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Mykonos Cyclades is considered the most cosmopolitan spot in Greece also known the ultimate Gay travel destination. The island is famous for its amazing beaches, the picturesque villages, the vivid nightlife and its gay friendly attitude. This is the second most popular Greek destination and it is often described as the Ibiza of Greece. The Cyclades Islands in Greece are some of the most magnificent islands in the world. The startling contrast between bright white sands and sharp cliffs overlooking crystal blue waters offers visitors a dreamlike experience that is incomparable to anything even the most seasoned tourist has seen.
 
Mykonos has reached iconic status as a LGBT cruise destination. It is the place to go gay in the Mediterranean, with gay travelers flocking from all corners of the earth to shake loose and let go in a comfortable and welcoming environment. Mykonos is only ten miles long, making it one of the smallest of the Cyclades. Visitors from other islands find Mikonos to be a lovely change of pace and atmosphere. Its dry, rough topography makes its radiant beaches all the more inviting, and its air is clean and warm. Mikonos has earned the reputation of being a cosmopolitan island that draws an enormous number of tourists to its sandy beaches and hilly terrain. It is quite a dynamic place, attracting all types of travelers depending on the seasons. During the early summer months, it is a hot spot for party-seeking college students. But during the off-peak months, Mykonos transforms into a haven for sophisticated tourists, artists, and intellectuals seeking to vacation in the midst of beauty. It is also quite popular among Londoners and Parisians, as it is known for its chic style and accessibility. During her life, Jacqueline Kennedy-Onassis frequented the island and helped transform it into a decidedly socialite-heavy place. The same elegance and magic that once attracted Jackie O. remains today in the form of a beautifully cohesive landscape that suggests a reprieve from the harsh contrast of some of the other Cyclades terrain. Here you will find sweeping shores, warm air, charming houses and an aura of placidity.
 
The capital of Mykonos is Hora, a town of fishermen and boaters, where the invitation is to relax and enjoy the slower environment. Here you can spend an entire day reading on the beach. Or, perhaps you will want to window shop at seaside boutiques, stroll along the harbor, and sample Greek cuisine in any number of Hora's restaurants and specialty stores. You could just set out with no destination at all and wind your way through the town's delightfully narrow streets and explore. You will soon realize that in Hora, aimlessness is an acceptable and commendable form of leisure.
 
Whether you are looking for excitement or calm, you are sure to find it here, as Mikonos also boasts of an energetic social scene. Spend the day relaxing, then dance through the night. There is truly something for everyone here.
 
Docking & Local Transportation
Cruise ships dock at the Mykonos Harbor, which is right in the center of the town.
 
Buses are by far the best way to get around Mykonos. There are two stations: the north station (22890-23360), which is adjacent to the harbor, and the south station (22890-23360), a ten-minute walk inland from the harbor. From either station you can get to any of the beaches, shopping areas, and other tourist attractions. Buses are normally on time as per the schedule that you can get at the stations.
 
Hailing a taxi is easy here, especially from Taxi Square in the middle of town. Your driver should follow the posted rates for each destination, and if they do not, remind them that you saw the posting and are aware of the proper fare.
 
Rental cars are available as well, but parking in town is quite strict. If you unknowingly park in a forbidden area, your car will be stripped of its license plates and the onus will be on you to retrieve them from the police and pay the expensive fine.
 
Local Interests
Walking around Mykonos is an adventure in itself. Each neighborhood is filled with its own appeal and charisma, as you will surely find out upon embarking on your tour. There are three central areas that are most popular. Plateia Mantos Mavroyenous (or Taxi Square, as it is commonly known), Plateia Tria Pigadia, and Plateia Laka are places where cafes and shops are plentiful. They are all near museums, art galleries, and of course, beaches. Local art galleries are everywhere, because Mykonos has a thriving artists community. Look for gallery openings and specialty shows that display the artists work when you visit. You will certainly be impressed.
 
If you are the type that needs to have a destination, Mykonos can help. The Archaeological Museum (Ayios Stefanos, 22890-22325) is a great place to begin. The museum houses ancient art and relics from Mykonos and mainland Greece. The Folklore Museum (22890-22591) is nearby and offers tourists a chance to bone up on their history while admiring the artistic sculptures and icons found here. Go to Orama Art Gallery (22890-26339) and see the pottery collection by local artists.
 
On the southwest end of the port, you will find Little Venice; a delightful area of bookstores, cafes, and gift shops overlooking the water. You may choose to stop at a café in Little Venice for a light lunch, then walk up the nearby hill to the Mykonos windmills, which stand today as a reminder of how wind power was once the island's main source of energy. Or, hike along the Central Harbor for a serene and picturesque experience.
 
After a day of walking and taking in the sites, any of Mykonos beaches on both the north and south shores offer breathtaking views of the sunset. Panormos Bay on the north shore makes for a postcard-like photo opportunity, and Elia Beach on the south shore usually draws bigger crowds, and audiences are known to applaud the nightly show that the sun puts on as it sets.
 
Things to see & do
Mykonos Little Venice
Little Venice is one of the most romantic places in the whole of Mykonos. This neighborhood is replete with elegant and gorgeous old houses that are situated precariously on the edge of the sea. Many discerning travelers in the past have fallen in love with this charming quarter to its magnetic appeal. Quite amazing are the sunset views from Little Venice. Its whitewashed edifices against the backdrop of the azure blue Aegean Sea is simply marvelous. The air of nonchalance that prevails in Little Venice disarms the most discerning of travelers. Little Venice evolved from the picturesque Alevkantra beach and extends right into the peripherial areas of Kastro, as it is popularly referred to. Visitors are highly recommended to stay in one of the quaint houses that dot the Mykonos shoreline for the sheer pleasure that they afford.
 
You can sit down with a peg or two of your favorite tipple in the quintessential wooden stairways even as the surging waves crash underneath. A truly magical aura indeed. The ethereal beauty of Little Venice is such that it has and still is a favorite haunt of highly acclaimed artists who have made this charming neighborhood of Mykonos their home. In fact many an artist have portrayed the magnetic beauty of Little Venice in their priceless artworks, etchings and paintings thereby promoting the reputation of this esteemed neighborhood of Mykonos to the outside world. No wonder, Little Venice is today among the most photographed tourist neighborhood in the whole of Europe.
 
Little Venice is fully geared up to cater to the whims and fancies of the discerning international travelers. There are plenty of entertainment options ranging from pulsating discotheques to well-stocked bars where party animals are known to jive well past midnight. Art galleries too abound here and exhibitions of renowned artists area a regular feature. In the days of yore, many distinguished sailors had built their houses right on the picturesque shoreline. Many of these houses have today been converted into chic bars which are still very conspicuous by their old world charm. You can still sit down with your folks over endless pegs of your favorite liqueur and watch the solitary shipping vessel cruise by at the distant horizon creating a surreal impression
 
Beaches
Mykonos is a very popular island visited throughout the year by foreigners and Greeks. The island's beaches are usually crowded and many beach parties take place there from early in the morning till late at night. Mykonos, apart from being a gay paradise is also an ideal destination for nudists since the choices in this section are many. On the island you will find crowded nudist beaches, more isolated and mixed beaches meaning with swimmers that have their bathing suits on along with naturists, without any of them being annoyed by the others. Needless to say that topless swimming is allowed everywhere. So, here are the famous beaches of Mykonos...

Most would assert that the south shore beaches are the prettiest and most tourist-friendly. The sand is soft and the air is temperate at beaches like Paradise and Paranga, two favorites among the college crowd. Ornos is popular among families, and Platis Yialos maintains a quieter presence. Beaches on the north shore are equally pretty, just a little less refined. For that reason, beaches like Ftelia and Elia are a great place to go to escape the masses.
 
Divers will love Mykonos, as it is world renowned for its undersea treasures. Psarou Beach (22890-24808) is a great place to take lessons. Or, if you are already certified, guided tours are offered as well. Dive Adventures (on Paradise Beach, 22890-26539) rents equipment and gives lessons catering to beginners.
 
Paradise
Paradise is the islands most famous beach and mainly a party beach! Its original name is Kalamopodi but it became known worldwide with its English name. It is accessible by footpath from Platis Yialos, by bus, or caique. It is an organized beach with sun beds, umbrellas, beach bars, pool clubs, a camping area, a mini market, jet skis and an abundance of water sports. The parties last all day, the place is crowded with young people dancing and drinking. Topless swimming is very common and since Paradise was the original nude beach of the island, it still attracts many nudists.
 
Super Paradise
This is another party also known (nude) beach which is large and sandy, with six rows of umbrellas and sun beds. To the left of the beach you will see the beach bars and the party animals dancing and drinking and some celebrities, the middle is where the tourists usually sit while the right side is frequented by gay people with amazing tans and nudists. This beach is less organized than Super Paradise but the parties organized are a success and the place is always crowded. You will find it to the southern bay of Mykonos where you will go by car or caique from Platis Yialos.
 
Elia
Easily accessible by bus from town and a regular boat service from Platis Yialos, Elia beach is the largest of the south chain of beaches. Good restaurants, hotels and bungalows provide beach-side refreshments and accommodation with the added attraction of the islands only water park situated just back from the beach and only minutes away. In Elia you will find a specific area visited by many nudists.
 
Agrari
Keeping commercial development to a minimum, Agrari has remained one of the quietest beaches of the southern chain. Medium in size this beach has a single restaurant and beach bar that caters to all who enjoy seclusion from the crowds. There is no local bus service but Agrari can be reached by private transport, taxi and boat shuttles from Platis Yialos. Due to its close proximity to Elia this beach can also be reached easily by foot from the Elia bus terminus. This is not a licensed nudist beach but it is frequented by many naturists.

Paraga
Paraga beach isn't a very crowded beach and it is the first of the southern beaches which is tolerant to nude sunbathing and supports the needs of the young and fashionable. The landscape that surrounds it is very picturesque and there are also restaurants and music beach bars that help to the creation of a holiday atmosphere not only for its daily visitors but for those who chose to stay in its hotels and well organized camping facilities as well. There is a public bus service that will take you to Paraga as well as a frequent boat service from Platis Yialos beach.
 
Eating Out
After 50 years of successful and cosmopolitan tourism, Mykonos Island has some of the highest quality restaurants in Greece: there is absolutely something for every taste...whether top class garden restaurants in Hora ( Mykonos Town), special beach fish tavernas, foreign-cuisine specialists, cafes on the Town water front, or other simple 'eateries'.
 
Kikis Tavern -- This cosy tavern is perfectly located above the beach at Agios Sostis and run locally. Food is grilled in the open on a charcoal barbeque because there is no electricity, so you can’t phone ahead and book a table. The restaurant also relies on the memory of its owner, who sees that everybody is served in the order they arrive. Tucked away above the bay there are also no signposts meaning the most failsafe way to discover this little establishment is to rely on your nose. The aroma of the charcoal barbeque carries all the way to the beach and the menu offers a range of grilled local fish and traditional meat dishes, well-priced and served in healthy portions. Guests can enjoy the calm and secluded atmosphere of this little eatery from the small, shaded patio which directly overlooks the ocean.
Kiki’s Tavern, Agios Sostis Beach, Greece
M-eating offers some of the best food in Mykonos, served in a small local house that is typical of traditional Mykonian architecture. The interior is elegantly decorated in white with wooden detail and as well as the intimacy of the indoor restaurant there is also an outdoor veranda and a garden for guests to enjoy dinner al fresco in summer. The chef and owner of M-eating acquired his experience working in five-star hotels and he has here created a restaurant of five-star quality famed for its good service and its excellent food. The menu offers exceptional Greek fare, from soutzoukakia and octopus to Myconian honey pie.
M-eating, 10 Kalogera street, Mykonos Town, Greece +30 22890 78550
 
Katerina’s Bar and Restaurant is ideally located in the area of Mykonos known as Little Venice. Here the medieval houses of two of three storeys are brightly painted with colourful wooden balconies that jut out over the ocean, giving Mykonos the feel of one of the most famous of all Italy’s cities. Katerina’s has just such a balcony, which affords stunning views over the water and the historic windmills. Built by the Venetians in the 16th century the windmills have been popular ever since and are one of the most iconic sites in all Mykonos. There are sixteen of them in total on the island, also known as the ‘Island of the Winds’, and Katerina’s offers the chance to experience them while enjoying a fantastic evening meal. There are only three tables on the outdoor patio so it is worthwhile to book ahead if you want sunset views.
Katerina’s Bar, Agion Anargiron 8, Mykonos Town, Greece +30 2289 023084
Madoupas Café Mykonos is one of the most visited of the Grecian islands and a number of its restaurants are designed to catch the large numbers of tourists that flock here every year. Madoupas, despite its location facing the old port where it is surrounded by a number of tourist-friendly establishments, is frequented by locals and is locally run. They serve all the traditional Greek specialities from souvlaki to moussaka with fantastic views over the ocean and the old port. Inside there are also a number of black and white photographs of old Mykonos that provide an overview of the history of the island and add greatly to the local atmosphere. Madoupas Café, Mykonos Beach, Mykonos Town, Greece +30 2289022224
Hippie Fish -- Located on Agios Ioannis beach, dinner at Hippie Fish is an opportunity to escape the bustle of Mykonos Town. Agios Ioannis is one of the most beautiful stretches of beach that the island has to offer and this restaurant sits right on the sand. Designed in the manner of an outdoor beach-bar set against the beautiful backdrop of the Aegean, Hippie Fish, as the name suggests, specialises in local fish dishes from crab and lobster by the kilo to sea-urchin spaghetti. It is also notable as the setting for the movie Shirley Valentine, which was filmed at this location before the current restaurant was erected. While this makes it a must-see for fans of the film, it is worth a visit for anyone looking for good seafood, followed by a waterfront walk.
Hippie Fish, Agios Ioannis, Mikonos 846 00, Greece, +30 2289 023547

Fokos Taverna -- At Fokos Beach this secluded and beautiful restaurant is set against panoramic views of the Aegean and the rolling countryside beyond. Described as a ‘jewel of Cycladic architecture’, Fokos Tavern has been constructed with simple elegance from stone and wood, with wicker or canvas roofing and spaces between supporting columns which function as large windows. The unique architecture gives this restaurant an open-air feel even while providing shade and shelter. The climbing vines are a splash of sudden green while the food is delectable. This restaurant really aims to return its guests to an age when Mykonos was quieter and more isolated than it is today, allowing you to appreciate the absolute beauty of this island.
Fokos Taverna, Fokos Beach, 84600 Mykonos, Greece, +30 6945828561
Joanna’s Nikos Place
 
Run by Joanna herself this taverna sits directly on the beach and only a five minute walk from the centre of Mykonos Town. This is good food at good prices, with the chance to take in the sunset and listen to the surf wash the shore. All the food is typically Greek, from the meze to the mixed grill, and the staff are friendly and accommodating. In summer it is the perfect spot for outdoor dining, but in cooler months be sure to take a light scarf as the sea breeze can get chilly.
Joanna’s Nikos Place, Notio Aigaio, 84600, Greece, +30 22890 24251
 
Ntekoto -- The main settlement on Mykonos is Mykonos Town on the western coast but stray further inland and you come to Ano Mera where you find this charming coffee bar and restaurant. This is a more modern idea of Greece reflected by the modern interior design. They offer a superb breakfast, from the freshly squeezed orange juice to the pancakes, but there is also a more local feel with the moustokouloura, Greek cookies made from grape must. Ntekoto simultaneously functions as a delicatessen, selling local delicacies over the counter so that you can take away the memory of Ano Mera.
Ntekoto, Ano Mera, 84600 Mykonos, Greece, +30 2289 072110
Eva’s Garden--Tucked away in the heart of Mykonos Town is this wonderful eatery serving quality local fare. Here you can find all the Greek specialities, from spanikopita (spinach pie) to tzatziki and grilled fresh bream. The atmosphere in Eva’s Garden is intimate and romantic, with guests seated on a small outdoor patio shaded by hanging vines. Although a little trickier to find than some of the larger restaurants, it is well worth the effort of discovery as an evening here is guaranteed to be delightful.
Eva’s Garden, Goumenio Square, N. Kalogera 2, Mykonos Town 84600, Greece, +30 22890 22160
Avra is another restaurant that is tucked away from the busy centre of Mykonos down a winding street. Offering traditional Greek cuisine, such as shrimp saganaki or stuffed vine leaves, or a more eclectic European menu, Avra is beautifully located in a small courtyard surrounded by buildings designed in the old Mykonian style. The outdoor patio is candlelit and covered in greenery and creepers, a spectacular place to enjoy a romantic meal for two.
Avra, Kalogera Street 27, Mikonos 846 00, Greece, +30 2289 022298
 
Mediterraneo (at the Hotel Cavo Tagoo, 22890-23629) overlooks Mykonos Bay and feels more like an art museum than a restaurant. The walls are lined with murals and paintings that make the room as aesthetically pleasing as the food is delicious. The wine and cheese selection is magnificent and the seafood is some of the freshest in the world. The dessert menu boasts of unusually large portions because the chefs at Mediterraneo believe this is how sweets are to be enjoyed.
 
For authentic and unpretentious dining, go to Phillipi (just off Kaloyera, 22890-22294) where the Greek salads are enormous and the Feta cheese is abundant. This is an older restaurant where the emphasis is on both quality and quantity. After a long meal, experience the excitement of Mykonos by going to the stylish Caprice Bar (8 Lambrou Katsoni, 22890-24541) for cocktails and watch the sunset on the balcony. Then dash off to MADD, a raging dance club in Taxi Square, where you will not want to leave until the sun comes up.
 
Gay clubs in Mykonos In addition to special parties that happen almost nightly during “high season,” Mykonos is home to several “permanent” gay nightspots, which vary greatly in terms of who you’ll find there and what happens there. Specifically, you can always count on a crowd at four venues: The Piano Bar, Kastro, Jackie O’s and Bablyon. The Piano Bar and Kastro are located just down Old Town Mykonos’s main street from the bus station, both on the left side of the street and sitting up against the waterfront. As The Piano Bar’s name suggests, it’s home to a nightly (specifically, starting at 10 p.m.) revue of show tunes played on piano and sung in a decidedly Broadway style.
 
Shopping
The primary shopping area in Mykonos is Matoyanni. It is situated right along the harbor and is a street lined with cafes, boutiques, and stores selling food, art, and clothing. Apocalypse (Ayios Vlasis, 22890-24267) has become a popular store among artists and art-enthusiasts looking to purchase works painted and sculpted by Mykonos own. Many of the works are inspired by Mykonos land, and they are breathtaking. Elias Lalaounis (Odos Polykandrioti 14, 22890-22444) is a jewelry shop for patrons looking for the highest quality and most original designs. Silver is the main attraction here, and the handcrafted designs are inventive and different.



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