Free Things To Do in Mykonos
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This Chora neighborhood is known as one of the most stunning places on the island. Overlooking the southwest end of the harbor, it was here that many early ship captains decided to settle down and built uniquely magnificent homes overlooking the sea. Today, many of these historic homes have been transformed into a variety of cozy restaurants, bars, shops and nightclubs, making this a bustling place at all hours of the day.
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These iconic windmills overlooking Little Venice date back to the 16th century when islanders used wind power to grind grain. There are 16 windmills in total, and while they are no longer operational, they stand as a monument to early innovation. The views here are spectacular: From this hilltop perch, you can see Chora and the harbor in the distance. While you're here, you might want to check out the nearby Mykonos Agricultural Museum, part of the Mykonos Folk Museum.
On your way to the windmills, don't overlook the surrounding neighborhood of Alefkandra. This historic area is a great place to stop for a bite to eat or a glass of ouzo as you head back toward Little Venice.
- #3View all Photos#3 in MykonosChurches/Religious Sites, Sightseeing, FreeTYPELess than 1 hourTIME TO SPENDChurches/Religious Sites, Sightseeing, FreeTYPELess than 1 hourTIME TO SPENDRead More
If you ask them, Mykonians will tell you that their island is home to 365 churches — one for each day of the year. However, Panagia Paraportiani is by far the most famous. One TripAdvisor user offers some advice: "[G]o at sunset right as the light is beginning to change. It's a beautiful and spiritual experience that everyone should have." Sitting in central Chora, this somber white-washed church dates back to the Byzantine era and features a variety of religious decorations dating back to the Middle Ages. From its main entrance, you'll have spectacular views of the Mediterranean Sea.
You don't have to pay to visit Paraportiani Church. This is an active house of worship, so remember to be respectful when exploring.
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Many people flock to Mykonos for two reasons: beaches and parties. A trip to the southern coast and Paradise Beach — Mykonos' original nudist beach — will kill two birds with one stone. Soft sands, azure seas and a rowdy atmosphere have made Paradise one of the most popular places on the island. Paradise has become more developed over the past few years and now features a nearby strip of resort hotels, restaurants and beloved carousing spots like the Tropicana Beach Bar and Cavo Paradiso Club. If you're not one for built-up beaches, head east along the coast to the Super Paradise Beach; although it lacks many of the amenities, the party scene attracts barely clothed bathers and a large portion of Mykonos' LGBT community.
Paradise Beach sits about 2 miles south of Chora and can be reached on foot or by bus or boat. The beach is open 24/7 and you don't have to pay to lounge. However, you may want to bring some euros with you just in case your glass runs dry.
- #5View all PhotosfreeAno Mera#5 in MykonosFree, Neighborhood/AreaTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPENDFree, Neighborhood/AreaTYPEHalf Day to Full DayTIME TO SPENDRead More
Sitting in the heart of Mykonos about 4 miles east of Chora is the island's only other real town. But because it lacks the sea view, Ano Mera isn't as crowded as other parts of Mykonos; and many say you should only visit if you're passionate about religious history (the town is home to the island's two monasteries). The 18th century Monastery of Panagia Tourliani — located southeast of town — is renowned for its intricate marble carvings and massive Italian baroque altar screen. Head half a mile farther southeast past Panagia Tourliani and you'll find what's left of the 12th century Monastery of Paleokastro, which is now one of the most verdant spots on the island.
- #7View all PhotosfreePsarou Beach#7 in MykonosBeaches, FreeTYPE2 hours to Half DayTIME TO SPENDBeaches, FreeTYPE2 hours to Half DayTIME TO SPENDRead More
If you're looking to have fun in the sun without having to put up with rowdy parties and nude bathers, skip Paradise in favor of Psarou Beach. Located northwest of Paradise Beach along the coast, Psarou's powdery sand, clear blue waves and more relaxing atmosphere make this beach popular among families and honeymooners. However, this stretch of coastline has begun to lure larger and larger crowds, including herds of water sports enthusiasts. This beach is known for its great windsurfing and waterskiing conditions. To lay claim to some prime real estate, try to get here in the morning, while other sun-seekers are still sleeping off the night before.
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The Mykonos Folklore Museum consists of three separate historical houses. The main museum can be found in the 18th century House of Kastro in Chora. Here, you'll find Cycladic costumes, traditional musical instruments, historic paintings and old photographs of the island. You can also visit the restored kitchen as well as a fully furnished 19th century bedroom. Nearby, the second building — Lena's House — is yet another 18th century upper-class home that has been preserved just how its final owner left it. The Agricultural Museum (known as the Windmill of Boni) near the Windmills offers further insight into the islands' farming history with the help of authentic tools like a waterwheel, an outdoor oven and a wine press. You're also invited to explore a preserved miller's home, complete with period decorations. The Mykonos Agricultural Museum is open every afternoon and admission is free.
All three branches of the Folklore Museum are open in the evenings, with times ranging from 4:30 to 9 p.m., and admission is free. For more information on each museum's hours and more, visit the website.
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