The Greek islands are beautiful, but some have gained the reputation as party destinations. Which leads you to wonder- Zante, a party island or relaxing oasis? The answer, it can be both! Here is our guide so you can experience the tranquil and luxurious side of this picturesque island.
Where to Stay
The island offers plenty of accommodation options, but to experience Zante at its best, and without the parties, we suggest staying off the beaten track in a holiday home!
Rent a Holiday Home
During the first half of our holiday we stayed in a rented holiday home found on HomeAway. This is a fantastic opportunity to immerse yourself in your surroundings, get to know the locals and to truly feel connected with your destination. Not to mention, it’s a great escape from the busy tourist centres (and rowdy visitors)! Take a peek at our accommodation below, the outdoor space and views were hard to beat!
Splurge and Stay Luxurious
The second half of our holiday we stayed further north of the island near Agios Nikolaos. We stayed in an beautiful villa with an ocean view provided by Emerald Villas & Suites and needless to say, we never wanted to leave! Check out our oasis below! The location, customer service and accommodation were fantastic, we definitely recommend considering Emerald Villas & Suites for your stay.
Where to Eat
The vegetables on this island were to die for! The Greek Salads and the OLIVES… Enough said. The majority of our meals were extremely fresh, well presented and accompanied by friendly staff in a beautiful surrounding. Check out are recommendations below, they did not disappoint!
Located near Agios Nikolaos and across the street from the Emerald Villas & Suites, this restaurant was perfectly situated and gorgeous.
Nobelos Seaside Lodge
We stumbled upon this great spot accidentally. This restaurant is a part of the charming Nobelos Boutique Hotel and offers an incredible view of the Agios Nikolaos Harbour in a tranquil setting. We enjoyed it so much we visited on more than one occasion!
What to Do
Below are three activities we suggest are a MUST for your visit to Zante! Each offer an opportunity to explore and experience the island from a different point of view.
Rent a 4×4 Quad
One of the most memorable days during our stay was when we rented a quad and explored the island. Once you’re out of Laganas (where there are plenty of rental options) the roads are quiet and an ease to navigate. We happened to pick up our rental just as it begun to down poor with rain! We were soaked and laughing hysterically by the time we arrived at our house!
Rent a Boat and See the Blue Caves
The only way to witness the beautiful coastlines and visit the famous Blue Caves is from the sea. So rent a boat, pack a lunch and get exploring! One tip however, look out for the tour boats when exploring the Blue Caves (they may or may not stop for you)!
Take a ferry from Agios Nikolaos Harbour to the island of Cephalonia. Visit the island where Nicolas Cage and Penelope Cruz filmed Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. Take a boat ride in the Melissani Cave and enjoy the breathtaking sunset as you sail back to Zante.
What NOT to Do
Continue reading to find out what the biggest disappointment of our holiday was. Our top bucket list item when visiting Zante unfortunately did not live up to our expectations.
Don’t waste your time and money sailing to the ‘famous’ Shipwreck Beach. Although the journey is beautiful, it is insanely crowded and the beach is dirty and rocky. Instead visit Navagio Beach from above and get a great shot of the shipwreck away from the massive crowds (a must for our next trip)!
If you want to avoid the party scene and the tourist hot spot on your holiday then avoid the area of Laganas. While the beach may be long and beautifully golden, the streets however are lined with bars, overpriced restaurants and touristy souvenir shops! There are plenty more areas worth exploring!
Thank you for stopping by!
~ What Greek islands do you wish to visit ? Comment below! ~