Mykonos is the great glamour island of Greece and happily flaunts its sizzling St-Tropez-meets-Ibiza style and party-hard reputation.
The high-season mix of hedonistic holidaymakers, cruise-ship crowds and posturing fashionistas throngs Mykonos Town (aka Hora), a traditional whitewashed Cycladic maze, delighting in its authentic cubist charms and its chichi cafe-bar-boutique scene.
The number of tourists (and cashed-up A-listers) visiting Mykonos is booming, and hip new hotels, beach bars and restaurants are mushrooming. In July and August, come only if you are prepared to pay and are intent on joining the jostling street crowds, the oiled-up lounger lifestyle at the packed main beaches and the relentless party. Out of season, devoid of gloss and preening celebrities, find more subdued local life, the with occasional pelican wandering the empty streets and beaches that you will have largely to yourself.
Mykonos is also the jumping-off point for the archaeological site of the nearby island of Delos.
Hora (also known as Mykonos), the island’s well-preserved port and capital, is a warren of narrow alleyways and whitewashed buildings overlooked by the town’s famous windmills. In the heart of the waterfront Little Venice quarter, which is spectacular at sunset, tiny flower-bedecked churches jostle with glossy boutiques, and there’s a cascade of bougainvillea around every corner. High-season streets are crowded with chic stores, cool galleries, jangling jewellers and both languid and loud music bars – plus a catwalk cast of thousands.