Are you planning a trip to Greece and debating which island you should go to?
The question of which of these well-known islands is the best to visit Mykonos vs Santorini is frequently debated. In a perfect world, you’d visit both places and take advantage of what each island has to offer specifically. But which Greek island should you choose to cross off your bucket list if you only have time for one and money is limited?
The highlights of each island are broken down in our comprehensive travel guide so you can pick the Greek island of your dreams.
Mykonos vs Santorini should you travel there?
You definitely can’t go wrong with Mykonos vs Santorini if this is your first trip to Greece.
Mykonos is a charming and energetic island with whitewashed houses, blue trim, and cobblestone lanes.
Pictures simply cannot do the breathtaking views from the top of Santorini justice.
This is only one Greece enthusiast’s opinion, of course. It would be wise to base your choice on the travel-related activities and other interests you have.
Mykonos boasts gorgeous beaches with crystal-clear sea, fantastic shops, and picturesque streets. Not to mention their nightclubs and nonstop partying.
Santorini, on the other hand, is a city known for its romance, magnificent scenery, mouthwatering cuisine, wineries, and distinctive beaches.
Weather in Mykonos and Santorini
The time of year you intend to take your holiday should be one of your first considerations when choosing between Mykonos vs Santorini.
Although the weather in Mykonos and Santorini is nearly identical during the busy months, the time of year you visit may favour one island over the other.
Beginning in April and continuing through November, Santorini often sees a surge in tourism. In the height of the summer, the climate may be quite oppressive, especially in higher elevations.
The season is shorter on Mykonos, where the peak travel period is from the end of May to the beginning of October.
Mykonos is also extremely warm, although there are also times when it is very windy there.
You can still enjoy Santorini in the off-season because sightseeing is the island’s biggest draw (while many places will be closed).
The colder temperatures during the off-season make Mykonos the less appealing option, though, as the island’s main draw is frequently associated with its beaches and summertime revelry.
The beach towns on Mykonos should be completely closed down, and many businesses should close in the main towns as well.
Beaches in Mykonos vs. Santorini
With its stunning sandy beaches, Mykonos leads the pack when it comes to beach time.
The beaches of Mykonos have the fine sand and clear sea that we all associate with Greece.
Not to mention their renowned beach clubs, which annually draw tens of thousands of visitors to their coasts.
Elia Beach is a must-visit if you choose Mykonos. While there, take advantage of the clear, lovely ocean and maybe try some windsurfing or snorkelling.
Have a lovely lunch at the Elia Beach Restaurant as well, don’t forget.
Their feta salad with watermelon and sesame crust was so good that I decided to make my own version of it.
Super Paradise Beach, Paradise, and Paraga are the best beaches to visit for an endless night of partying if you’re in Mykonos for that purpose.
Santorini’s beaches are quite distinct from those of Mykonos. You will see a range of coloured stones or sand in black or grey due to the volcanic pebbles.
Don’t get me wrong; Santorini boasts the most distinctive beaches between Mykonos and Santorini, including the Red Beach and the Black Beach.
While a few beaches, including Perissa, feature black sand, Kamari is a well-liked option with good waves, beach chairs, and umbrellas.
Additionally, you can use the beach loungers and WiFi for free if you order a cocktail there. Additionally, there are several other restaurants around.
And the swimming hole in Almoudi Bay deserves special recognition; in my opinion, it is a ten out of ten.
The atmosphere is exciting and boisterous since everyone descending those 300 steps is seeking for a good time.
For those who prefer cliff diving or getting a glimpse of Oia from the bottom up while swimming in cool, invigorating water, this is the ideal location.
If swimming is among your top travel pastimes, you must visit this hangout.
Island Attractions in Mykonos vs Santorini
In addition to its stunning beaches and fantastic shopping, Mykonos features a few locations for wine tasting, including the organic winery Mykonos Vioma.
For those who enjoy history, its proximity to the Delos archaeological site is extremely appealing.
And the possibility of running into Petros the Pelican is always exciting.
Though the real Petros is long gone, three local pelicans still roam freely, and you might catch one skulking around Niko’s Taverna in the middle of the day in Mykonos town.
However, when it comes to island attractions, Santorini once more holds the top spot.
Given the island’s dry environment, Santorini is renowned for its distinctive wines, and wine tasting excursions are popular activities there.
Popular locations include Santo Wines, Venetsanos Winery, and Domaine Sigalas, which provide views of the sunset to the west but also provide views of the Caldera and cliffs.
But aside from its breathtaking Caldera vistas, I think Santorini’s biggest feature is the archaeological site of Akrotiri.
The Minoan city-farming and fishing town of Akrotiri, which was tragically destroyed and buried following a powerful volcanic eruption around 1650 B.C., is brought to life in the ruins of Akrotiri.
Most Romantic Greek Island
Both Mykonos and Santorini appeal to me, as someone who spent a portion of her honeymoon on each island.
However, if romance is the only consideration, Santorini triumphs thanks to its breathtaking scenery.
Nothing compares to sharing a wonderful meal with your special someone while gazing at the magnificent Caldera or taking in the magnificent orange-pink-red sky each sunset with a glass of wine in hand.
Not to mention how Santorini transforms into a stunning world of vibrant lights in the evening.
Costs of travel to Mykonos vs Santorini
Although it can be pricey to travel to the Greek islands of Mykonos and Santorini, it is unquestionably worthwhile to see their breathtaking beauty.
Be prepared to pay more for everything, from meals to housing, as both islands are well-known tourist destinations and are famed for their luxurious hotels and services.
And to be fair, the cost of both islands is the same.
However, if you prepare ahead, you may undoubtedly find some great housing discounts.
Find smaller hotels or even fantastic motels in locations with no or little view.
Food is the same way; if you’re on a tight budget, there are lots of possibilities. Keep in mind that souvlaki wraps typically cost about €3, and there are plenty of local eateries where you can have a good lunch for a fair price.
Greek Island with the Best Nightlife and Parties
Mykonos is the undisputed champ when it comes to nightclubs, beach clubs, and parties when pitted against Santorini.
All summer long, crowds of people go to Mykonos to enjoy the island’s nightclubs and daytime beach clubs with world-renowned DJs.
The island that never sleeps is Mykonos, in a very real sense.
The nightlife of Mykonos is unmatched by the few bars Santorini has in Fira.
Final thoughts on Mykonos vs Santorini
I firmly believe that a trip to the Greek islands can never go wrong.
But hopefully, our comparison between Mykonos and Santorini has shed some light.
Just keep in mind why you’ve chosen to travel to Greece and choose the island that most closely resembles your ideal vacation and your preferred activities.