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Mykonos, Greece. Waterfront in Little Venice, Mykonos at sunset.
Photograph: Shutterstock

The 16 best things to do in Mykonos

It's a bit like a Greek Ibiza, but if you do it right, Mykonos is the holiday of dreams

Heidi Fuller-Love
Written by
Marissa Tejada
Written by
Heidi Fuller-Love

It’s no secret that Mykonos gets a bit of a bad rep. Years and years of honeymoons and influencers have blown this city up as the ultimate Greek island break, and if you go at the wrong time of year, you might not be able to move for tourists. But if you do Mykonos right, it’s completely and utterly magical. 

In a week in Mykonos, you can party all night to famous DJs, have dinner overlooking a crystal-blue sea, stroll through its old town and take a load of great day trips too. And yes, you can snap the most Instagrammable pic of your life too, we won’t judge. Our local writers have planned the ultimate itinerary for your trip: here are the best things to do in Mykonos. 

🇬🇷 The best places to visit in Greece
🏛️ The best things to do in Athens
🧿 The best hotels in Mykonos
🌅 The best things to do in Santorini

This article was written by Greece-based writers Marissa Tejada and Heidi Fuller-Love. At Time Out, all of our travel guides are written by local writers who know their cities inside out. For more about how we curate, see our editorial guidelines.

Top things to do in Mykonos, Greece

Mykonos Town
Photograph: Shutterstock

1. Mykonos Town

What is it? Mykonos Town is one of the best-preserved historic towns in Greece. It is the perfect destination to get lost wandering about.

Why go? Known as Chora (which means 'main town') by locals, Mykonos Town has a photo opportunity at every corner. Here, whitewashed cube-like homes contrast beautifully with brightly-painted wooden doors to make simple yet stunning contrasts. Expect to see pastel bougainvillaea draped fences in front of tiny Greek churches, stylish shops, and restaurants and bars lining the labyrinth of powder-white, walled lanes.

Mykonos Windmills
Photograph: Shutterstock

2. Mykonos Windmills

What is it? One of the most iconic sights on the island stands on a hill on the border of Mykonos Town; the Mykonos Windmills.

Why go? Walk here for a panoramic view of Mykonos Town and an Insta with Mykonian history. These windmills hark back to an era when wind power was used to grind grain and feed locals. This area was named Alefkandra back then (which means 'whitening') because it was where locals once hung their laundry. Stop by the small beach at the foot of the hill for another picturesque spot where the sea surf splashes wildly onto the shore. It’s the perfect place for a picnic – maybe with some great local bread.

Paraportiani Church
Photograph: Shutterstock

3. Paraportiani Church

What is it? This church is one of the most photographed in the world, and it stands in Mykonos Town.

Why go? The Greek Cycladic islands are full of churches and chapels. There are 365 whitewashed churches on Mykonos island alone – one built for every day of the year. However, Paraportiani is the most famous. That’s thanks to its architecture. The unique building is made of four chapels, each built at a different point in history. The mix of buildings, all under a coat of white paint, is a sight to behold.

Little Venice
Photograph: Shutterstock

4. Little Venice

What is it? Little Venice is one of the most scenic areas of Mykonos. Here, whitewashed buildings dangle over the edge of the island, seemingly built on sea rocks right above the sea.

Why go? The sunset views here will take your goddamn breath away. Be sure to secure a sea-facing spot at a cocktail bar to soak them in. For those wondering how such a place came to be, Little Venice’s history harks back to a simpler time on the island. It was built in the sixteenth century out of convenience. Pirates were a real threat then. Residents built balconies overhanging the water as an easy way to quickly load goods on and off ships without them getting stolen. 

Take a two wheel tour
Photograph: Shutterstock

5. Take a two wheel tour

What is it? A scooter trip to discover the island’s wilder side.

Why go? Tired of waiting for buses and don’t want to have the bother of parking a car? Why not see the Island of the Winds from the back of a scooter? Whether you follow winding roads to 17th-century fortified monastery Agios Panteleimonas, stop off at Tirokomio Mykonou near Ano Mera to sample the local cheeses or just chill on the dune-studded sands of Natura network-protected beach Agios Sostis, it’s the best way to explore.

Cavo Paradiso
Photograph: Shutterstock

6. Cavo Paradiso

What is it? Mykonos lives up to its glamorous party rep and has every taste covered, but this open-air venue is a particularly great out-of-town spot for the early hours.

Why go? Whether you want a dive bar, a Greek music club, a cocktail lounge, an all-night dance club, a gay club or a beach club where you can dance on the sand (or on top of tables), the Mykonos summer party scene is packed with options. Open on Saturday and Tuesday (well, the early hours of Sunday and Wednesday, technically), the fun starts at 11 and ends long after the sun has come up. Cavo Paradiso will take you till dawn, with heavy hitters like Steve Aoki and Armin van Buuren on the decks.


7. Cook like a local at Mykonian Spiti

What is it? A farm and cookery school in Messaria village.

Why go? Inspiration for the famed Mediterranean Diet, Greek food is renowned for its health-giving properties. 

At family-run farm Mykonian Spiti, you’ll spend six hours learning how to make gemista (stuffed vegetables), spanakopita (spinach pies) and other vitamin-packed traditional dishes using ingredients sourced from the farm’s garden. Once you’ve mastered the art of cooking Greek-style, you’ll enjoy an alfresco dinner in the company of some of the farm’s free-range inhabitants.

Jet out to the beaches

8. Jet out to the beaches

What is it? A water taxi tour from Platis Gialos beach

Why go? If you believe the journey is essential to the experience, you’ll love this trip over sparkling turquoise seas to the island’s best beaches.

The less-crowded strips of Agrari and Elia are perfect for sun-worshippers, whilst families will prefer the warm crystal waters and talc-soft sands of Ornos beach. Movers and shakers should make a beeline for Paradise beach, whose dusky sands littered with hip restaurants and cool bars are the dreamy backdrop for sets by world-class DJs.

Photograph: Shutterstock

9. Delos

What is it? Fancy an excursion? One of Greece’s most fascinating archaeological sites can be found on the nearby island of Delos.

Why go? On this tiny, sacred island – the mythical birthplace of the Greek god Apollo – you’ll find yourself among ancient ruins, including remnants of temples, theatres and villas. Although Delos is unpopulated now, the ruins prove it was considered a grand city of the Cyclades. Pop into the small museum that houses mosaics and artefacts found on this UNESCO World Heritage Site.

See the Caldera

10. See the Caldera

What is it? A day trip to Santorini.

Why go? With high-speed ferries whizzing you over to the world-famous volcanic island in less than two hours, this is the perfect day trip.

Once you’ve got over the wow appeal of those spectacular caldera views, shop for local products in capital Fira’s labyrinth of shopping streets, and then spend a c0uple of fascinating hours exploring Akrotiri, Santorini’s Cycladic Bronze Age settlement - dubbed The Pompeii of The Aegean - which was buried by a volcanic eruption back in the 17th century BC.

Ano Mera Village
Photograph: Shutterstock

11. Ano Mera Village

What is it? The little inland town of Ano Mera is worth exploring for an authentic look at quiet island life. It shows a quiet side to this party island. 

Why go? A highlight of a visit to Ano Mera is the sixteenth-century Panagia Tourliani Monastery which stands in the central square. Visit this sacred spot to admire embroideries and wood carvings. If you’re lucky enough to visit on August 15, you are in for the biggest event on the calendar; the church festival, where hundreds attend for traditional dancing and food.  

Hit the hippest club

12. Hit the hippest club

What is it? A Greek-Italian fusion food restaurant that morphs into a hip beach club at nightfall.

Why go? If you want to mingle with slebs ranging from Lady Gaga to Leo as you sip cocktails and gaze out over an armada of yachts bobbing in Psarou Bay, Nammos is the place for you.

Remember, however, that there’s a minimum spend charge here, even if you just have coke (and we don’t mean the powder kind), so be prepared to max your credit card.


Photograph: Shutterstock

13. Kalafati

What is it? When Greece’s Meltemi summer winds blow – and they blow hard - the beaches on Mykonos are the perfect windy escape for windsurfing enthusiasts. Kalafati is one of the best.

Why go? Mykonos is blessed with idyllic beaches of turquoise waters that meet fine powder sand. Many of them are also idyllic for windsurfers. Head to Kalafati, Platis Gialos or Ftelia to see how these annual summer winds become a challenging but fun natural force for surfers.

Take a wine tour

14. Take a wine tour

What is it? Sip Malagouzia and Mandilari on a tour of the island’s top winery.

Why go? Shots might be the preferred tipple in most of the island’s clubs but the local grape juice, which has been grown on Mykonos since 1600 BC, merits discovering. 

Take a deep dive into the island’s age-old wine traditions at Mykonos Vioma, a quirky and inventive winery near Ano Mera where they use classical music to help the grapes mature.

Archeological Museum of Mykonos
Photograph: Shutterstock

15. Archeological Museum of Mykonos

What is it? History buffs can learn a bit of Mykonian history at this small-but-quaint museum in Mykonos Town.

Why go? Go to the Archeological Museum of Mykonos for a look at ancient artefacts and marble statues. While you’re in town, pop into Lena's House, a unique folk museum in the form of a middle-class, 19th-century Mykonos house. The Aegean Maritime Museum tells the story of Greece’s maritime history and traditions, including the importance of the merchant ship.

16. Spend a night with the stars at Cine Manto

What is it? An open-air cinema in the heart of Mykonos town.

Why go? With its palm-tree-shaded restaurant and mega-sized screen set in lush gardens surrounding a lily-studded pond (inhabited by a pelican called Petros), Cine Manto, is an oasis for cinephiles.

It takes some seeking out - it’s tucked into one of Chora’s bougainvillaea-shaded back alleys - but it’s well worth the effort for the thrill of watching Mamma Mia! and other classic movies as you chill beneath a canopy of stars.


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