More insider guides for planning a trip to Mykonos
These are unusual times, and the state of affairs can change quickly. Please check the latest travel guidance before making your journey. Note that our writer visited pre-pandemic.
Mykonos comes into its own at night. From the host of prime positions from which to watch a deep orange and purple sunset, to the number of sophisticated cocktail bars, and the choice of dance clubs to head to in the small hours, it’s as if the island was made for partying. Every night is a good night to go out (it doesn’t calm down just because it’s, say, Tuesday) and there’s no such thing as a quiet pub, so if you can’t beat them, join them.
As one of several bars lining the waterfront in Mykonos’s most attractive quarter, Little Venice, BAO’s advantage is an unobstructed view right across the sea. With the famous windmills to your left, and the outlines of the houses built out into the water on stilts, it’s a prime spot for a sundowner. The inventive cocktail list covers most of the classics, but you should also try one of their signatures, such as The Mandarin, with fresh mandarin juice, gin and lime. The interiors are chic, with whitewashed walls and ceilings contrasting with bright blue wooden beams, low-hanging rattan lampshades and curved banquettes lining the windows. But you want to be on a table outside; they’re popular, so head here early. Music is of the generic Euro-dance variety, though people do get up and dance as the evening progresses (and it gets louder).
Contact: 00 30 22890 26505; baosmykonos.com
Opening times: 6pm-late
Getting in: Get there early to bag a table outside
Located just along the waterfront from BAO’s, Galleraki’s main selling point is its terrace on the first floor, so you double your chances of getting a good view. Its décor is less showy, with touches of blue and white, and white-painted wooden chairs and tables, but as it’s more tucked away in a corner, it avoids the worst of the winds that blow off the sea. They have an extensive range of cocktails made with fresh fruit – try the irresistibly sweet Peach Daquiri – as well as more classic and champagne cocktails, plus alcoholic coffees. Music here veers towards the chilled out, at least at the start of the evening.
Contact: 00 30 28890 27188; galleraki.gr
Opening times: 10am-4am
An intimate, jewel box of a bar tucked away down a small side street in Chora (Mykonos Town). The décor is predominantly pink and purple, with a fancy, flamboyant crowd to match. The signature slushy, salt-rimmed, strawberry Margarita of course follows the colour theme; enough of those and you’ll be dancing to the pumping house music along with the best of them. But there are enough tables hidden away in corners to conjure up a romantic atmosphere too, if that’s what you want. Needless to say, it’s one of Mykonos’ many LGBT+ friendly establishments, but it appeals to a mixed clientele.
Contact: 00 30 22890 78391; facebook.com/lola-mykonos
Opening times: 8pm-3am
Getting in: It draws a glamorous, dressed-up crowd
A Mykonos institution. This bar, sprawling out across a small square close to the Old Port, has been attracting dance-loving drinkers since the 1970s. It consists of two compact bar areas – though most people try and secure an outdoor table, the better to people-watch – and a ‘disco’ reached up a flight of steps, with a DJ overseeing the decks to play crowd-pleasers from the likes of Rihanna and Taylor Swift. The cocktail list offers the usual suspects, from Aperol Spritz to Martinis, and they also do a range of luridly titled shots. The up-for-it ambience appeals to all ages, and as for dressing up, well, anything goes…
Contact: 00 30 22890 22669; skandinavianbar.com
Opening times: 8pm-6am
Getting in: Queues to get into the club above the bar start to form around 11pm
Jackie O’ (sister venue to the popular beach club on Super Paradise), is located right by the waterfront round the corner from the Old Port. It’s one of the best gay bars and clubs in town, but appeals to a mixed crowd. Inside, it looks as if it’s been – stylishly – carved out of a cave, with a curvy whitewashed stone bar and sinuous seating. There’s a small upstairs area, too. Black and white photos of its namesake, Jackie Onassis, are scattered throughout, but all eyes turn to the front when the dance music ramps up, to signal the entry of the nightly drag act. The bar menu ranges from local beers to classic cocktails.
Contact: 00 30 28890 77298/00 30 697 301 0981; jackieomykonos.com
Opening times: 8pm-6am
Getting in: It tends to get very busy after 11pm
Queen of Mykonos
Billed as a ‘champagne and cocktail bar’, this attracts the big spenders; aptly since it’s on a street – Enoplon Dynameon – lined with eye-wateringly expensive jewellers and designer boutiques. Perrier Jouet (ideally by the magnum) is the order of the day, but you can also splash out on Veuve, Dom Pérignon, Bollinger and Moët, and there are dozens of cocktails to choose from. If you’ve got a yacht – or just want people to think you have – this is the place for you. Most people stay outside (easier to see and be seen), perching on stools or Louis Ghost chairs.
Contact: 00 30 6949 078018; queenofmykonos.gr
Opening times: 8pm-5am
Getting in: Dressing up in designer labels is the way to go
A stylish, sophisticated option in quieter, more family-orientated Ornos – and part of the exclusive Santa Marina resort, tucked away at the far end of the beach – this is more about having good quality Mediterranean and Asian fusion food accompanied by top-notch drinks than partying into the small hours; though, thanks to occasional live DJ sets, you can do that too. The vibe is chilled, the décor a mix of modern cane furniture, brightly coloured cushions and orchids in huge vases. Wash down sushi, black cod with miso or Wagyu beef with a Japanese Old Fashioned (made with Japanese whisky and Umeshu) or a White Princess (gin, lemongrass-infused sake and passionfruit, topped with vanilla foam).
Contact:00 30 28890 23220; santa-marina.gr
Opening times: 1pm-7pm; 8pm-1am
Getting in: Reserving a table is recommended
Situated towards one end of the sweeping curve of Ornos beach, this is a relaxed, easy place to come for a few drinks. You can sit at a table on the sand, or in the airy interior, which subscribes to the island’s natural aesthetic – all bamboo roofing, simple, white-painted furniture, lighting in glass, jam-jar-like shades, and, of course, a view out to sea. The cocktail list is more inventive than most – how about a Smoked Daiquiri with mezcal, rum and lime, or the Greek Passion, with the ubiquitous mastiha liqueur, basil, jasmine and cucumber?
Contact: 00 30 28890 27991; aperantogalazio-mykonos.com
Opening times: 9am-2am
Getting in: It gets busy in July and August so reserving a table is especially recommended
Seltz Champagne Bar
This small but charming bar on the first floor terrace of the chic Katikies Mykonos hotel in Agios Ioannis is perfect for an aperitif or for a few sophisticated drinks, if you plan to go on somewhere else for dinner. Tables are evenly spread across the poured concrete floor, illuminated by hanging lampshades made from curved pieces of wood. The signature cocktail involves fresh strawberry juice and champagne, but there is a more classic list to choose from as well as wine and beer. The vibe is calm and peaceful – gentle music forms a subtle backdrop – perfect for a break from the party element in Chora.
Contact: 00 30 22890 27890; katikies.com
Opening times: 12pm-1am
Getting in: Reserving a table is recommended but you can also walk in
This upmarket resort at Psarou beach comprises a beach bar and restaurant, as well as a series of small boutiques (in what’s known as Nammos Village). Its exclusive feel has meant it has played host to a range of visiting stars, from Ralph Lauren to Leonardo Di Caprio, Elizabeth Hurley and Mariah Carey. By night the music ramps up and the cool crowd sip cocktails and champagne or smoke shisha pipes. Again, you can sit on or near the sand, or retreat to the stylish terrace area and star-spot to your heart’s content.
Contact: 00 30 28890 22440; nammos.gr
Opening times: 10am-1am
Getting in: Reservations advised
Please note: most bars open every day during the season, which generally runs from mid-April to the end of October. Contact bars directly for exact timings, especially when visiting outside of peak season.