Milos (All the Feel-os)
Like any Greek island version of a wild, post-apocalyptic Martha’s Vineyard with beaches from space would, Milos completely captured my heart. Also the food was amazing. The traditional Milos fried cheese pie, pitarakia, though delicious, was not all that photogenic and its photo didn’t make the blog post cut, but many other things we tried were equally-if-not-more delicious and are pictured below. Lots of beaches are also pictured! Since we visited on the last days of the tourist season (restaurants were starting to close down and after we left the ferries transitioned from a daily to a twice-weekly schedule), we had a few of the beaches literally to ourselves, which felt both bizarre and wonderful.
We arrived hungry, so once we checked in to our hotel, we immediately walked down the road for some pastry snacks at Mouratos Art of Bakery. We ate a bacon and cheese thing, a sugar donut thing, and a walnut-honey-filo thing. I know they all have names, but it was a ravenous point and pay situation, so we didn’t find out what those names were!
With a little sustenance, we were ready to explore, so we headed out to Sarakiniko Beach, which was actually the main reason we chose Milos in the first place—I had seen some photos of the beach and had been taken with how completely different and strange this beach looked. The beach did not disappoint IRL (that’s “in real life,” if you’re wondering!):
If you decide to visit Milos (which I highly recommend you do, unless you’re the cruise-ship-group-tour type of person, in which case I recommend you don’t!), Andrew and I have a few pieces of advice for you. 1) Rent a car. The buses come once every two hours, and things are too far apart to walk, plus there are no sidewalks. 2) Don’t try to drive in any residential-looking areas! Even if a detour or Google Maps takes you there. Those roads are narrow and scary and we experienced the first true relationship test of our marriage while stuck in their labyrinthine coils (we passed, don’t worry). 3) If at all possible, try to stay at Lithos Luxury Rooms, because it’s run by the friendliest, most wonderful people, there are sheep grazing nearby and this creates a rustic, relaxing atmosphere, and there is a breakfast buffet situation that looks like this, but with different dishes each day:
And some closeups! Eggs with tomatoes, fresh cheese, and peppers:
Loukoumades with sugar:
After eating this type of breakfast, you will be energized to start exploring some more beaches!
Provatas Beach was one of my favorites, and it was speckled with thermal water areas where sulfurous hot water bubbled up through the sand! And we found this colorful rock to stand on!
The reddish-orange patch under the water is sulfur deposits! (You can smell it too, eek.)
Here is a really hot area! (Andrew stepped on it by accident and burnt his foot—ouch!)
Next we explored Firiplaka (wow!!):
For lunch we visited the picturesque Mandrakia Beach with its colorful boat garages (syrmata):
We ate at Medusa by the water. The house salad with some vinegar-braised octopus on the side:
More loukoumades (these with cinnamon) for dessert!
After lunch we drove over to Klima to see the famous colorful syrmata. So beautiful!
We had a memorable dinner at Archontoula in Plaka, where we also watched the sun set (sunset was first and dinner second, but sunset photos are a better blog post ending, so here’s our dinner!)
We tried the Milos fried cheese pies (delicious, not pictured), some local wine, and a seasonal salad of chopped vegetables, nuts, and pomegranate seeds, and some local lamb and potatoes. All of these were quite tasty. However. The highlight of the dinner experience was observing the three jovial older gentlemen at the table next to us and charting the progress of their meal. They ordered: skordalia (a pureed garlic and potato dip) (two orders), grape leaves, tomato salad, fresh cheese, bread, a house salad, pork souvlaki, fried zucchini, fried eggplant, and three carafes of raki. WOW! We aspire to be like them one day.
The sunset is also best viewed from Plaka, the neighborhood with the highest elevation. It may not have been quite as grand as the Santorini sunset, but instead of watching the sunset with hundreds of others, we watched with about ten other people around us, so this sunset was much more serene.
We really hope to go back to this magical place someday. I hope you’ve enjoyed the photos. I’ll be back with a new recipe for you next week!