A Travel Price Comparison for Greece Mykonos vs. Heraklion for Food, Nightlife, Couples, and Attractions

Should you visit Mykonos or Heraklion?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the activities as well as the prices of travel for Mykonos and Heraklion. We'll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget, schedule, and interests. So, let's dig into it.


Mykonos is a party-oriented, ritzy, and opulent Greek island. It's considered by many to be an absolutely beautiful destination, too. It also has a unique and quaint vibe that attracts lots of visitors. Visitors also love the food, scuba diving and snorkeling, and beaches.


Heraklion is a historic, vibrant, and accessible city. It's a large city, so you'll find plenty of things to do around town. And you can't forget about the food, beaches, and shopping.

Mykonos and Heraklion: Pros and Cons

  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Nice resorts
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Scenic old town
  • Fun shopping
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Impressive beauty
  • Quaint atmosphere
Things to Consider
  • Less family-friendly
  • Less popular with backpackers
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Popular beach
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
Things to Consider
  • Less popular for shopping

Is there more to do in Mykonos or Heraklion?

You'll generally find more things to do in Mykonos than Heraklion. Mykonos is bigger than Heraklion, and it also has more attractions and activities for travelers. Mykonos is better known for its food, nightlife, resorts, scuba diving & snorkeling, historical sights, hiking, shopping, impressive beauty, and quaint atmosphere, while Heraklion is more popular for its museums and big city activities. Mykonos is more touristy than Heraklion and is popular for its active party scene, luxury accommodation, and picturesque villages. Also, Mykonos is famous for the traditional windmills near Chora. Heraklion is well known for its archeological sights, local Cretan restaurants, and its vibrant nightlife scene.

How is Mykonos different from Heraklion?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Heraklion and Mykonos. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Mykonos or Heraklion?


Heraklion is a well-known place for its sights and museums. Also, Mykonos is not as famous, but is still a good Greek island to visit for its museums and history.

Visitors can fill many days exploring the museums and attractions around Heraklion. The city is filled with historical sights and archeological ruins. The impressive Palace of Knossos is a must-see, but also make sure you visit the Koules Fortress, the Heraklion Archaeological Museum, and the Natural History Museum of Crete.

If you're looking for an educational opportunity, there are a decent number of museums and historical sights around Mykonos. Visitors enjoy checking out the windmills and churches around the island. You can also hop over to Delos to see its archeological sites.

Is the Food Better in Mykonos or Heraklion? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?


Mykonos is a world-class destination for its restaurants. Also, Heraklion is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its restaurant scene.

Many restaurants in Mykonos have been singled out for their culinary prowess. Like most things on the island, food is expensive, but its also very good. Make sure you try the louza sausage, kopanisti cheese, and melopita pie.

Dining out in Heraklion is an experience not to be missed. The city is home to countless Cretan restaurants that range in style and budget. There are fine dining restaurants as well as local dives with casual street food. The restaurants reflect the island's multi-cultural past with many styles and flavors available.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion Better for Nightlife?


Mykonos is a world-class destination for nightlife and partying. Also, Heraklion is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its evening party scene.

People head to Mykonos just to party. With many exclusive clubs and bars, this island is among the best for nightlife in Greece. Popular options include Tropicana Club, Scarpa, and Super Paradise Beach Club.

Heraklion is a popular destination for visitors looking to party into the night. The city has some of the best nightlife on the island of Crete. There are many all-night clubs as well as bars that stay open until 2 or 3 in the morning. In particular, there are many British tourists hanging out at the clubs and bars.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion Better for Resorts?


Mykonos is a world-class destination for its luxury resorts. However, Heraklion is not a resort destination.

Mykonos is a world class resort vacation destination. There are many world class luxury resorts on the island that offer a variety of amenities including pools, restaurants, and spas. Popular options include Myconian Avaton Resort, Myconian Imperial Resort and Villas, and Myconian Utopia Resort.

Heraklion is not a resort destination.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion Better for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling?


Mykonos is a very popular place for its diving and snorkeling. However, Heraklion is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

Mykonos is an extremely popular place to visit for scuba diving and snorkeling. There are many good diving and snorkeling spots around the island include shipwrecks and reefs with good visibility.

Heraklion is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion Better for Beaches?


Mykonos and Heraklion both offer very good beaches.

Many people visit Mykonos for it's beautiful beaches. This island has become popular for its sandy beaches, but these days they come with a high price. Many are lined with umbrellas and sunbeds that you can rent. They often have bars that bring high energy and loud music. The water is often calm enough to enjoy swimming or water sports. Most of the best beaches are on the southern side of the island, but there are less crowds on the northern side, although the weather may not be as good.

Heraklion is considered a top beach destination. You'll find world-class beaches just outside of town, if you're willing to explore a little. Agia Pelagia Beach is about half an hour away and Limanakia Beach is also not a bad day trip. If you want to stay closer to town, head to nearby Amnissos Beach.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion Better for its Old Town?


Mykonos is a world-class destination for its old town. However, Heraklion does not have a historic old town.

The historic old town of Mykonos is revered around the world. Chora, the old town and largest town on the island, is filled with windmills, cafes, churches, and charming streets.

Heraklion does not have a historic old town.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion Better for Hiking?


Mykonos is not a good area for its hiking trails. However, Heraklion is not a hiking destination.

A few hiking trails can be found near Mykonos. This island doesn't have any real hiking but you can walk to the beach along the road. The island is mostly flat.

Heraklion is not a hiking destination.

Is the Shopping Better in Mykonos or Heraklion?


Mykonos is a world-class destination for its shopping opportunities. Also, Heraklion is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its shopping areas.

Known for shopping, Mykonos draws large crowds to its stores. This island has become the playground for celebrities and the wealthy, so there are plenty of shopping opportunities in town.

Many visitors go to Heraklion to go shopping. There are a number of unique shops around town that sell everything from traditional pottery to homemade jewelry.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion Better for Families?


Heraklion is a good destination for its family-friendly activities. However, Mykonos is not a good Greek island for its kid-friendly activities.

Heraklion is a family-friendly place to visit. In town you'll find many historical and educational sights such as the Palace of Knossos, the Heraklion Archaeological Museum, and the Koules Venetian fortress. Kids will also enjoy walking the Venetian Walls that are in town. If you're willing to head a bit outside of town, in about half an hour you can reach the Cretaquarium, Dinosauria Park, or Acqua Plus Water Park.

Mykonos is not always a place people visit with their families. This island is a bit of a party destination, so many people choose alternative islands when visiting Greece with their kids. If you do head to Mykonos, you'll find nice beaches and some good museums.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion Better for Couples?


Mykonos is a world-class destination for its romantic activities. Also, Heraklion is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for couples.

Mykonos is a great Greek island for couples, as it has plenty to offer. Couples who enjoy beautiful coastal settings with a great party scene will love a vacation or honeymoon to this Greek island.

Couples visit Heraklion frequently as it offers plenty of romantic activities. Most couples head outside of town to other parts of the island, but those who linger in town for a while will enjoy world-class museums and fascinating archeological sights.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?


Heraklion is a well-known place for backpackers. However, Mykonos is not a good Greek island for backpackers and budget travelers.

Heraklion is a great city to visit for backpackers. The city is filled with budget-friendly hostels that often have a social atmosphere and a fun vibe.

Mykonos is a challenging destination for budget travelers and backpackers due to the higher prices. The island appeals to the wealthy and glamourous, but for backpackers and budget travelers, there are a few budget-friendly hotels. It'll be a bit harder to find affordable food though, as restaurants can be quite expensive.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?


Both Mykonos and Heraklion offer notable public transit options.

Mykonos has a few public transit options. There is a bus system that connects the towns and beaches on the island. Both major bus stations are on the western side of the island.

Heraklion has some public transit options. KTEL buses travel both within town and to nearby villages.

Is Mykonos or Heraklion a more walkable city?


Mykonos is a world-class destination for its high level of walkability. Also, Heraklion is not quite as popular, but is fairly good for its ease of walking around.

It's very easy to get around on foot in Mykonos. Walking is actually one of the only ways to get around town.

Heraklion is a very walkable destination. Many parts of the town are walkable and doing a walking tour is a great way to see many of the city's sights.

For even more information, also check out Is Mykonos Worth Visiting? and Is Heraklion Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Heraklion or Mykonos?

How long in Mykonos or Heraklion?

Visitors can find plenty of fun things to do in both Mykonos and Heraklion. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Mykonos than in Heraklion. Usually, 3-5 days is a good amount of time for Mykonos, and 1-3 days is enough time in Heraklion.

Couples should spend more time in Mykonos than Heraklion. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Mykonos that are great for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Mykonos than Heraklion if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Mykonos.

  • How many days in Mykonos or Heraklion? Ideal Length of Stay
    Mykonos 3-5 
    Heraklion 1-3

One day in Mykonos or Heraklion?

You'll find nightlife and food around the quaint Greek island of Mykonos. People often spend their time relaxing at one of the resorts. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

In Heraklion, you'll find nightlife and food. You'll find plenty of activities on the beach. This city offers something for everyone. This would be the perfect place to spend one day, as it has just the right amount of activities.

A weekend in Mykonos or Heraklion?

You'll find food and scuba diving and snorkeling around the party-oriented destination of Mykonos. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. A weekend is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. This Greek island offers a variety of activities to choose from.

In Heraklion, you'll find food and shopping. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. A weekend here is typical. Most people come for the beaches. A weekend is a great amount of time to relax and see the many things that Heraklion has to offer.

Five days in Mykonos or Heraklion?

You'll find scuba diving and snorkeling and shopping around the party-oriented Greek island of Mykonos. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. If you have five days, this Greek island makes for a great vacation. It's also a relaxing resort destination. Five days should give you a good understanding of everything this Greek island has to offer.

Heraklion is a great place to explore. Many visitors spend time at the beach while visiting the area. Five days is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. Anyone can find something fun to do here.

A week in Mykonos or Heraklion?

Mykonos is a popular choice for travelers. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. One week is usually plenty of time to spend here with extra days to spare. With this much time, visitors often visit nearby destinations or take day trips. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Heraklion. Many people enjoy the museums and nightlife when visiting Heraklion. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. One week may feel like too much time unless you plan to do a lot of relaxing.

For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Contiki Tours to Greece, The Best G Adventures Tours to Greece, The Best 3-Day Tours from Athens, and The Best One-Week (7-Day) Tours from Athens.

Which place is cheaper, Heraklion or Mykonos?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Mykonos is €237, while the average daily cost in Heraklion is €158. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Mykonos and Heraklion in more detail.

  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Mykonos 74
    Heraklion 81
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Mykonos 148
    Heraklion 162
Compare Hotels in Mykonos and Heraklion

Looking for a hotel in Mykonos or Heraklion? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Mykonos

Hotels in Heraklion

Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.

Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Mykonos Hotel Prices and Heraklion Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Mykonos 24
    Heraklion 31
Typical Local Transportation Prices in Mykonos

Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Mykonos:

  • Bus to Paradise Beach (for 2)
  • Taxi to Kalafatis

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Mykonos

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Mykonos:

  • Transfer from Mykonos Airport to Ftelia area up to 6 customers: $76
  • Transfer Service in Mykonos: $44
  • Sunset cruise to Rhenia& Little Venice with transfer: $131
  • Sunset South Coast Sail Cruise with lunch,drinks, optional transfer : $120
  • Sedan Departure Transfer from Mykonos to Mykonos Airport JMK: $46
  • Schatz Luxury Transfer : $27
  • Private Transfer:Mykonos Old Port to your hotel with Sedan: $54
  • Private Transfer:Mykonos Old Port to your Villa with minivan: $71
  • Private Transfer:Mykonos Old Port to your Villa with minibus: $75
  • Private Transfer:From your hotel to Windmills with mini van: $64
  • Private Transfer:From your hotel to Windmills with mini bus: $75

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Heraklion

Also for Heraklion, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Transfer Airport to HERAKLION CITY CENTER OR PORT area up to 7 : $27
  • Acqua Plus Water Park Admission with Optional Transfer: $32
  • Crete Private Transfer to and from Heraklion Airport Port Town : $36
  • Private Transfer Services Crete Heraklion Airport-Port-Hotel: $43
  • Transfer Heraklion Airport to KOKKINI HANI area up to 7 customers: $44
  • Transfer Heraklion Airport to HERSONISSOS area up to 7 customers: $62
  • Transfer Heraklion Airport to KOUTOULOUFARI area up to 7 : $62
  • Heraklion Dia Island Cruise with Lunch + Transfer: $63
  • Crete Private Taxi and Transfer from Heraklion Airport to Malia: $81
  • Semi-Private Premium Wine Tasting at Titakis Winery with Transfer: $93
  • Transfer Heraklion Airport to SISSI area up to 7 customers: $96
  • Transfer Services From Heraklion To Rethymno Hotels: $97

Is it cheaper to fly into Mykonos or Heraklion?

Prices for flights to both Heraklion and Mykonos change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.

  • Food Meals for one day
    Mykonos 48
    Heraklion 52
Typical Food Prices in Mykonos

Some typical examples of dining costs in Mykonos are as follows:

  • Two Ice cream Cones

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Mykonos

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Mykonos.

  • Traditional Lunch or Dinner at the Mykonian Spiti: $70
  • Traditional Lunch or Dinner with Drinks in Mykonos: $71
  • Sunset Boat Cruise with Light Dinner & Drinks: $100
  • Food Tour in Mykonos - 10 Tastings : $108
  • Souvlaki Cooking Class in Mykonos: $109
  • Souvlaki Cooking Class with Locals: $131
  • Private Cooking Class at the Home of a Mykonian Family : $131
  • Cooking Class with Food and Wine: $161
  • Cooking Classes in Mykonos Greece: $164
  • Private Cooking Class on Naxos Island with Pick Up: $197
  • Mykonos Cooking Class of Local Specialties: $218
  • Private Greek Cooking Class in Mykonos with a Food Professional: $224

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Heraklion

For Heraklion, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Crete: Traditional Dance Show and Buffet Dinner with Wine: $31
  • Troy Dinner-Show: $33
  • Spectacular Dinner-Show: $44
  • From Village Cretan Night, Live Dancers & dinner: $48
  • Cretan Night with Dinner & Live Show: $49
  • Crete: Olive Oil Festival, Farm Dinner, Live Show & Pickup: $59
  • Olive Oil Festival in Cretan Farm with Traditional Dinner: $60
  • Cretan Farm with scenic view: Olive Mill Festival & dinner: $64
  • Crete: Land Rover Safari with Sunset Viewing, Dinner, & Wine: $90
  • Amazing Sunset Safari Route with Dinner: $91
  • Full-Day Jeep Safari Tour with Cooking Lesson: $97
  • Food tour tasting walking tour: $98

  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Mykonos 23
    Heraklion 38

Tours and Activities in Mykonos

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Mykonos are as follows:

  • All Inclusive Tour to Delos and Rhenia Islands with S/Y Olga M: $153
  • Mykonos Gems for the First Time Cruise Visitors: $27
  • 2 Hours Gems of Mykonos Private Tour: $109
  • 2 Hours Private Tour Mykonos Highlights with Local Driver: $109
  • 3 Hours Private Sightseeing Tour to Mykonos Island: $218
  • 4 Hour Mykonos Tour Explorer : $164
  • All Inclusive Mykonos Island Tour & Greek Food Tasting: $187
  • All incl. Delos & Rhenia 12 pax,free trans, hotel/cruise pickup: $152
  • All inclusive Delos & Rhenia Islands tour up to 12 pax (free transportation): $153
  • All inclusive Sunset Cruise Delos & Rhenia - free transpotation: $137
  • All inclusive cruise-Mykonos Delos&Rhenia beaches(free transport): $141
  • Authentic Jeep Adventure Tour: $191

Tours and Activities in Heraklion

For Heraklion, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • Free Walking Tour in Heraklion: $4.28
  • Private Traditional Olive Grove and Dragon Fruit Farm Tour: $5.46
  • Heraklion Area: CRETAquarium Admission Ticket: $8.56
  • CRETAquarium Entrance Ticket in Crete: $8.74
  • Mobile Self-Guided Audio Sightseeing Tour: $11
  • Self-Guided Audio Tour: $11
  • Herakleion: City Self-Guided Game & Tour: $12
  • Minoan Day Experience: $19
  • Crete: Palace of Knossos E-Ticket and Optional Audio Guide: $19
  • Crete: Heraklion Market & Creta Aquarium *Skip the line: $20
  • Knossos Self-Guided Treasure Hunt & Tour: $21
  • Crete: Day Tour to Heraklion City, Market & CRETAquarium: $24

  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Mykonos 20
    Heraklion 26

Sample the Local Flavors in Mykonos

Also in Mykonos, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Winery Vineyard Experience with Food & Wine Tasting: $73
  • Tour and Wine Tasting in Mykonian Land : $74
  • Wine Tasting at a Mykonian Farm: $80
  • Wine Tasting Tour at a traditional farm in Mykonos: $82
  • Mykonos Town: Wine tour in Greek Gastronony with a local: $103
  • Half-Day Wine Tasting and Snack at a Local House: $128
  • Ancient Greek Wine Tasting on the Beach with a Sommelier: $128
  • Wine Tasting In Mykonos with Greek Ancient varieties : $131
  • Half-Day Wine Tasting Tour in Mykonos : $131
  • Luxurious All-in-One Mykonos Party Tour with Wine Tasting: $163

Sample the Local Flavors in Heraklion

Also in Heraklion, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Walking city tour & Wine tasting: $92
  • Wine Tasting E-Bike Tour: $95
  • Culinary Tour at an Olive Farm and Micro-Winery Raki Distillery: $98
  • Ecobike Tour with Wine Tasting: $111
  • Luxury Private Wine Tasting Experience in Haralabakis Winery: $119
  • Full Day-Ecobike Old Villages Tour & Wine Tasting: $128
  • Half Day Semi Private Wine Tour with Tastings: $134
  • Semi Private Heraklion Valley Wine Tour with Lunch: $160
  • Full Day - Ecobike - Discover old villages & Wine tasting: $175
  • The Gourmet Wine Tour of Heraklion area: $180
  • All in One - Ecobike City Tour - Food Tasting - Wine Tasting: $201
  • Private SUV Wine Tour with Lunch: $203

When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Mykonos and Heraklion, we can see that Mykonos is more expensive. And not only is Heraklion much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Heraklion would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Heraklion and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Mykonos would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Mykonos than you might in Heraklion.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Mykonos Expensive? and Is Heraklion Expensive?.

Which is Bigger, Mykonos or Heraklion?

Mykonos has a larger population, and is about 4 times larger than the population of Heraklion. When comparing the sizes of Mykonos and Heraklion, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.