Mykonos is one of the most popular Greek islands, with a plethora of sun-drenched beaches and a vibrant nightlife scene. For the best beaches in Mykonos, check out Elia, Ornos, and Paradise Beach. Alternatively, if you’re heading to the island on a romantic vacation, some of the best things to do in Mykonos for couples include watching the sunset from Little Venice and dining on the oceanfront at places like Principote.
If you’re instead searching for things to do in Mykonos, Greece from a cruise ship stopover, stick to the town center and its surrounding beaches. For more fun and unique things to do in Mykonos, keep reading.
1. Little Venice
Little Venice is known as the most romantic spot on the entire island, which is quite the accolade. Its name comes from the fact it’s reminiscent of charming Venice in Italy, which is seen in the old whitewashed Venetian-style buildings with wooden balconies sitting on the sea. If you rent one of these, you are in the perfect position to capture spectacular sunsets. You will also find restaurants, bars, art galleries, and nightclubs in Little Venice.
Ftelia is a beach on the island’s north side. About a 20-minute drive from the town center, Ftelia has a lot of inviting features. Namely, it has fewer crowds combined with the crystal clear blue waters that the Mediterranean Sea is famous for. Off the shoreline, Ftelia is also a popular windsurfing spot. When you need to escape the sizzling heat, head to the oceanfront and stylish Ftelia Beach Club, which serves delicious Mediterranean cuisine.
3. Ornos Beach
On the other hand, Ornos Beach is located on the island’s south side and is surrounded by restaurants, bars, and hotels. This means it’s very popular and hence overcrowded, particularly in the summer months. But if you don’t mind sharing the sand with a few others, Ornos is a great family-friendly beach that is accessible by car or public bus from the town center. There are also sunbeds and umbrellas available to rent, so get in quick!
4. Archaeological Museum of Mykonos
If you love ancient history and art, you must visit the Archaeological Museum of Mykonos. Established in 1902, it’s home to an extensive artifacts collection that was discovered across the island and in neighboring Delos and Rhenia. It includes funeral statues, ceramics, marble and clay sculptures, jewelry and vases that date from the Prehistoric to Hellenistic periods. One of its most famous pieces is a vase from the 7th century BC with an image of the Trojan horse.
One of the best things to do in Mykonos is to visit Principote, as they say, there’s nowhere in the world quite like their beach club. Sitting on Panormos Beach and a relatively new kid on the block, head to Principote and enjoy a refreshing cocktail while relaxing on a sun-soaked lounge. Alternatively, dress up to dine in their restaurant, which serves Mediterranean-inspired dishes. This includes moussaka and fresh local seafood like octopus and sea bream.
6. Platis Gialos Beach
Platis Gialos is another beach backdropped by several hotels and restaurants. It’s popular with families, thanks to its shallow and clear azure water. Platis Gialos also has a large sandy shore that’s completely lined with loungers and umbrellas. Taxi-boats depart every hour from Platis Gialos to other beaches as well, including Paradise and Super Paradise on the island’s southern side. A visit to Platis Gialos is one of the best things to do in Mykonos this summer.
7. Archaeological Site of Delos
Located a short ferry from Mykonos is the island of Delos and the Archaeological Site of Delos. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, it’s a sacred island for the ancient Greeks, as according to Greek mythology it was the birthplace of both Apollo and Artemis. There’s a museum on Delos that houses one of the world’s finest ancient Greek sculpture collections. Other monuments found across Delos include The House of Dionysis and the Terrace of the Lions.
8. Mykonos windmills
The island’s most iconic landmark is undoubtedly its cylindrical windmills with thatched and pointed roofs. Dating back to the 16th century, the windmills took advantage of high winds to provide grain to local residents. Today there are 16 windmills found across the island and some have even been transformed into homes. Bonis Windmill has also been turned into a museum, while there are seven grouped together on a hill, which is a popular sunset spot.
9. Armenistis Lighthouse
Established in 1891 and standing at just over 62 feet tall, Armenistis Lighthouse is a fully-functioning lighthouse located on the island’s northwest coast. Overlooking the neighboring island of Tinos, Armenistis Lighthouse stands as a tribute to the island’s rich maritime history. It’s a great place to visit for panoramic coastline views and scenic sunset shots. The best way to get to Armenistis Lighthouse is either by doing an organized tour or by renting a car.
10. Kalafatis Beach
Another day, another beach to check out on this picturesque island. Kalafatis Beach is located on the island’s east side and is less developed than many of its more central counterparts. However, the beach still offers a long stretch of sand, the mandatory crystal clear water, and sun loungers and umbrellas for rent. You should also visit Kalafatis Beach if you enjoy windsurfing. Surrounding Kalafatis Beach, you’ll find a smattering of hotels and restaurants.
11. Agia Anna Beach
There are actually two Agia Anna Beaches located on Mykonos, but we’re talking about the one found down the road from Kalafatis Beach. Just like Kalafatis Beach, Agia Anna Beach has sun loungers and umbrellas and is more relaxed and less crowded. One of the other reasons people visit this Agia Anna Beach is to dine at the oceanfront Agia Anna Beach Bar and Restaurant. There’s nothing better than enjoying fresh seafood by the sea.
12. Paradise Beach
One of the most popular things to do in Mykonos is to soak up the sun from beautiful Paradise Beach. Known as the island’s most famous beach, you can expect to be greeted by both the mesmerizing Mediterranean Sea and a sea of people at Paradise Beach. Lined with sunbeds and umbrellas, it attracts a younger crowd who are looking for the quintessential summer beach party experience that overflows from the surrounding restaurants and bars.
13. Super Paradise Beach
Around a headland from Paradise is Super Paradise Beach, which has a similar party atmosphere. The music gets louder in the afternoon, but the sunbeds and umbrellas remain squished together all day long. However, the beach itself is very enticing, with calm and crystal clear water. To reach the beach, there’s conveniently a shuttle service from Fabrika Square. Super Paradise Beach Club is also synonymous with the island’s party scene and is regularly frequented by celebrities.
14. Matoyianni Street
Matoyianni Street is the main street in Mykonos Town. It’s characterized by stone walkways and whitewashed buildings with blue accents. Matoyianni Street is also the best place to go shopping on the island, as it’s home to a combination of designer stores, local boutiques, and souvenir shops. Check out Delos Dolphins for unique jewelry pieces and Soho-Soho for designer clothing and to rub shoulders with celebrities. Matoyianni Street also has many restaurants, bars, and nightclubs.
15. Elia Beach
The final beach on this list is Elia Beach, which stands out from the rest. The island’s largest beach, it’s known for being a clothing-optional and gay-friendly beach. It also has less of a party atmosphere than Paradise and Super Paradise. Elia Beach is nearly completely covered in umbrellas and loungers and has a watersports facility for visitors who want to go water-skiing, parasailing, or windsurfing. It has a few great waterfront dining options as well.
16. Rarity Gallery
One of the best things to do in Mykonos if you’re an art aficionado is to visit Rarity Gallery, which is Greece’s leading art gallery. Established in 1994, its curators are passionate about displaying inspiring international contemporary artists. Divided into five rooms that each follow their own narrative, Rarity Gallery exhibits an inviting combination of well-known artists alongside emerging artists. So take a break from the sun and prepare to be amazed by Rarity Gallery’s unique exhibits.
17. Paraportiani Orthodox Church
The Church of Panagia Paraportiani is said to be one of the world’s most photographed churches. The whitewashed Greek Orthodox church is actually made up of five separate churches that were built either on top of or beside one another. Built between the 14th and 17th centuries using varying architectural styles, the Church of Panagia Paraportiani is conveniently located in the town center. Don’t miss this iconic photo opportunity during your visit to Mykonos.