A tale or two : Mykonos and Delos

Little Venice, Mykonos- courtesy of Wikipedia

Little Venice, Mykonos- courtesy of Wikipedia

Did you ever press the Publish button accidentally?  Hmm?  Momentary panic!

Normally I check and triple check my posts before launching them, but I must have had a twitchy finger when I published Santorini.  It was my intention to slip the islands of Mykonos and Delos into a paragraph or two at the end of the post.  I wasn’t there for long, and crucially, the photos of these two, along with Naxos, are missing from my collection.

But twitch I did, and before I knew it, Santorini was out there!  Reading through the published content, I decided to leave well alone.  Maybe it was meant- Santorini surely deserves a post of its own.

But what to do about Mykonos and Delos?  Why, own up, of course.  So, yet again, it’s my pal Wikipedia to the rescue.

Remnants of the Greek theatre, Delos- courtesy of Wikipedia

Remnants of the Greek theatre, Delos- courtesy of Wikipedia

I remember feeling distinctly underwhelmed as the boat docked at Delos.  A barren island, with limited water supply, according to Greek mythology it was the birthplace of Apollo and Artemis.  Delos became a major cult centre and place of pilgrimage, and to ensure its purity, it was decreed that no-one be allowed to give birth or die on the island.  It is a strangely atmospheric place.  To me it felt sad, the lions no longer commanding due respect.  From the summit of Mount Kynthos, the panorama of the Cyclades below.

The Terrace of the Lions was dedicated to Apollo- source Wikipedia

The Terrace of the Lions was dedicated to Apollo- source Wikipedia

Establishment of the Poseidoniasts

Establishment of the Poseidoniasts

Mosaic floor in the House of the Dolphins- source Wikipedia

Mosaic floor in the House of the Dolphins- source Wikipedia

It was hot on the island, with little shade, and I admit my priority was to reach Mykonos.  I was eager to see for myself the red roofed churches and to idle through narrow whitewashed streets.  The harbour was just as I expected.

Chora- Mykonos Town- courtesy of Wikipedia

Chora- Mykonos Town- courtesy of Wikipedia

There was far too little time, on a day trip including Delos, to do justice to Mykonos.  I was left with an overall impression of beauty and romance.  Probably good to leave it that way.

Looking down on Mykonos- courtesy of Wikipedia

Looking down on Mykonos- courtesy of Wikipedia


  1. Wow .. I wish I had visit more islands when I was there for such a long time in Athens, I have really missed out big time – and I had that yacht too that would have taken me anywhere. Thanks for sharing your islands with me.

    1. Mykonos was super trendy 26 years ago when I was there, Madhu, but everything was on a much smaller scale then. I imagine it might be a bit spoilt these days with those cruise ships docking in the harbour.
      We did Rhodes too. (coming later) Thank you on behalf of Wikipedia.

  2. Lovely pictures, Jo. I’m so jealous of your Greek island hopping. I’ve only been to Crete many years ago but would love to see more of this beautiful country and learn more about its ancient past. 😉

  3. Whenever I visit ancient sites like these, I always wonder what it must have been like when it was newly built.

    Though I have visited one or two Greek Islands, I´ve never been to Mykonos or Delos, but they look well worth the effort.

    I´m always disappointed when I get back home and realize I don´t have any photos of somewhere. I guess it means I´ll try to get back there! 🙂

    1. I’d love to do another couple of weeks visiting the islands we didn’t make it to, Marianne. We did have the photos from the first visit but a chunk of them have ‘disappeared’. I’ve scrambled around the loft (well, Mick has!) and turned out cupboards, but in the end I conceeded defeat and began to write the series anyway.

  4. I’ve done the Publish rather than Save as Draft more than once too, oops! Enjoying exploring Greece with you Jo, my Greek travels have been sadly lacking so far so it’s one to fill in someday.

    1. I’m feeling a little bit of a traitor at the minute, Lucy, but I am enjoying revisiting Greece. I believe there’ s been quite a lot of rain in Portugal. Getting it all out of the way before your next visit. I spotted your Sao Bento post earlier and will be refreshing my memory soon. So happy to be in such good company with premature publishing!

      1. Yes, I suppose not much compares to the Valley of the Kings and Luxor. It hasn’t been my privilege to visit there either. Maybe, someday…

  5. I love going on your travels with you, Jo! And yes – I have pressed ‘publish’ and thought, ‘oh well, I’ll just live with it’. LOL 😉 Well done 😀

  6. I loved Mykonos too. Such a romantic place. I would love to see Delos. Actually never heard of it before. Those Romans were such mosaic professionals, weren’t they. 🙂

    1. It was the size of tuppence and if I’d read all of the history that goes with I might’ve been more impressed, Ad. I think there’s a museum now to showcase what hasn’t been shipped to Athens.

  7. It does look a little sad – it must have been grand and majorly impressive when it was all newly constructed, but now it is barely a few remnants of stone columns and statues. It makes me wonder what all of our current structural achievements will look like in a couple thousand years. Will they withstand the time better with all our fancy new materials? Or will they degrade faster, as people design buildings and structures for lifetimes of 100-200 years to save on costs?

    1. We seem to set store on getting higher and higher these days! What is that all about? Delos may well look different these days as I know a lot of excavation has been done. Most of the “loot” has been carted off to museums but I think there’ll be more to see on the island. It’s 26 years since we were there!

    1. I’ve had to borrow heavily from Wikipedia for this post, but I’ll be back to our own photos next time. I’m always impressed with the quality of Wikipedia photos. Thanks for reading.

  8. Mykonos and Delos in a day is rather ambitious. I didn’t really like Mykonos, it’s a bit too commercialised but I went there because Shirley Valentine is one of my favourite films. I had a good day trip from there though to nearby Tinos which was much quieter and more traditional. Generally speaking I prefer islands without airports or cruise ships! Shame about the photos – good old wiki!

    1. Tinos coming up later, Andrew. When I made this trip I wasn’t sure if I’d be back and we put as much into 2 weeks as 2 beach lovers possibly can. Mykonos was a trendy place to go, even then, but I’m sure if I’d had time to go exploring I’d have found corners I liked.

      1. The trouble with holiday islands like Santorini and Mykonos is that most bars, shops and hotels are owned by people from Athens so they lack a genuine local ethnicity that you find on islands like Naxos, Paros and Ios or even further afield places like Amorgos, Tinos or Milos or to go to the absolute extreme, Kimolos, Koufonisia or Sifnos.
        I hope you get back to the Cyclades one day, personally I am a bit unsure of Greece during the current economic troubles but I know that I am going to miss it.

  9. That is interesting information about Delos.
    I can sort of understand the not allowed to give birth on there, as most women usually get some sort of warning…….. but not allowed to die? jeez, thats a bit odd, it’s not like we plan death! 😮

    1. It had to do with sanctity, Vicky (and, cynically, something to do with preserving trade routes). A better explanation is in the link to Wikipedia. I’ve enclosed those on all my Greek posts as my knowledge of Greek history is scanty to say the least.

    1. Thanks, Paula! I’m just back from a walk and preparing to snuggle up with the laptop for a while. Reliving my Greek adventures to conjure up a little sunshine. Hug!

  10. More for us to see Jo. 🙂 Love the post and photo’s. Thanks for the trip. I would sure love to visit it some day. Have a great day hon. *hugs*

      1. Oh yes, the same here. Went driving today and will post the pics tomorrow. Enjoy the coffee and laptop and your day. 🙂 *hugs*

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