I don’t like beaches. There I said it.
I don’t hate it, I’m just not a big fan of it. I grew up in Yogyakarta, only an hour away from some nice beaches, yes a contradiction. However, these beaches are barely swimmable as they are located in the south and the south sea is known for its vicious waves so it’s dangerous to swim in the beach.
Also, I remember when I was a kid, I went to one of the “friendlier” beaches and during my stay there I heard a news of a young, married couple who were dragged by the waves into the sea. It was a pretty scary experience and ever since then I’ve had beachaphobia.
But, I wanted to go to Greece SO BADLY and I knew Greece was well known for its stunning beaches and it would be such a shame to go to Greece and not visit its islands and beaches. I decided to settle for Mykonos and Santorini. I was already blown away by looking at pictures of these two islands and I couldn’t wait to set my feet there.
As my friends and I arrived at the airport and made our way to our hostel, all I could see was dry, barren land. Everything looked so dry and desert-like, I wasn’t impressed. Arriving to our “hostel” I was even more disappointed. Our room was like a prison cell with a tiny window. It was around 40°C outside and they didn’t provide us any fan or air-conditioner, not to mention the bed was very uncomfortable. Then by the wall was a group of ants having a party with some mosquitoes flying around wanting to join. Great, heat, ants and mosquitoes – three things I’m familiar and hated the most. I wanted out.
So we spent our first day looking around for another accommodation. It wasn’t easy. The heat made us grumpy and extra sensitive. Everyone said “full”. What I love the most about the Greeks is their friendliness. One man at a hotel said he had no more rooms but he made an extra effort to call his friends for a free room. Although we didn’t get a room through him, I really like the effort he made, he even tried to find a room within our budget. We finally managed to get a room, although it was quite a splurge, I didn’t regret changing it!
After a bumpy start, we decided to spend a day on the beach. That was the plan, before I got a huge big smooch…from a jellyfish. Just only after 10 minutes of enjoying the cool water against the scorching sun, a little fella decided to kiss me on the lip. Gone were the fun in the sun days! Again, the locals there helped me with my now massively swollen lip. The staff at the hotel showed me a pharmacy and even the man at the pharmacy was amazingly kind. I cannot thank them enough!
At this point I was pessimistic about the rest of my time there. I was expecting more mishaps. How could I possibly enjoy my trip with my swollen lip! I slept it off and by morning, miracle happened. My lip was now only partially swollen, “you can barely see it Aggy” – my friends would say to convince me. The beach and I made up and we finally hit it off. I was loving my days beach hopping in Mykonos. Relaxing, drinking beer, sun tanning, swimming, (staring at gorgeous Greek men) – it was great and I almost forgot about the swollen lip!
However, as much as I loved my new friendship with the beach, unique old town is my weakness. I can’t remember how many times I walked around Chora, which means town in Greek. Blue, green, red windows and doors against the white wall with wild pink flowers crawling by its side – it was so beautiful that I went weak on the knees. My favourite spot in Mykonos was by the old windmills overlooking the city by the water and the different shades of clear, blue water. If not for the intense heat, I would’ve stayed there all day and stare.
Mykonos is also well known for the amount of churches they have on this small island. People say that there are 365 churches, one supposedly for each day of the year. The small white churches were also one of my favourites. What surprise me the most was the location of the churches, you can literally find them everywhere. Three churches in a row, a church by the beach, a church sitting on a hill – everywhere and all equally beautiful and unique.
What made me love Mykonos so much was its sunset. Everyday I looked forward to the end of the day, for its sunsets were perfection. I have never been so stunned to see such beauty in my whole life.
At the end of my trip in Mykonos, I overcame my beachaphobia. I learned that some beaches can be trusted and that its cool water is great…as long as you avoid jellyfish! Most of all, I love how Mykonos combines all beautiful things in life into one small island package: sun, beach, gorgeous old town, stunning churches, friendly people and great food – what more can a girl ask more in life!
HOW TO MOVE AROUND IN MYKONOS
There are plenty of beaches to choose from in Mykonos, all are accessible by buses from Chora or by boats. There are two ports in Mykonos: the Old Port (situated in Chora) and the New Port – if you are travelling through these ports, check your ticket thoroughly in which port you are travelling from. If you prefer flying, there is also an airport not far from Chora.