The Island of Delos: Where Greek Myths, Cults and History Come Alive

When you want to escape to an Greek island which can transport you back to the times of the ancient Greek gods, look no further than Delos.

You can see Delos, a UNESCO World Heritage site, from the shores of Mykonos, and the beauty of the island and its surroundings inspire all who visit – but do you know the legendary myth of the sacred island?

Delos (Courtesy: Greece is…).

It is one of the most important mythological, historical and archaeological sites in all of Greece.

There are extensive excavations on the island, revealing ruins that tell tales of Delos as a holy sanctuary, dating back over a millennium before Greek mythology named it as the birthplace of the Greek gods, Apollo (God of Light) and his twin sister Artemis (Goddess of Hunting).

Ruins of ancient stone huts on Delos date back to the 3rd millennium BC and from 900 BCE and 100 CE, the island was a cult center. Eventually it became a religious pilgrimage for the Ionians after undergoing a number of “purifications” at the command of the city-state of Athens around the 6th century BC.

Along with the ruins on Delos, the tales that go along with this enchanting island are captivating.

The island of Delos, referred to as “the sacred island of Delos,” is where, as Greek mythology tells it, Leto gave birth to Zeus’ twins Artemis and Apollo.

The story goes that because of Hera’s jealousy of Zeus and Leto, she ordered all lands to shun Leto, making it difficult for her to find a place to give birth.

However, Zeus asked Poseidon to find a secret, safe place for Leto to give birth. She ended up on the island of Delos, and, since the island is not connected to the land, she was able to safely give birth to her twins, Artemis and Apollo.

From that moment on, Delos, a small, rocky island, was declared “the most sacred of all islands” (Callimachus, 3rd century BC) in ancient Greek culture and was devoted to Apollo. In fact, it is considered to be ‘bathed in the unique light of Zeus’ son.

Where to stay when visiting Delos?

On Mykonos, just across from the island of Delos, you will find a hotel that was inspired by the legend of the sacred island of light, De.light Boutique Hotel.

This calming and relaxing hotel located in Agios Ioannis Bay, not far from Mykonos town, and offers views of the historic Delos Island in all its glory.

You can escape to the lap of luxury at De.Light Boutique Hotel where the accommodation is both elegant and luxurious, offering a cozy and inviting feeling for guests. The hotel offers an array of amenities, including suites overlooking the sea, a spa, a pool and bar restaurant and lounge, and exceptional gastronomy at its Authentic Restaurant.

(Photo credit: Christos Drazos Photography)