Mykonos Town, the island’s capital, is a fascinating mix of cosmopolitan activity and traditional Greek charm. Frequently referred to as Chora to distinguish it from the island itself, this coastal town has grown over the decades into the hub of island’s tourism industry. However, whilst bars and clubs line many of its thoroughfares, you can step back into its narrow, winding streets running between the distinctive, whitewashed buildings and immerse yourself in the town’s history and culture.
Much of the town’s activity is focused around the harbour district. Many restaurants and traditional tavernas line the waterfront. You can spend many hours sampling the delicious local cuisine whilst watching the fishermen unload their latest catch from the boats. If you’re lucky, you may even spot Petros the pelican, the island’s feathered mascot. Round off your meal with a traditional Greek coffee accompanied by a small, iced glass of Ouzo, the national liqueur.
The town centre is bustling with cafés and shops, fashion boutiques and galleries. Much of this is the result of the tourism boom in the 1970s, but you’ll still find many of the traditional vendors selling delicious, locally-grown produce. Of course, once the sun goes down in the evenings, the party starts, and the bars and clubs take on a life of their own.
Lovers of history and culture will be fascinated by the town’s many museums and cultural institutions. Discover the area’s ancient past at the Archaeological Museum, home to marble sculptures and artefacts such as jewellery and ceramics, all unearthed on Mykonos and its neighbouring islands. The story of the island’s sea faring tradition is told at the Aegean Maritime Museum. Exhibits include expertly-restored ships and a 19th-century lighthouse.
Mykonos Town lies on the west coast of the island. If you have a hire car, the best parking spaces are to be found in the harbour district. Otherwise, the town is well served by public transport.