Zante Mini Guide
The Greek island of Zante (or Zakynthos) has something for everyone with great beaches, beautiful weather and busy towns. Because of all these qualities and more, the island of Zante has a buzzing tourist industry.
You can arrive at Zante by collecting your Rhino rental car on the Greek mainland, or one of the other islands, and taking it there on the ferry. The island’s main road is known as the Greece national road 35 which goes to Porto Roma and Volimes. You may well want to choose to rent a 4x4 vehicle in Zante as some of the island’s best sights are off road. Book one well ahead of time to be sure of having your request met.
Located in the south near the resorts of Laganas and Kalamaki, Zante also has its own airport. Mainly the flights arrive from Athens
on Olympic Air but during the popular summer months there are charter flights from a number of European destinations. If you want nice weather without having to fight the crowds, spring time between March and May is a good period in which to visit. Many flowers should be blooming by then.
Zante takes its name from Zacynthos who was the son of legendary Arcadian chief Dardanos and it is the third largest island in the Ionian Sea. Most people go to the east coast of the island as the west coast can be subjected to very strong winds.
Among the popular pastimes in Zante is scuba diving as there are many underwater caves which are home to much marine life including seals, eels and turtles. You would be missing out to go there and not try a dive. But if total immersion is not your thing then you can also go snorkelling and get good views of what is happening down below.
One of the beaches in Zante is probably the most photographed in the world, the incredible ship wreck bay. If you have ever seen a photo of a beached galleon resting on a cove of white sand surrounded by towering cliffs, then you know how beautiful Zante can be. Considered to be one of the world’s most beautiful beaches, Ship Wreck bay is situated on the north west end of the island and can only be accessed by boat.
Zante or Zakynthos is a stunning island, full of the unexpected. A hire car will get you to the Marine Park of Zante on the south coast to find out about the turtles that nest there. You can also visit the much photographed Shipwreck Beach at Navagio, you’ll recognise it from all the tourist brochures!
If you’re looking for historic sites, you’ll be disappointed as all but three of Zante’ buildings were destroyed in the 1953 earthquake. Those that remain are the St Dionysios Cathedral, the Church of St Nicholas of the Quay and The National Bank.