Mykonos Island “when no one’s watching” from Andreas Bekas on Vimeo.
Mention Mykonos, and most people instantly imagine sun-scorched rocky hills; crescent-shaped beaches packed end-to-end with people partying under searing sunshine; throngs of tourists swarming the iconic windmills on the hill near Little Venice; gigantic cruise ships docking at both of the island’s ports; and luxurious private yachts dropping anchor in almost every bay. That’s a fairly accurate image of what the island is like during the peak travel months of July and August.
But Mykonos has a completely different look during winter when the island’s 10,000 residents have the beaches and monuments entirely to themselves. The hillsides are verdant with winter flowers and greenery; the quiet beaches are empty of people, lounge chairs and umbrellas; and there’s nary a soul to be seen near the windmills or on the seaside at Little Venice.
Spectacular video by Andreas Bekas
In his spectacular time-lapse video Mykonos Island: When no one’s watching, photographer Andreas Bekas captures the Mykonos landscape in moments of peace, quiet, solitude and colour that few tourists ever get to see.
The 2.5-minute video opens with striking sunrise views of the Agios Iakovos chapel near Agios Sostis (which I profiled in a June 10 2013 post), and features scenes including: the five windmills at Alefkandra; the Armenistis lighthouse; the Bonis windmill on the hill above Mykonos Town; vast expanses of green countryside; the blissfully empty beaches at Paraga, Kalfatis and Panormos; the remarkable Paraportiani Church; and a moody view of the Little Venice seafront. The clip concludes with an aerial view of an eerily quiet Mykonos Town and harbourfront at sunset; a star-filled sky above a rustic dovecoat; and tall green grass rustling in wind.
Makes me wish I could take a winter trip to Mykonos!
Musician Andreas Tsironis plays the bouzouki while one of the island’s famous pelicans preens on the wall behind him in the Kastro area of Mykonos Town
Tunes for tourists: Cruise ship passengers who headed for the Kastro area of Mykonos Town in hopes of seeing one of the famous Mykonos pelicans, as well as the iconic Paraportiani Church, got a triple treat while visiting the island recently.
They not only got to see both the church and one of the popular birds in the same place, but they also got to enjoy some live musical entertainment at the same time, courtesy of a local bouzouki busker.
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The view from the hill: A panoramic view of Mykonos Town and its harbourfront and Old Port areas on May 21 2012. Click on the photo to view the image in a larger format.
Monday May 21 2012
Familiar patterns: Things weren’t looking very promising for my final full day on Mykonos. The weird up-and-down weather hit another “down” cycle, bringing overcast skies in the wake of a gorgeous sunny Sunday. Good thing I had not been planning another beach day, because I would have felt pretty bummed out by all the clouds and the threat of light rain. But I didn’t need more beach time and was content just to start walking and see where I would wind up.
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A hillside view overlooking Mykonos Town and its harbour area
Lots to see: Unlike a lot of visitors, I never get bored of Mykonos Town. Many people think they’ve seen all that’s worth seeing after they walk along the harbourside, visit Little Venice, and stroll some of the narrow, twisting streets.
But those people see only the highly commercial, touristy side of Mykonos Town — the lanes lined with jewellery stores, T-shirt shops and tavernas. They don’t wander far enough away from the main tourist zone to walk the quiet residential streets or climb to hillside lookout points that offer amazing views over the town, harbour and beyond.
Even after 7 separate visits to Mykonos, each of which has included a lot of walking around town, I still keep discovering streets and vantage points I’ve never seen in my favourite Greek Island town.
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