Crete Vs. Mykonos – Choosing Mykonos Or Crete Guide

Chasing the Donkey may include affiliate links - if you decide to make a purchase through these links, we receive a commission without any additional cost to you. Disclaimer & privacy policy.
Post author Nick

Written by our local expert Nick

Nick is is digital nomad originally from Athens, Greece. You will now find him exploring the Greek islands, Bulgaria and beyond.

Should you visit Crete or Mykonos? These are two of the most famous Greek islands, and both pack a punch.

This guide shares detailed travel tips about weighing up Mykonos Island vs. The Island of Crete. We cover the best places to go, top attractions, and the day trip ideas for these Aegean Sea beauties.

Are you in a rush and just want to know how to choose between Mykonos or Crete? Here is what we think you should know:

Mykonos Crete
Glamorous beaches & chic boutiques Mountainous landscapes & forests
Cosmopolitan vibe Hiking, exploring & trekking
Excellent party & nightlife scene Home to historical & UNESCO sites
Known as the Ibiza of Greece Still great in the low season

Are you dreaming of a Greek island adventure but can’t decide between Crete and Mykonos? With their stunning beaches, rich history, and vibrant nightlife scenes, both islands offer plenty to see and do. But which one suits your personality better?

In this blog post, we’ll compare the two destinations side by side to help you make an informed decision. So pack your bags and prepare for a virtual tour of these two Greek paradises!

Keep reading below for our in-depth analysis on weighing up Mykonos vs. Crete.

Introduction To Crete And Mykonos

Mykonos To Crete - Crete To Mykonos Guide
Mykonos, Greece

Crete and Mykonos are two of the most famous Greek islands. They both offer stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and a relaxed Mediterranean lifestyle. But which one is right for you?


Crete is Greece’s biggest island and has a more rugged landscape with mountains and forests. It’s perfect for those who want to explore and hike. There are also plenty of historical sites to visit, such as the Minoan Palace of Knossos.


Mykonos is a small island with a more cosmopolitan feel. It’s known for its glamorous beaches, chic boutiques, and lively nightlife. If you want to party and be pampered, Mykonos is the place for you.

Mykonos Vs. Crete

Panoramic view of Mykonos town, Cyclades islands, Greece
Mykonos, Greece

There are pros and cons to visiting any destination, and Mykonos is no different. Here are some things to consider before deciding whether or not this Greek island is right for you:

  • Mykonos is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Greece, so there are plenty of activities and attractions to keep you busy
  • The island has a reputation for being a party destination, so if you’re looking for a place to let loose and have some fun, Mykonos is the place to be
  • Mykonos is home to some of the best beaches in Greece, so if you’re looking for stunning scenery and great swimming, this is the place for you
  • Because it’s such a popular tourist destination, Mykonos can be quite crowded during high season
  • The island is also quite expensive, so if you’re on a budget, you may want to consider another destination

What To See On Mykonos

Platis Gialos beach, Mykonos, Greece
Platis Gialos Beach, Mykonos

There’s no shortage of things to see on Mykonos. The island is home to several beaches, including the popular Paradise Beach. Mykonos also has several historical and cultural attractions, such as the windmills of Little Venice and the Archaeological Museum. And for those who want to shop, there are plenty of boutique stores and art galleries to explore.

The Windmills of Mykonos: These iconic windmills are some of the most popular tourist attractions on the island. They were once used as power mills, but today, they stand as a symbol of Mykonos’ rich history.

The Beaches of Mykonos: With over 30 beaches to choose from, you’re sure to find the perfect spot to relax on this Greek island. From the party beaches of Paradise and Super Paradise to the more secluded beaches of Agios Sostis and Elia, there’s something for everyone.

The Town of Mykonos: Explore the charming streets and whitewashed stone houses of Mykonos Town, the island’s capital. Don’t miss the Little Venice district, where you can watch the sunset with a drink in hand.

The Island of Delos: Just a short boat ride from Mykonos lies the island of Delos, an important archaeological site that was once the religious center of the Aegean world. Today, it is home to ruins dating back to ancient Greece, making it a must-see for history buffs.

Where To Stay On Mykonos

Brands We Use And Trust


Crete Vs. Mykonos

Rethimno, Crete Island, Greece

Crete is the largest and most populous of the Greek islands, and it has a lot to offer visitors. Here are some pros and cons to help you decide if Crete is the right destination for you:

  • Crete is home to a number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, including the ruins of the Minoan palace at Knossos
  • The island has a diverse landscape, with mountains, beaches, and plenty of opportunities for hiking and other outdoor activities
  • Cretans are known for their hospitality, and visitors will find plenty of the best restaurants in Greece serving traditional Greek food
  • Because it is so large, getting around Crete can be difficult without a car. Public transportation is not always reliable. Here’s our guide to car rental in Crete
  • The island can be crowded during peak tourist season

What To See On Crete

Snorkeling In Greece - Crete

There’s no shortage of things to do on the Greek island of Crete. Visitors can explore ruins dating back to the Minoan civilization, sunbathe on one of the island’s many beaches, or hike through the picturesque Samaria Gorge.

The Palace of Knossos: This is the largest Bronze Age archaeological site on Crete and is considered to be Europe’s oldest city. Here’s how to get there

The Heraklion Archaeological Museum: This museum is home to one of the world’s greatest collections of Minoan art and artifacts

The Cretan Olive Oil Museum: This museum is dedicated to the history and production of olive oil on Crete

The Venetian Fortress of Rocca al Mare: This fortress was built by the Venetians in the 13th century and is now a popular tourist attraction

The Samaria Gorge: This gorge is the largest in Europe and is a popular hiking destination

Where To Stay On Crete

Crete Or Mykonos: Which Island Suits Your Personality Better?

Archaeological Sites In Greece - Knossos Palace
Knossos Palace

When it comes to choosing between Crete and Mykonos, it all comes down to your personality. Do you crave long walks on the beach, or are you looking for a lively nightlife scene? Would you prefer to relax in a secluded villa or rather be in the thick of the action?

If you’re the type of person who likes to be constantly surrounded by people and activities, then Mykonos is probably the better choice for you. This party island is world-famous for its nightlife, with clubs and bars that stay open until the early morning hours.

There’s also plenty to keep you occupied during the daytime, from exploring windmills and churches to lounging on one of the island’s many beaches.

Crete, on the other hand, is ideal if you’re looking for a more relaxed vacation. Although plenty of bars and clubs exist in Crete’s main towns, they tend to close earlier than those on Mykonos.

And while there are plenty of beaches to enjoy, there are also many other attractions such as ancient ruins and museums. If you want to escape the crowds, there are plenty of secluded spots on Crete where you can relax in peace.

Airports On Crete & Mykonos

An airplane seat with a magazine on it, found on routes between Mykonos and Athens.

Both Mykonos and Crete have airports that serve as gateways to the islands:

Airports on Mykonos

  • Mykonos International Airport (JMK): the Mykonos airport is located near Chora, the main town of Mykonos; caters to both domestic and international flights and is quite busy during the summer months

Airports on Crete

  • Heraklion International Airport (HER), also known as Nikos Kazantzakis Airport, is located near Heraklion, the capital of Crete; the primary airport on Crete and the second busiest in Greece, offering numerous domestic and international flights
  • Chania International Airport (CHQ), also known as Ioannis Daskalogiannis Airport, located near Chania, the second largest city on Crete, serves both domestic and international flights, with increased traffic during the tourist season

Transport To Crete & Mykonos

Fast Ferry Greece_Depositphotos_210680072_s-2019

Mykonos and Crete, two jewels in the Aegean Sea, offer quintessential Greek destination experiences with stunning sea views and rich cultural heritage. Getting to these islands, whether from each other or from the Greek mainland, can be a delightful part of your journey.

From the Greek Mainland

  • Direct flights: both Mykonos and Crete have airports with direct flights from Athens and other major cities. This is one of the fastest ways to reach these islands
  • Ferry: for those who prefer sea travel, the main ferry port in Piraeus, Athens, offers regular ferry connections to both destinations. The type of vessel varies from standard ferries to high-speed catamarans, catering to different preferences and budgets

Travel Between Mykonos and Crete

  • Port of Heraklion: on Crete, the Port of Heraklion is a major hub for ferries traveling to and from Mykonos. This ferry route connects two of Greece’s most beloved islands
  • Ferry route and connections: while there might not be direct ferry connections every day, services are frequent during the tourist season. The journey offers a spectacular sea view, making the trip between Mykonos and Crete more than just a transfer
  • Type of vessel: depending on the type of vessel and the specific ferry route, the journey can vary in duration. High-speed ferries offer quicker travel but may be more expensive than conventional ferries

Travel Tips

  • Always check the latest schedules, as ferry connections and flight times can vary depending on the season
  • Consider the type of vessel when booking ferries, as high-speed options offer a quicker but often more costly journey

Sandy Beaches On Mykonos & Crete

Mykono beach bar - A tranquil Paradise beach Mykonos with a lot of people on it.

Both Mykonos and Crete have sandy beaches, which are among their main attractions in the summer months.

Sandy Beaches on Mykonos

  • Psarou Beach: known for its luxurious atmosphere and popular with celebrities
  • Paradise Beach: famous for its party scene and beach clubs
  • Super Paradise Beach: another popular spot for party-goers, with a lively atmosphere
  • Elia Beach: the largest beach on the island, known for its clear waters and relaxed vibe
  • Ornos Beach: a family-friendly beach with a lot of facilities and restaurants nearby

Sandy Beaches on Crete

  • Elafonissi Beach: known for its pinkish sand and shallow turquoise waters
  • Balos Lagoon: famous for its exotic scenery and clear, shallow waters
  • Falassarna Beach: a long sandy beach known for its clear waters and beautiful sunsets
  • Vai Beach: famous for its palm forest and golden sand
  • Preveli Beach: known for its river, palm trees, and a sandy beach area

Wrap Up On How To Choose Between Mykonos Or Crete 

Greece Travel Blog_Crete Vs. Mykonos

After reading through this article, we hope you now better understand the differences between Crete and Mykonos.

Whether it’s Crete’s dramatic landscape or Mykonos’s buzzing nightlife, both locations offer something unique for travelers looking to explore Greece. Consider your personal preferences and lifestyle when choosing which Greek paradise suits you best!

No matter where you end up, be sure to relax, enjoy some delicious food, and take in all that these two beautiful islands have to offer.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Move This Adventure To Your Inbox & Get An Instant Freebie

Subscribe To Unlock Your FREE Customizable Travel Packing List & All Our Best Tips!