Long sandy bays with pulsating beach bars and partying into the night; luxury sunbeds and first-class waiter service; fine dining or traditional taverna; calm, clear water perfect for water sports… whatever beach perfection is for you, you’ll find it on Mykonos.
Exploring the more sheltered and popular southern coast, we reveal what you’ll love about each of them. And we pop up to Panormos in the north, where there are alternative beaches with a very different vibe.
Starting with the superstars, we move to the quieter but equally iconic beaches on Greece’s ultimate luxury isle.
It’s difficult to know where to start when it comes to Mykonos’ beaches, but Psarou – just 4km from Hora (the main town) – gets to the nod. It’s a celebrity magnet, with fine (almost white) sand, clear blue water and beach bars renowned for their epic parties. Want a taste of fame and luxury? Just say the word. There’s a choice of restaurants nearby where you’ll get VIP service and a high-end menu to match as well as boutique shops with Greek and international brands. But don’t let that distract you from the fact that Psarou is also a great swimming spot, with a diving school and water sports.
This is where it all began! It’s hard now to imagine Paradise beach as a once quiet stretch of sand, attracting 70s hippies looking for fun, love and freedom. Restaurants, bars and international DJs were added and – along the way – the legend that is Paradise beach was established as a destination in its own right. The mood is relaxing in the morning, before the music kicks in and, before you know it, it’s party time long into the night. And if you’re looking for added water fun, you’ll find a water sports and diving centre on the beach.
It takes something special to pull off being called Super Paradise. Just around the bay from Paradise, the party mood continues at the beach bars here, but Super Paradise takes the swimming experience a notch higher. The water is especially clear and the sand is fine and golden, attracting a more chic ambience. There are exquisite dining options to cap the experience.
Between Psarou and Paradise, we have Paraga beach. You’ll adore the restaurant and extraordinary beach club scene here too – stylish, sophisticated and intimate, perfectly blending in with the surroundings. The water is shallow and inviting and the bay is protected from the summer winds that can affect other beaches. It’s worth staying till sunset.
There’s another cluster of beaches on the south coast, this time further east, starting with Kalo Livadi. One of Mykonos’ biggest beaches, it caters to every taste. Again there are trendy beach bars and restaurants that turn heads. But there’s also a long stretch with nothing on it and a water sports centre. It’s shallow, making it a big favourite with families and there’s a handrail that’s helpful for anyone needing a little support getting into and out of the sea.
Agia Anna (Kalafatis)
Not to be confused with the Agia Anna beach near Paraga, this small, sandy cove, near Kalafatis is one of the more exotic settings on Mykonos’ southeastern coast, next door to picturesque Divounia Bay.
The settlement of Ornos has grown ever more popular over the years and its sandy beach has a cosmopolitan atmosphere to match. You’ll find all the facilities to let you spend a full day here, with a choice of restaurants serving everything from Mediterranean dishes to sushi and beach bars with refreshing cocktails and other drinks. There are water sports and diving centres, but it’s the fine sand and calm blue water that you’ll remember most.
Our one entry on Mykonos’ north coast, Panormos proudly takes its place alongside all of the most popular beaches in the south. It is surrounded by a rocky landscape and is known for its amazingly clear water, but where it really stands out is for its ability to provide both a chilled section with nothing but sand and a beautifully styled beach club that serves exquisite food and hosts legendary parties.
You’ll find everything you could wish for on Mykonos’ longest sandy beach. Celebrities and VIPs mingle right next to honeymooning couples and families. And there’s a choice of traditional taverna and upscale restaurant, beach bar and even a water sports centre where you can try everything from waterskiing to parasailing and jet skiing. Elia has the perfect mix and it knows it.
Platis Gialos has every facility to cater to couples, friends and families. Easy to get to (around 5km south of Hora), it has everything from traditional tavernas to beach bars and a wide selection of water sports (water ski, windsurf, jet ski, jet pack etc). It’s also the main departure point for water taxis to Elia and the beaches in between.
Agia Anna (Paraga)
Mykonos’ ‘other’ Agia Anna beach (between Paraga and Platis Gialos) manages to strike a balance between having facilities and retaining a sense of remoteness. The sand is fine and sunsets are magical. It is ideal meze & ouzo territory at a totally authentic taverna, with tables right on the sand.
Another idyllic setting to finish with, by the traditional Cycladic settlement of Diakofti (with its classic whitewashed houses with blue-painted balconies and window-frames). Agios Ioannis is sandy and shallow, with a unique view of the island of Delos. It’s perfect for a quieter swim, whilst still having all the facilities you could need, including traditional tavernas, and there is a rail for easy access for visitors with disabilities. At the far end of the beach is the Agios Ioannis Diakoftis chapel, after which the beach was named.
No wonder Mykonos’ best-known beaches have earned celebrity status. And best of all, many are close enough to hop between. Or you could choose a different beach style every day. There’s something different to love about each of them.