The Cyclades are some of the most beautiful islands in the world. They’re Greek and, despite many international visitors, you can tell where their roots are. When visiting, you should, in particular, discover authentic Mykonos by visiting what makes it so unique and beautiful.

Forget Italy and Spain – Discover Authentic Mykonos to Fall in Love With Europe

When people dream of a European vacation, they think of Italy or Spain, but the Cycladic islands should take the crown instead.

Despite being in the Aegean Sea, Cycladic islands have a distinctly Mediterranean climate, and their food and culture are highly influenced by the region. Some say that Greece influenced the Mediterranean, too.

When you decide to have a Mykonian summer, you’ll fall in love by discovering its authentic side, the one only known to the locals and true lovers of Greece.

Take a Private or Group Half-Day Guided Tour

We’d recommend booking a guided tour, which usually takes half a day. Many are organized by local agents who know many historical areas.

With them, you’ll see Chora (the capital) without missing a single thing, visit galleries and museums, and eat delicious traditional dishes that define Greece and its cuisine.

Some companies organize day trips to Rhenia and other surrounding islands. All the locations in the Cyclades are pretty close and easy to travel to and from, so it’s easy to take a few hours away from the hustle and bustle and enjoy some quiet elsewhere.

Locals recommend a tour to Tragonisi island and its fantastic caverns. After that, come back to Chora and watch a movie under the starlit sky at the open-air Cine Manto cinema.

Swim at the Most Beautiful Beaches on the Aegean Sea

Don’t worry about what to pack when coming here – the island’s nude beaches are there for that. They aren’t entirely private but have peaceful energy that enables all visitors to enjoy themselves without guilt or shame.

If you aren’t in the mood for that much authenticity, visit one of the most beautiful swimming areas, Agia Anna Beach. If you’re looking for a locals-only gem, find a guide to Kapari Beach for an intimate experience.

A view of Kapari Beach at sunset

Kapari Beach is an intimate and small swimming area adored among the locals

Uncover and Learn More About History On and Off the Island

Despite being isolated from mainland Greece, Mykonian history is long and rich. You can learn more about it from guided tours of historically significant places and by exploring independently.

Connect with the island’s history (for free) by visiting the famous 16th-century windmills which overlook Little Venice, the Paraportiani Church, and the Folklore Museum, set up in a shipowner’s former home.

You can also go to the island of Baos. It’s one of the tiny surrounding islands, unique for a particular legend. Apparently, it used to be an exile ground for Greek vampires – people believed being surrounded by salt (which they allegedly don’t like) made it harder for them to escape.

Take a Ferry From Mykonos to the Island of Delos

More activities you can do off the island include visiting Delos. This UNESCO World Heritage site is a must-see place in the Cyclades. According to legends, it was the birthplace of Apollo, god of light and music, and Artemis, goddess of wilderness and animals.

The best transportation you can use to reach Delos is a ferry from the old port in Chora. The round-trip costs approximately €20, and the ride is around 40 minutes long.

Travel North of Chora to See the Stunning Byzantine Monastery of Saint Panteleimon

If you aren’t in the mood to travel by ferry or wait at the port, hire a private driver to one of the most visually stunning locations – the Saint Panteleimon monastery. Known to the locals as Agios Panteleimonas, this 17-century church is just three kilometers northeast of Chora.

Saint Panteleimon’s architecture and design are breathtaking, and you’ll fall in love while looking at the shades of green, blue, and red everywhere.

Three distressed lion statues made of stone standing next to each other

Learn more about history and culture by visiting Delos

Tour the Town of Ano Mera for the Island’s Most Authentic Side

For a truly authentic Mykonos experience, visiting the Ano Mera village is one of the must-do activities here. It is around 8 kilometers away from Chora, and buses are the best transportation mode. If you plan to see the area in one day, a trip to this town will be ideal.

Locals love it because it shines with authenticity, peace, and calm. Typically, you can find expert tours with a guide and go to a small organic farm that occasionally hosts tourists. After seeing the farm, they continue to the nearby monastery, Panagia Tourliani.

Lovers of history, especially religious history, will love Ano Mera and its charming, quaint architecture.

Greece Is an Orthodox Christian Country, and They Have Lovely Monasteries

Ano Mera is home to Panagia Tourliani, a 16th-century monastery, but that monastery isn’t the only one here. Travelers can also visit the 18th-century monastery of Paleokastro. Both are essential for Mykonian history and religion.

Understandably, some people aren’t interested in religious buildings, but if you must see one, see Panagia Tourliani.

A frontal view of Panagia Tourliani

Visit Ano Mera and the famous monastery Panagia Tourliani

Go on a Food Tasting Tour

There’s no shortage of what to eat while staying here. Mykonian traditional restaurants are world-class eateries where you can taste the best of national Greek cuisine.

Some food tours to embark on are the visit to the Tirokomio Mykonou dairy factory, a family-owned business that reveals its cheese-making secrets. You can taste their products while there. They offer kopanisti, tyrovolia, and other types of Mykonian cheeses.

On your way to Ano Mera, you can see the factory and its cattle grazing on the hillside. You can connect these two activities for several hours of historical, cultural, and gastronomic fun.

Book a Food Tasting Tour With Local Agencies

Local agencies can show you the best Mykonian restaurants. For those who want a more fun and laid-back trip, booze cruises and bar crawls are often available during the summer.

There’s also a Mykonos Brewing Company tour available for €20 per person. You can taste their craft beers and see the brewery. It lasts between 45 minutes to an hour.

Learning about Greek food is also possible with a cooking class, which several organizations offer. There’s no shortage of a good time, and according to TripAdvisor, these guide tours have mandatory good times as their policy:

  • Sail cruise to Delos and Rhenia, BBQ & drinks, by Chios Yachting Team,
  • The authentic Rhenia-Delos cruise by Aegean Ventures,
  • Tour and wine tasting by Tour in Mykonian Land,
  • Cooking classes by Mykonian Spiti,
  • Wine tasting by Mykonos Experiences,
  • Souvlaki cooking class with the locals by Mykonos Experiences.

Take a Load Off by Booking Private Villas in Mykonos With The Ace VIP

Guided tours are great for first-timers, but another genuine experience in Greece would be just relaxing in Mykonos luxury villas and letting go of stress. With the help of The Ace VIP, you can do that and more.

Rent one of our luxury villas in Mykonos, put your feet up poolside, and soak in the sunshine. If you don’t like being static and staying in our luxury Mykonos villas for rental all day, why not get a car rental to one of the historical places near Chora?

We can arrange private drivers, chefs, and parties with our concierge services and provide luxurious yachts for rent. Don’t wait too long, contact us and get a modern Mykonos villa and anything else your heart desires.