills per film. This one is light-hearted and funny...and a little romance (so just warning you!).

Mykonos, Greece

Mykonos is about 41 square miles, so it's not huge. However, it's big enough that you can get away if you need a change of scenery. Now, keep in mind that this is not one of those tropical, palm tree lined places. It has a rock terrain and hardly any trees to speak of....but that's what makes it unique.

Super Paradise Beach on Mykonos, Greece

Mykonos does have multiple sand beaches and they are great. People arrive in the main town of Mykonos and that is where you will need to find your transportation to the beaches or other areas.

Mykonos, Greece

Mykonos has various methods of getting around. Most people rent the scooters for the week or day. They are reasonable to rent and pretty much don't take more than a simple signature and handshake with the rental shop owner. There are places on the internet to rent, but trust me, it's much cheaper if you do it while you're there. I think I paid about $15 U.S. for the day (but it's much cheaper by the week). The shop owner will generally ask you if you've driven one before, etc...they don't want to loose their bikes. A word of warning though: If you're at all timid or a nervous driver, then don't rent one. The island roads and hills can be tedious due to cars passing by quickly and the steepness of some areas. If you don't want to rent a scooter, then you can easily just take the bus from town, which runs frequently. There is also a small ferry service that you can take, but you will get a little wet since you have to get out of the boat into the water. Oh, as far as renting a car, I wouldn't. Most of them are stick shift and it's just simply not necessary to have a car.

Super Paradise Beach on Mykonos, Greece

As I said, there is more than one beach, so you have your choice. One of the most popular is "Super Paradise Beach". Yes, it's a strange name, but that's it. I drove my scooter there, and it took a while and was on some pretty steep hills, not to mention the cars whipping by at breakneck speeds. Also, it's a little tricky knowing all of the streets, so take a map.

Mykonos, Greece

Super Paradise does have a clothing option section (as do many Greek Beaches), so you can't be too shy or uptight to enjoy Mykonos. Mykonos is known as a party island, but don't let that scare you. It's not the Spring Break, rowdy, obnoxious crowd. All ages go there and are welcome, but there is a great nightlight in the main town with multiple bars and dance clubs. It's very, very safe on Mykonos and many families enjoy long stays there.

Mykonos, Greece

The town is very charming and unique. Most buildings you see are painted white, and many have blue domes on top. There is a stone path that runs through the town, which adds to the character.

Mykonos, Greece traditional sidewalk

As many times as I've been there, I have gotten lost over and over in the town. This is not a problem, since it's safe and the town is not that big. Getting lost is fun and easy though because of the many small paths that make their way through shops and cafes up and down the hill. It is akin to being in a maze, but again, it adds to it's charm.

Mykonos, Greece

The Greeks are nice and generally helpful, but it's a two way street. So remember to be respectful to their culture and town and they will go out of their way to help you. Food and shopping in Mykonos can be a little more expensive than normal, but not horrible. Everything is in Euros and ATMs are readily accessible. I would say a meal can be anything from a $8-10 sandwich to upscale fare. If you go to a restaurant by the water (and it's touristy) you will pay much more than if you go to a small cafe in a different part of town. Of course, seafood is in abundance.

Mykonos, Greece Storks 

There are tons of gift shops and Greek art available. Obviously, be smart when you shop though, because you can get ripped off anywhere in the world. However, it's not a general problem in Mykonos.

Mykonos, Greece, Traditional Church Tower

Mykonos does have a season, so make sure you don't go there during the off-season because most everything will be closed. Hotels and shops generally open around Easter time and run to about October. July and August are the craziest months and you would be wise to book in advance. The best months to go are May, June and September. As far as hotels go, there are all price ranges and most people can find something affordable.

Mykonos, Greece home entrance

Everywhere you turn in Mykonos is a photo opportunity. It's absolutely beautiful. Take your camera video camera if you have one. Take PLENTY of sunblock since the sun is constant and the prices for sunblock on the island are ridiculous.

Mykonos, Greece "Venice" area

In addition to the many things you can do on Mykonos, there are also day trips and overnight trips you can take to other sites. HERE is a generic website that will give you some idea of what's available, but there is a tour office by the waterfront in the main town, and I would recommend waiting until  you get there to book anything. Delos is the most popular destination off of the island, due to it's ancient ruins.

Mykonos, Greece

Overall, Mykonos is an amazing destination and I would highly recommend it. If you like diversity in your fellow guests, cultures and food, then this is the place to go.

Mykonos, Greece windmills

There are a few photo galleries of Mykonos in my Flickr album which can be accessed by clicking
HERE. The Mykonos sets are towards the bottom of the group.


Sheri said...

I loved your photographs. Since I doubt if I can ever get to Greece, it's the next best thing! Stunning scenery. I like the idea that you are taking photographs depicting life as it is there. I can't wait to see the Santerini photos.

Luther Bailey said...

Hi Sheri!

Thank you so much for reading my blog, and for complimenting me on the photos. I hope you've had a chance to check out the Santorini post, as well as other countries. I love photography and will be posting some interesting photos of new places around the world, soon. Always feel free to comment and ask questions. Take care,


Jane Cooper said...

Thank you for sharing your photos and experiences of mykonos.I cant wait to go as just booked a family holiday in August staying mostly in the north side parnormos bay for a chill out then few days in the busier south resorts so glad of your comments that families enjoy stays as well as party goers thanks again Jane {uk}

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