Mykonos is an island of Greece and one of the top international tourist destinations, famous largely for its cosmopolitan character and its intense nightlife. The island is part of the Cyclades, lying between Tinos, Siros, Paros and Naxos. It spans an area of 86 km² and rises at an elevation of 364m at its highest point. The island is composed primarily of granite. It has little natural fresh water and relies on the desalination of sea water in order to meet its needs. There are approximately 6200 inhabitants (2002). The largest town is Mykonos, also known as Chora (i.e. the Town in Greek, a common denomination in Greece when the name of the island itself is the same as the name of the principal town), which lies on the west coast. It is believed that the island was named after a local hero, who is considered an offspring of the god Apollo and was worshipped locally in antiquity.
Archaeological finds indicate that the Ionians settled on Mykonos in the early part of the 11th century BC. More recent discoveries have uncovered remnants in Ftelia beach from the Neolithic Kares tribe dating back to as far as 3000 BC.
In Greek mythology Mykonos was the location of the battle between Zeus and the Gigantes, and the island was named in honor of Apollo's grandson Mykons. During these ancient times, Mykonos, due to its proximity to the then highly populated island of Delos (situated about 2km away), became very important as a supply island and possibly as a getaway location for Delian citizens.
Today, Mykonos is one of the world's most cosmopolitan islands, having become increasingly popular especially during the last 50 years due to the numerous international jet set visitors that spend their holidays on the island. It is widely known for its extremely rich, diverse, and often intense nightlife featured by a vast number of bars and nightclubs. Mykonos is also distincted for its sandy beaches, offering everything from crystal-clear waters, windsurfing potential, sea-side tavernas, and bars featuring 24-hour loud music. Many Greek and international celebrities have summer residences in Mykonos and can often be seen walking the white-washed roads or having dinner at a small street-side table of an expensive restaurant or a taverna. The island is also one of the most upscale areas of Greece, and its real estate is very expensive. The popularity of the island has given rise to a wave of real estate development with the construction of private homes, villas, and hotels. This has raised some concerns that the island may be gradually losing its character. In order to prevent this, the island's zoning requires all new buildings to abide by the rules of the Cycladic architectural style.
- Petros the Pelican - An old celebrity of the town's waterfront, "Petro" has been the official mascot of Mykonos for over 50 years.
- Windmills - From as early as the 16th century, they are one of the most recognized landmarks of Mykonos.
- Little Venice - Here the buildings have been constructed right on the sea's edge with their balconies overhanging the water.
- Paraportiani - One of the most famous architectural structures in Greece. It's name means inner or secondary door which it was to the Medieval stone walls which encircled the area.
- Archaeological Museum - Houses marble sculptures, ceramics and jewellery recovered from the islands of Delos, Renia and Mykonos.
- Aegean Maritime Museum - Displays models of a collection of ships from the pre-Minoan period through to the 19th century and nautical and ancient artifacts related to the history of shipping on Mykonos.
- Delos - One of Greece's most famous archaeologic sites, it is an island located 2 kilometers to the west of Mykonos. The entire island has been declared a national museum.
JOURNEYS trips that include Mykonos:
Information based on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mykonos