Zakynthos is known for its breathtaking scenery, its practically untouched nature with its mountains and its many dream beaches, such as Laganas beach, which offers a very developed nightlife. But when we imagine the beaches of Zakynthos, the image of the famous Navagio beach immediately comes to mind: this beautiful white sand beach, only accessible by boat, surrounded by impressive cliffs and unreal blue water. A shipwreck lies on the sand, which has given the place the name "Shipwreck Beach". The "Blue Caves", which are large natural arches created by erosion, are also part of the beauty of the atoll.
The island is also famous for being home to giant turtles, the Caretta Caretta, which have been coming to lay their eggs for millennia on some of the island's beaches. These turtles are protected by the government. The town of Zakynthos is one of the most popular seaside resorts on the island. Numerous squares, as well as cafes and taverns make the capital a lively city.
Introduction to paddle offered*
8 days/7 nights
• Electric bike or Scooter included
• We offer you an introduction to paddle*
Day 1 : ZAKYNTHOS, CAPITAL OF ZAKYNTHOS ISLAND
Your arrival day
Installation at your hotel and free discovery of the city of Zakynthos.
Things to do : the Dionysos Solomos square named after the composer of the Ode to Freedom. In a mansion with arcades pointing towards the sea on Solomos Square, the Byzantine Museum is a repository of Byzantine and post-Byzantine religious art from all over the island.
But the museum also possesses paintings, ornaments, crucifixes and many other liturgical objects from the 15th to the 17th century. The Byzantine Museum houses a model of what Zakynthos was like before the 1953 earthquake.
Agios Markos Square with its pastel-colored facades is very lively in the evenings.
Bokali the Strani Hill and its Venetian fortress called "kastro". From the top, you can enjoy a breathtaking view of the city of Zakynthos. At a short distance from the top of the hill is the mansion of Solomo. Romas Mansion, this magnificent mansion was built in the 1660's and is one of the few historical buildings not destroyed by the 1953 earthquake. The relics of Saint Dionysios, the island's patron saint, are kept in the Agios Dyoniso Church located on the port of the town of Zakynthos where they have been since 1717. The museum of the church presents four works of the eminent 18th century painter Nikolaos Koutouzis
Northeast of Zakynthos is a cove surrounded by imposing white limestone cliffs, the famous Navagio or Shipwreck Beach. Some people say that it is the most beautiful beach in the world and we are not far from thinking that they are right. There are two ways to see Navagio beach, either from the sea or from the top of the cliffs. There is no road leading directly to the sand, so to swim in the water and see the wreck up close you will have to take a boat trip. On the white sandy beach are the rusty remains of the MV Panagiotis, a container ship that ran aground in 1980.
The small port of Skinari, just north of Zakynthos, is the starting point for excursions to the blue caves accessible only by sea. In just a few minutes you will float through a magnificent complex of limestone sea caves and natural arches. You will be allowed to jump for a swim and don't worry about your skin taking on a ghostly hue below the surface.
Just north of Zakynthos is the Askosune Stone Park, an attraction that brings together in one place a wildlife sanctuary, a zoo, a farm (where you can engage in certain rural activities such as harvesting olives or milking a cow), a forest reserve and an archaeological site.
The park owes its name to the profusion of stone structures that surround it, from cobblestones to dry stone walls, stone stables and remarkable cisterns carved into the cliffs dating back six centuries.
Kalamaki beach is one of the few beaches we will mention in the Greek National Marine Park. Kalamaki is located in the bay of Laganas and could be the best beach on the island. The coastline is protected, which keeps the tourist development discreet and away from the beach. And as you are in a national park, the beach is carefully maintained.
In the villages of the south coast like Limni Keriou, Agios Sostis and Laganas, you can book a boat trip along the jagged coast at the extreme south of the island. The white cliffs rise up to 300 meters and at their base are small sea caves and natural arches. The caves of Keri are part of the stages of the turtle watching excursions in Marathonisi.
Marathonisi Island is a small island in Laganas Bay, south of Zakythos and is often called Turtle Island because it is a hatching place for loggerhead turtles. For this reason, Marathonisi is uninhabited and visitors must clean the sandy beach in summer and before sunset to allow the turtles to land to lay their eggs.
The clarity of the water means that you will have a good chance to see one or two.
Sitting on the top of Mount Skopos in the southeast of Zakynthos, the Panagia Skopiotissa Monastery is a challenging climb, but worth the trip for its 15th-century church and exhilarating scenery. The walls of the church are frescoed and an icon of the Virgin Mary was produced in Constantinople and brought to Zakynthos after it was taken by the Ottoman Empire. On the floor of the church you cannot help but notice the two-headed eagle, the emblem of the Byzantine Empire.
Gerakas beach is the southernmost beach of Zakynthos and also one of the most beautiful, it has a curve of golden sand facing west bathed by turquoise waters. If you get up before dawn, you can see hundreds of baby turtles moving towards the water from the beach.
Zakynthos is popular for its olive oil and olive press and the free Aristeonce museum located a few kilometers from the airport will tell you all you need to know. The tour begins in the 1700s, with a collection of antique tools such as a wooden press and millstones that were once operated by animals. You will be able to compare them to the ultra-modern factory with its stainless steel tanks and centrifuge. Along the way, your guide will explain some facts about olive oil and show you the difference between virgin and extra virgin olive oil. During the tasting, there is homemade bread to dip in Aristeon's oil and a factory store that sells olive oil soap and garlic and lemon infused oils.
On the west coast and by a newly traced road from the village of Agios Leon, the beach of Porto Limnionas, bounded by high white cliffs carved with caves, winds its way along the west coast. You will find it hard to resist bathing in the sparkling, crystal clear water and walking on the small beach at the northern end.
Just a stone's throw from Navagio is the Monastery of Anafonitriaun dating from the Byzantine period of the island, consecrated in the mid 15th century, it was unharmed in the 1953 earthquake. Saint Dionysios, the patron saint of Zakynthos, resided here at the end of his life in the 1500s. The monastery has a picturesque stone tower, originally built to defend the complex but later transformed into a campanile. The church is decorated with an amazing hagiography, although slightly worn out by time.
The Kambi Cross is located on Schiza Mountain in the village of Kambi.
This Cross is erected on a promontory more than three hundred and fifty meters above sea level and is a living symbol to commemorate those who died during the Civil War and the Second World War. The view is worth the detour and offers a breathtaking view of the Ionian Sea.
Banana Beach is the longest beach in Zakynthos is also one of the most attractive for its soft, golden sand and shallow transparent sea.
Second Marine National Park of Greece after the one created in Alonissos, the one of Zakynthos aims at protecting the Caouanne sea turtles. A total of 650,000 visitors come to visit this national park every year. It is the most important egg-laying site for loggerhead turtles in the Mediterranean Sea with more than 500 females coming to lay their eggs on the beaches of the south of the island (1300 nests from April to October) depositing their eggs about 40 centimeters under the sand. Near the extreme south of Zakynthos, the Keri lighthouse is located at the top of a 300 meter cliff. There is a restaurant at the top and from its terrace you will have a very romantic view of the deep blue of the Ionian Sea, the cliffs and the outcrops at their base. And as the terrace points west, the sunsets are magical. If you have a strong stomach, the restaurant also has a small overhanging skywalk. But if you prefer to enjoy the view without paying, you can continue your journey to another point of view to write yourself a new story.
Accommodation in Vathy
Day 2 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 : NORTH OF THE ISLAND
Spice up your stay
Prices per person from :
- Diving day : 115€
- Paddle SUP : 75€
- Sailing day: 220€
- Day of biking and kayaking at sea: 115€
- Visit of an olive oil mill: 10€
See details in Activities & Sailing section
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Prices include :
7 nights in a room for 2 persons
Accommodation hotel 2* or 3* category daily breakfasts included. To better adapt your breakfasts, remember to specify any food allergy or special diet when you make your reservation.
E-bike or Scooter included days 3 - 4 - 5 - 6
Accommodation hotel 4* or 5* category with extra charge, depending on availability, please contact us
Possibility to book a single room, on request with extra charge
Prices do not include :
Lunches and dinners
Anything not indicated in "Prices included".
Options and extras
single room supplement low season, mid season, high season and transfer to Athens airport - Piraeus or to the airport on request
A complete travel file will be given to you before departure, including a roadbook to print out with a detailed map of the island, suggestions for visits, a list of accommodations and vouchers. As there is no guide for this trip, the paper roadbook offers you discoveries, it is useful for "anticipatory" reading to prepare your next day's stopover. It allows you to get an overall idea of the itinerary and to identify the different possible variants: detours to particular points of interest (monasteries, viewpoints, beaches or creeks, etc) which often lengthen the itinerary, or on the contrary, identify possible shortcuts.
Your bike :
E-Bike Esperia E250D K20 or equivalent
⦁ Aluminum frame
⦁ 3 power levels of electronic support
⦁ 6 Speeds
⦁ 26 inch wheels
⦁ Autonomy 50Km
Your scooter :
Piaggio Liberty 125/150cc or equivalent.
For higher categories, please contact us.
Road assistance on Zakynthos Island only.
To obtain your scooter, the driver(s) must :
- Be over 20 years old.
- Valid identification.
- Valid driving license (motorcycle license with power limit).
In case you do not have a driving license, a Symphony 50cc scooter will be at your disposal (the power of this type of scooter is sufficient for your stay).
Your stay is suitable for swimming, during the stage or at the end of the day. It would be a pity not to take advantage of it. However, we would like to emphasize that you are the sole judge of whether or not a swim is appropriate; you are therefore responsible for your own safety.
SOUTH OF THE ISLAND
For 3, 4, 5, 6 vacation days or more , our team of consultants is at your disposal to help you create your customized trip to the Ionian Islands.
Entrust us with your dreams and ideas. It will be our pleasure to use our knowledge of the country to create a 100% personalized itinerary for you.
EAST OF THE ISLAND
*Valid for 1 person for stays in Kefalonia only from 2 persons including a minimum of 5 nights. Activities cannot be cumulated with combined stays in different islands
Day 8 : BREAKFAST AND END OF STAY