Milos is an amazing island to visit. The whitewashed towns and friendly locals are inviting tourists from all over the world. To fully explore you will need a rental car. If you are unsure what you can expect from driving in Milos you are at the right place.
We will help you go over the things you should know before you are driving in Milos. We’ll start with the basic driving rules on Milos then go over the tips we’ve gathered from our own experience.
After reading this guide you’ll know better if driving on the island is for you or you want to avoid it.
Do you need to rent a car in Milos?
If you want to explore the island fully then we highly recommend renting a car. Milos is surprisingly big and the public transport system is pretty lacking.
Surely you can get around via taxi but the costs can rack up very quickly. This is why we think that renting a car in Milos is your best option when you visit the island. You can pick the car up right at the airport and be on your way to your hotel in no time.
Many people like to opt for hiking near their hotel and while it’s a great option you can’t really explore the whole of Milos this way. It’s simply too big for exploring on foot. Plus we’ve found that the best beaches are always at the end of a dirt road.
Full Guide to Driving in Milos
Let’s jump into our full guide to driving in Milos and let’s start at the beginning. We’ll go over the rules of the road. Although this is the same throughout Greece, this might be your first trip to the country.
Milos Driving Rules
The people in Milos drive on the right-hand side of the road. This is the standard in most places around the world but if you come from a left-hand driving country you might need a minute or two to accommodate.
Speed limits are 50 km/h (31 mph) in the city and 110 km/h (68 mph) outside of cities. Of course, these are the official Greek numbers. In reality, most places in Milos have 80-90 km/h limits or even less. The winding roads and dirt roads will definitely not allow such high speeds.
You must always wear your seatbelts when driving in Milos. Also, your phone can’t be in your hands. If you want to speak with someone over the phone you must use the car mode. Similarly, if you want to set a new route on your phone or check something pull off the road and stop. Only after you are stopped you can start using your phone.
There is also no drinking and driving in Greece. We suggest you don’t try to game the system as you will be looking at a hefty fine if the policemen test you.
The legal driving age is 18 years but most car rental companies want you to be 21-23. You will need an EU or International Driving license in order to drive in Milos.
Roads in Milos
There are no highways in Milos. In fact, there aren’t even many roads that comfortably fit two cars. There are a few main roads that are wide enough and these are very pleasant to drive on. They are asphalt and have two lanes.
However, once you turn off from the few main roads you can’t know what to expect. Sometimes it will be a tiny asphalt road that can barely fit one car. More often than not it will be a dirt road. Milos has miles upon miles of dirt roads.
Mountain passes, minor roads between towns, and roads leading to beaches. It’s all dirt roads. While we’ve found that lately Greek islands are doing well on building as many asphalt roads as possible, Milos seems to reject this idea.
Luckily these dirt roads are often wider than their asphalt counterparts. Once you get used to driving on dirt it’s not that bad actually. It might seem scary at first, especially your first unpaved mountain pass but it’s totally doable.
Traffic in Milos
Traffic in Milos is very sparse. You’ll have a relaxing time while driving around the island as you probably won’t meet that many cars. When you do meet another car, chances are that it’s a rental car just like yours.
Even the locals seem more laid back on Milos than in many other Greek islands. They take it slow and use their indicators. Not sure if it’s the unpaved roads or the relaxing vibe of the whole island but we’ve found some of the best Greek drivers in Milos.
When you visit during the off-season you can drive long distances without meeting any other car. It’s a uniquely fun experience.
How long does it take to drive around Milos?
It takes around one hour to drive from one end to the other in Milos. This puts means that the island is in the middle of the pack when it comes to the size of Greek islands.
This also means that you can cover a lot of distance when you are driving in Milos. You will be able to visit all the small villages and beautiful beaches via a short drive.
The total road distance from one end to the other is around 40 kilometers or 25 miles.
Is driving in Milos difficult?
We rate driving in Milos easy-moderate. The traffic is low and the roads are not that demanding. However, the number of unpaved surfaces might put inexperienced drivers out of their comfort zone.
There are some very difficult unpaved mountain passes so make sure that you plan ahead before you follow the GPS without thinking. It’s best to check the satellite images before you decide to take on a mountain road in Milos.
Tips for renting a car in Milos
You are now ready to decide whether you want to rent a car in Milos or not. The driving is quite relaxing but there are some difficult sections. It’s totally worth exploring with a car though as you can stumble upon some awesome beaches.
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What kind of a car to rent in Milos?
The roads are pretty narrow at most places in Milos so we are conflicted when we need to recommend a car. We are conflicted because we are leaning towards the economy category as those cars are small and nimble.
They are a perfect fit for these narrow roads. Except most roads are also unpaved. Due to this fact, you will be better off with a 4×4 or an SUV. Especially if you want to travel through the more hilly parts of the island.
So if you feel like you are experienced and you can pull away on a hilly dirt road from a complete stop then go for the economy category. If you are unsure bout your dirt driving capabilities then stick to a 4×4.
Most cars are manual transmission but you can find a very limited stock of automatic transmission cars on the island. If you want to book a car with an automatic transmission then you need to book in advance.
Other useful tips for renting
- Check if the AC works
- Photograph the bodywork damages before you get in
- Get the highest insurance – you will need it due to small rocks on the side of the road
- We don’t recommend scooter rental due to dirt roads
Driving in Milos FAQ
Driving is easy to moderate in Milos. There are some demanding dirt roads that pass through mountains but it’s mostly relaxing roads. Most of them are unpaved though.
Not really. The roads are mostly dirt with only the main road being asphalt. As dirt roads, they are good quality but they are still dirt roads.
Driving from one end to the other takes around 1 hour.