Picturesque countryside, dramatic cliff sides, glorious golden sandy beaches and crystal-clear waters make Zante an irresistible holiday.
If your idea of the perfect holiday involves a beautiful beach, a quite getaway to relax or even somewhere to party the night away, a holiday in Zante (aka Zakynthos), Greece could be the perfect choice for you. The most southerly of the Ionian Islands and the third largest behind Corfu and Kefalonia, Zante ranges from mountainous landscapes in the north to gentle hills and flat countryside in the south. Nicknamed the 'Flower of the Orient' by the Venetians, Zante displays a lush countryside rich with olive groves, lemon trees and bougainvillea. Zante is also renowned for its stunning coastline, as well as for a number of water sport activities - so whether you plan to make a splash or catch some serious rays, you can do it all on your holiday in Zante, Greece!
Who holidays in Zante?
Zante is undoubtedly a beach lover's paradise, inviting holidaymakers to enjoy a lively holiday yet still find a quiet corner to escape the crowds. It is suitable for both families and couples alike and young people are particularly attracted to the Laganas area during the peak summer months.
Green valleys, lush picturesque countryside and golden sandy beaches fringed with crystal clear waters entice holidaymakers to Zante year after year. In fact, the island has been colourfully billed as 'the green island of poetry, song and love', mainly because it was the home of Dionysios Solomos, who wrote the Greek national anthem, 'The hymn to liberty'.
It is however the loggerhead turtles that really take centre stage on Zante, with the island being the most important nesting spot in the Med for them. The best place for spotting these amazing creatures is Laganas Beach and particularly at sundown between July and August.
Zante Town is reminiscent of Venice, with its historic St Mark's Square and Solomos Square lined by reconstructed neo-classical buildings. The picturesque town even curves around a bay, dominated by a Venetian Fortress and the St Dennis Cathedral. In and around the town, holidaymakers will find a range of activities to partake in - from shopping and sightseeing to visiting the local wineries.
The lively resort of Laganas in the South of the island, with its 5 mile sandy beach is known as the place to party on the island while Tsilivi with its fabulous beach of fine sand, just 6 kms north of Zante Town has managed to maintain its traditional village charm whilst still offering a wide range of bars and eateries. Argassi, with the mountains as its backdrop and with a long sand and shingle beach is becoming increasingly popular offering a wide selection of bars, tavernas and restaurants and being the closest resort to Zante Town it is a great place from which to launch shopping trips to the island's capital.
Other must-see attractions include Zante's traditional tavernas, the island's stalactites and blue caves, and a 'ship wreck' sunk in the sand.
Laganas - is located on the south eastern part of the island. It is one of the most beautiful beaches of the island. Laganas Beach is 9 kms in length and is considered to be one of the longest beaches of Zante with a small seaport too.
Vassilikos - and Gerakas . The endangered sea turtle Caretta-Caretta is known to come to the beach at Vassilikos and Gerakas to lay her eggs.
Navagio beach - The wreck, the most beautiful beach on the island. You can reach it from Porto Vromi (at the west) by boat.
- Beautiful beaches
- Picturesque setting
- Stunning coastline
- Historical interest
Local specialities for those taking holidays in Zante include Mandolato (Xante famous nougat), local arts & crafts and locally produced cheese.
Things To Do
Popular activities for those taking holidays in Zante include scuba diving and other watersports.
Great Excursions During Zante Holidays
Beach Day: Get down and party! Games & fun in the sun on one of the best beaches in Zante. On arrival to the funkiest beach on the island St Nicks you have a chance to experience the discounted watersports. Beachside lunch included.
Smugglers Cruise: Cruising to the North of the island to discover the most picturesque view of the island, the famous shipwreck. One of the most photographed sights in Greece. A great day exploring caves and swimming in the crystal clear waters of the Ionian sea whilst achieving that ultimate tan. When visiting Zante this day is a must!
Land Rover Discovery: Get your adrenalin flowing with this great fun packed adventure, known as the Heineken tour as it reaches parts that others don't. Off the beaten track through the lush green forestry, olive groves and vineyards bringing you to villages and beaches that can only be reached by 4 wheel drive. A day of adventure and discovery with Mr Tassos and his knowledgeable, fun loving team.
Keri Kaiki: Zante is the home to the Caretta Caretta loggerhead turtle, who nest on this island of dreams. Heading out of Zante town looking back sugar cube buildings, before heading towards Keri the old fishing village. Whilst on route you can normally spot one of the many turtles in the clear waters. Caves and translucent waters will be awaiting you for a couple of swim stops. A day for all.
Splash Waterpark: A fun day for all at Zante's waterpark with tempting slides and rides to get you in the mood. With the black hole and new boomer bowel along with other slides there is plenty to keep you occupied. Even the young kids have a mini aqua park in the cool waters. Or for those who just want to relax there are plenty of loungers and the lazy river to just take it easy. So all the big kids and the little kids get on down to Splash!
Scuba Diving: After preparation and a talk, put on your suit, pick up your flippers and walk into the crystal clear waters of St Nicks beach with your British speaking one 2 one Padi instructor, for your introduction dive to the underwater world. A photo opportunity can be had whilst underwater to keep as a momentum. You may even want to try an advanced dive which we can arrange for you in resort. Pool demos take place in or around your hotel.
Kefalonia Magic: Across the Ionian waters to our sister island Kefalonia, the home were Captain Corelli's mandolin became one of the greatest movies of all time. An island unspoilt by tourism still having culture at its best. Sit and watch the world go by in the square of Argostoli, whilst sampling its homemade ice-cream, before going up to the viewpoint of Myrtos Bay. Learn of the many Greek myths and legends of this beautiful island , Melissani underground lake being just one of them. A two in one holiday is an opportunity not to be missed.
Olympia: Step back in time & visit the birthplace of the Olympic games, one of the wonders of the ancient world. See where the journey of the Olympic flame begins.
Things To See
Shipwreck at Smugglers Cove: It is certainly Zante's most famous landmark and whether viewing it from the cliff above or from a boat it is a photo opportunity not to be missed.
Platia Solomou: This huge marble-flagstoned main square in Zante Town is the largest in the Ionians and is surrounded by many impressive buildings including the Byzantine museum.
Agios Dionysios Church: Located in Zante Town and dedicated to the island's patron saint the Agios Dionysios Church is decorated with colourful murals and contains a small yet fascinating museum.
The Byzantine Museum of Zante: The Byzantine Museum of Zante is situated in Solomou Square, in Zante town. Here you can admire a rich collection of hagiographies from the Byzantine times to the 19th century, Hellenistic and Byzantine sculpture and statues, and some beautiful icon-stands from the island's churches. The Museum houses, the works of great Zante hagiographers such as Doxaras, Koutouzis, Tzanes, Kandounis and Damaskinos.
The Cultural Centre of Zante and the Library: Another imposing building next to church of Saint Nikolaos on the Mole. It houses the Cultural Centre of Zante and the renowned Public Library. The Library includes a small art gallery, small dolls with local costumes, photographic material and the historical archive of Zante with codices and documents.
Monastery of St George Gremon: It is said that pirates destroyed the monastery in 1553, only to have it re-built in a Venetian style in the 17th century. The lodger, famous for its icon stand and roof, was renovated in 1803. Near the monastery, one can see the ruins of a castle which protected the area from pirate raids.
Keri: A great place from which to admire the sunset and the stupendous view of the sea caves below.
Skinari: Where the famous Blue Caves are located. At the northern tip of Zante, the afternoon sun shines on the sea to create patterns in every conceivable shade of blue on the cave walls.
Olympia: Located on the Greek mainland and the birthplace of the modern Olympic Games and where the Olympic Flame burns. Official guided tour of the archaeological sights including the Temple of Zeus, the Temple of Hera. Visit the Olympia museum & the main village of Olympia.
Boat - The best way to see the island is by boat. There are daily boat tours around the island that visit the many amazing and remote beaches and caves. The main port on the island is in Zante Town where there are eight ferries a day to Killini.
Bus - There are bus connections to many of the beautiful beaches, small towns and villages. However, the easiest way to travel around the island is to rent a car.
Car - Rental cars and Jeeps are available with insurance Olympic Holidays car hire.