Updated on September 13th, 2021
If you are searching for the perfect Greek Island experience, then look no further than Milos in the Cyclades Islands. With fewer crowds, some spectacular beaches, traditional fishing villages, whitewashed towns, volcanic rock formations, pristine clear blue waters & dramatic coastal features, it’s an island that should not be missed. If you are wondering what to do in Milos, then here are 21 things to choose from!”
Milos is one of the smaller, lesser-known islands of the Cyclades in Greece. As such it is often overlooked when compiling the Perfect Greek Island Hopping Itinerary. However, miss Milos at your peril! It may not have the fame of its neighbours Santorini or Mykonos but it also doesn’t have the crowds or the price tag! What Milos does have is spectacular volcanic rock formations, charming fishing villages & plenty of natural beauty to keep you entertained. Throw into the mix some unique beaches & crystal-clear blue water & hopefully I’ve convinced you to add it to your list!
I have been Greek island-hopping 6 times in the Cyclades & therefore consider myself somewhat of an expert. If you are planning a trip, then my First-Timers Guide is not to be missed, along with my in-depth guides on Santorini, Paros & Naxos.
What to do in Milos, Greece – 21 Incredible Reasons to Visit
So, when you’ve chosen the island as your perfect Greek getaway, here are my picks of the best things to do in Milos.
Milos is so stunning that it’s hard to see the best of it without getting on the water to circumnavigate the island. However, which boat you choose to take is important so I produced a handy guide with everything you need to know before selecting your tour. My recommendation is the excellent Eleni Sailboats, but for some other alternatives, check these out from Get Your Guide:
The following places are only accessible by boat so make sure they are on the itinerary of any boat tour you choose:
World-famous Kleftiko is one of the highlights of any trip to Milos. It is one of the most photographed spots on the island. The waters surrounding the white rock archway are pristine & the caves here were once a refuge for pirates.
Again, only reached by boat, the Milos icon of Arkoudes is also known as “Bear Rock”. At the right angle, the resemblance is unmissable.
Sikia Cave & beach is also only accessible from the water. If you are able to go inside then don’t miss the opportunity. A fig tree stands above the hole where the roof collapsed & the cave is named after this.
Polyaigos is a small island just off Milos with orange & white cliffs, forming a dramatic backdrop for a swim. The sea here looks unnatural it’s so blue (no editing or photoshopping required). Make sure any boat trip includes some time here, a swim in these pristine waters is truly unmissable.
Spectacular & breath-taking are 2 words that spring to mind as you approach these rocks. Through the impact of great pressure, the rock has shaped into long thin hexagonal columns, making it look like striped cliffs. They soar from the water to create an otherworldly landscape.
Apparently, you can only view a similar phenomenon in Tasmania. To me, it resembled a much smaller version of the Giants Causeway in Ireland.”
Off the boat? Wondering what to do in Milos next? Why not head to one of the 70 beaches on the island. Here are some of the best:
Sarakiniko Beach is the most photographed beach on the island so has to be on any list of the best things to do in Milos. The beach is made up of volcanic white rock which has been eroded by the wind & waves. It literally looks like marble or the surface of the moon (hence you may hear it referred to as “Luna Beach”). Take a couple of hours to explore, swim, relax & marvel at the beautiful rock formations. Don’t expect to laze around for hours as there is no shade & limited actual sand to relax on, but it is spectacular. If you’re feeling daring, then take a leap into the water from the cliff…but prepare for an audience when you do!
Pollonia is a long stretch of white sandy beach with crystal clear waters, backed by traditional whitewashed houses & plenty of tavernas to keep you fed & watered. If you are looking to stay somewhere more unspoilt & quiet, then this is a good option. Try Polyegos View, Traditional House Milos or blow the budget at Milos Breeze Boutique Hotel. For food then check out Armenaki, Gialos, Enalion or Kivotos for sweets.
The beach here is a bit of an adventure as it’s only accessible if you climb over the cliff & lower yourself down by a ladder & rope. If you suffer from vertigo you may want to give it a miss! Once there it is a popular place with a small café for refreshments.
10. Firiplaka Beach
If rock formations are your thing, then head to Firiplaka. The beach is characterised by a natural arch in the centre, creating a cave which you can safely swim through. At one end are a series of rock pools & lagoons which can be a great place for keen snorkellers. If you are here long enough, consider staying as it’s a great place to watch the sunset!
11. Paliachori Beach
Apparently, the best beach in Milos. This means it’s organised & popular so get there early to secure your sunbed & umbrella for the day. Then relax & enjoy your choice of tavernas (try Sirocco), or water sports if you fancy getting a bit more active.
12. Paliorenia (Thiorichia Beach)
If you’re looking for something a little different on your day at the beach, then head to Paliorenia where you’ll also find an abandoned sulphur mine nestled into the rocks. The road there is a dirt track which is only really accessible if you have a 4-wheel drive or an ATV. Be aware that there are no facilities on the beach, however, you can enjoy exploring the old abandoned mines & rusty carriages on your visit.
Searching for a beach, with traditional whitewashed houses, churches & ancient ruins? Firopotamos, nestled among the cliffs, could be among your favourite things to do on Milos. The water here is crystal clear although the beach is more stone than sand.
Finally, if you are looking for iconic Cyclades whitewashed villages & history, then don’t miss these things to do in Milos:
Plaka is the inland capital of Milos where you can enjoy strolling through the labyrinthine streets in this typical, picturesque Cyclades town. For history buffs, it is also home to the Archaeological Museum. If you choose to stay in Plaka, you will be able to witness some of the best sunsets on the island (head to Utopia Cafe). For food, I recommend heading to Palaios, a bakery with a delicious selection of cakes & pastries, or try To Diporto.
When you are in Plaka do not miss the ominous-looking climb to the top of the Kastro (a Venetian castle). It is hard to miss as it sits on top of the one very dominant hill in town. My advice is to get there early & go straight up. This is partly because you can avoid the intense heat & there are fewer people to join you. However, mostly it stops you looking at it for a long time & talking yourself out of the climb!
The views from the top are well worth the effort as you take in the whole island vista, with the churches & water sparkling all around you.”
This vantage point is definitely not one to miss from your list of things to do in Milos. Kastro is also apparently THE best place on the island to come & watch the sunset.
Joined to Plaka, it is an easy walk to the windmills of Trypiti which on closer inspection are all converted into houses. Some are available to stay in which struck me as an opportunity for a unique experience on my next visit – try Aera Milos for details. If you’re feeling peckish here, they try Ergina or Methismeni Politeia.
Klima is a collection of gorgeous fishermen’s cottages, all painted brightly, with the sea lapping against them. It’s very picturesque & with a welcome restaurant (Astakas) in the centre. You will be grateful for some shade & a chance to cool off there if, like me, you walked from Plaka in the midday sun! It’s worth knowing that some of the cottages (also called sirmata) have now been converted into accommodation. If you fancy staying in one, check out Tsakanos Traditional Sirma or Fisherman’s House.
The catacombs are carved out of the pumice stone cliffs in caves 150m above the surface of the sea. They have been deemed the most ancient monument of Christianity & used as a cemetery from the end of the 2nd century BC. They are second only to the catacombs of Rome & the biggest example in Greece. You can find them close to Klima.
19. Ancient Theatre of Milos
Close to the catacombs is this ancient theatre which originally dated back to the 3rd Century BC. It once seated 7000 & overlooks the cliffs of Klima. Eight tiers of beautiful marble terraces have been excavated. During your visit, test the acoustics & admire the spectacular location.
If you arrive in Milos by ferry, then you come into the port of Adamas. It’s a great option to base yourself here as there is a wide choice of accommodation, tavernas on the water & shops to keep you occupied.
If you are planning on a boat trip, then the marina is the perfect place to shop around & find the one which best suits your needs. For all these reasons, Adamas could be the best place to stay in Milos.”
I chose the Hotel Eleni for my stay, as it’s within walking distance from the port. I could not recommend it highly enough. The hotel is run by Eleni herself who is the most adorable, enthusiastic & helpful person you could wish for! Apart from a lovely clean room & great outside terrace, the breakfasts were amazing (a huge array of options for less than €10). Her husband & son also run the boat touring company which I have recommended. Alternatively, how about staying in The Windmill if you fancy treating yourself?
If you do stay in Adamas, then for restaurants, try Flisvos which specialises in fish with a great view over the boats in the harbour. In Marianas, the eggplant saganaki & mussels in ouzo were delicious! You could also try Mikros Apoplous or the amazing Oh Hamos. Apparently, Yankos is a great spot for breakfast & for drinks looking down on the harbour then give Vipera Lebetina a try. If ice cream is on the menu, hunt out Aggeliki.
21. Milos Mining Museum
Milos has a long history of mining which dates back to the Neolithic Period. Here, through the years they have excavated obsidian, sulphur, kaolin & are now the biggest producers in the EU of bentonite (for metal production) & perlite (for improving soil quality). Located in Adamas, this museum is excellent if you have an interest in the history of the island.
Getting to & from Milos
Milos does not currently have an international airport, so you need to either fly to Athens or one of the bigger islands such as Santorini or Mykonos. Whichever you choose, the next step is to either get a small internal flight or preferably go by boat.
For a ferry to Milos, it’s easy to book online but seats may be limited so I would advise doing this in advance. I recommend Ferryscanner. For all the information you need on using the ferry service, check out my First-Timers Guide to Greek Island Hopping.
Getting around Milos
There are 3 main options for getting around the island:
Buses are regular & reliable if a little chaotic at times. There is a flat rate per journey (expect €2 or less). As always, it’s much easier if you have change. Timetables are hard to come by but if you find one, my top tip is to photograph it which should set you up for your time on the island. They connect the main towns, but you may need to be prepared to walk a bit too. For example, there is no bus down to Klima, so we walked but ended up hitching a lift back as it was long, uphill & very hot!
Hiring a Car/Moped/ATV
As with all of the islands, exploring at your own pace is highly rewarding & there are a myriad of vehicles available to hire, depending on your preference & budget. During peak season book ahead. The main towns will provide options (Adamas, Plaka) so you can shop around a little for the best price.
Finally, with all these amazing natural features, beautiful beaches & traditional towns, I hope I have convinced you to add Milos to your next Greek island-hopping itinerary. If not, then maybe the lack of crowds & the fact that it less demanding on your budget may persuade you? I love the island & I hope that with my list of what to do in Milos it is your perfect Greek island destination too!
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