You Can Totally See Four Mykonos Beaches in One Day
Mykonos is celebrated for its iconic windmills, white-washed buildings and world-class bars, restaurants and nightclubs, interconnected by narrow, meandering cobbled footpaths. It’s a combination of these selling points that attracts local and international holiday-makers alike to the most visited island in Greece.
For me, it was the call of the white sand beaches and glistening turquoise waters that drew me in. There are over 25 beaches in Mykonos and at least six of them are considered ‘must-sees’ for any visitor to the popular Aegean island.
I had just 36 hours to enjoy Mykonos. I spent the first afternoon sightseeing around Mykonos Town and trying to catch a glimpse of the sunset. The second day I dedicated wholly to visiting the beaches - I was determined to see at least four.
Despite having the odds stacked against me, I did…kind of.
Reaching the beaches from Mykonos Town is easy and comfortable. Spacious, air-conditioned coaches line up neatly in Fabrica (the Mykonos Town bus stop) waiting to take tourists to the most popular beaches. For €1.80, these coaches will take you to Ornos, Paradise and Super Paradise beach.
I decided to visit Ornos first. This particular beach was recommended by the helpful Airbnb host of the stylish apartment I had booked for the two nights. In addition, a quick glance at Google Maps revealed that Ornos was just a short, 25-minute walk from another beautiful and highly-recommended beach, Agios Ioannis.
The bus stopped at Ornos and I eagerly hopped off and made my way to the water. Bypassing the sunbeds and beach bars, I walked along the boardwalk to take in a view of the coastline. The beach itself is barely 250 metres across but it’s encased on both sides by gorgeous rocky outcrops, which open out onto a breathtaking view of the Aegean.
Having found a secluded patch of sand and a shallow rock pool, my partner and I lounged under the clear skies and cooled off in the crystal waters all by ourselves. Time stood still as I laid on the sand with the shining sun warming my skin and the sound of gently lapping water filling the air. Except it didn’t. I had three more beaches to visit.
After refreshing and refuelling at one of the beachside bars, we started this “25 minute walk” to Agios Ioannis.
Minutes into the walk, I looked at the map and spotted another nearby beach: Korfos. Mere metres away, I couldn’t resist taking a look. Reviews celebrate Ornos beach for its unique protection from the harsh Aegean winds - something I had yet to experience. After just 30 seconds at Korfos, I was well acquainted. Bracing ourselves against the sharp, blinding winds armed with fine grains of sand, we continued on towards Agios Ioannis.
Approximately 20 minutes into the walk, I realised that Ornos beach was not a short 25-minute walk from Agios Ioannis beach: the little blue dot on my map was less than half way through its journey. The path was steep, and harder still with the midday sun beaming down on us.
Perhaps the real tip-off for this ill-fated walk should have been the lack of other tourists walking along the same path. On an island as popular with beach-goers as Mykonos, this should’ve been a red flag
Stubborn and foolhardy as ever, we continued along, slowly but surely making headway. That was, until the next road.
Perhaps it had been a road once upon a time, but with overgrown bushes filling the space between crumbling stone fences, it was unsurpassable by any mode of transport. There was no way through it and no viable alternate route.
We’d come too far to turn back. Instead we climbed on one of the fences and tightrope-walked the rest of the way, stopping briefly at one stage to apologise to the construction workers who stopped drilling to watch us quizzically as we passed.
Around 20 minutes later, we arrived at Agios Ioannis beach. The aquamarine waters glistened under the beaming sunlight. A few restaurants and bars lined the beachside, but the atmosphere was quiet and relaxed. We rented sunbeds, dozed and swam on rotation.
Re-energised and possibly suffering from sunstroke, I insisted that we could make it to one more beach, possibly two. Paradise and Paraga were high on the list.
But the bus didn’t go to either of those beaches from Agios Ioannis, so we decided to turn back to Mykonos Town, freshen up and head out to Paradise in the evening.
We took the bus from Fabrica toward Paradise. On route, the driver announce a stop at Scorpio’s. This megaclub, situated on a cliff overlooking Paraga beach, was said to be the best place to be on a Thursday night - and it just happened to be a Thursday night.
On a whim, we stepped off the bus and down the path towards the bar. Unlike our last walk, we trailed behind other eager tourists. The bus stop was some distance from the club and the road was a familiarly tough walk, but this time we could see the end in sight with the glowing lights shining from the popular nightclub.
Scorpio’s itself is a sprawling clifftop club, lavishly styled and filled with equally stylish people - bar two. Expect the cheapest beer to set you back approximately €10, and to become quickly worn out by the intense EDM and increasingly drunk crowds (unless you plan splashing the cash to join them).
After exploring Scorpio’s nooks and crannies and drinking €20 worth of beer between us, we thought about our next moves.
I looked at my map to see how far Paradise beach was - just a 30 minute walk. Before I could even contemplate another “quick walk”, reality stepped in.
We instead decided to turn in for the night and head back to Mykonos Town on the bus. But the sun was long gone, street lights were non existent, and the moonlit walk back to the bus stop was less romantic than somewhat terrifying. Headlights loomed from oncoming traffic and cars whipped passed us just inches from our shoulders.
We made it to where the bus let us off, and sat waiting on a fence to keep out of the way of passing traffic. From the distance, I saw the bus approaching. I felt pure joy at the thought of sitting safe and sound inside a bus and off this dangerous road. But then it passed on by. And another bus passed by.
We were stuck. No buses were stopping and the road back to the bar was just as treacherous, with taxis flying passed at regular intervals. The taxis entering were dropping guests at Scorpios and those leaving were filled with guests on their way out. To make matters worse, there was no cell reception. We were stranded.
After what felt an eternity, a passing car stopped.
“What are you doing out here?!”, the driver asked, curious and incredulous.
“We were waiting for the bus,” we replied.
“The bus won’t stop here!” the driver quickly informed us.
She was heading back to Mykonos Town having just dropped off some customers at Scorpio’s. She kindly offered us a ride back to town.
We arrived back at the apartment, exhausted, deflated and grateful for having returned unscathed - and having seen four beaches in Mykonos in one day. Success?