4 Reasons Zakynthos Should Be Your Next Holiday Destination

One of the most beautiful islands of the Ionian Sea archipelago, the Greek island of Zakynthos should definitely be the next item on your travel agenda. We give you 4 reasons why.

The Greek island of Zakynthos offers breathtaking beaches, fun outdoor activities and amazing food!

As you can’t possibly do and see all of them, we have selected four main points you absolutely shouldn’t miss once you visit this island paradise.

1. Navagio (“Shipwreck”) Beach

Navagio beach in greece island Zakynthos

Although the island boasts many breathtaking beaches and lagoons, Navagio has no competition whatsoever, having been listed among the ten most beautiful beaches in the world.

Ivory sand and limestone cliffs surrounding it give the water a heavenly turquoise shade, the kind you might only find in the Caribbean or some equally exotic destination.

The location of the beach makes it all the more appealing, because it can only be accessed by boat, which means that it is very intimate and virtually intact.

Tourist agencies on the island organize daily trips, which cost around 25€ (app. 33$). They include a bus ride to the port, and after a 20-minute boat ride, you’re swimming in the open sea of the Shipwreck Beach.

Why the peculiar name? In the early eighties, a big ship carrying cigarettes, alcohol and even some drugs (!) was run aground to this beach by a sea storm. The captain and his crew quickly fled the scene, whereas the Zakynthos people looted what was left of the counterfeit merchandise.

The ship remains on the beach to this day, even though today it is nothing more than a rusty wreck. Be as it may, the story gives the beach a piraty flare, which tourists find very appealing.

Extra tip: If you would like to take pictures, be sure to take a waterproof plastic zipper bag with you, so you could put your camera inside it and swim to shore. The boats do not take you to shore directly, and you will need to swim to get to the beach itself.

2. Turtle-Spotting


The next tourist attraction of Zakynthos are its turtles, which the people are very proud of. So proud that they decided to earn as much money as possible on their account: they put them on everything: magnets, bags, towels, you name it!

The turtles can be seen pretty much all around the island, but mostly on the so-called Turtle Island, or Marathonissi, known for its turtle-like shape.

This is a paradise-like island filled with lagoons and caves, ideal for snorkeling and relaxation. The turtles are a common sight in this area, so you will find a turtle-spotting boat on almost every beach.

The one-hour deal in a glass-bottomed boat will cost you around 15€ (app. 20$), and it is well worth it! What’s more, it’s money-back guarantee if you do not spot any turtles during the trip (which can happen, but very rarely).

Extra tip: If you are not so much of a turtle person and do not want to give money to see one, you still can hope to catch a glimpse of these adorable creatures! If you rent a pedal boat for the day, just look around for turtle-spotting boats and listen for people screaming and flashing cameras.

Then, nonchalantly pedal your way towards the same spot where the turtle was seen and who knows – you might even get to swim with it!

3. Clubbing in Laganas

If you are looking for a calm and relaxing holiday destination with an after-midnight twist, then Zakynthos is the island for you! The southern city of Laganas is the (in)famous party capital of the island.

A fun-in-the-sun kind of place by day, Laganas turns into the hottest, wildest part of the island by night. PG-18 advised!

The main street is filled with clubs and pre-party lounge bars, each offering happy hours, discounts, free shots, all for your pleasure! After midnight techno and house beats fill the air, and young people of all nationalities swarm to the street hoping to dance the night away.

To name a few clubs you shouldn’t miss, there are “Rescue”, known for its UV paint parties, “Sabotage”, for those wanting a classier feel, and for shisha lovers there is “Medousa”. The parties start around 1-1.30am and last well into the morning hours. The bravest clubbers will be seen to party until 9am.

Extra tip: Should you ever feel hungry during your crazy night of partying, you can get everything from pizza to frozen yoghurt on this street. There is even a McDonald’s for the fussy eaters. 

4. Zakynthos Food Specialties


Yes, we all come to the seaside to tan, swim in the sea, and party when the sun goes down. However, after an exhausting day in the hot Greek sun, your stomach will crave a solid meal.

That’s why the taverns are there on every corner to offer you anything your heart desires. Our recommendation is to stay away from the pizzas, pastas and the usual, and go for something more exotic.

The Zakynthos signature dish is the stuffed rabbit or the spetsofai, which is worth trying when on the island.

The taste is quite peculiar, as the rabbit meat is slightly more rich than the chicken or beef we’re used to eating at home. It is served with rice and/or french fries.

Other than that, we suggest starting your meal off with a Greek salad (cliché for a reason), and some home-made bread. Today usually all the taverns bake their own bread, which is served hot and tastes heavenly.

Accompany the starter with a bottle of semi-dry island wine, which for me was the discovery of the year! If you can choose, opt for pineapple or peach aromas. Yamas! (“Cheers” in Greek)

For the main dish, you cannot go wrong with the sea bass, or in Greek tsipoura, a type of fish that the Zakynthos people love to prepare, and which they always have a fresh stock of.

When it comes to dessert, Zakynthos has been under the strong influence of the Turks, and that is why their sweets remind of the Orient.

Khadaif, baklavas, even the frigania – all are made of the peculiar type of sweet dough, topped with a sugary syrup. All of these desserts are best when shared, as they are very sweet.

Do we need to go on? We could, but we have already fallen in love with Zakynthos and, no doubt, so have you.

Cover photo: toptravellists.net


About the author


I am a 21-year-old Political Science student with a passion for languages, the media and psychology. In my future career, I wish to help others communicate better and lead more fulfilling lives, and what better way to start than journalism.

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