Travel tips about Zakynthos for visitors

The port of Zakynthos

The port of Zakynthos @Anna Oates/Flick

Zakynthos (or Zante) is a splendid Greek Island located in the Ionian Sea, at about 20-25 miles from the mainland of Greece. It belongs to the Ionian Islands region, which has about 123 km of coastline and an area of ​​410 square kilometers, being about 40 km long and 20 km wide.

The most important town of the island is the town of Zakynthos – it is in the eastern part of the island and has a population of about 17,000 inhabitants, on the whole Island of Zakynthos living about 40,000 people. If you want to visit the island, our travel tips about Zakynthos might be helpful.

 

The landscape of the island

The island has a varied landscape, with mountainous terrain in the western half, the highest peak being the Vrachionas with its 758 meters, steep cliffs in in south-west and fertile plains in the eastern half. In the south the Island of Zakynthos ends with two small peninsulas and around Zakynthos are other smaller islands as well. Besides tourism, the main source of income is agriculture.

The port of Zakynthos

The port of Zakynthos @Anna Oates/Flick

The mythological Island of Zakynthos

The name of the island and the main city comes from the Greek mythology, Zakynthos was the son of Dardanus, son of Zeus. The island has been inhabited since the Neolithic, Homer mentioning it first in his works, the Iliad and Odyssey, according to these the first inhabitants who settled here were the Trojans, around 1500 BC. Since the Middle Ages the island was dominated by the Byzantine Empire, Naples, the Ottoman Empire, the Venetians, French and British. In 1864, together with the other Ionian islands, it was ceded to Greece. In 1953, there were 3 earthquakes that destroyed the island entirely, a few taller buildings remained standing. Another earthquake occurred in 2006, followed by strong fire that destroyed the west of the island.

Beautiful Zakynthos

Beautiful Zakynthos @Marcus Povey/Flick

Main tourist attractions

The Island of Zakynthos is famous especially for its beaches, the island is one of the main tourist attractions of Greece.

Other attractions of the island are the Byzantine Museum (icons and religious paintings from the Byzantine period) and the Dionysos Solomos Museum (literature), both located in the town of Zakynthos, the Blue Caves, located in the north of the island, the Venetian fortress, built in 1646 and located on the hill Bochali at about 3 km north of the town of Zakynthos, from there can be admired and town of Zakynthos. The Aghios Ioannes Prodromos Monastery and the Theotokos Monastery are also very popular in Zakynthos, as well as the Marathonisi Island, located in the south, being a haven for turtles loggerhead (Caretta caretta) and the cliffs of Shiza or Keri offer panoramic views of rare beauty.

Water Park in Zakynthos

Water Park in Zakynthos @ heatheronhertravels/Flick

 

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