Visit the most iconic feature of Mykonos.
Dotting the coastline near Mykonos Town, the iconic windmills of Mykonos stand as one of the island’s most recognizable landmarks. With their cylindrical whitewashed exteriors and thatched roofs, these distinctive mills capture the essence of quintessential Greek architecture and the island’s history as an Aegean Sea trading hub.
When were the windmills of Mykonos built?
The windmills of Mykonos were built by local families starting in the 16th century when the island was under Venetian rule. Designed to harness the strong winds blowing from the north, the windmills used their large sails to grind wheat into flour for bread and export. At one point, Mykonos had over 600 windmills thanks to the steady winds and central position in the Cycladic islands.
Today, Mykonos has 16 windmills still standing along its coastline offering scenic views and fascinating history. The seven iconic windmills situated on the west side of the harbor just north of Little Venice are the most photographed. Accessible by a short walk north from the harbor, these perfectly aligned windmills provide breathtaking sunset views and make for classic snapshots with their small domed roofs and rotating sails framing the sea and sky.
What are the windmills of Mykonos like now?
Some windmills have been lovingly restored and converted into museums and shops for visitors to get a firsthand look at how they operate. The landmark Boni Mill contains a small museum displaying tools and artifacts that bring the windmill history to life. Quaint restaurants and cafes have also moved into old mills, like the Pink Mill which serves up traditional Greek dishes on an outdoor patio.
Windmill Pharos remains in its original state but unfortunately collapsed in 2016 when strong winds broken its sail mechanism, showing just how weather-worn these historic structures have become. However, preservation efforts by the community are ongoing to maintain Mykonos’ iconic windmills and their scenic coastline positions.
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Why is it worth visiting the Mykonos windmills?
Photographers flock to the windmills of Mykonos to capture them from every angle during the day and at sunset when their white facades glow against colorful Aegean skies. Getting on a boat offers another perspective, like from across the harbor looking back at the perfectly aligned row of windmills greeting newcomers to the island. Lovers of architecture, history, and classic Greek imagery will all find the windmills of Mykonos incredibly photogenic.
Beyond their aesthetic appeal, the windmills also symbolize an earlier way of life before tourism dominated Mykonos. They stand as proud reminders of the islanders who built and operated them by hand. The iconic windmills add deep cultural heritage to the island’s trademark beauty and lively modern ambience.
No trip to Mykonos is complete without stopping to admire these 16th century marvels of engineering and their picturesque placements overlooking the sea. The windmills of Mykonos captivate visitors with their enduring charm and the feeling that little has changed in this uniquely timeless Greek island paradise.
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Gay Group Trip: Greek Island HoppingGroup Trip Departs: • 22nd May 2024 • 3rd June 2024 • 12th July 2024 • 11th September 2024 • 14th September 2024
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