Zakynthos Things to Do

We have gathered a list of the Best Things to Do in Zakynthos, which includes the absolute must-sees and must-dos of the gorgeous Ionian Island: places to visit, sights, beaches, tours, where to eat, activities, and more.

In brief, the top things to do are to visit Navagio (Shipwreck) Beach and the Blue Caves by a boat tour, go to Marathonisi islet to see the birthplace of Caretta Caretta turtles, and party all night long at the beach resorts.

Open the table of contents to see our suggestions for the 15+ best things to do once on Zakynthos Island.

Navagio (Shipwreck) Beach is the most famous place on the island. Having been photographed thousands of times, the beach is considered one of the most beautiful ones on a global level. It is covered with white sand and the contrast between the bright blue waters and the rusty old shipwreck located there creates a unique scenery that attracts countless visitors every summer. Navagio can only be approached from the sea since the massive cliffs around it make it totally secluded.

The Blue Caves are located in the same region as Navagio. The caves and arches in the rocks by the sea are a naturally occurring geological formation. What makes them so special is the reflections of the seawater that makes them seem blue. It is one of the most beautiful places to visit and swim around while observing the otherworldly scenery. The underwater world around the caves is quite interesting too and ideal for snorkeling.

The only way to see Navagio Beach and the Blue Caves is by boat, so the wisest thing to do is to book a guided tour that will take you to both of these remote spots and allow you to admire some of the most beautiful landscapes in Zakynthos.

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2. Swim in the waters of fantastic beaches

Category: Beaches

Similarly to the other Ionian islands, Zakynthos is famous for its beautiful beaches; hence, of course, one of the best things to do is to pay a visit to as many as possible! Most of them are covered with golden sand and have very clear waters, have both organized and unorganized parts available and you can easily get there by car.

The sandy beaches of Laganas and Banana are excellent for those who enjoy the comfort of tourist facilities, while Kalamaki is only partly organized. Agios Nikolaos and Agios Sostis are very popular among young people and water sports lovers. For visitors looking for a calmer beach with a remote location that ensures a magnificent and unspoiled natural landscape, we recommend Gerakas.

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3. Stroll around Zakynthos Town

Category: Villages

Zakynthos Town is the capital of the island. It is a relatively big town of approximately 10 thousand residents and hosts the island’s main port. With an architecture heavily influenced by Venetian, French and English colonizers, Zakynthos Town used to be a true cultural mosaic in terms of design. To get a taste of yesteryear, the best thing to do is visit Solomos and Agiou Markou Squares to see the most significant buildings. A few other old mansions that survived the earthquake are scattered around the town.

Other major landmarks worth visiting in the area are the imposing Church of Agios Dionysios with its signature bell tower, the Church of Agios Nikolaos of Molos and the ruins of the Old Venetian Castle. Zakynthos Town also has a lovely seaside promenade full of cafes, restaurants, bars and shops.

More about Zakynthos Town

4. Stay at a wonderful hotel

Category: Hotels

Looking for a place to stay in Zakynthos? The island offers an abundance of unique accommodation options. These are our favorite boutique hotels in the area:

The building of Archontiko Maisonettes is representative of the rural culture and history. The maisonettes have been carefully renovated, preserving elements of the local tradition and design and guaranteeing a fully-equipped and comfortable accommodation.
With its signature olive trees by the two-level pool, Olea offers luxurious accommodations in Zakynthos. It has a very sophisticated design, aiming at offering the ultimate relaxing experience.
The authentic traditional decor and antique furniture in Alegria Villas will make you feel as if you’re a guest in a local home. Featuring a pool and a playground for children, the villas are located near the beach and are surrounded by pine and olive trees.
The Bay Hotel and Suites is a seafront accommodation with ultra-modern facilities. Comfy sun beds have been placed both on the beach and by the pool for your convenience.

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5. Enjoy a cruise to Marathonisi - the turtle island

Surrounded by turquoise waters and entirely covered with dense greenery, this small exotic islet is located very close to Zakynthos. Marathonisi has a golden beach, caves, natural arches and other impressive rock formations but what it is mostly known for is the sea turtles Caretta Caretta that visit this remote place frequently to lay their eggs on the beach. The best thing to do is to take part in an organized cruise and explore the exotic landscape of Marathonisi, swim in its crystal clear waters and see the turtle nests!

Book the cruise

6. Explore Zakynthos with your own car

Category: Transportation

Who doesn't want to be totally relaxed and move at their own pace on holiday? A rental car comes with many perks, the most important being that it allows you to be flexible with your schedule and not worry about local bus schedules.
Renting a car while in Zakynthos is one of the best things to do, as it allows you to explore the island comfortably.
In cooperation with the best local car rental agencies, we offer the best prices and our service is rated .

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7. Feast on delicious meals at the local restaurants

Category: Eat & Drink

The land and sea of Zakynthos endow the locals with several goods, including fish, grapes (that usually get turned into wine and raisins) and olive oil. The restaurants are aware of the high quality of the products and use them to serve visitors palatable dishes. Several types of dining establishments are available on the island so that all can enjoy the type of food they yearn for.

Some of the restaurants that we believe stand out are Fishalida in Alykes, Avli in Tsilivi, Prosilio in Zakynthos Town and Cave Damianos in Agalas.

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8. Enjoy the upbeat party scene

Category: Nightlife

Zakynthos is famous for its vivid nightlife. Being home to a wide variety of bars, pubs, beach bars and nightclubs that host legendary parties with a great atmosphere, spending at least one night there is definitely among the best things to do if you enjoy partying! The island is very popular among young people and students from Greece and all over the world looking for a summer destination full of life 24 hours a day.

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9. Snorkel and discover underwater beauties

Discover the underwater secrets lying at the bottom of Zakynthos’ Sea with a snorkeling boat tour! The transparent blue waters are ideal for snorkeling enthusiasts and this tour will take you to explore the best snorkeling spots on the island.
You will be able to see marine life in the area of Keri and also discover the local underwater geology. This is the best thing to do for whoever is interested in the sea world but lacks diving experience.

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10. Visit the Solomos Museum

Category: Sightseeing

The Museum of Dionyssios Solomos, Andreas Kalvos and Other Eminent Personalities of Zakynthos is located in Zakynthos Town. The beautiful neoclassical building can be easily spotted once you arrive at Agios Markos Square. The Museum, which is also the mausoleum of the Solomos and Kalvos families, exhibits small but diverse collections, including paintings, manuscripts, coats of arms, archaeological findings and coins.

More about the Museum

11. Visit the Venetian Castle

Category: Sightseeing

Located on a hill above Zakynthos Town, the Venetian Castle is like an open-air museum with findings dating back from the Byzantine Era to the period of the English Occupation of the Ionian Islands. Even though it has been severely damaged due to many earthquakes and wars during the past centuries, several ruins of old walls, gates, churches and other buildings can be seen in the area. In the past, it was reconstructed two times during the Venetian and English Rule.

Discover the Venetian Castle

12. Have fun doing watersports

Category: Sports

Along the long and sandy shores of Zakynthos, visitors will find watersports centers allowing them to try a plethora of activities. Many of them are located at Agrassi, Tsilivi and Banana beaches. Saint Nicholas Watersports and Diving Center has been offering safe water sports sessions for one of the most enjoyable experiences on the island! The center provides all the equipment you need to make the most out of the bright blue waters of Zakynthos and the experienced instructors will make sure you have an incredibly good time!

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13. Make a family visit to the waterpark

Category: Other businesses

Visiting a water park is definitely the best thing to do if you want to gift your family a memorable fun time on Zakynthos Island! Zante Water Village is a very large water park that offers numerous slides, rides and games for all ages. No matter whether you enjoy a good adrenaline boost or prefer more chilled-out games, the Water Village provides several options. In addition, there is a mini-golf course, shops and places where you can eat or drink. The experienced staff and lifeguards will make sure everyone is having fun safely.

14. Visit picturesque churches and monasteries

Category: Sightseeing

Even though many of the island’s old buildings have been destroyed, several churches and monasteries are exceptionally well-preserved and interesting architecture-wise. These churches and monasteries are significant monuments of local culture and religion and they are definitely worth visiting. The easiest to find are the Church of Agios Dionysios and the Church of Agios Nikolaos Molos in Zakynthos Town.
If you would like to combine sightseeing with exploring the countryside, you can visit The Monastery of Anafonitria, where Saint Dionysios, the patron saint of the island, spent his last days, or the Monastery of Skopiotissa, a place full of ruins with an amazing view of the natural setting of Zakynthos.

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15. Explore the traditional Volimes village

Category: Villages

To get a taste of the local rural life, visit Volimes village in the northwestern part of the island. It is a traditional settlement with quaint neighborhoods, some ruins and a lovely natural background consisting of fields and vegetation. Strolling around the quiet streets of the small village, you won’t notice any tourist facilities except for very few taverns and cafes frequented by locals and a few shops where you can buy traditional products. In addition to the old buildings, there are some interesting landmarks in the area, including churches and abandoned windmills.

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16. Take a full-day tour of Kefalonia island

When you’re done seeing most of the beauties of Zakynthos, we recommend booking a day trip to Kefalonia in order to explore another nearby Ionian island. The tour is fully guided and will take you by boat and bus to all the major attractions of the island. You will have the opportunity to see the most important landmarks in Kefalonia’s picturesque capital Argostoli and explore the island’s impressive Drogarati Cave, as well as the mythical in-cave lake of nymph Melissani. You will also visit the imposing monastery of Saint Gerassimos.

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17. Watch a movie at Cine Negas

Category: Other businesses

Wherever there's an open-air cinema, there is an opportunity for you to experience a night that you won't forget! Cine Negas in Zakynthos Town allows you to watch a movie under the starlit sky while enjoying a snack or beverage.

About Cine Negas

18. Are you an animal lover? Visit ZAWF!

Category: Other

ZAWF (Zakynthos Animal Welfare Fund) was founded in 2000, in order to look after and protect any animal that may need it.
The association's members try to raise public awareness regarding animals, rescue stray dogs and cats, and make people adopt a new friend.
If you want to volunteer, donate, or take a new family member home with you, you should pay them a visit!
See their Facebook Page: