This Mykonos shore trip provides all the best sites associated with a visit to Mykonos. You visit the archaeological site on the uninhabited island of Delos and then enjoy a walking tour of the town of Mykonos including Little Venice, the windmills, the Paraportiani church and a visit to the Mykonian Archaeological Museum (closed on Mondays).
After meeting your private guide you transfer to the ferry port in the town of Mykonos where you'll board the local kaiki (ferries) to Delos. Located virtually at the center of the Cyclades island group, Delos developed into one of the most important trading centers of the Mediterranean. It was once the religious center of the entire Aegean. Pilgrims from all over the known world came to pay their respect to the God, bringing gifts and offerings, and making the island one of the most important sanctuary islands of the ancient world.
In the early 19th century excavations uncovered ruins of a long dead city. Beautiful artifacts such as the Naxos marble lions and splendid mosaic floors are visible amid the ruins and inside the small museum. Rising above the ruins of the ancient city is Mount Kynthos. Here the earliest traces of habitation were discovered, dating back to the 3rd century B.C.
After visiting Delos, you take the ferry back to Mykonos and enjoy a walking tour through the narrow whitewashed streets, where you will appreciate the fact that its confusing layout was designed to foil the attacking pirates.
Your guide will explain the tradition of the painted houses, colorful doors and whitewashed sidewalks which make the town so unique in Greece. You stop to see a traditional 15th century bakery which is still operational today and is one of the few bakeries in Greece which still uses wood burning ovens.
You stroll through picture-perfect Little Venice, so called due to its striking resemblance in design to the famous canal city. The buildings in this area are built right at the sea's edge and they have balconies which hang over the water. It is said that these buildings were used by ships for quick loading and unloading in the days of pirates. Today some of the most popular caf̩s in Mykonos offer visitors the chance to dine at the seafront.
On the western edge of town you will see the famous windmills, an island trademark, which offer a wonderful photo opportunity. These windmills date back to the 16th century when Mykonos was a major trading stop between Venice and Asia. The mills were used to refine grain and their location was ideal for the wind and for it's close proximity to the old port.
Next you visit the castle area and see the Paraportiani church which is considered one of the most famous architectural structures in Greece. Construction began in the late 15th century in what is a group of five smaller churches being built up to the mid-17th century. The first four churches were combined together and the fifth church was built on top of them, creating the central domed roof that you see today.
You also visit the Mykonian Archaeological Museum which houses vases, statues and other treasure from the uninhabited island of Delos. While you are here, your guide will explain the history of Delos which was once the religious center of the entire Aegean. According to mythology it was the birthplace of Apollo, the god of music, light and beauty.
You end your tour in the old harbor where hopefully you have the chance to see Petros the Pelican. The pelican was found here after a storm left him stranded. He has become a local resident and a popular site for the tourists over the last 50 years.
Please Note: It is about a 20 minute walk along the harbor to return to the pier where large cruise ships dock. Most cruise lines offer free shuttles from the town back to the ship.
Mobility: NO wheelchairs
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