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Zakynthos

Zakynthos

Of the many beautiful and attractive holiday destinations of Greece the inspiring island of Zakynthos, also known as Zante, is one of the most impressive. Here visitors will be amazed by the crystal clear shores and beautiful beaches, but also the traditional Greek cuisine that is both delicious and famously healthy. As testament to its many charms Zakynthos is a popular regular destination for holiday-makers.

Few visitors stay in the main town; if you do, Palatino (Kolokotróni 10) in Repára district offers great value for contemporary facilities. Vasilikós Peninsula, southeast of town, has the best, most scenic beaches, and worthy choices in the posh, design-led Bay Hotel & Suites, or Hotel Vasilikós Beach (Ágios Nikólaos cove), with ample watersports. Northwest from town, Tsilivi (go for the sleek Al Mare) and Alykés are also popular bases, though their beaches can’t compare with Vasilikós. At Límni Kerioú beyond Laganás, special mention goes to the extra-friendly Bratis family’s well-appointed Pansion Limni, arguably the best budget option on the isle.

Any purchases on Zákynthos will likely be island specialities. The National Marine Park of Zákynthos, designed to protect the loggerhead sea turtle, encompasses Laganás Bay, and accordingly you can buy every conceivable souvenir commemorating the creatures: ceramic turtles, tea mugs, key chains, etc. Bottled wines – both the crisp white Verdea and various hues of rosé or dark red, made from grape varieties not found elsewhere – are well worth taking home; reputable wineries include Callinico, in Kalípado village, near Alykés; Solomos, in Kydóni, just inland from the main town, off the Volímes road; and Oinollpi, in Agriá near Maherádo.

The restaurant scene on Zákynthos is far healthier than the menus at some of the beach resorts might suggest. At opposite ends of the main town, Green Boat (Dionysíou Róma, behind municipal lido) is the go-to place for affordable seafood, while Malanos (Agíou Athanasíou, off Kalamáki road, Kípos suburb) is a shrine of magireftá (casserole dishes), justifiably packed all year. A 1953 earthquake did for most of Zákynthos’ architecture, but many stone buildings in the westerly mountain villages survived and today shelter restaurants with more careful cooking and regional recipes: try LIthino (Maherádo), Alitzerini (Kilioméno outskirts) or Kalas in Kambí hamlet, beyond which salubrious Tou Papa perches at a vertiginous cliff edge next to a controversial memorial cross.

Carnival
February/March
It might not rival Corfu’s, but Carnival on Zákynthos – with the same Venetian heritage as the other Ionian Islands – boasts a similar repertoire of parties, fireworks and the like.


Feast Day of Saint Mavra
3 May
Mass at the imposing church of Agía Mávra in Maherádo village precedes banqueting and folk dancing in the village square.


Theatro Avouri/Skalia Cultural Village events
June-August
There’s generally something on at this lovingly constructed stone venue outside Tragáki village, though often with a distinctly educational or child-centred slant rather than concerts.


Wine Festival
August-September
Tasting of local wines – often excellent, as noted – in the port capital.


Feast Days of Saint Dionysios
24 August, 17 December
Processions in honour of the island’s patron saint, with his relics, begin from the imposing waterfront basilica of Ágios Dionýsios in Zákynthos Town. Afterwards, there are a few days of eating, drinking and dancing.

TIMETABLES

This is a Summer only destination

ESSENTIALS

Language
Greek
Currency
Euro
Time zone
GMT +2
Flight time
3 Hours 50
Holiday type
Beach , Sightseeing , Summer Sun

WEATHER

01/11/14
Sunny skies
Sunny skies
15°C
min
17°C
max
02/11/14
Sunny skies
Sunny skies
16°C
min
19°C
max
03/11/14
Sunny skies
Sunny skies
16°C
min
19°C
max
04/11/14
Sunny skies
Sunny skies
17°C
min
20°C
max
05/11/14
Partly cloudy skies
Partly cloudy skies
17°C
min
19°C
max
06/11/14
Overcast skies
Overcast skies
17°C
min
21°C
max
07/11/14
Moderate rain at times
Moderate rain at times
18°C
min
20°C
max
Jan
14°C max
8°C min
Feb
14°C max
7°C min
Mar
16°C max
8°C min
Apr
19°C max
10°C min
May
25°C max
14°C min
Jun
30°C max
18°C min
Jul
32°C max
21°C min
Aug
32°C max
21°C min
Sep
28°C max
18°C min
Oct
24°C max
15°C min
Nov
19°C max
12°C min
Dec
15°C max
9°C min

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AIRLINES

TODAY'S WEATHER

Sunny skies 16°C
15°C
min
17°C
max
55%
huimidity

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