Things To Do In Zakynthos
The Ionian Islands are an impressive artistic heaven encompassed by blue waters and velvety smooth sands. The unspoiled magnificence is simply overwhelming. Zakynthos is the biggest of the Ionian Islands and it’s blessed with an abundance of produce such as olive oil, citrus, and grapes. Music is a colossal part of the society and you can witness a concert or celebration practically every night where you'll be enamored by the sight and quality of Zakynthos' world class entertainers.
When To Go:
Anytime is an ideal opportunity to visit Zakynthos as massive amounts of sun and warm temperature are ensured throughout the year. However, it can be a bit overcast in winter with a tolerable amount of downpour and temperatures can go below 20°C in April, the coldest temperature you can expect in summer.
Summers are hot with temperatures getting as high as 30°c in the month of August. There are some downpours and large amounts of humidity throughout the year. Also, expect a few cold winds, called Melternia, that originate from the north and blow throughout the evening. Despite the substantial downpour, it is safe to drive along the well-paved roads and you can visit the entirety of the city without any issues.
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These are the prominent attractions to visit and the top things to do while in the city of Zakynthos:
Marathonissi (Turtle Island)
The Marathonissi (Turtle Island) on Laganas beach can be accessed for 20 euro per person and you can take part in a three-hour tour by boat. The trip includes a tour of the Bay of Laganas, where you will get to see the turtles. It is a great excitement to see the turtles coming out of the water with their cute noses sticking out a few meters from up close. You can continue the excursion along the southwest coast to see the caves of Keri. Here, you can bathe in its water paradise and then come back again to Turtle Island where you first stopped. The water is beautiful and along the beach there are wood protections positioned by the conservationist-volunteers of the island around the eggs laid by the huge turtles. A label indicates the date on which they were laid, and it is forbidden to walk in that area for obvious reasons.
This is an island filled with pristine white sand and blue-tinged crystal clear water. The scenery is gorgeous with a bar floating on the water and some boats moored on its coast. The only flaw is that you can get there only by boat and if you are not alone the price of the tour is quite high. You can stay on the beach for more than an hour and admire its transparent water and its amazing blue sky on the horizon. It is one of those places in Zakynthos that are worth seeing and coming back to and maybe, with a bit of luck, you will see some turtles lay eggs or a turtle egg hatch.
The lagoon portion would not look stunning if it were not for the borders of Kalamaki which is the perfect place to meet the turtles, without any water sports to disturb them. To a certain point, it is a succession of sun beds and umbrellas on the beach which are also offered for free by some stores in exchange for a drink purchase. On this island, you can soak up the sun until it disappears. You will love the amenities as you settle on the border -beach where you can use the services of the bar, kitchen and bed, and free Wi-Fi or simply choose to walk along the shores of the Kalamaki.
If you take into account the other beaches of the island of Zakynthos, the beach of Laganas is the most typical. But it is still lovely because the water is still clear and warm. Along the shore, there are many places that offer sun beds and beach chairs for free to those who consume in bars or the beds can be purchased for only 3 Euros. Don’t miss a visit to Cameo beach, a private island that is located in front of Laganas Beach and is easily accessible by scooter. There are numerous bars to drink at very low prices and two nightclubs with free entry. There are also many typical restaurants where you can taste the exquisite Greek dishes. It is common to see the continuously passing waiters with beautiful fruit salads to be consumed under an umbrella. A few meters from the shoreline are the line of shops making Laganas Beach the most touristy and commercial center of Zakynthos.
Blue Caves (Agios Nikolaos)
You can see the Blue Caves along the beach of the wreck (Navagio) and during a tour of the island. The sea caves are accessible only by boat and you can cruise on the crystal clear water and enters in the crevices between the rocks. You can see the bottom of the ocean clearly although it’s very deep. It is very impressive, even if the tour is pretty fast. You will pass into one of the caves and walk the perimeter and be left with 20 minutes to swim. The place is beautiful and the tour is cheap, so it is a must to see it while you’re on the island of Zakynthos.
It is truly a marvel, especially for lovers of snorkeling. If you go with the boats that travel only to Navagios, you can stay in the caves for 20 minutes or more. Although it is not long, it is better than nothing. Enter into one of the caves with the boat and you will find water with a blue color that is almost surreal. You can enter the cave to swim and feel immersed in this fantastic blue; it is truly an unforgettable experience while on a tour of Zakynthos.
Navagio Beach (Shipwreck Beach)
The Navagio Beach (Shipwreck Beach) is accessible by boat from Porto Vromi. If you plan to visit, decide to do so when the air is calm otherwise you will encounter rough seas and it is definitely not recommended to go in such circumstances. Be very careful if you want to take a bath. You do not wish to dive too far, because water that looks enchantingly blue can be very dangerous. In the presence of rough seas and strong waves, you may get pulled under the sea and no one will find you. The Navagio is an experience that will remain in your heart. You cannot come to Zakynthos and skip the most famous beach in the world.
For those who love pure nature, this is the right choice because the place is isolated from the urban chaos. Visit this paradise at least once in your life. Relaxation, recreation and swimming in crystal clear water are a few of the best rewards you can get from the Navagio Beach. The sea is beautiful, and there are caves nearby where you can swim. The reef is quite deep (around five meters), but there are many fish and corals to discover. It’s also true that the water is a bit milky because of the presence of the limestone making the visibility a bit reduced, but still it’s a wonderful complex and a visit is highly suggested.
Porto Limnionas Beach
The Porto Limnionas Beach is a lovely place where the sunbeds are cheap and with fantastic views of the ocean. It has frigid water, but it's worth diving because there are lots to see even with masks and fins. Equally good is the restaurant located at the top. It is a perfect place to spend the best beach vacation with your family. It is one of the most beautiful landscapes you will admire in Zakynthos; a small strip of sea that creeps into the rock and drawing a picturesque bay between the rocks. One will not be pampered while on tour, but it is a journey that is very adventurous and includes is a steep winding road that is also very beautiful.
It can be accessed by passing the landscape from Agios Leon -which gradually becomes bleaker- and counting the numerous groves of pine (which are now degraded or dead, but giving a distinctive profile to the lunar sea view). Finally, you will arrive at a parking lot with a restaurant and bar overlooking the sea. Take the stairs that have been cut into the rock down to the beach. There are also organized tours and terraces with a few straw umbrellas or cliffs where you can settle down on the tiny beach between the rocks. For lovers of diving it is a paradise because the rocks overlooking the sea offer many opportunities to jump from different heights, and the sea is deep enough to avoid disappointment. Even if you are not a diver, this is the ultimate paradise in Zakynthos.
You have to go and explore Keri Beach, but avoid the costly tourist boats. Try to rent a fisherman’s boat that is fit for 4- 6 people at the maximum price of 65 Euro for three hours from the port of Keri. Along the coast to the right, you will run into caves, coves and bays that are almost untouched by mass tourism and colors so intense that you can hardly forget. Just drop by the nearby island of turtles (Marathonissi) and you can do it very well in an hour. On the island, there is a floating bar where you can order cocktail drinks and snacks.
After a few minutes by boat to reach the Keri Beach the view becomes very impressive with its deep blue water. As the boat enters the caves, you will admire the electric blue that comes from the bottom as if there was a lighted lamp; it is very beautiful to see. The island offers amazing places such as a range of restaurants and excellent bars to have lunch or a coffee (if you do not have too high of expectations).
The appointment with the sunset is best done at the Keri Lighthouse, an address where the romantics admire the sun that disappears behind the spectacular cones while the rock overhangs a few meters away from the ocean. It is one of the most spectacular places to see in Zakynthos. There is a small terrace here to observe all its surrounding vistas and impressions.
Most tourists come here only to take pictures of the sunset and the idyllic scenes. They also visit to see the local tavern and stay longer because of the coffee, cookies, and a glass of water plus the breathtaking views of the cliffs. Seeing the sunset, sipping tea while sitting on hay bales, smelling the undergrowth and the melody of the wind and crashing waves is priceless. It is advisable to go to the lighthouse around 7:00 pm so you can admire the view as the sun sets. The cliffs overlooking an amazing crystalline sea and the sun on the horizon is a sight not to be missed while on this part of Zakynthos.
Xygia Sulphur Beach
The Xygia Sulphur Beach can be visited in the late afternoon when there are very few people and the site becomes quiet. The beach has pebbles, crystal clear water, umbrellas and chairs for a fee (7 euro per set). The only downside might be the slight sulfurous smell that hits as you get off on the beach. There is a lovely cave on the left and a cute delivery system from the bar (located on the cliff) to the beach below with pulley operated system with an old bicycle. Recommend is stopping to take freshly mixed drinks at the bar and sit overlooking the panorama while you’re staying on the island.
This small beach is very special and truly remarkable because the color of the water is deep blue, but unlike the other beaches that you can find here in Zakynthos, it is not transparent. You can even see all of the sulfur particles that float and also smell the scent in the air that gets very intense. On the rock to the right, you can find two caves and all the tiny details of the island. The water is freezing, especially on the surface. It is also advisable to visit early in the morning when there are still lots and lots of people.
The Kalamaki Beach is a beautiful site and crystal clear sea. A Wi-Fi connection can be obtained from the taverns in the bar that overlook the beach where taking a squeezed orange juice gives you the opportunity to take the umbrella and two chairs all day. Aside from the clear sea, you can also focus on the smooth rocks that are present between the beach and the sea. While it is safe to say that it is not the best for those with small children because they can slip and get hurt, for the rest, it is a fabulous beach with an unforgettable sunset.
Banana Beach (Vasilikos)
The Banana Beach in Vasilikos is definitely worth visiting and unlike the other crowded beaches in Zakynthos; you can spend the whole day here in peace. They provide an umbrella and 2 beds for 6 Euros. There is bar service near the beach. It is a Tiki bar in very low water, where you can also do many water sports and enjoy the ample free parking. It has clear water and shallow pools that are located several meters from the shore, it is also suitable for non-swimmers.
Banana Beach is well-equipped with everything the tourist needs at a very low price. The beach also has a green lawn with relaxing hammocks, a bar and an opportunity to practice many water activities. Try out many things - from canoeing, to pedal boats, to the giant inflatable bananas where more people are linked to a small boat that will pull you into the water at full speed or parasail and enjoy the whole panorama of the sea.
For most visitors who have seen and felt its beauty, Zakynthos can be defined as paradise where you can have the pleasure of spending the best summer holiday. It is excellent for couples, ideal for families, and groups of adventurous friends who share the same passion of loving a quiet oasis on a busy island. Sand, caves, or rocky cliffs complement its wonderful sea that shifts colors from clear to bright turquoise. If you want to spend a relaxing holiday on the Ionian islands with peace and adventure, you must not miss Zakynthos for it offers everything at a fair price.
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