With their magnificent fusion of sunlight, stone, and sparking aqua sea, the Cyclades are the islands that launched a thousand trips. Set in the heart of the Grecian Mediterranean, these nearly 2,000 islands and islets are scattered like a ring (Cyclades is the Greek word for "circling ones") around the sacred isle of Delos, birthplace of the god Apollo. All the top spots—Santorini, Naxos, Paros, Mykonos, Tinos, and Folegandros—are beloved for their postcard-perfect olive groves, stark whitewashed cubist houses, and bays of lapis lazuli. Gateways to this Aegean archipelago include the airports on Mykonos and Santorini and the harbors of Paros and Naxos.
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