A relatively off-the-beaten-path island a few years ago, Milos has quickly become a popular alternative to Mykonos and Santorini. It’s the most southwestern island in the Cyclades, home to white-washed towns, colorful fishing villages and one of the most spectacular beaches in all of Greece. Below is my complete guide to Milos that includes the best beaches, fishing villages, day trips, travel tips, photo locations, restaurants, hotels and Airbnb’s, as well as a complete four-day itinerary to help maximize your time on the island. This post contains affiliate links.
If there were beaches on the moon, I’m certain they’d look like Sarakiniko. OUTFIT DETAILS: Swimsuit linked here.
JUNE THROUGH SEPTEMBER. Sunshine is absolutely essential for a proper visit to Milos. And similar to most islands in Greece, the summer months offer up the best weather for a visit to the island. If the crowds and prices of July and August aren’t your jam, September offers a great alternative. Slightly less people and lower prices, but still warm weather.
Mother of God Korfiatissa Church. OUTFIT DETAILS: Dress linked here.
FOUR DAYS. Milos is a small island, but there’s a lot of coast to see. Four days is the ideal amount of time to see the prettiest beaches, eat at the best restaurants, explore the coast by boat and even take a day trip over to Polyaigos.
This quaint fishing village on the north coast of Milos has it all – a stunning bay, colorful boathouses and some of the best chill out vibes on the island. You can walk pretty far out into the bay thanks to the calm, shallow water, but like most beaches in Greece, Firopotamos is rocky. Also, make sure to explore the entire bay when you visit. From the main beach, swim out to the little rocky island to your left for cliff jumping and epic views. Also, drive past the beach to the end of the village where the road ends. Here you’ll find a cute viewpoint for photos, a small church and a more cool cliff jumping spots.
Popular beach located on the south coast of Milos. Fyriplaka’s soaring red cliffs serve up a sweeping backdrop, especially from the parking lot at the top of the cliffs. There are sunbeds and umbrellas available for rent, as well as a small snack shack.
This crystal blue bay is an oasis of white cliffs and stacked rock formations that give way to natural sea caves and soaring archways. Pack a swimsuit and visit midday when the water sparkles intense shades of blue, perfect for swimming, floating and kayaking. Kleftiko is best accessed by boat, so you’ll have to join a group tour, book a private tour or rent your own boat. To visit by private boat, Salty Rides runs both half-day and full-day tours – the boats are new, the crew is awesome and they take guests to all the best spots. Alternatively, there are a handful of companies on Milos that will rent out small private boats that you can drive yourself (no license required) – standard price for half-day rental is 150 euros, plus fuel.
Colorful fishing village on the west coast of Milos. It’s not my favorite village, but worth a quick stop if you have the time.
Mandrakia is another fishing village, but this one is a must-visit (my favorite on Milos). The boat houses are bright, colorful and there are a handful of pretty incredible viewpoints. Mandrakia is also home to Medusa, one of the more popular restaurants on Milos.
MOTHER OF GOD KORFIATISSA CHURCH
Beautiful church that sits in the middle of Plaka’s Old Town. Visit the viewpoint in front of the church in for gnarly views at sunset.
Colorful cliffs spill into the sand at Paleochori, a south coast beach famous for its orange, yellow and white rocks. The turquoise water is pretty dreamy, and there are plenty of sunbeds and umbrellas available to rent. If you’re hungry, Sirocco is located in Paleochori – a seafood restaurant famous for cooking its fiah under the beach’s piping hot sand.
The oddly shaped Papafragas is part sea cave, part beach. It sits on the north coast of Milos surrounded by grottoes, rocky islets and funky rock formations. If conditions are right, Papafragas can be beautiful, but when I visited, the waves were rough and the water a dull shade of grey.
The island’s Old Town is charming, but small. There is one main pedestrian boulevard lined with a few bars, restaurants and boutiques, plus a few other lanes with shops and a couple cafes. Plaka is pretty quiet during the day, but comes to life in the evening when tourists spill into town for sunset, drinks and dinner.
KIMILOS & POLYAIGOS
From Milos, it’s possible to visit neighboring islands Kimolos and Polyaigos. There is a ferry service that runs between Pollonia and Kimolos, or it’s possible to visit both islands by daytrip. I booked our visit with Salty Rides because I wanted a private tour – more flexibility and freedom. They run both half-day and full-day tours that include both islands with stops for swimming at the prettiest blue bays, sea caves and secluded beaches. Best to visit midday when the water color is at its bluest.
Perhaps the most iconic beach on Milos, Sarakiniko is a dazzling moonscape of volcanic white rock riddled with shallow bays, gnarly swimming holes and epic ledges that have become famous for cliff jumping. The beach is quietest in the morning, but the water color is prettiest from 11 AM to 3 PM. Beach vibes are also better midday. There is a small food truck stationed in the main parking lot.
Tsigrado is hit and miss, depending on the weather. Visit on a sunny day with minimal winds, and it’s a recipe for paradise. The little cove is reachable by boat (it’s on the way to Kleftiko if you rent a boat from Agia Kiriaki Beach), or by climbing down a series of ropes and ladders from the parking lot. On a good day, the water is calm and sparkles the prettiest shades of deep turquoise. Swim along the rocks that line the bay, and you’ll find tiny sea caves to swim through. Tsigrado is located next to Fyriplaka, so you can visit both of them on the same day.
A popular spot to watch the sunset in Plaka. The Venetian Castle is pretty quiet during the day, but dozens of people show up at Golden Hour to climb the rooftop for sunset.
The picturesque streets of little Plaka.
AGGELIKI ICE CREAM SHOP
Gelato shops are far and few between on Milos, which makes Aggeliki a must-visit while on the island. The shop is located on the Adamantas waterfront, across from the port. Aggeliki serves up a variety of desert items, but the two dozen ice cream flavors are the highlight of any visit.
Gialos is always the busiest restaurant on the Pollonia waterfront, and for good reason. It’s definitely the best seafood on the island. Highlights are the fresh scallops, Greek salad and grilled whole white fish with potatoes and tomatoes.
GYROS OF MILOS
Cheap, delicious and fresh, this gyro and souvlaki joint is located on the Adamantas waterfront.
HANABI SEASIDE SUSHI
The sushi isn’t the best, and it’s definitely overpriced. But if you are in desperate need of a change in cuisine, Hanabi Seaside Sushi will definitely do the job. And the location on the Pollonia waterfront is lovely.
This charming little cafe sits in the heart of Plaka, and serves up a delicious selection of crepes, scrambles, waffles and fresh smoothies.
Medusa is a popular seafood restaurant located in Mandrakia. The outdoor seating overlooks beautiful views of the ocean – a great spot for lunch or an early dinner.
Sunset bar located in Plaka – popular early evening spot for drinks.
VERINA COCKTAIL BAR
My favorite spot to hang out at night on Milos. About a dozen small tables make up this tiny cocktail bar located on the main pedestrian boulevard in Plaka.
On calm days, this area at Sarakiniko Beach is popular for cliff jumping.
Fresh fruit on beach days.
There are so many cool spots to swim, float, sunbathe and cliff jump – it’s easy to spend an entire day at this rocky beach.
If the moon had beaches …
This is one of the best Airbnb’s finds – an absolute gem perched at the edge of town in Plaka. Eight Finity Retreat is two separate apartments (we stayed in the lower one) that are spacious, modern and loaded with minimalist design cues (lots of whites and rounded edges). Both apartment terraces are completely epic boasting unobstructed views of the sunset.
Beautiful apartment located in Plaka that sleeps three, but is better suited for two. A sunny staircase leads to a rooftop terrace that overlooks the little streets of Old Town. Sunset Nest is bright, modern, clean and bursting with character. My only complaint is the restroom – the shower sits over the toilet. If you can get past that, then everything else about Sunset Nest is lovely.
A seaside boutique property, Tania Milos is located in Pollonia, right on the water. One of the best reviewed midrange options on the island.
This luxury hotel is part of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World, and one of the only truly upscale options on Milos. An adults-only retreat, the property embrace minimalist luxury with neutral tones, floor-to-ceiling windows and concrete finishes. And every suite at White Coast has a private plunge pool overlooking the ocean.
The Venetian Castle is an amazing place to watch the sunset.
Views over Plaka.
Milos is a small island, but everything is pretty spread out. You’ll maximize your time if you have a set of wheels. Rental agencies can be found all over Adamantas – cars, ATVs, scooters and e-bikes. I rented our car with Budget Car Rentals, and they were great. Almost all rental agencies will ask for an International Driver’s License, so best to be safe and get one before arriving in Greece. If you live in the USA, you can easily pick one up at AAA.
It’s a fun climb down a series of ropes and ladders to reach beautiful Tsigrado Beach.
Milos is connected to other destinations in Greece by both land and sea. All flights to Milos connect through Athens, but the ferries connect Milos directly to other islands including Ios, Paros, Santorini, Mykonos, etc. I used Ferryhopper to look up all ferry schedules and to book all my ferry tickets.
Grilled fish, potatoes and tomatoes at Gialos – hands down the best meal I had on Milos.
Waterfront dining in Pollonia.
Kokkino Milos (breakfast)
Sarakiniko Beach (beach)
Mandrakia Fishing Village (sightseeing)
The Venetian Castle (sunset)
Verina Cocktail Bar (drinks)
Kokkino Milos (breakfast)
Boat Trip to Polyaigos (adventure)
Gialos (early dinner)
Kokkino Milos (breakfast)
Tsigrado Beach (beach)
Fyriplaka Beach (beach)
Firopotamos Beach (beach)
Gryos of Milos (dinner)
Aggeliki Ice Cream Shop (treats)
Utopia Cafe (sunset)
Kokkino Milos (breakfast)
Boat Trip to Kleftiko (adventure)
Klima Fishing Village (sightseeing)
Hanabi Seaside Sushi (dinner)
The views over Mandrakia.