Often referred to as the “island of colors”, Milos is one of the most glamorous Greek islands that turns into a playground for the rich and famous each summer and attracts visitors with 75 azure beaches and vibrant villages.
It comes as no surprise that the island was at the forefront of the history of art and the birthplace of some of the world’s most photographed masterpieces.
After the discovery of Venus de Milo, now the brightest star of the Louvre, near the ancient theatre in 1820, Milos was flocked by art enthusiasts and archeologists in the hunt for their next revolutionary discovery. Just decades after, the famous marble statue called Asclepius of Milos, once part of a colossal statue, was excavated on the island and is now displayed in the British Museum. With a multitude of UNESCO World Heritage Sites to explore and picturesque villages beautifully backdropped by the electric blue seas, it comes as no surprise that Milos is quickly rising as one of the most coveted Mediterranean destinations to visit in the summer.
Until recently unjustly overlooked for her neighbors - the wild Mykonos, sunset-colored Santorini, and gourmet Sifnos, the island is gaining popularity in recent years and is full of brand new swish restaurants and bars offering the trendiest forms of entertainment.
Due to its volcanic terrain, the island has a unique terrain full of rocky formations that possibly inspired the sculptures that now adorn the brightest spots of the most renowned museums. If you want to enjoy the caldera of Santorini, minus the crowds - Milos is an ideal choice. The island was created out of volcanic lava that’s rich in natural minerals, which are the main source of income for the local economy. A big part of the island’s beauty is due to the volcano, which is also responsible for creating the out-worldly Kleftiko Caves, with its windblown rocky formations that surround the translucent sea.
The southernmost Cycladic island has a rich history that stretches as far back as 15 millennia ago - trade of obsidian took place in prehistoric times, and some of the most important Bronze Age settlements are found on the south coast of Milos, in Phylakopi, where you can still see a comprehensive exhibition of frescoes, pottery, and figurines of the era.
Later on, the island was ruled by Byzantines, Venetians, and Ottomans, all of whom contributed to the cultural heritage of this dreamy island.
According to Greek mythology, the island was named after the first resident who was sent by Venus to populate the island - the influence of the goddess of love and art is evident in every inch of this ethereal Cycladian jewel.
Best towns to visit in Milos
Milos has 7 main villages, all clustered together and easy to visit during your luxury charter cruise. Adamas, Plaka, Pollonia, Tripiti, Klima, Mandrakia, and Triovasálos all offer unique charms, but each village you come about is almost equally beautiful, so there’s no need to strictly stick to your itinerary. Instead, let your heart wander as you discover new horizons every day.
The capital of the island offers an upbeat tempo and is famous for enchanting sunsets that you’ll have a chance to view from flower-adorned balconies of ritzy places that lean next to each other in narrow, whitewashed streets. Perched on a rock that overlooks the gulf, the town is a labyrinth of cobbled alleys, purposely built in a confusing way in order to distract the pirates who often attacked the island in the 18th century. It came into existence as an extension of the Kastro area, when residents ran out of space. The Venetian castle was built in the 13th century and abandoned in 1821 when most of its population moved to Plaka. Located on a tall valley, Kastro provides a glimpse into the medieval way of life on the island. It takes an hour to reach the top on foot, but after a vigorous walk, you’ll be awarded panoramic views of the gulf and breathtaking scenery.
The city has a rich cultural scene and four magnificent museums to visit on a rainy day. The Folk and History Museum has a superb exhibition of traditional local costumes and everyday artifacts, while the Archaeological Museum has a display of Bronze Age figurines and pottery. Visit the peculiar Marmara Museum, where you can also pick out unique souvenirs and gifts - the museum is a great place to visit with children. So is the War Museum, located in a World War II bunker near the Kastro castle.
Founded by Cretan refugees in the early 19th century, the town that is sometimes referred to as Adamantes leaves a great first impression with one of the largest natural harbors in the Mediterranean, quintessentially Cycladic streets, and an abundance of flowers spilling from whitewashed balconies in the old streets. It will probably be your first introduction to the island, whether you’re coming by sea or flying-in directly to the nearby airport.
This port town is also the cultural, commercial, and touristic center of the island and offers a unique experience of Greece. With superb restaurants, shops, and museums, as well as two beaches - Lagada and Adamas beach, the busiest town in Milos is a great place for families looking to start their cruise in the Aegean.
Sometimes referred to as Apollonia, this North Coast fishing village truly comes to life in the summer when the quiet streets start dreaming with visitors and chic bars and restaurants open their doors. Built around a gorgeous inlet, the picturesque town is tranquil and serene yet somehow offers all forms of entertainment you can think of. The pier is lined with tamarisk trees that spread their fragrance with the warm breeze often felt here and has numerous traditional whitewashed taverns serving their daily catch of fish. The main attraction of the village is the church of Agia Paraskevi, located on the far end north of Pollonia, which provides the best sunsets in town.
Best Beaches On Milos
When choosing where to swim in Milos, you will be spoiled with choice. With 75 beaches, each prettier than the other, Milos is one of the best islands for those that enjoy discovering a different cove every day.
The legendary Kleftiko is the most emblematic place on the island and can only be reached by boat. With impressive rocks jutted from the sea, surreal-looking coves, and unique geological phenomena, Kleftiko is one of the places you shouldn’t miss during your luxury charter cruise in Milos.
Sometimes referred to as Sea Meteor, the mysterious place was once a hiding spot for pirates and the legend says they hid their treasure here - why not try and find it?
Famous for its sculptural white rock formations, Sarakiniko is one of the most dazzling beaches in Greece and one of the most intriguing ones in the world. Often referred to as Moon Beach because of the peculiar shape of the volcanic terrain, Sarakiniko is completely barren and colored in an intense white hue, beautifully juxtaposed by the turquoise seas.
A small sandy cove surrounded by impressive cliffs with limpid, sparkly seas, Tsigrado is a marvelous beach on the south coast of Milos. Adored for the intensely hued water and intriguing rocky passages and caverns, the beach is so stunning, many risk their lives trying to climb down the cliffs to reach it. The safest way to visit this mystic oasis is by boat, and because of its remoteness, you might be able to have it all to yourself.
A calm and dreamy oasis with fine-grained sand and baby blue seas, this secluded northern beach is a great place to relax and enjoy a family beach day.
If you’re intrigued by the extraterrestrial look of Kleftiko, make sure to visit Papafrangos, a stunning natural pool with silver sand and aquamarine seas surrounded by enormous rocks that appear like they’ve been dropped off by a spaceship. Nearby, you’ll find the prehistoric Phylakopi site, to explore after you’re done splashing in the sea.
Some other beaches worth visiting include Firopotamos, Paleochori, Provatas, Alogomandra, and Ammoudaraki amongst many, many more.
Best restaurants in Milos
With new hip eateries popping up everyday, traditional taverns that serve old-school dishes, street food with the best gyros in Greece (try the one in Adamas, O Gyros Tis Milou), and elite restaurants for romantic dinners, Milos is quickly becoming a superior gourmet destination.
Located in Tripiti village, this fabulous restaurant adds an innovative twist to the traditional Greek dishes, turning them into fine alchemy cuisine with wonderful presentation. Perfect for both families and couples, Barriello has a privileged location and overlooks the beautiful gulf.
At first glance, Sirocco resembles any other Greek tavern. But just one bite of the artfully prepared seafood will have you think otherwise. Located on Paleochori beach, the restaurant uses a peculiar volcanic cooking technique that makes all the dishes stand out - make sure to try the sand-cooked lamb, prepared for 48 hours underground.
Konstantakis Wine Cave Gallery
A unique cellar tucked away in the Kostantakis Spiglia offers a different perspective on Milos wine, praised for its distinct taste created with help of the hot volcanic terrain. The family-owned winery has been open for 100 years and organizes tours and tastings of regional whites and reds, all paired with delicious local products.
Grab a few bottles to enjoy on the foredeck of your luxury charter yacht or to bring home after your unforgettable cruise comes to an end.