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What's good? Timeless charm (the windmills and sugarcube buildings are beautiful) Hundreds of tiny boutiques Loads of great little restaurants Some brilliant beaches (St Stephanos is fantastic) Crystal clear waters An ecclectic mix of people Cheap drink in the shops (1L of Ouzo = £2ish) Glorious sunshine Cooling breeze Relaxed pace of life
What's not so good? Mopeds of doom Expensive drinks in bars Expensive Clubs Cooling breeze can get a bit strong and blustery at times
Until last year I had never heard of Mykonos, but when one of my best mates went out there to spend the summer with his boyfriend, I decided it would be a good plan to go there for my annual summer holiday. Thankfully my girlfriend agreed to the plan...
Further reseach on the island prior to departure revealed that Mykonos is seen primarily as a "gay" resort, and to be honest, this is a reasonably accurate description of the island. I think anyone with a limited view of the world would have their eyes opened, and any particularly closed minded people may have serious problems with *some* areas of the island. From what I saw, there must be a 50/50 split in the amount of gay/straight holiday makers who visit the island, and this makes for a hugely ecclectic, vibrant place!
We stayed at the Paola's Appartments, and were made to feel hugely welcome by the owner and her husband. The appartments were typical of most of the Greek islands, basic, but comfy. Nothing was too much trouble for the owners, and when we asked for our two single beds to be replaced with a double, it was done within an hour!
The appartments were just up a (rather steep) hill from Mykonos town itself - you pass them as you come down the road from the airport - the ideal location as far as we were concerned. It allowed good access to the town centre ("taxi square"), and was far enough out of the town to be a touch more relaxed at night.
If we had a problem with both the appartments, and the island as a whole, it would be the mopeds. These seem to be driven by anyone, regadless of age, ability, inibriation, etc... Going anywhere near a road is a near death experience, as people cut each other up, squeeze through tiny gaps, look in completely the wrong direction, etc. How we never experienced an accident I'll never know. The noise that one of these things makes is bad enough, but when five come racing past your appartment, it can become close to unbearable. Fortunately as the week went on, our hearing adjusted to the point where you didn't hear them anymore. But personally, I think it does spoil the island a little.
The pace of life in Mykonos is very relaxed. We spent most day's pottering around the town, or on the beach at St Stephanos (a ten minute bus journey from the town). Nights were spent eating and drinking in some of the friendliest places I've had the opertunitly to visit. Unfortunately, we never got to experience the islands two main clubs, as the real night life in Mykonos tends to get going at around about 1/2 am, carrying on until mid morning! If we had been there longer than a week we might have been able to reverse our sleeping patterns! The clubs, Cavo Paradiso in particular do pull some of the biggest names in dance music to the island, but the entry prices are, to be honest, rediculous. Personally, I think spending £30 to get into a club is a *little* too much.
Unfortunately, we never got to visit the famous "Shirly Valentine" beach, we were too busy looking in all of the little shops, or relaxing on the beach. But I'm sure that for some people, this will be a must.
Would we go back? Probably. We felt that we had seen most of what there was to offer in the week we were there, but my friend spent most of the summer there (around three months) and he's busy sorting out flights to go out there again this summer. It's different things for different people I guess. Also, 2004 would be a great time to visit Mykonos, as the Olympic games in Athens are just a short ferry ride away!