Tag: beaches

Temptation island: Why Mykonos is Greece’s hottest holiday destination

A tour of the heavenly island of Mykonos!!

A tour of the heavenly island of Mykonos!! With an exclusive and amazing video that highlights the unparalleled beauty of the island, the journalist and owner of Mykonos Live Tv Peter Nazos invites us to escape to Mykonos! Among the picturesque narrow streets, next to the churches and the monasteries, behind the freshly painted shutters, through the living tradition, the vitality of the night, the rocky hills and the heavenly beaches, the island of the wings can not hide its incomparable charm. Walk in the idyllic cobbled roads, dive into the deep blue and experience the unique atmosphere of the "queen" of the Cyclades. This is Mykonos, a top vacation choice!

Posted by Mykonos LIVE TV. on Wednesday, April 6, 2016

This video by Mykonos LIVE TV shows some of the popular beaches and tourist attractions that draw huge crowds to Mykonos every year

 

Intriguing island: It seems everybody loves Mykonos,  Countless people love its atmospheric beaches, restaurants, shopping, and nightlife, and happily spread the word about how fantastic everything is. And there are likely just as many who love to criticize and complain, warning anyone who will listen not to go to Mykonos because it’s overpriced, overcrowded and overly commercialized. With so much talk, whether by exuberant fans or equally enthusiastic detractors, it’s no wonder Mykonos is the most famous of all the Greek islands. Remember the expression “There is no such thing as bad publicity?” Well, Mykonos gets plenty, yet its popularity continues to soar.  

I think there’s a very simple reason: Mykonos has tremendous visual appeal. Watch the two videos I’ve published in this post, and it’s easy to see why millions of people want to go there. Professional photography helps, no doubt, but similarly enticing images of the island’s breathtaking sights and scenery have appeared for many years in news and social media, travel publications, lifestyle websites, fashion and design magazines, and hit movies all around the world. Heck,  I’ve been to Mykonos more than any other place in Greece, yet these videos make me feel like rushing right back.

The film at the top of this post, produced by Mykonos LIVE TV, does a great job of selling the island’s good looks. It presents fabulous views of the iconic landmarks and attractions that have made Mykonos a household name over the past five decades: beaches, bougainvillea, brilliant white buildings, charming churches and chapels, the Little Venice seafront, the photogenic pelican, the impressive Alefkandra windmills, the incredible blue skies and turquoise seas, the sensational sunsets, and much more.

 

 

However, there is another popular expression that applies to Mykonos: “Beauty is only skin deep.” Although the narrator of the Tripment travel website film, below, makes a point of mentioning the island’s biggest blemishes, warts and flaws, the video views of bustling beaches, streets and bars do a convincing job of selling Mykonos as an incredibly attractive, exciting, and vibrant place to vacation.

Acknowledging that the island can be extremely expensive and overcrowded during peak season (July and August), the narrator describes Mykonos as “the ideal destination to boast one’s wealth and happiness.” Still, there’s that matchless beauty and alluring aura that make people dream of taking a trip to Mykonos..

“The all-white Cycladic architecture, in combination with the blue colour of the sea and sky, creates really beautiful scenery,” the narrator notes, adding that the 25 Mykonos beaches  — “quite a large number” considering the island’s small size — are all “beautiful, with golden sand and crystal-clear blue water.” They might be jam-packed with rental sunbeds and umbrellas, too, but they still look so damned inviting!

 

Despite its drawbacks, Mykonos “definitely offers a unique experience to its visitors,” the narrator says, and “whether you like it or not depends on your personal taste and style.”

Nevertheless, “the fact is that it is the liveliest destination in Greece as people here enjoy themselves 24 hours a day, non-stop.” Mykonos, he concludes, is “a destination that has made Greece famous all over the world.”

And that’s a really good thing, in my humble opinion.

Even if you can get there only briefly, whether on a cruise, a day tour or a short stopover en route to another island, Mykonos is absolutely worth seeing. There’s nowhere else like it, and that’s a good thing, too. 

 

This clip from the Tripment travel blog dates back to 2014, but little has changed in the interim, and the video still offers an excellent overview of what it calls “the most famous and expensive destination in Greece.”

Cool things to see in and around Andros Town

Andros Town

Red-roofed buildings on the northeast side of Andros Town

 

Eye & camera candy:  If you enjoy exploring Greek island towns, either simply to stroll around and just see what’s there, to learn more about the destination’s history, or to discover interesting subjects for photography, painting or other artistic hobbies, you won’t be disappointed with Andros Town. 

During our Andros visit this spring, we spent three days at Chora (the Greek name for the island’s main town) and wandered its streets, lanes, and seaside areas several times. The town has many familiar features and amenities we enjoy seeing and photographing on other Greek islands — outdoor bars and cafes, public squares, picturesque churches and chapels,  impressive local architecture, and cats aplenty — but it also boasts its own special landmarks and historic sites, plus distinctive natural surroundings of seasides, beaches, bays and mountains.

Unfortunately, jet lag kept us from exploring Andros Town as thoroughly as we would have liked. Though we did view a lot of interesting sights and scenery, when it came time to move to a beach resort area on the south side of the island, we realized there had been much, much more we didn’t get to see. But that just means there will be plenty of new things to experience the next time we visit Chora. 

Page 2 of this post features photo slideshows of some of the sights we saw during our various walkabouts. Click here or on the link below to access the photos.

You can view full-size versions of all of the pictures, along with hundreds more, in our Andros Town album on the mygreecetravelblog Flickr page.

CONTINUED ON PAGE 2

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Timeless treasures of Zakynthos

Treasures of Zakynthos – A Timelapse Film from Maciej Tomków on Vimeo

 

I haven’t been to Zakynthos yet (or any of the other Greek islands in the Ionian Sea, for that matter), but I already know I would love it.

I’m drawn to islands that boast superlative scenery and, based on the scores of photos and videos I have seen, Zakynthos would not disappoint. With its stunning landscapes — verdant mountains,  soaring cliffs, picturesque towns and harbours, and especially its spectacular coastlines, Blue Caves and magnificent beaches — Zakynthos would tick off a lot of boxes on my list of favourite features for an ideal Greek holiday destination.

And if you saw my August 2 2014 post about Shipwreck Beach, you’ll know that Zakynthos is already on my bucket list of the places I most want to see in Greece.

The Treasures of Zakynthos video I posted above simply reinforces my strong belief that I would thoroughly enjoy visiting the island. The breathtaking film was produced, directed and photographed by cinematographer Maciej Tomkow, who captured astounding timelapse images of the island’s amazing natural treasures — its mountains and hills; sunrises and sunsets; towns and harbours; star-filled night skies; and its coastlines, bays, and beaches (Shipwreck plays a starring role, as you’d expect).

If you haven’t been to Zakynthos yet, either, I bet you’ll be adding it to your own travel bucket list after watching Maciej’s film.

Greece holiday 2010: Beaches at Kokkari, Samos

Long Beach at Kokkari on Samos

A hillside view overlooking the aptly-named Long Beach at Kokkari on Samos

 

One village, three beaches: The picturesque seaside village of Kokkari on Samos boasts something few other towns in the Greek Islands can brag about: three beaches. On one side of the village is Long Beach, a very long (of course) pebbly beach lined with shops, bars and tavernas and offering rental lounge chairs and umbrellas. On the other side are two crescent-shaped beaches, also pebbly, that sit back-to-back, separated by a small strip of land. Oddly enough, they’ve both got the same name: Small Lemonakia. Below are pics of the two Lemonaki beaches, along with brief videoclips of them.

 

Small Lemonakia beach

The Small Lemonakia beach closest to Kokkari (just a two-minute walk away)

 

Small Lemonakia beach

The second Small Lemonakia beach is literally a stone’s throw away from the first

 

 

 

Greece holiday 2010: Kos

Bougainvillea in Kos Town

A giant wave of bougainvillea cascades over a stone wall in Kos Town

 

Starting point: Kos wasn’t on our travel radar for 2010 until I discovered it would be the easiest (that is, the fastest) island to get to after our overnight flight from Canada arrived in Athens. And when I realized it would be a convenient starting point for island hopping to Patmos and Samos, two islands we really wanted to see, I immediately booked two tickets to Kos on Aegean Airlines.

We spent only three nights on Kos, but that gave us enough time to relax and recover from jet lag, explore colourful Kos Town, and spend a day bicycling around, visiting the Tigaki area and the Asklepieion. (We had hoped we’d have time to take a day excursion to Bodrum, Turkey, but it just didn’t work out.)

Things we liked the most about Kos:

The ruins. At home, we can’t walk very far without passing a Tim Horton’s coffee shop or a McDonald’s. In Kos Town, you can’t walk very far without encountering historic ruins and monuments from centuries past, like the castle overlooking the harbour.

Cycling: Kos is a great island for bike riding! There are dedicated bicycle lanes on some of the main streets in Kos Town, and it’s an easy bike ride to some of the island’s beach areas, including Tigaki. We also rode the bikes to see the Asklepieion, rather than take the little tourist choo-choo train that makes regular trips from Kos Town.

What we liked the least about Kos:

We knew Kos would be extremely touristy and commercial, but we didn’t expect to be hounded and hassled as much as we were whenever we walked past restaurants in Kos Town, or strolled along the harbour past the excursion tour boats. I couldn’t begin to count the number of times restaurant staff actually came running — and I do mean running! — out to the street to urge us to stop in for a meal. Some even followed us part way down the street, with one fellow actually pestering us for nearly two blocks! It happened so often it was ridiculous, not to mention extremely annoying.

At some future date I hope to post a more detailed report of our short visit to Kos. In the meantime, you can find plenty of information about Kos at the kosinfo.gr website and on travel-to-kos.com.

 

St Constantine Hotel in Kos Town

We stayed at the St Constantine Hotel in Kos Town. Convenient location, pleasant & helpful staff, decent breakfast, OK room

 

a street in Kos Town

It took about 15 minutes to walk along this street to get from the St Constantine Hotel into the heart of Kos Town. The street is lined with shops, tavernas and cafes all the way.

 

fishing boats and tour boats in Kos Town harbour

Colourful fishing boats and tour boats in Kos Town harbour

 

a church in Kos Town

A huge church in Kos Town

 

tavernas and shops on a street in Kos Town

Tavernas and shops on the street leading to the big church

 

one of the beaches near Kos Town

The view toward Kos Town harbour from one of the beaches just a short walk away from the St Constantine Hotel

 

lounge chairs on one of the Kos Town beaches

Colourful lounge chairs and umbrellas on one of the Kos Town beaches

 

the palm tree lined street outside the castle in Kos Town

Palm trees line Finikon Avenue outside the Castle of Neratzia in Kos Town

 

the castle at Kos Town

Inside the Castle of Neratzia at Kos Town

 

the castle in Kos Town

Inside the Castle of Neratzia in Kos Town

 

A street in Kos Town

A street in Kos Town

 

ruins in Kos Town

There are archaeological ruins in Kos Town practically everywhere you walk

 

archaeological ruins in Kos town

More archaeological ruins in Kos town

 

Mary's House restaurant in Kos Town

Mary’s House restaurant in Kos Town, where we had an amazing dinner — friendly hosts and an absolutely wonderful food!

 

The bicycles we rented to explore Kos

The bicycles we rented to explore Kos, seen here at a stop along the coast during our ride to Tigaki and the Asklepieion

 

tall grasses near the coast on the way to Tigaki

Tall grasses near the coast on the way to Tigaki

 

dunes near the beach at Tigaki on Kos

Vegetation on dunes near the beach at Tigaki on Kos

 

one of the sandy beaches near Tigaki

Lounge chairs along one of the sandy beaches near Tigaki

 

The Asklepieion ruins near Kos Town

The Asklepieion ruins near Kos Town

 

Kos Town and Bodrum Turkey

The view toward Kos Town and Bodrum Turkey from the hillside at the Asklepieion

 

fishing boats in Kos Town harbour

Fishing boats in Kos Town harbour