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Mykonos, Greece

 
Part of the Greek Islands in the Aegean Sea, Mykonos is a dazzling destination filled with whitewashed houses, blue-domed churches, and beautiful beaches set against an equally striking blue sky. Seen from a distance, the island chain of the Cyclades resembles a necklace on deep blue satin. Once you set foot on Mykonos, you may well determine it to be the crown jewel.

THE HORA - A CITY MAZE
The Hora, or main village, of Mykonos is filled with a maze of tight-winding streets. Were they designed to confuse invaders or simply serve as a windbreak to deflect Aegean squalls? Take a stroll and envelop yourself in the mystique of Mykonos. Pay homage at the square dedicated to Mando Mavrogenous, the island's protectress whose two ships unfurled a stunning defeat on a large band of Algerian corsairs in the 1800s. Climb to the 16th-century Boni windmill for scenic views of the town, or simply explore the island for signs of the Venetian presence that followed the Fourth Crusade.

AN ISLAND BEACH DREAM
With over twenty accessible sandy beaches, you'll discover a stretch of sand for whatever mood you're in. Some popular and some more remote, you'll find both quiet, secluded locations and family-oriented beaches. All are calm and relaxing surroundings for sunbathers and if you're not content to sit around on the beach, water sports such as diving and wind surfing are available.

AN ARCHEOLOGICAL TREASURE
A short ferry ride from Mykonos, the tiny island of Delos is an archeological treasure. Many temples and monuments built over the span of a millennium can still be viewed today through excavations by the French School of Archaeology, whose preservation of the archaic ruins began in 1873.

THE BIRTHPLACE OF APOLLO
Mythology cites Delos as the birthplace of Apollo, the son of Zeus. Visit remnants of temples dedicated to Apollo, or take a stroll to the Sanctuary of Artemis, dedicated to Apollo's sister. South of the central temples is the Theatre District, with ruins of a majestic theatre and several magnificent, private homes. The House of the Dolphins and the House of the Masks showcase superbly, colorful mosaic pavements. The Terrace of the Lions, a row of marble lions erected in the 7th century BC, stand as eternal guardians of the sanctuary, reminiscent of this sacred spot.
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