Ibiza Or Mykonos (Or Both)? The Lowdown On The World’s Favourite Party Islands

Ibiza Or Mykonos (Or Both)? The Lowdown On The World’s Favourite Party Islands

Kate Moss, Gigi Hadid and Emily Ratajkowski were spotted on a yacht just off the coast of Mykononian Paraga in recent weeks. Touché Mykonos; what you got, Ibiza?

is a Mediterranean island sizzling with
mischief. Second home to the sybaritic gypset who bounce from beach
to beach all across the globe, over the years this Cycladean
paradise has become synonymous with rosé-fuelled lunches,
hedonistic nights and a slew of unmentionables in the intervening
hours. No surprise then that it’s repeatedly compared to Ibiza – one pitted against the other in a hyperbolic
battle of one-upmanship centred around the most expensive bar bill,
the longest stretch of unspoilt sand and the most famous A-list

But to compare Mykonos to Ibiza is to overlook the essence of
its charm. Here, Greek mythology seeps from the island’s
glistening, granite foundations, prevailing northern wind coats
your skin like a warm, velvety blanket (making well-groomed hair an
impossibility) and the sparse, jagged landscape – barren in some
ways, bubbling with opportunity in others – evokes a sense that
anything is possible. Mykonos is 33 square miles of relentless
parties, sun-kissed bliss, timeless, breeze-blasted beauty. Take
your cue from Ibiza and hunt out its hotspots, then kick back and
savour this island’s uniquely sparkling spirit.

If you like Aguas de Ibiza, go to Myconian Villa

A sprawling, five-star resort that drifts down a hillside above
Elia Bay, Myconian Villa Collection is an assortment of varying
sized villas and suites, each one head-turningly luxurious. Some
villas are large enough to house several families and come with
round-the-clock service and swimming pools, but couples will prefer
the intimacy of the whitewashed suites, home to panoramic sea view
terraces, hot tubs and cloud-like beds designed for dreamy sleeps.
If you can drag yourself away from the room, joy awaits around
every corner. Start with a champagne breakfast on the terrace then
spend morning lingering on monochrome sun-beds round the saltwater
infinity pool. Sup on cocktails at the poolside bar, relax with an
Elemis treatment at the world-class spa or browse the on-site
boutique. Slip off for a siesta mid-afternoon, then at dinnertime
savour the culinary creations of star chef Thodoris Kyriakidis,
whose Greek-inspired gourmet dishes are near perfect, and taste
fabulous on hot, sultry nights. Finally, stagger back to your room
in a state of satisfied happiness, jump in the hot tub, then drift
off to sleep hyper-aware that tomorrow brings more of the same.

If you like El Chiringuito Es Cavallet, go to Scorpios

Such is its notoriety that mentions of Mykonos and Scorpios now
come hand in hand. Adored by celebs and the European jet-set,
crowds flock here to eat lobster risotto washed down with
eye-wateringly expensive bottles of wine. Afternoons are lazy
thanks to Bedouin-inspired decor and raffia-rimmed lampshades
gently swaying in the breeze, but as dusk falls the tempo rises and
the previous calm makes way for more madcap scenes. Come to dance
to tribal drumming and deep-house soundtracked by DJs, but don’t be
surprised if after just a couple of cocktails your wallet is
looking somewhat barren.

If you like Experimental Beach, go to 180º Sunset Bar

No trip to the Med is complete with a psychedelic sunset and in
Mykonos 180º Sunset Bar delivers perhaps the most beautiful views
around. Looking out across the port from a cobbled rooftop high
above Mykonos Town, the final light of day dipping below the
horizon in the distance is made all the more glorious by
fishermen’s boats and super-yachts casting shadows that spin across
the water. Reaching it requires a steep, sometimes sweaty trek, but
the basil-infused Euphoria cocktail waiting at the end of it makes
all the effort worthwhile.

If you like the Fish Shack, go to Kiki’s

A family-run, ramshackle hut just off Agios Sistos, Kiki’s is a
Mykonos institution specialising in no-frills fare. There are no
reservations, so queues begin at midday and last well into the
afternoon, but the wait’s made bearable by the waft of
charcoal-grilled cuts and free rosé wine splashed in a plastic cup,
on repeat. In the canopied courtyard, tables are haphazardly placed
– some with sea views, others dotted around the base of twisted
tree roots. Food is fuss-free – think local fish and pork chops
served with a range of freshly made salads – but made all the more
delicious by the wonderfully authentic vibe. Simple perfection.

If you like Izakaya, go to Utopia

A rising star on the Mykonos dining scene, Utopia is a hotel
that’s part of the Myconian Group, with a white-hot on-site
restaurant (be warned, if flash isn’t your thang, this probably
isn’t for r. Adored by young couples who come to dine alongside top
footballers and the international elite, it comes alive at dusk
when the specially designed pool sparkles with makeshift fireflies
and the music switches up a notch. Sip on fine, crisp champagne
(the group is the biggest importer of the sparkly stuff in the
whole of Greece, so there’s plenty to choose from) served in
surprisingly heavy, handblown glass, tuck into a
Mediterranean-inspired feast and don’t pass up the chance to share
a shot of mastika with the manager. Yamas!

If you like Destino, go to Cavo Paradiso

Another alfresco clifftop venue that draws big crowds and even
bigger DJs, Cavo Paradiso is Mykonos’ most popular clubbing haunt.
Action starts in the early hours and continues through till dawn –
watching sunrise is a quintessential part of the magic. Tunes come
courtesy of internationally renowned talent including Richie
Hawtin, Marco Carola and Sven Väth, so unsurprisingly clubbers come
from all over the globe for a session here – Ibiza may be the
clubbing capital of the world, but it doesn’t have anything quite
like this.

If you like Ibiza town, go to Chora

Otherwise known as Mykonos town, Chora is a medley of
labyrinthine streets lined by highly Instagrammable blue and white
buildings dripping with bougainvillea. Pathways twist and curl in
all directions so you’re never quite sure where you’re going, but
getting lost is all part of the charm. Come just before dusk when
the light is fading and wander among shops and brightly-coloured
doorways, or along the harbour till you reach Little Venice and the
island’s famous set of windmills. In summer, the town is undeniably
laden with tourists but take your time to discover the true spirit
of Mykonos, which still simmers vividly here.

If you like Punta Galera, go to Kapiri

A stamp-sized cove ringed by ochre-hued rocks, Kapiri sits on
Mykonos’ wild and rugged west coast. By day, sun-seekers come in
search of relative quiet – this is one of the slightly less crowded
beaches. By night, people descend to watch the sun disappear,
locked in by its mesmerising glow. Low-key Mykonos at its best,
raise a simple toast and relish the sound of the crashing

If you like Salinas, go to Paradise Beach

Favoured by those who like their beach served with a hefty side
of indulgence, Paradise Beach is where the pleasure seekers come to
party. A golden, sandy bay met by gin-clear water, here
conversations take place in raised voices and often revolve around
where to get the cheapest drinks and where next to continue the
party. Bring sun cream and stamina, but leave your book at

If you like Formentera, go to Delos

Islanders tired of peak summer crowds hire a boat and makes
waves towards Delos, a UNESCO World Heritage Site just a few miles
away from the glitz and glamour of Mykonos, but worlds away in
spirit. Considered the mythological birthplace of Apollo and the
immortals, the island is full of ancient ruins creaking under the
weight of the past. Sightseeing crossed off, seek out some of the
stunning turquoise coves and in the face of ancient Greek history,
let imaginations run wild.

SUITCASE Magazine were guests of www.destinology.co.uk

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