Days before our decision to travel to Greece, our conversation sounded a bit something like this:
Me: “Where do you want to go next?”
Nick: “I don’t know. You?”
We were sitting at our friend’s lovely Airbnb apartment in Brighton, England, trying to choose where we would travel to next. We had just completed a road trip from Edinburgh to London with my family, as well as were now checking out good friends in Brighton.
But, it was time to step on.
After being in the UK for 3 weeks, it was time to step on
It’s not as if there weren’t many options, the world is a huge place, it was just that we weren’t sure where we felt like going. Which destination was calling us? Which country was genuinely ideal for us in that moment? Where might we get some much-needed sunshine, take pleasure in great food as well as have regional experiences?
Eventually it dawned on us. Greece!
The only reason we hadn’t put Greece at the forefront when brainstorming was since we had been there in the past, as well as were trying to find somewhere new. But, it had been 6 years considering that we’d touched down on Greek soil, as well as now seemed like a excellent time to return, particularly provided the truth that we might fly to a stunning island direct from London.
In just 3.5 hours, we shown up on this stunning island
Prior to our spontaneous Greece plans, we had never heard of the island of Zakynthos, which is one of 7 primary islands (plus 5 smaller ones) laying west of mainland Greece. These are understood as the Ionian Islands, which were under Venetian policy from the mid 14th century to the late 18th century – while the rest of Greece was under Ottoman Rule.
Due to the history as well as place of the Ionian Islands, there is a lot more of an Italian influence here. during Venetian rule, lots of people spoke Italian as well as still do today. There’s Italian influence in the music, cuisine as well as language. In fact, Zakynthos is really called “Zante” by many, which is the Italian word for the island.
Having stated all of this, we’ve been to Italy, as well as this Ionian island still felt extremely much “Greek” to us…with the strange pizza thrown in.
Arriving in Zakynthos, we understood we had made the right choice in pertaining to Greece. With our rental car, we zipped with the narrow streets, as well as reminisced about the last time we were on the islands of Santorini as well as Crete. When we pulled up at Katerina spaces in the town of Psarou, we felt the exact same hospitality as well as warmth from the owner that we had felt on our previous trip.
The outside of Katerina spaces in Psarou
Katerina may not have spoken any type of English, however she was kind as well as welcoming. utilizing hand gestures, we comprehended that we were able to select between one of two rooms. We selected the one with expansive views over the olive grove as well as to the Ionian Sea.
One of the special aspects about travelling in Greece is that a lot of of the accommodation options, even hotels, are really bit studio apartments. It’s the norm rather than the exception. Ours was fitted with a comfy bed, a closet, a bit desk, a couch as well as a little completely furnished kitchen area with a fridge as well as a hob.
This guesthouse was our house for the complying with 9 nights as well as it was perfect.
Each day started with us sitting on the deck, with a coffee made from our Handpresso (so pleased we have that thing!). A few minute later we’d get a knock at the door from Katerina holding a bag of fresh oranges, as well as asking if we desired an “omelette” (which was actually an massive frittata with meat, cheese as well as vegetables). breakfast wasn’t included in the space rate, she was just being generous.
Coffee with a view at Katerina Rooms
With birds chirping in the trees as well as a tortoise sauntering around the garden, we’d take pleasure in our breakfast, freshly squeezed orange juice as well as coffee in the sunshine.
Each day we’d hop in our rental cars and truck as well as set off to check out a different area of Zakynthos. We had shown up on may 11th, which is thought about the off-season / shoulder-season. lots of shops were still closed, or were just opening up when we arrived.
Planning your own trip to Greece? inspect out our Greece travel guide for a lot more info about planning, checking out as well as making the most of a Greece vacation.
For us, this was the very best time of year to be right here as it indicated there were sufficient restaurants available to provide us some eating options, there were some tourists around so it didn’t feel like a ghost town, yet it wasn’t packed with people zipping around on ATV’s as well as motorbikes!
We checked out 9 beaches during our 9 day stay. Each stretch of sand, or pebbles, was different. From the vast, marine secured Gerakas Beach, to the cavernous, crystal remove water of Porto Limnionas, as well as whatever in between. We liked them all.
Chillin’ out on Tsilivi beach near to our guesthouse
Lazing around on beaches is never a poor thing, but we were invited to set off on a speedboat with the people from Luxury Island events to get a different view of the island. as well as of course, we jumped at the chance!
The limestone shoreline offered natural archways, hidden coves as well as caves, as well as excellent water. We were in awe of the natural beauty.
Checking out the rocky shoreline by speedboat!
After zipping around the rocky coast, we shown up the backside of Marathonisi Island. This island is dubbed “Turtle Island” because of its shape, in addition to the truth that the Loggerhead Sea Turtle lays its eggs right here every year.
Greeting us were sea caves, a sandy cove as well as exceptionally turquoise water. This was the spot to jump in as well as great off. From the backside to the front side of the island, we moored up on the beach as well as jumped off for one more swim. There were a few other boats here, as well as a couple of vendors, however other than that, we had the location to ourselves.
Our speedboat for the morning! It was awesome
There are many beaches in Zakynthos, some a lot more easily accessible than others.
As part of our trip with high-end Island Events, we were planning to see the popular Shipwreck Beach. However, because of weather condition conditions, the waves were as well aggressive as well as the winds were as well strong. Our captain made the decision, we weren’t going to be checking out today.
Shipwreck beach is the location for the popular beach picture that you’ve most likely seen on the Web many times. In 1980, a freight liner was caught in a storm as well as discovered its method to this cove, where it crashed on the shore. The aptly named Shipwreck beach (also called Navagio beach or Smuggler’s Cove) is finest seen from both the water, as well as the towering cliffs above it.
We may not have been able to get up close to the sensational beach, however we were able to view it from above, as well as it was truly spectacular!
Look at this stunning setting!!
Arriving at the little checking out platform, with its bit metal railings for safety, we believed it appeared like an OK vantage point, however not the greatest. We then saw a path that leads out onto the point. We held on to every other as well as made slow, precise motions to get to the edge.
Important Note: A number of tourists have just recently plummeted to their deaths trying to get the best selfie shot in this precise location. We weren’t conscious of this at the time, as well as in hindsight, we shouldn’t have ventured past the safety of the railings. These deaths are very tragic as well as are a tip of exactly how dangerous this area can be. It is not worth clambering over the rocks as well as running the risk of one’s life for a photograph. stay behind the railings.
We need to have stated “Be careful!” 50 times within an hour.
While we were being meticulous with our movements, moving one inch at a time, other tourists from Japan, Germany as well as the Netherlands were barreling towards the edge, stumbling a few times in their flip-flops while snapping a few pictures as well as hurrying back to the excursion bus.
Nick as well as I held our breath each time. Cliffs are made from rock. rock crumbles. These were likewise overhangs, indicating that they weren’t all that stable. After withstanding some vertigo as well as the intense heat, we made our method back to our rental car.
Zakynthos was an exceptional introduction to the Ionian Islands as well as our upcoming month of travel around Greece. every day was spent getting lost in bit villages, interacting with regional people, eating standard food, enjoying the sun set as well as checking out charming beaches. What a lot more might we ask for?!
Although we had nothing however remarkable experiences during our 9 day stay, there was one, just one, thing that irked us. The garbage. Unlike the other Greek Islands, Zakynthos doesn’t have a garbage dump as wellas has problems getting its garbage off of the island. We came across many overflowing dumpsters as well as piles of garbage, which is unfortunate. Thankfully, there wasn’t any type of garbage on any type of of the beaches.
Apart from that, we have nothing unfavorable to state about this terrific location as well as would a lot of absolutely like to return to see more.
Enjoying some white wine as well as dinner at sunset
Visiting Greece in the off-season or the carry season is a excellent method to discover discount rates on hotels, food, excursions as well as transportation. We shown up may 10th as well as it isn’t high season up until mid-June.
In our opinion, you requirement to have a rental cars and truck on the island. inspect out web sites like Expedia.com for discounted rental cars. Ours was $14 / day as well as was worth every penny.
Check out web sites like Booking.com for discount rates on apartments in Zakynthos. We stayed at Katerina spaces as well as extremely suggest it. The spaces were comfortable, well stocked as well as Katerina herself was lovely. We spent $22.50 / night.
If you want to hire a boat with a motorist as well as head out on the sea for the day, inspect out high-end Island Events. They likewise lease out boats to individuals – as well as you don’t requirement a boat license! The speedboat we had was virtually brand new as well as we had a excellent afternoon.
There are many locations to eat on Zakynthos, however one of our favourites in terms of the view, service as well as food was Lofos. The sunset views right here are great!
For useful information on travelling to Greece, inspect out the terrific travel portal, Discover Greece.
Check Out Our travel video From Zakynthos:
Stay tuned as we inspect out the islands of Kefalonia, Corfu, Chios as well as Lesvos during our one month of travelling in Greece ? Have you been to Zakynthos? What are your impressions of the island?
A significant thank-you to Discover Greece for helping with our boat tour! The rest of our trip to Zakynthos we planned, booked as well as paid for ourselves. All opinions as well as thoughts stay our own, in spite of any type of free services received.
After choosing that we wished to travel to Greece for a month, we reached out to find Greece, who ended up being our remarkable partners for this trip! The reason we’re able to partner up with terrific business such as this is since of our travel blog, as well as devoted followers (you!). If you’re thinking about starting a blog as well as ultimately working with tourism boards, excursion business as well as airlines around the world, click right here to get started. If you begin a blog utilizing the link in the article, we’ll send you our pro blogging eBook, free!
Like This Article? Pin it!
Disclaimer:Goats On The road is an Amazon partner as well as likewise an affiliate for some other retailers. This indicates we make commissions if you click links on our blog as well as purchase from those retailers.