Mykonos, Greece – Best Beaches and Hiking Paths
Note: This is a segment of a larger post I wrote about my 10-day trip to through Athens, Mykonos, and Santorini a few years ago.
Despotiko Hotel – We stayed in the lovely Hotel Despotiko on Mykonos, which is a 200-year old Bishop’s-house-turned-boutique-hotel. It was quite close to Mykonos Town, but not quite within in it, which was perfect for us because the nightlife fully lives up to its reputation. The hotel offered beautiful rooms, great (free) breakfast, affordable prices, and an excellent location.
Agios Ioannis Beach – This beautiful beach was far enough away from the main town to offer a break from the crowds in a serene, calm setting. We spent our time hiking from one isolated sunbathing cove to the next while enjoying an excellent view of Delos island with drinks in hand. This was easily my favorite beach on Mykonos. You could purchase drinks and use facilities at a nearby hotel, however it was easy to hike away from the populated area and spend the entire day amongst the coves gazing at nearby islands.
Platis Gialos and the Hiking Path – Platis Gialos is one of the most popular beaches on the island, and is adorned by numerous bars, restaurants, hotels and other facilities. I recommend checking it out since it’s where you can pick up the hiking path between the main Mykonos beaches. Hiking this path was one of my favorite parts of the trip, and definitely my favorite part of Mykonos. The path winds up hills and through valleys along the island coastline. You can take it from Platis Gialos to Psarou, then on to Paradise and Super Paradise (although we weren’t able to find Super Paradise on the path). A note of forewarning – It’s difficult to find the hiking path, and many will say it doesn’t exist (or is too far to walk) if you ask . We found it by walking along the beach in the general direction of Psarou until we picked it up.
Psarou Beach – Psarou is a tranquil, VIP-style beach that boasts luxurious sun beds, a nice restaurant, and is surrounded by private yachts. To give you a sense of the luxury, a James Bond scene was allegedly filmed there. We swam and lounged at Psarou for a few hours before hiking on to the famed Paradise Beach.
Paradise Beach – Paradise beach is famous for Tropicana beach club, which covers a good portion of the shore. Paradise is exactly what you would expect, or – as my mom described it – a real ‘shit show.’ There’s a good bit of open sex, heavy alcohol and drug consumption, and a number of scooter and other vehicle mini accidents on the road leading up to the beach. The bus to and from Paradise is an adventure in itself, especially during peak partying hours. The driver packs the bus full of irrationally drunk EU young adults, and zooms up and down small, rocky mountains while dodging people puking in the road, and falling off their scooters.
Mykonos Town – We stayed in Mykonos town, which is a beautiful white-washed village. One area, called Little Venice, is flush against the water and very near Mykonos’ iconic windmills. We frequently hiked back and forth between the windmills, which are on a hill overlooking the village, and the village to grab a bite or drink. During one of our hikes, we came upon a white-washed church that jutted from a platform over the water. We spent one evening there drinking wine and watching the sunset.