the island of hidden treasures

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Here we are to another stop of our journey discovering our beloved Greece… yes, because there is no corner of this wonderful country that is not worth visiting. Every place, every destination, manages to give extraordinary sensations and emotions to its visitors… the whitewashed and sunny villages, bougainville at every corner, domes of blue little houses and beautiful beaches. Continuing to sail along the Cycladic archipelago, we turn to Milos, known as the island of pirates since ancient times.

We are on a beautiful island of volcanic origin, recognisable by the sea due to its lava rock formations and its black beaches, which are just some of the characteristics that make Milos so recognisable. In fact, always famous for its natural beauty, the horseshoe shape has endowed the island with the largest bay in the area, which has more than 70 beaches, some of which can only be reached by sea, overlooking a wide gulf.

The origin of its name

According to Greek mythology, the island is named after its first inhabitant belonging to the Milos family. Legend has it that the son of the royal family of Cyprus was prompted by the Goddess Venus to populate the island. However, many people agree that Milos is the evolution of the Greek word “Vilos” (in english “sheep") due to the presence of goats and sheep in general. The island became universally known from the early 19th century when a farmer who was plowing his field accidentally found a statue without arms and in two pieces, later called “The Venus of Milo”. Currently, only one copy can be seen on the island, while the original is kept in the Louvre Museum.

How to get to Milos

If until recently, the beautiful island of Milos was a hidden treasure, today the number of visitors who choose it as their holiday destination is increasing. On the island there is a small airport served only by domestic flights, so if you want to reach Milos from Italy and not only, you need to take a flight and a ferry or a flight with a stopover. The solutions are different, but depending on your budget choose the right one for you! The cheapest way to get to Milos from Italy is to fly to Athens, transfer to the port of Piraeus reachable in about an hour and a half by public transport) and then board a ferry or hydrofoil to your destination island. Depending on the option you choose, the duration of the sea crossing will vary, in fact if you want to arrive in the shortest possible time it will be convenient to take the hydrofoil, on the contrary, if you want to save money take the ferry.

How to move in Milos

Once you arrive in Milos, whether your accommodation is in the city centre or not, I recommend you look for car and scooter rental points. Many people do not recommend renting and moving around with a scooter because, in some cases, the road to go to the most popular beaches is not paved. That’s right, but at the same time I prefer the scooter to the car. Near the port of Adamas there are many agencies and prices vary. Generally, the daily rental costs start from € 15 for a scooter up to € 50 for the quad (obviously considering both the displacement of the vehicle and the period of low or high season). Keep in mind that the island is not huge, so you don’t spend a lot of gas, especially if you can optimise your travels but trust it will be worth it.

Milos, sea and much more

On an island like Milos, you can’t help but enjoy its tranquillity… take time to visit the island and enjoy the sights in peace. However, there are things to do that complement the perception of the island, here are my must-see on what to see and do in Milos:

  • Visiting the fishing villages of the island of Milos means going back in time. Some of the villages are easily accessible by land, while others are only accessible by sea. What they all have in common are the typical houses, often coloured, called “sirma”. Once used only as booths for boats with a room upstairs where the fisherman slept, today they open their doors to tourism, renting them to visitors during their stay on the island. Among the best known villages, Klima is definitely the best known, reachable by car.

    Also not to be missed are Adamas, the liveliest area of the island with its pretty promenade which, in summer evenings, is animated by tourists strolling after dinner, and Plaka, a charming postcard village, which fully represents the image we have of the villages in the Greek islands. A labyrinth of narrow streets and white houses on the slopes of a hill with a blue sea in the background, Plaka occupies the area where the ancient city of Milos once stood. If we like, we can compare it to a miniature Santornini, only less mundane and less touristy, considered the best place to enjoy the sunset over the gulf. Finally, if you are looking for absolute tranquillity, you just have to choose Pollonia, on the north coast of the island, which as fishing village all year round, in summer turns into an elegant tourist resort.

  • To see the island as a whole it is necessary to take a boat trip , always the best way to reach beaches that can only be visited by the sea and especially points of the island where there are roads and dirt paths that are not easily covered. Just reach the port of Adamas, from there you can choose the excursion that is right for you. Aboard a fantastic sailboat, your crew will take you to the most famous sights and must-see attractions of Milos Island such as Cape Vani, Kalogries Bay and Gerontas Beach, as well as areas accessible only by sea such as Kleftiko and Sykia .
  • Did you know that… Milos is called “the island of pirates”

    Before being a popular seaside resort, when there were no five-star resorts and touristic villages, Kleftiko, in the south of the island, was the perfect hideaway for pirates. Although the whole of Milos is worth a visit, the cliffs of Kleftiko are without a doubt one of the main points of interest on this enchanting Cycladic island. It is not only the white of this rocky complex that enchants, but above all the history behind this marvel. It was precisely the conformation of these white rocks of volcanic origin that guaranteed the ideal refuge for the corsairs of the past. The latter, in fact, used the natural caves and strategic inlets of this complex to hide their ships and the loot taken here and there. There are many legends related to this fascinating place. It is said, today, that among those caves of their bright white colour, perfectly in tune with the cobalt water, there is a treasure hidden by the pirates who were forced to abandon Kleftiko.

  • But now you’re wondering where to eat? Well, after showing you what to do and what to see in Milos, it seems right to give you some tips on the best places to enjoy some authentic Greek cuisine; Milos doesn’t usually have exclusive restaurants like other islands, but the many taverns on the beach will satisfy your desire to enjoy excellent Greek food or freshly caught fish. No frills but only the characteristic wooden tables with coloured chairs as a side dish to a typical dinner and certainly delicious. If you want to eat the traditional octopus, you’ll find the best one at the restaurant “Medusa” in mandrake, or head to Adamas, during your search remember “Oh Hamos”, probably the most popular restaurant in the town, if not in the whole of Milos. Starting from the location, really very nice simple but cared for, the restaurant deserves its fame especially for the excellent food.
  • Milos is the island you don’t expect, or rather you hope to find and in the end, certainly, it won’t disappoint you. Everyone only talks about the bigger Cyclades like Santorini, Mykonos, Paros, but those who know Greece know very well that the real Greece is the one still little known and that’s why you have to make a trip to the fantastic Milos.

    mariagrazia youknow

    Maria Grazia Funel

    Born in 1989
    Coming from Southern Italy, I cannot help but love the sea and, more generally, everything about travels and new places to discover. My perfect day? A beach, at sunset, in good company, with a nice bottle of wine!