Known as a party island and a nightlife haven, Mykonos has a charming side that goes beyond typical island tourism – if you look hard enough. It is indeed one of the most picturesque islands with its winding streets and characteristic windmills. Few people know that there are important ecosystems on the island, such as the coastal wetlands of Ftelia and Panormos which flood from time to time creating small lagoons, representing key spots for migrating birds.
While seemingly barren, the island does offer many interesting beaches away from the masses. Along with nearby Delos and Rineia, it has been characterized as a region of natural beauty, protected by legislation. The landscape is dotted by prickly pear and wild flowers, particularly in spring. The island is best visited in spring or late summer, not during the high season with the quality of food suffers and the noise pollution rises dramatically.
Beyond the main town or Hora lies Ano Mera, the next biggest town or village which is quieter than touristy Mykonos. In addition, around Agios Georgios Spilioanos west of the main town there are round granate boulders which, according to Greek mythology, were used to kill wild giants who had revolted against the Olympian Gods.