If you're like us, before visiting a new place, we like to know a little history and interesting tidbits to give us some insights into whatever we're about to encounter and explore. So if you're planning your first time trip to St. John Resort and Mykonos, then how about a little background information, beginning from the ancient past right up to the present, to enhance your upcoming visit?
Popular theory has it that Mykonos island got it's name from a local mythological hero known as "Mykons," long worshipped as a descendent of Apollo, who was born on the nearby celebrated island of Delos. You may also notice that the main town of the island is also called Mykonos, so don't be confused if you also hear the name "Chora" as well. This general term is used when the name of a town is the same as the name of it's island, so in order to differentiate Mykonos the island from Mykonos the town, you can call the town, Chora.
Although archeological evidence tells us Mykonos was inhabited by Neolithic tribes as far back as 3000 BC, the early 11th century shows the arrival and subsequent takeover by the Ionians via Athens. And since the nearby island of Delos was the highly populated cultural and trade center of the Cyclades islands, these arriving Ionian "businessmen" saw very lucrative trade and transport opportunities, being only 2 km from the highly advanced civilization on Delos. Perhaps these were some of the earliest Greek shipping tycoons? In these ancient times, Mykonos was a very poor island, not yet developed for agriculture or trade, but that would change shortly thereafter.
The beautifully well preserved yet uninhabited Delos is but a short boat trip away, and a guided tour to learn all the fascinating details of the history between the two influential islands of Mykonos and Delos is a must! The St. John staff is happy to arrange this adventure for you, along with all the other activities to enjoy on the island!
Continuing along our timeline, the Roman Empire took control, and Mykonos eventually joined the Byzantine Empire controlling the island from the 7th to 12th century, successfully holding back Arab invaders. However when Constantinople fell in 1204, Mykonos was occupied by Venetian overlords, and except for a brief occupation by Catalans, Venice controlled the island until 1537 when Barbarossa conquered and the Ottomans moved in. In 1718 the last Venetians cleared out and the Ottomans had full control. Throughout the following centuries, great prosperity came to the island due to the well honed skills of Mykonian sailors and tradesmen. When the Greek revolution began, Mykonos a large military role in returning the island from Turkish rule back to Greece, and in 1830 formed part of the Greek State, and the island economy was back up running better than ever due to many new international trade agreements. World War I and impending economic factors arrived which led to a rather mass exodus from the island, mostly to Athens, and abroad as well, for islanders seeking a more modern world and greater opportunity. Several factors led to the development of tourism which eventually resurrected the Mykonos economy. The news of the exciting excavations taking place in Delos, and the rumors of the undiscovered, pristine beauty and famous hospitality of nearby Mykonos spread quickly. Artists, writers and other widely respected politicians and the like, were discovering Mykonos as tourists, as early as the 1930's, and then after surviving through the disastrous Second World War, islanders worked hard to build on their wonderful reputation. The 1950's and 60's saw the arrival of the world's most elite jetsetters and the flashy Greek shipping tycoons, including the world renown Aristotle Onassis and his new bride "Jackie O," with their close friends Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier among many others. Thus the final rebirth of Mykonos was complete, and she never looked back!
Today, even after all the ups and downs, including the more current economic issues of the last six years, Mykonos remains the undisputed queen of hip holiday destinations in Greece. And of course this news is especially gratifying in light of Greece's years of turmoil on the front lines of the European financial crisis. But you would never know there was a crisis going on anywhere in the world when you step onto the sands of Mykonos. Even holiday hot spots like Ibiza and St. Tropez pale in comparison these days to what Mykonos has to offer, with international gossip pages packed with the nonstop glamour and gossip of our endless parade of champagne sipping celebrities. And not only, because Mykonos has something to offer everyone, from family adventures, to party time for best buds, to a sublime and romantic honeymoon. No doubt about it, two million yearly visitors can't be wrong, Mykonos isn't just hot, Mykonos is on fire!
And St. John Resort is here to assist you all the way, in the planning of your next thrilling holiday in Mykonos, the hottest destination on earth!