This past fall we finally made it to one of our bucket list destinations - Greece. We had debated going here for our honeymoon and a few years ago when we opted for Italy instead, but after coming home on a honeymoon high a few months earlier, we couldn't help ourselves but just book it. Since neither of us had been to Greece, we wanted to visit more of the mainstream Greek Islands for this trip so we chose to do Mykonos first, then Santorini, and finally an afternoon (layover) in Athens.
We arrived in Mykonos around 9pm and knew in order to stay awake after our overnight flight from New York to Athens and then Athens to Mykonos that we would need to force ourselves out. After a quick change and shower at our hotel, the Andronikos Mykonos, we walked the 20 minutes or so into town. The normal dinner hours in Greece, and especially the islands, don't really begin until 8 at the earliest, so we fit in perfectly at 10pm. We wanted a more traditional restaurant for our first night and were able to snag the single tiny table outside of To Maereio so we could also people watch. By the time we finished dinner a little before midnight, the town was bursting with people and music even though it was the last weekend in September. We missed the real party season but got a glimpse of what Mykonos town is like in the weekend during the summer months.
For our first full day in Mykonos, we knew we wanted to explore the blue and white streets in town as well as Little Venice and the famous windmills. We didn't have much more of a plan other than walk around and really get a feel for the town. We woke up late and enjoyed a tasty breakfast at our hotel before heading out around 11. We were hoping to get some time in at the pool but it was a little too breezy on our first morning.
Instead we started off toward the windmills which are a little detour from the main streets in town. This is also where you can see Little Venice. The waves really do crash up on the buildings here and it's such a pretty photo to get from where the windmills are. Vice versa, it's fun to sit in one of the bars in Little Venice to capture the lighthouses from that angle (especially at sunset). From there, we started exploring the narrow, winding streets in town with no direction. There are so many shops to stop into and restaurants to get a quick bite that you feel like you are never done exploring. Depending on the time of year you go though, be cautioned that the streets are tiny and it can get very busy. Even in the last weekend of September it was crowded so on a weekend in August with a cruise ship in port I would think the experience may be a little hectic. We stopped at Lotus Mykonos for a glass of wine and snack and had a late lunch at Pepper. While we liked the food, it definitely didn't live up to the hype of it's reviews.
We were enticed by all of the 4 wheelers and quads around the island so we decided to rent one late afternoon to take a spin and also get back to the hotel instead of walking. It was so much fun and highly recommended! They are so cheap to rent and perfect for two people. It's such a fun way to see a bit more of the island outside of town and there are tons of places to rent them from. We drove through Ornos to Paradise Beach and Platos Gialos - I can see how this is a scene in the summertime!
For dinner that night we had made a reservation at Kastro's (reservations are recommended and most likely necessary depending on the time of year you're visiting). It has a great view of the windmills since it's situated toward the end of Little Venice, so you can plan around sunset if you want. We decided to watch the sunset at a bar a few doors down at Rhapsody and then went to dinner after.
We really embraced the time change and slept later than usual again on our second full day but had to make it out of the hotel by 10am for a cooking class that we signed up for. We like to try to do as many "local" things as possible when we travel whether it's cooking, wine tasting, or just walking around and feeling like a local. We booked an afternoon class with Mykonian Spiti. I would recommend it for the spanakopita recipe alone but it wasn't my favorite class or tour we've done. That aside, the food we made really was delicious (the spanakopita was the clear winner but the tzatziki was really tasty too.)
After our class, we stopped back at the hotel to get ready to head back to town. We stopped at a tiny coffee shop, Sic Coffee Bar (which also doubles as a real bar) and sat outside for a quick cappuccino to perk us up after too much spanakopita. We were hoping to catch the sunset since the night before was overcast and then head to drinks and a late dinner. We wound up staying in the area at the Veranda which is toward the beginning of Little Venice. It's a big place with so many great places to watch the sunset but it does get really crowded around this time of day so be prepared to go early. We enjoyed the drinks but the sunset wasn't the best - the sun peaked out from the clouds from time to time but overall it was a bit disappointing.
We didn't have a plan for dinner since we weren't sure if we would even be hungry but since it was our last night in Mykonos we didn't want to miss the opportunity for more Mykonian food so we ended up at Caesars. It's located in the center of town and has a nice outdoor seating area as well as inside. We loved the fried feta appetizer there! Still getting over jet lag we headed back to the hotel after dinner but for anyone looking for a night life experience, this is definitely the place to go. There are tons of places from bars to night clubs to choose from as long as you are here during the popular tourist season.
But for us, we enjoyed a calm night on our last full day in Mykonos. See more of our trip in our 3 day itinerary of Santorini here.