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A volcanic island in the heart of the Aegean, Milos is endowed with an unusual landscape that frames its many beaches in pink, orange and dazzling white rock. It’s one of the Cycladic Islands, but far less visited than its counterparts, which gives it a greater sense of local character.

Milos owes its multi-hued landscape to its volcanic origins, a fact that obsidian miners exploited as far back as 15,000 years ago. Today, the curious geological phenomena — rock formations, hot springs, hidden caves and unusual beaches — are a large part of Milos’s appeal, twinned with its long history.

The island has been mined since Neolithic times and inhabited since the Bronze Age. You can find many archaeological sites across Milos, but the most renowned discovery was that of the Aphrodite of Milos, better known as the Venus de Milo, now on display in the Louvre. The statue, thought to date to around 100 BC, was unearthed by a local farmer close to the island’s ruined amphitheatre.

Although little of the amphitheatre remains, you can still get a clear idea of its scale. Alternatively, you could visit the early Christian catacombs at Tripiti, whose graves date back to the 1st century AD.

Along with the island’s many historical sites, its beaches are its most appealing asset. The volcanic form of the land cradles the beaches in dramatic fashion. At Sarakíniko, the landscape is white and rocky, the wind and sea having shaped the pumice into a series of otherworldly rock formations.

Other rewarding spots include Kleftiko, reached by boat, with its rock arches and clear turquoise waters. Then there’s the cave-like Papafragkas or the large and sheltered beach at Achivadolimni.

Milos’s villages are also worth a wander. Plaka, the island’s capital, has a core of labyrinthine streets, a lofty castle and a clutch of museums. Climb to the ruins of the castle on the town’s highest point for sweeping views, or visit the archaeological museum to see a life-size replica of the Venus de Milo.

For us, though, the island’s best view is in Klima, sometimes referred to as ‘Little Venice’. Its port is lined with syrmata, tiny houses carved out of the rocks by the sea, which were originally used by fishermen who moored their boats below.

Best time to visit Milos

Milos is a seasonal destination, where many properties only open from May to October. July and August are typically the busiest and hottest times of the year, with temperatures reaching 30 C (86 F). May to June and September to October are better times to go, when you’ll be accompanied by blue skies, warm weather and fewer visitors.

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Suggested itineraries featuring Milos

Our itineraries will give you suggestions for what is possible when you travel in Milos, and they showcase routes we know work particularly well. Treat them as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.

Map of Milos

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    Places near Milos

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    Our specialists seek out authentic ways to get to know the places that could feature in your trip. These activities reflect some of the experiences they've most enjoyed while visiting Milos, and which use the best local guides.