Things to do in Zante
The Greek island of Zante (otherwise known as Zakynthos), offers tourists everything from beautiful beaches and a vibrant nightlife, to quiet walking trails and ancient monuments and sites galore. Whether you want to visit this sunshine-soaked island to top up your tan on the beach, enjoy watersports or get stuck into its fascinating history and culture, you won’t be stuck for things to do. Here’s our guide to the most interesting things to do in Zante.
Visit Smugglers’ Cove
This beach is one of the most famous coves in all of Greece, and is one of the best Zante things to do for families. The most popular attraction on the beach is the notable shipwreck, which is known in Greek as ‘Navagio’. It is one of the most iconic sights on the island and all of Greece. The wreck happened over 30 years ago, when poor weather caused the ship to run aground as it tried to escape the Greek Navy, who were chasing it because of contraband cargo. With stunning views, soft powdery sand and gentle azure waters, the whole family will be able to catch some rays, snorkel, swim and build sandcastles together on this beautiful stretch of coastline.
Cool off at the Water Village
If you want to splash out in something a little bigger than the private pool of your Villa Maira Azalea, then it’s worth a visit to the wild Water Village – a thrilling water park with plenty of slides, rides and attractions to keep the entire family entertained and cooled off from the heat of the day. Adrenaline junkies will love the Kamikaze slides, Black Hole and Sinkhole, while those that want a calmer pace will enjoy the lazy river and various sun loungers on offer. There’s plenty of eateries should you start to feel peckish, and for toddlers there’s a soft play area.
Dance the night away in Kalamaki
In the summer months, Kalamaki is the place to be if you feel like sampling Zante’s vibrant nightlife. Here you’ll find plenty of clubs, bars, restaurants and live music, with a more laid-back vibe. Most tavernas are open until the little hours, which should satisfy night owls! From Irish Pubs to traditional Greek fare and Italian food, there’s something for every taste. There’s even a sports bar if you don’t want to miss out on the football action while on holiday. Just a five minute taxi ride away is the Laganas Strip, where you’ll find plenty of festivals, clubs and international artists playing sets in clubs. One of the best things to do in Zante Town itself is to sample the vibrant nightlife, so if you’ve come to the island to dance the night away, you’ll be spoiled for choice!
Go turtle-spotting at the marine park
Just off of Zante’s south coast is Marathonissi Island, (otherwise known Turtle Island) because of the turtle and wildlife conservation that happens there. If you are interested in eco-tourism and nature, this is one of the best things to do in Zante. Originally opening in 1999, the island is home to the endangered sea turtle Caretta, as well as loggerhead turtles. In summer, the turtles lay their eggs, with up to as many as 1,300 hatching every season. Tourists can visit the island, but there are strict rules in terms of visiting times and what is allowed on the beaches in order to preserve the turtles’ natural habitat. Keep your eyes peeled and your camera ready though, as you’ll be sure to spot one.
Visit the famous Blue Grotto
The Blue Grotto is one of the most famous attractions and makes a fascinating day out for all ages. Located in the north of the island in the Skinari region, this set of caves was discovered in 1897 by Antonio Komouto, and have formed as a result of natural erosion by the sea, creating vast and enchanting chambers that are waiting to be explored. The Blue Grotto’s name comes from the vibrant blue colour of the water, which is caused by light reflection. There are many tours that explore the area by boat, which you can catch at Agios Nikolas port. Comfortable shoes are important, as the cave system has many steps. Some boats have glass floorings, so that you can see plenty of marine life as you pass through the caves.
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