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Mykonos is a popular tourist destination in the Greek islands of the Cyclades group, situated in the middle of the Aegean Sea. Mykonos is located south of Tinos, east of Syros and north of Paros and Naxos.
Mykonos is famed as a cosmopolitan destination amongst the Greek islands and widely recognised as one of the great travel meccas. It is one of the most touristed islands in the Aegean. This means that visitors should be prepared for loud dance clubs on parts of the island, an option to have 'English' breakfasts that could consist of an egg, some bacon and a few rolls with butter, and some over-priced merchandise. Mykonos, along with Santorini, is more expensive than other Greek islands.
If you have a room in the centre of town, expect to be woken by people going about their business in the early hours of the morning - this could be people arriving back from a nights clubbing or local bakers who arrive very early for work every day of the week. Although a lot of the streets in the main town are closed to traffic, locals get around on mopeds/motorbikes and on other motorised contraptions, and once again, they make quite a lot of noise in the early hours of the morning if they go past your open window. If you don't have a room that offers air conditioning and you are planning to keep your windows open at night, some ear-plugs might be an idea if you are a light sleeper.
Mykonos' main communities are Chora, the island's port town and capital, and Ano Mera.
Mykonos Town (Chora) is a stunningly picturesque Cycladic town with a maze of tiny streets and whitewashed steps lanes, houses and churches, gathered around its harbour in the middle of a wide bay. It is one of the most cosmopolitan and crowded towns of the Aegean.
The climate of Mykonos is characterised by hot, dry summers and mild winters. In the whole period mid-May through mid-October it's usually warm and sunny enough to enjoy the beaches.
Greek is the official language of Greece, and therefore it's spoken by all the permanent inhabitants of the island and most of its visitors, but the foreign visitor will have no problem at all communicating in foreign languages, mainly in English.
From the Greek mainland ferries and highspeed catamaran services run daily from Piraeus and Rafina. The highspeeds take half the time but cost twice as much.
The journey between the port of Piraeus (Athens) and Mykonos takes between 3h 30min and 5h 15min, depending on the type of ferry you are taking.
Mykonos can also be reached directly from other islands in the Cyclades. More than once a day there is a boat connection from Syros, Andros, Tinos and Paros. There are daily boat connections from Naxos, Ios, Santorini and Crete.
By cruise ship
Mykonos is a popular stop on cruise ship tours of the Greek Islands. Almost all cruise ships dock at the new port in Tourlos, some cruise ships use the old port, and if several ships visit at once, one or more may have to moor/anchor off-shore.
Mykonos has an airport (JMK), about 4km away from the main town. There are daily flights from Athens airport by Olympic Air and Aegean Airlines. During summer both Olympic Air and Aegean Airlines have daily direct flights from Thessaloniki. In high season there are also less frequent flights from Rhodes, Santorini, Crete and Volos by Sky Express. During the months of July and August Astra Airlines flies from Thessaloniki.
From May till October charter airlines fly directly to Mykonos from many European airports.
From the airport to Mykonos Town
Many Mykonos hotels offer airport transfers, at rates that can be anything from free to more than a taxi. Best chance for a free transfer is when you book your room directly with the hotel. A transfer by your hotel is the easiest way to get to your hotel, so check with your hotel before arrival.
Taxis are usually waiting at the airport, at the taxi rank opposite the terminal building, but competition for them can be keen. If there is no taxi waiting you can see the sign with the phone numbers of the taxi radio office so you may call. A taxi from Mykonos airport to town costs about € 8, a few euros more if you are carrying luggage.
With a length of 12 to 15 km and a width of 10km, Mykonos is one of the smallest of the Cyclades islands. On Mykonos you can get around by bus, taxi, car, scooter, ATV or boat.
There is a bus network that takes you around the island. There are two bus stations in Mykonos Town, each on different sides of Mykonos Town. From the main southern bus station, Fabrica, buses can be taken for departures to Platys Gialos (every half hour), Paraga (every hour), Paradise (every half hour), Ornos and Agios Ioannis. There are also night buses from Mykonos to Platys Gialos and Paradise leaving every hour.
There is no bus connection between the two bus stations. From one bus station to the other will take about 20 minutes of walking through the streets of Mykonos Town.
On the entire island there are only about 30 taxis, which means that depending on taxis for transport can be an exercise of great patience. In Mykonos Town the main location for taxis is in Manto Square (also called Town Square or Taxi Square), on the harbour front near the statue.
What to see
Attractions in Mykonos Town
The Windmills, Mykonos Town (western part of town). From as early as the 16th century, the windmills are one of the most recognized landmarks of Mykonos. Once this island was a great producer of wheat and bread. The area of the windmills has a splendid view on Little Venice and is the most popular place in Mykonos to watch the sunset.
Little Venice (Alefkandra), Mykonos Town (most western part of town). A district located at the sea, famous for its picturesque medieval two and three storey houses, which stand like a wall above the sea, and their colourful wooden balconies.
Panagia Paraportiani, Mykonos Town. Of all the churches on Mykonos, the most impressive is Panagia Paraportianí, a true Byzantine jewel.
Petros the Pelican, the island's mascot, can sometimes be found at the waterfront or even up in town. Originally the pelican was found wounded off the coast of Paranga shore after a storm back in the 1950s by a local fisherman.