The Church of Paraportianí
The Folklore Museum
The famous white windmills

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White and blue, the island’s colours

When sailing on an MSC cruise to the Mediterranean Sea, Mýkonos is the quintessential image of the Cyclades. In summer most people head out to the beaches during the day, so early morning or late afternoon are the best times to wander the maze of narrow streets.
The labyrinthine design was supposed to confuse the pirates who plagued Mýkonos in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, and it has the same effect on today’s visitors. When you alight from your MSC cruise, getting lost in its convoluted streets and alleys is half the fun of the place.

From your cruise ship you’ll pass the archaeological museum on your way into town, which was specially built in 1905 to display artefacts from the cemeteries on Rínia Island, opposite Delos. A shore excursion on your MSC Mediterranean cruise can be the opportunity to discover Mýkonos’s museums and mansions. Lena’s House is a completely restored and furnished merchant home from the turn of the twentieth century.

The Folklore Museum, housed in an eighteenth-century mansion, crams in a larger-than-usual collection of bric-a-brac, including a basement dedicated to Mýkonos’s maritime past. The museum shares the promontory with Mýkonos’s oldest and best-known church, Paraportianí, a fascinating asymmetrical hodgepodge of four chapels amalgamated into one. Beyond the church, the shoreline leads to the area known as Little Venice because of the high, arcaded Venetian houses built right up to the water’s edge on its southwest side.

Together with the adjoining Alefkándhra district, this is a dense area packed with art galleries, trendy bars, shops and clubs. Beyond Little Venice, the famous windmills look over the area, renovated and ripe for photo opportunities.

Must see places in Mykonos

  • Mykonos town

    Mykonos town

  • The island of Delos

    The island of Delos

  • A typical windmill

    A typical windmill

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Under the protective wing of the gods
Under the protective wing of the gods

It would take a lifetime of island-hopping to fully appreciate the 227 inhabited Greek islands scattered across the Mediterranean Sea.
With sapphire water lapping at rocky coastlines sprinkled with secret coves and sandy beaches, they are the stuff of dreamy travel posters, the very definition of the eulogized Greek summer of sun, sea and sand.

For anyone with a cultural bone in their body a cruise to the Greek islands cannot fail to inspire. Every culture has left its mark, and almost every town or village has a link to the past, whether it’s a delicately crumbling temple to Aphrodite, a forbidding Venetian fort or a dusty Byzantine monastery decorated with exquisite frescoes.
But the call to cultural duty will never be too overwhelming on a Greek islands holiday. The hedonistic pleasures of languor and warmth – swimming in balmy seas at dusk, talking and drinking under the stars – are just as appealing.
Sprawling, globalized Athens is an obligatory, almost unavoidable introduction to Greece: aside from the show-stopping Acropolis it offers a truly metropolitan range of cultural diversions, from museums to concerts; well-stocked shops; gourmet restaurants and stimulating clubs.

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