There are over 3.500 islands surrounding Greece, of which over 1.100 are inhabited. It is a unique sailing paradise with a limitless number of coves and bays.
Mykonos is part of the Cyclades, a group of 220 islands lying in the middle of the Aegean Sea and south of Athens forming an imaginary circle around the neighbouring island of Delos.
The island has a population of about 12.500, most of whom live in Mykonos Town or Chora, the capital town of Mykonos island. Chora is exclusively pedestrianized and you can find the most important sightseeing spots, the well-known fashion boutiques and local artisan shops, the most popular typical bars, the most refined international cuisine and the most characteristic Greek tavernas. Chora’s architecture is typical of Cyclades with white-washed houses with colourful doors and blue windows, narrows streets with pebble-stoned pavements and an infinite number of tiny Byzantine white chapels with sky-blue cupolas, ex-voto of the island’s sailors or family chapels (counted about 400 churches in the island). Centuries ago the residents built twisty, narrow lanes and alleyways in order to confuse the pirates who used to frequently invade the island and nowadays this contributes to the charm of Chora.
An emblematic monument of Mykonos is Paraportiani Church, a complex of 5 churches, dedicated to Vergin Maria and built between the 14th and the 17th century. The name Paraportiani means “the side door” and refers to the fact that the church was next to the door of the medieval walls surrounding and protecting the “Kastro” (the castle area), the old town.
One of the most picturesque corners of the island is Alefkantra or “Little Venice” with a very characteristic architecture, wooden balconies perched over the sea, colourfoul walls and the view of the Windmills standing on the hillside above the town. The Little Venice, built in the mid 18th as a neighbourhood for sailing captains and boat owners, is the most romantic spot on the island from where you can enjoy the sunset drinking your favourite cocktail at one of the numerous bars, clubs or tavernas.
One of the most attractions of the island and a total celebrity in Greece and abroad is Petros, the pelican, the official mascot of Mykonos since 1954 when was found by a fisherman after a storm and eventually became the locals’ companion. Nowadays, the famous pelican Petros is the successor of the original one.