Complete Travel Guide Zakynthos Greece From a Local

by: Dionisis Vitsos

March 2023

Dionisis Vitsos
Cameo Island - Dennys Inn Zakynthos
Dennys Inn Hotel Kalamaki Zakynthos - Cameo Island

Fear not, your Complete Travel Guide to Zakynthos, Greece, From a Local Zakynthian, is here.

You won’t need any further reading because I will cover everything worth exploring on my beautiful island, Zakynthos.

Zakynthos, also known as Zante Island, is a picturesque and captivating small island located in the Ionian Sea of western Greece. It’s no surprise that this island has quickly become one of the fastest-growing travel destinations in the country, given its outstanding accommodation options, fantastic restaurants, welcoming locals, and some of the best beaches in Greece.

Zakynthos remains one of our favorite islands to visit. Zante island, divides itself into 4 different sections. The sandy-south, the rocky-north, the bumpy-west and the civil-east.

We have the south side of Zakynthos island includes all the golden sandy beaches, such as the famous Kalamaki Beach, Banana Beach, Porto Azzuro, and many more. With water sports, pool parties, amazing restaurants, and organized beaches, the southern side of the island is the most organized part of Zakynthos.

The north side of Zakynthos, and its cliff-strewn coastlines, boasts breathtaking white sand beaches tucked away in secluded coves and sheltered by dramatic skyscraper cliffs, along with one of the most famous beaches in the world, Navagio Beach.

Of course, the west side of Zakynthos as rugged, as it remains largely undeveloped. This presents a unique opportunity to rent a 4×4 and venture through the island, but be prepared for a bumpy ride! Discover monasteries, quaint villages, secluded beaches, renowned vineyards, and rocky terrain – an adventure that is definitely worth taking!

Finally, the east side of Zakynthos includes Zante Town, which is the main port and hub of activity on Zakynthos Island. However, the eastern coast is also home to several developed beach towns that span out on both sides of the capital.

If you’re in search of a perfect beach holiday, Zakynthos is one of the best options in Greece. However, don’t be fooled into thinking that beaches are all that Zante has to offer.

In this Complete Travel Guide to Zakynthos Greece From a Local, we’re going to provide you with all the essential information you need to know before traveling to this fascinating Greek island. Discover the best beaches in Zakynthos, top-rated accommodation options, delicious restaurants, friendly locals, and a host of exciting activities that will make your trip to Zakynthos unforgettable.

👉 Wondering where to go for Snorkeling? Check out our list of the Top 10 Best Snorkeling Spots In Zakynthos You Won’t Want To Miss.

About Zakynthos Greece

Dennys Inn Hotel Kalamaki Zante
Zakynthos Island - Dennys Inn Hotel

During the season, which sees as many as 2.9 million travelers visit Zakynthos and the other Ionian islands, the island’s population of around 40,000 swells. The charming seaside city of Zante town serves as the capital, offering plenty of restaurants, bars, and historical sites for visitors to explore.

It’s worth noting that this port city is likely to be bustling in the high season. For a Complete Travel Guide to Zakynthos Greece From a Local, including information on popular attractions like Navagio Beach, be sure to check out our website.

Where is Zakynthos?

Zakynthos Island - Denny's Inn Hotel
Zakynthos Island source: https://www.goatsontheroad.com/zakynthos-greece-travel-guide/

Zakynthos, one of the most popular Greek islands, is situated in the southernmost part of the Ionian island group, about 20 kilometers west of the Greek mainland and 249 kilometers from Athens. Kefalonia, another famous island, is located 50 kilometers north of Zakynthos.

Additionally, there are several small islets surrounding Zakynthos, including Marathonisi and Kalonisi to the south, which are worth exploring during your visit to the island.

How Big is Zakynthos?

Zakynthos, also known as Zante, is a beautiful island  in the Ionian Sea, about 20 kilometers west of mainland Greece and 249 kilometers from Athens. 

With an area of just over 400 square kilometers, the island is 40 kilometers long and 20 kilometers wide. The highest point on the island is Vrachionas Mountain, which stands at 758 meters above sea level.

The island boasts approximately 123 kilometers of coastline, featuring stunning beaches like Navagio Beach, also known as Shipwreck Beach, as well as craggy cliffs and dramatic rock formations. 

The total population of Zakynthos is 40,759, but during peak tourism season, as many as 2.9 million travelers visit the island, outnumbering the locals 10 to 1.

The Best Time to Go To Zakynthos Greece

Dennys Inn Hotel Zakynthos Zante Shipwreck Nauagio
Navagio Beach Zakynthos - Dennys Inn Hotel

If you’re planning a visit to Zakynthos, you’ll want to consider the best time to go. The island is accessible throughout the year, but the ideal seasons for lower prices and fewer crowds are Spring (March to May) and Fall (September to November).

During these months, you could save up to 50% on accommodation. On the other hand, the Summer (June to August) is perfect for those who don’t mind the crowds and want to experience the vibrant energy of Zakynthos. During this time, you can always take a refreshing dip in the sea to cool down, as mentioned below in this Complete Travel Guide Zakynthos Greece From a Local, I will inform you of the best beaches in Zakynthos.

I, as a local, personally enjoy Zakynthos during the Spring, with hot days and cool evenings that make for comfortable sleeping conditions. However, peak times like Easter, Christmas, and July & August can be expensive, so plan accordingly.

Winter (November to March) is still an option, but swimming may not be an option due to sea temperatures dropping to 12°C (54°F) in January and February. Additionally, many restaurants and hotels may be closed during this time.

DONT FORGET: If you are looking for the best place to stay, we already have the perfect spot for you. Our family-made hotel. from 1991, is right next to Kalamaki Beach, Us! Dennys Inn Hote,

Getting There & Away

Zante, also known as Zakynthos in Greece, offers convenient accessibility due to its close proximity to the mainland. There are several transportation options available to travelers when arriving at and departing from the island.

By Sea

Looking for a way to travel to the Peloponnese from mainland Greece? You might want to consider taking the ferry from Kyllini, which has around 3-5 departing routes at 5:30. With a travel time of approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes, the ferry is a convenient and popular mode of transportation.

The cost of a one-way trip varies depending on the season, but you can expect to pay around €20 – €40 per person. This route is one of the most frequently searched-for and sought-after travel options for those looking to explore the beautiful Peloponnese region.

By Air

Zakynthos Island is a popular tourist destination, and if you’re planning to visit this Greek gem, flying is likely the quickest option. You can book a flight with Olympic or Aegean Airlines from Athens, or choose a direct flight from major European cities such as London, Amsterdam, Prague, Edinburgh, and Rome.

These direct international flights are more frequent during the summer months when Zakynthos receives a surge in tourism. For those looking for convenience and speed, flying to Zakynthos is the way to go. With its stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and vibrant nightlife, Zakynthos is a top-rated vacation spot you wouldn’t want to miss.

By Car

Zakynthos Island is a top destination for many travelers, and renting a car is a popular choice for exploring the area. Driving from Athens to the Ionian Islands is a common route, but be aware that you’ll need to pay a fee to bring your rental car on the ferry to Zakynthos.

If you prefer to rent a car once you’re on the island, that’s also a great option. With your car, you can easily explore the most popular attractions in Zakynthos, such as Navagio Beach and the Blue Caves. Plus, it’s much more convenient than relying on public transportation or expensive taxis.

Where To Stay

Zakynthos Zante Hotel Denny's Inn Kalamaki- Zante Town Zakynthos Town
Zante Town - Dennys Inn Hotel

If you’re planning a trip to Zakynthos and wondering where to stay, let me introduce you to one of the best-kept secrets on the island: our family hotel Dennys Inn in Kalamaki.

Our family-run hotel, Dennys Inn, is located on the south coast of Zakynthos in Kalamaki, known for its beautiful beaches, crystal-clear waters, and relaxed atmosphere. Dennys Inn is perfectly situated close to popular attractions such as Turtle Island, Laganas, Zakynthos Town, and the airport, and is just a short 5-minute walk from Kalamaki Beach. Our hotel offers a unique experience, combining traditional Greek hospitality with modern amenities and personalized service.

Dennys Inn is family-owned and operated since 1991, so you can expect a warm welcome and personalized service from the moment you arrive.

Don’t just take our word for it – our guests rave about their experiences at Dennys Inn, citing the excellent location, great Greek food, clean and comfortable rooms, and friendly staff as some of the highlights of their stay.

FROM 55€

EARLY BOOKING DISCOUNT - 30%

Check out our Summer Deals!

Zante Town

Zakynthos’ capital city is a charming town located right on the sea. However, it may not be the best option for a stay as it’s a bustling port city with plenty of hotels and restaurants but not the nicest beach. For a more tranquil and scenic vacation, consider staying in the island’s south coast towns such as Kalamaki or Laganas, where you can find beautiful beaches, crystal-clear waters, and a relaxed atmosphere. These areas are also in proximity to popular attractions such as Turtle Island and the airport.

🏝️ Click Here For Directions To The Exact Location 🏝️

Kalamaki

Kalamaki Beach - Dennys Inn Hotel
Kalamaki Beach - Dennys Inn Hotel

Kalamaki Beach strikes the perfect balance of being neither too crowded nor too isolated. With nesting turtles, the beach is a protected area (National Marine Park of Greece) and there are no hotels on the sand or any water sports, creating a serene and peaceful environment. This makes Kalamaki a fantastic destination for couples and families looking for a relaxing beach holiday in Zakynthos.

🏝️ Click Here For Directions To The Exact Location 🏝️

Laganas

When it comes to where to stay in Zakynthos, Laganas is a popular choice for many travelers. This bustling town is known for its very lively nightlife and is especially popular among young visitors and European students on short breaks. Laganas offers a range of accommodation options to suit all budgets, from budget-friendly apartments to luxurious resorts and trendy boutique hotels. If you are not interested in partying, then I wouldn’t recommend Laganas as an option.

🏝️ Click Here For Directions To The Exact Location 🏝️

Agios Sostis

Agios Sostis is a quieter alternative to the bustling Laganas, located just 2 kilometres to the west. It is within walking distance of Laganas, making it a popular spot for day-trippers who come to see the picturesque Cameo Island connected to the mainland by a charming little bridge. Additionally, Turtle Island is located nearby and attracts many visitors.

🏝️ Click Here For Directions To The Exact Location 🏝️

Tsilivi & Planos

Tsilivi and Planos are two of the most sought-after beach destinations in Zakynthos. The picturesque, family-friendly, and shallow “Blue Flag” beach in Tsilivi stretches for 2 kilometres and is one of the most stunning and secure places to swim on the island. Lodging options are abundant in both towns, as well as excellent seaside eateries that offer delicious food with stunning sea views.

🏝️ Click Here For Directions To The Exact Location 🏝️

Psarou & Ammoudi

Situated between the well-known towns of Tsilivi to the south and Alykes to the north, Psarou may not be one of the top tourist destinations in Zakynthos, Greece, but it’s definitely worth considering.

If you choose to stay in Psarou, I highly recommend renting a car because there aren’t as many restaurants and entertainment options as in other more touristy cities in Zante.

🏝️ Click Here For Directions To The Exact Location 🏝️

Argassi

Located on the Vasilikos peninsula, Argassi is a charming town situated between the bustling capital of Zante and the beautiful beaches of Banana Beach and Porto Azzurro. With its great selection of hotels and apartments, delicious Greek restaurants, and easy access to public transport, it’s the perfect base to explore the island. Whether you’re looking to spend your days lounging on the beach or exploring the historic sites of Zante Town, Argassi has something for everyone.

🏝️ Click Here For Directions To The Exact Location 🏝️

Vasilikos

Vasilikos, located on the southeastern peninsula of Zante Island just a few kilometers south of the capital, is a hidden gem that is often overlooked by travelers. This unspoiled town boasts some of the island’s most stunning beaches, including St. Nicholas, Banana Beach, and Porto Azzurro. Despite being less developed than other areas of the island, Vasilikos offers excellent accommodation options and authentic Greek dining experiences.