The Greek island you should skip

When planning a dreamy Greek island getaway, Mykonos often tops the list of popular destinations for many reasons. The traditional windmills, especially those in the town of Chora, are one of the island’s most recognisable landmarks. They offer a glimpse into the island’s history and are a popular spot for photos.

Another one of the major highlights of Mykonos is its beaches. Unlike Santorini, Mykonos features soft, golden sands and crystal-clear waters. Some beaches provide a serene environment ideal for relaxation, while others cater to those seeking a lively party atmosphere.

It is undoubtedly a beautiful Greek island, but you might want to think twice if you’re planning a visit. Here’s why.

The dining dilemma

Imagine settling down for a peaceful meal only to be jostled by a constant stream of pedestrians squeezing past your table. Mykonos’s narrow pathways, crowded with diners and passers-by, can turn a relaxing dinner into an exercise in frustration. It’s a far cry from the serene dining experience you might expect from such a picturesque locale.

Also, many of the dining experiences on Mykonos leave much to be desired. While the island boasts numerous restaurants and cafes, the quality of food often fails to justify the exorbitant prices. Many eateries cater primarily to tourists, resulting in mediocre and overpriced meals that lack the authentic flavours of Greek cuisine.

It’s pricey

Mykonos is notorious for its sky-high costs. From accommodation to transportation, everything on the island comes with a premium price tag. Budget-conscious travellers may find it challenging to enjoy their stay without breaking the bank. 

Locals run on ‘island time’

The relaxed pace of island life can be charming, but when it comes to public transport, it can also be a hindrance. Waiting indefinitely for a shuttle bus that may or may not arrive is hardly the best use of your precious travel time.

Late night life 

Mykonos is famed for its vibrant nightlife, but be warned: the party doesn’t start until the early hours. If you’re someone who prefers to enjoy the night and still catch the beauty of dawn, the island’s nocturnal schedule might not suit your rhythm. The late start to festivities could mean sacrificing the next day’s activities to catch up on sleep.

Beaches come at a premium 

The concept of paying for beach access can be quite foreign to us Aussies, accustomed as we are to sprawling sands free for all to enjoy. In Mykonos, expect to fork out a significant fee for the privilege of a sun chair and umbrella, even when the beaches are deserted in the morning.

While this might not seem like a significant issue, it can add up quickly, especially for those planning to spend several days soaking up the sun. The commercialisation of a beach experience detracts from the natural beauty and relaxation that you expect from a Greek island.

Crowds, crowds, crowds

The crowded beaches and streets of Mykonos can also detract from the overall experience. During peak season, the island is overrun with tourists, making it difficult to find a quiet spot to relax and unwind. The constant hustle and bustle can be overwhelming, taking away from the laid-back atmosphere that many seek in a Greek island getaway.

Despite these drawbacks, Mykonos does have its charms, and it’s important to experience places for yourself. However, it’s equally important to go in with eyes wide open, aware of the potential pitfalls. If you do decide to visit, consider timing your trip outside the peak season to avoid the worst of the crowds and inflated prices.

Where to go instead

Rhodes: a blend of history and natural beauty

Rhodes offers a perfect blend of historical intrigue and stunning landscapes. The medieval Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, invites exploration with its cobblestone streets and ancient architecture. Beyond the historical sites, Rhodes boasts beautiful beaches and a vibrant local culture, making it a well-rounded destination.

Athens: the cradle of civilization

Athens, the capital city of Greece, provides a rich cultural experience with its ancient ruins and bustling city life. The Acropolis and Parthenon stand as testaments to Greece’s storied past, while the city’s neighbourhoods offer a mix of traditional tavernas and modern cafes. Athens is an excellent starting point for anyone interested in Greek history and contemporary urban culture.

Santorini: iconic views and romantic vibes

Santorini, with its iconic, blue-domed churches and stunning sunsets, is the epitome of Greek island beauty. The island’s unique volcanic beaches and charming villages such as Oia and Fira offer a picturesque escape. Santorini is also renowned for its wine, providing a delightful experience for oenophiles.

For those who’ve been to Mykonos, we’d love to hear your thoughts. Did you find the island lived up to its reputation? Or did you encounter some of the same annoyances? Share your experiences in the comments below.

Also read: Top tips for over-50s wanting to see Greece

Ellie Baxter
Ellie Baxter
Writer and editor with interests in travel, health, wellbeing and food. Has knowledge of marketing psychology, social media management and is a keen observer and commentator on issues facing older Australians.


  1. Exact opposite of what you say in your article. Been to both Santorini and Mykonos in 2017 and Mykonos, by far, was less crowded and easier to get around. Santorini was the pits……way way too many tourists!

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