Each of the Greek Isles is known for something unique and each one provides a different experience when you visit. I cannot tell you how DIFFERENT each of our islands were that we visited. Like the minute you step on land you can feel the vibe! So here is my breakdown of each of the three, what I liked about them and what I would recommend for different types of people.
Mykonos: This is FAMOUSLY the party island. Years ago, some affluent and famous people began vacationing there and now it has exploded. The typical Mykonos evening begins with dinner at 10:00… Head to the bar at 1:00 in the morning… Stay out until the sun rises… (I am not done yet) Grab breakfast… then head home at 10:00 to sleep. WHAT??? That is WAY too much for me! Mykonos town is packed full of shops and tourist attractions – and of course bars. There were quite a few authentic and local restaurants available. I do not know why but I could not navigate through this area. For some reason I would find something once and then never again… One day we walked by the same café three times… and got called out for it. Whoopsie. If you stay close to the heart of town you would not need a car… but there are so many GEMS within driving distance. We stayed about five minutes from town and taxied in when we wanted to.
Naxos: This was the most local experience we had on our vacation. Naxos has some of the best beaches in the Greek Isles, which is why it is a hot spot. Most of the tourists are Greeks actually because it is not as well known as Mykonos and Santorini. I also predict it is about to BLOW up because there were dozens of hotels being renovated and plenty of construction. This was absolutely a much more relaxed vibe, and a lot easier to navigate downtown. Also, here is your fair warning… The best parts of Naxos are things you have to drive to. If you visit, expect to rent a car to hike the mountain, check out the adorable Greek villages and drive to the beach. The port road of the city has a row of great cafés and restaurants, which is the most touristy part of it. If you go into the heart of town you will find great food as well as local shopping. We stayed in an Air B&B close to downtown and walked everywhere. (This was Jennifer’s favorite island)
Santorini: There are limited beach options here, because everything is up on these massive and beautiful cliffs. This is one of the most breathtaking places on the planet. I seriously found my soul in Santorini. When you see pictures of the blue domes you are looking at pictures of this island. This place is pretty heavy on tourism but you can still find a more local vibe. Downtown Fira is where we spent most of our time, which I loved… but the town you have to visit there is Oia. This is where the sunsets are spectacular, and the shopping is to die for. There is a beautiful hike you can do along a rock path that takes about three hours from Fira to Oia. If we had more time I would have LOVED to do this but two days is tough… And it rained the first day. Sad… There is a lot of art on this island. Seriously I could get lost just walking into these beautiful galleries and jewelry shops. Santorini is my FAVORITE place we visited.
I love the Greek Isles because each is so different. You can go and experience so many different things in just a matter of days. Every single person prefers different aspects of their vacations and if you go with a group or if you go with one person you will love different islands for different reasons. Tomorrow I am going to break down my favorite activity from each place!