Photo: Colorful buildings and balconies near the sea © LUCIANBOLCA - DREAMSTIME.COM
ASK ANY LGBTQ+ GLOBETROTTER to name a top sun-andfun vacation spot in Europe, and Mykonos will likely appear near the top of the list. “Mykonos has always been a welcoming and nonjudgmental place,” said Keith Wein, owner, 127travel, an upscale travel agency that’s a division of Tzell Travel Group in New York City and Seattle.
The reasons for the appeal are many, according to Wein, who sells the destination frequently and recently returned from his latest visit. “Mykonos has amazing beaches, beautiful sunsets, wonderful gay nightlife, exquisite restaurants, shopping and dance parties that go on all night long. You can make friends with gays from all over the world and have an experience that removes you from the stress of your everyday life.”
Among the top beach choices is Super Paradise, a complex that includes a hotel and what Wein touts as the most party-oriented stretch of sand, complete with afternoon drag shows. A quieter alternative is Elia Beach. After a day of soaking in the sun, Wein said, “… every LGBTQ traveler should go to Jackie O bar at midnight and enjoy the nightlife scene as the waves crash over the sea wall out front.”
LGBTQ+ travelers seeking comfortable accommodations can choose from hotels like the Myconian Ambassador Thalasso Spa, a member of Relais & Châteaux; the Mykonos Grand, a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World; and the San Giorgio Mykonos, offering an extensive program of meditation classes and workshops.
The largest annual LGBTQ+ event, XLSIOR, takes place Aug. 21–28 this year, with large-scale parties and events that attract thousands of mostly gay, mostly young men from around Europe and beyond.
But that doesn’t mean you have to be a party person to appreciate Mykonos, of course. “All kinds of LGBT travelers are attracted to Mykonos,” Wein said. “The bustling shops attract everyone. Of course, the young crowd will want the late-night parties and beautiful young single people. However, an older crowd will appreciate the beautiful hotels and beaches and restaurants. It’s possible to have a completely chill vacation in Mykonos, void of nightlife.”