From tiny, remote coves to yawning sandy stretches, beaches of all shapes and sizes make up Mykonos’ coastline. The southern strips are the most popular – and often more crowded – while the northern gems are more remote and quiet. Many unfurl from the foot of villas and hotels, while others feature beach clubs thronging with bronzed revellers. Here’s our roundup of the best beaches in Mykonos – take your pick.
Best for Water-sports: Kalafatis Beach
Kalafatis Beach is probably one of the best known, with a sweep of powdery sand and turquoise waters. Lashed by the meltemi, the strong, dry north wind of the Aegean, Kalafatis is also a water-sports destination, with diving and windsurfing up there among our top things to do in Mykonos. W-Diving offers scuba diving tours, while Windsurf Centre Mykonos offers lessons and rental.
Best for Multi-generational Families: Ornos Beach
Ornos Beach wraps around a former fishing village of the same name, and is one of the best beaches in Mykonos for families. Expect umbrellas and loungers to hire, plus a cluster of seafront bars and restaurants for all-day refreshments. Watersport rental outfits hire out windsurfing equipment, and a diving school runs courses and tours. The downside: it’s the nearest big beach to Mykonos Town, so often crowded.
Best for Parties: Paradise Beach
Partygoers should make a beeline for Paradise, a long, picturesque sweep of pebbly sand. There’s a campsite, café and a couple of toes-in-the-sand bars. But most people come for the finest Mykonos beach club around, where the action doesn’t stop just because the sun goes down.
Best for Barefoot Hedonism: Paraga Beach
Mykonos isn’t short on beach parties, with barefoot revellers soaking up the sun and the cocktails. One of the most popular is Paraga, home to slick hangout Scorpios – the uber-hip Mykonos beach club from the Soho House team – where you can rub shoulders with a stylish crowd. If your pockets are too shallow, stick to the loungers edging the beach’s small pool (min spend £18 on food and drink), or simply dive off the floating pier into the sea then grab a (cheaper) sunbed dotting the shore.
Best for Escaping the Crowds: Panormos Beach
To escape the throngs, head north for quieter, more peaceful beaches. We recommend Panormos, where you’ll find a couple of small restaurants and the latest addition – Principote, one of the chicer Mykonos beach clubs that’s popular with Champagne-slurping patrons. Not your scene? Head to the sheltered Lovers’ Beach or any of the other sandy coves carved into this stretch of coastline.
Best for Snorkelling: Agios Ioannis
Hugging a peninsula to the west of Mykonos, Agios Ioannis gained acclaim for its starring role in 1989 classic feature Shirley Valentine. Feast on Greek favourites or day-fresh sushi at the small tavern (now named Hippie Fish) where Shirley sipped on a glass of wine in the film. After, snorkel among the glass-still, cerulean waters then linger over drinks to catch a staggering sunset, with the light falling over the island of Delos. This is where to stay in Mykonos if you like a more relaxed pace.
Best for All-day Hangouts: Super Paradise
Sheltered by a headland looking out over Paradise Beach Club, its super sibling was the island’s first dedicated gay beach, but today draws a mixed crowd. Start the day with fruit and yoghurt at the bar, rent out jet skis or go parasailing and kick back on a sun lounger until live DJs get you up on your feet. Super Paradise is the best Mykonos beach club for letting your hair down.
Best for Decadent Luxury: Psarou Bay
On the south coast of the island, Psarou Bay has rarely been out of the tabloids for its notorious beach club: Nammos. The eponymous village is an exclusive enclave that attracts models and moguls, who are willing to shell out £80 a day to recline on a sun lounger. Super-yachts bob in the crystal-clear waters, while millionaires think nothing of forking out £65k for a 15-litre bottle of Armand de Brignac champagne at the super-pricey Mykonos beach club. Not one for budgeting travellers.
Best for Untouched Beauty: Rhenia Beach
Not technically on Mykonos but just a short speedboat ride away, the lagoon on Rhenia – Delos’s sister island – is kissed by one of the most pristine beaches in the Aegean. Expect balmy aquamarine shallows and dazzling white sand, and often a couple of superyachts bobbing on the crystal bay. This is one of the most enchanting day trips from Mykonos.
Best for Foodies: Agios Sostis Beach
The beach below foodie hotspot Kiki’s – among the best restaurants in Mykonos – Agios Sostis is a great spot to snooze off those pork skewers chargrilled to perfection by the tiny tavern. Quite a humble affair, this understated stretch is free from loungers or deck chairs, so take a towel. Be careful when hotfooting it into the sea: the shore is littered with sea urchins – a speciality on the menu at the acclaimed Spilia, across the other side of the island on Agia Anna.