Looking for unconventional ways to explore this history-infused Greek isle? Our team compiled this roundup of extraordinary ways to explore the many sides of Mykonos so you can learn, indulge, and immerse yourself in both the traditional and contemporary aspects of the island.
We found activities that will appeal to creatives, families, fitness enthusiasts, cultural purists, party heads and those just looking for ways to connect to the natural beauty of The Island of the Winds.
Check out these noteworthy activities and off-the-beaten path escapades to deepen your experience as you explore Chora, Ano Mera, or Drafaki, interact with the people of Mykonos, and create memorable moments.
1. Tour the Mykonos Vioma Organic Farm
Mykonos Vioma Organic Farm is a 4.4 hectare (10.9 acre) farm and vineyard in the Ano Mera village. Using organic and biodynamic cultivation and farming techniques, the farm produces wine, vinegar, grape leaves, table grapes and even honey from 20 onsite beehives. Visit the farm for guided bicycle tours, wine tastings, sample local cheese varieties or take a leisurely stroll through the vineyard. Prior notification and arrangement of your visit is required.
2. Take a Day Trip to Rhenia Island
A chartered cruise to Rhenia Island offers the triple benefit of a relaxing sail enhanced by beautiful panoramic views, gaining knowledge about Rhenia through historical tours, and post-tour snorkeling or swimming in the clear blue waters of the Aegean Sea.
Rhenia Island is an uninhabited, protected archaeological site that is the final resting place of warriors who died on its sister island Delos. Known as Big Delos or Great Delos, Rhenia Island is a great destination for the history buff looking for an intellectual fill, the snorkeling enthusiast eager to dive in the blue-green waters surrounding the island, or anyone looking for meaningful ways to learn about this part of the world while on vacation.
A chartered half-day cruise to Rhenia Island with Mykonos Cruises is a fun-filled sailing adventure complete with lunch (cold, buffet or BBQ), an open bar, available snorkeling or fishing equipment and even cooking classes or yoga lessons on two of its sailboats.
Grekaddict also makes it super easy to find and book a tour to Rhenia Island. Their Ancient Delos and Rhenia Island cruise starts at the port of Mykonos aboard a sailboat with lunch and beverages onboard. This tour is a 7.5 hour escape to learn about the ancient history, architecture and mythology from a trained guide. Grekaddict also has a half- or full-day Delos and Rhenia Yacht Cruise aboard a luxury yacht with premium services and access to snorkeling and other recreational equipment.
Finally, industry standard bearers Keytours can also arrange your adventure to Rhenia. With over 55 years of organizing sightseeing tours and excursions throughout Greece, their team knows how to find the right excursion to Rhenia Island to fit your budget. Keytours options include the All-Inclusive, Super Sailing Yacht Cruise to Mykonos South Coast Beaches, Rhenia & Delos Islands and the Concierge Class Cruise to Rhenia Island and Guided Tour of Delos.
3. Peruse Contemporary Art at Rarity Gallery
You’re on your holiday and you seldom have a chance to visit the museums in your hometown so why not rev up your passion for art at Rarity Gallery? Right in the center of Mykonos is an early 20th century Mykonian manor house that has been converted to a five-room gallery each with its own theme. With artistic styles from abstract expressionism to recycled art, Rarity Gallery is a feast for the eyes and balm for the art lover’s soul.
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4. Enjoy a Movie Under the Stars at Cine Manto
Imagine watching a feature film under the open skies. Every night from June 1 to September 30, you can do just that and more at Cine Manto. This community gem is at once an open-air cinema, 200-seat restaurant, an ethereal garden, and a cultural center that hosts film festivals, exhibitions, themed cinema features, and even tango lessons. On movie nights, two original versions films are screened (with Greek subtitles as needed).
The onsite Cine Manto Restaurant opens at 10am so you can swing by the following morning for a Greek breakfast under the trees and be lulled by the sounds of fountains. After breakfast or brunch, you can explore the wonders of the garden with its large cacti, palm and pine trees, and a cistern filled with goldfish and floating lilies—an unexpected oasis within the oasis of Mykonos.
5. Enjoy A Spa Day
For some, getting to Mykonos is a multi-hour, multi-stop flight to paradise. For others, it’s just a few hours. Regardless of your travel time, consider starting your vacation with a visit to Ciel Mykonos Spa for a one-hour Delos Energy Singing Bowl massage or an Aegean Grape body scrub. You can choose from their Ornos or Mykonos Town locations or they can provide your massage, facial, or other services in your room, villa, aboard a yacht or private plane, or on a secluded beach.
Walk into a day spa designed to induce relaxation at the mere sight of Mykonian whitewashed walls balanced by nature-inspired hues of dark brown, sea green, and light-colored wooden décor. This is the scenery at Nefes Spa & Bath. Let the team at Nefes cater to your need for relaxation using one of the holistic “Beauty Rituals of the World” treatments adapted and utilized by their highly trained staff. From the Ayurveda Tonifying Massage and the Polynesian Sublime Body Massage with Tiaré and Noni Oils to an Indian Head Massage, this award-winning day spa should be on your list. Check out their website for special offers.
6. Take a Hands-on Cheese Making Course at Mykonos Farmers
If you’re a fan of Kopanisti or Niari cheeses or if you’ve never had the pleasure of savoring their unique flavors, you can learn the techniques used by traditional Greek cheesemakers on your next trip to Mykonos.
Located just 10 minutes from Mykonos Town, Mykonos Farmers are local cheesemakers who specialize in Mykonian cheese, yogurt, and butter. Hewed to the practice of traditional Greek cheese making without packaged starters, additives and chemicals, Mykonos Farmers invites visitors to its sustainably designed production facilities (by reservation, of course) and extends the learning experience through 30-minute to two-hour hands on communal cooking courses designed to accommodate both novices and the experienced cook.
During the cooking workshop, you will also learn how to source the best milk for cheese making and you get a few cheese making recipes to try at home. Be sure to contact Mykonos Farmers to reserve your space in an upcoming cooking class. The classes are available with prior arrangement every day from March 1 to November 15 starting at 11am to 2pm or 5pm to 8pm.
7. Participate in a Guided Yoga or Qigong Class at Scorpios
Just a short walk away from the uber chic Soho Roc House is Scorpios. Described as a gathering place of creatives, healers, meditation teachers, visual artists, and experimental musicians, this modern-day interpretation of the Greek concept of agoda is a beachfront oasis replete with rustic and nature-inspired design elements. Scorpios also has a restaurant that serves Mediterranean cuisine, beachfront cabanas, and an onsite bazaar of exquisite handmade clothing and accessories.
The Mind & Body program at Scorpios includes daily group classes facilitated by instructors who guide you through yoga, Qigong, other holistic body exercises and meditation workshops. Contact the Scorpios team to find out more about its 2020 program and facilitators.
8. Catch a Live Performance at JackieO’ Mykonos
One of the first things to know about JackieO’ Mykonos is that it is a leisure and entertainment amalgam designed to cater to all of its guests needs. There is the gestating JackieO’ Mykonos Hotel scheduled to open in 2021, the award-winning JackieO’ Mykonos Restaurant, the beach club, JackieO’ Town Bar, an onsite boutique featuring well-known fashion brands and, of course, JackieO’ Events.
The second thing to know is that JackieO’ Mykonos opens in May each year so if an evening at JackieO’ is on your list of must-dos, plan your vacation around the lineup of exhilarating performers and unique DJ sets. Check out their Events page or follow them on Facebook to get the latest.
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9. Attend a Fitness and Yoga Retreat
Mykonos Fitness and Yoga Retreat is an annual six-day retreat hosted by Helios Retreats in the sunny and invigorating Mykonos landscape.
The retreat includes your stay at villas on the island, healthy breakfast, lunch and snacks, and spa services available onsite. Take note that this is not a retreat for those who want to laze around. The itinerary includes 1-2 daily fitness and 1-2 yoga classes and two hikes around the island.
Check out their website for the dates of the upcoming retreat. If you can’t make it, there’s always next year.
10. Go for a Hike
If you want to go beyond the whitewashed edifices of Mykonos to explore the uncrowded panoramic landscape, watch the gentle rolling waves along its beaches, and tour a farm in Maou, then this hiking tour is for you. The 4.5 hour guided tour includes transportation to and from your hotel or cruise ship, hiking stick, snack, and water. Meal at the farm and a swim in the beach are included in the tour. You can book this tour through Grekaddict.
Our team created this list to inspire you to try something new while vacationing in Mykonos. We hope we did. If there are other ways to enjoy the island that you recommend, drop us a note and we may publish another set of unconventional things to do there.