Do & See
Palazzo di P Luxury Villa Zakynthos Greece
Apart from the extended selection of beach spots that the island offers, travelers explore Zakynthos Town, religious sightseeing, island's museums, the National Marine Park walking trails, local production and much more.
It is a modern city built after the earthquake of 1953. Here is the main port of the island with daily ferry routes from Greece’s mainland. This port is also used for daily private or mass boat trips which go round the island to visit the Shipwreck Beach, Blue Caves, Marathonisi Island and many other attractions.
Solomos Square, in the center of the coastal road Lomvardou , surrounds the neoclassical buildings of the National Bank, the Post Byzantine Museum, City Hall, the Municipal Library and hosts the statue of the national poet Dionysios Solomos. Main pedestrian encounter cafes, bars and restaurants.
Arriving in traditional paved San Marco Square, where in 1797 the revolutionaries burnt the Libro Doro and planted the tree of freedom. At this area you will meet the neoclassical building of the Mausoleum Solomos and Eminent-Kalvou as well as the Catholic Church of San Marco and the traditional clock.
From this point the route starts the Alexandrou Roma pedestrian which crosses almost half of the island’s town. This pedestrian street has been the main commercial point of the Town for centuries. It has a great variety of shops for all needs of the local population and visitors. Shops and roadside stalls offer the visitor a selection of colourful beachwear, designer clothware and conventional souvenirs, local products, boasting folk art, gift ideas and unique handcrafts, gold and silver jewelry, all of which are handmade and well designed.
The coastal road known as Strata Marina (K. Lomvardou street), features restaurants, cafes, and bars and connects Solomos Square up to the church of the patron-saint Dennis.
Finally, 2 km away from town, there is a Venetian Castle situated on a hill overhanging the town in the place of the old acropolis named Psofis.
Among the most popular religious attractions on the island are found in Zakynthos town.
Zakynthos features remarkable churches such as:
Saint Nicholas Molou, located at Solomos Square. This is a church of Renaissance order (17th century) with its belfry dating back to the Byzantine period.
The patron Saint of the island Saint Dennis (Aghios Dionysios) lived here in 1853. Initially the church grounds were on an island connected to the town by a bridge, consequently this island joined the town. This church was under the ownership of the Corporation of Sailors for many centuries. Inside the church the guest will be able to see the ornaments of Saint Dennis.
Saint Dennis (Agios Dionysios), located at the pier of the port. This church survived the 1953 earthquake. The church hosts the silver-encrusted sarcophagus of Saint Dennis, the island’s patron saint.
Church indoors are impressing due to the quantity of frescos and lamp holders. Painter Doxaras and the chaser Bafas contributed to the church features and the silver reliquary in where there are the mortal remains of Saint Dennis. Furthermore, the tower bell of the church, is equipped with numerous light bulbs which are creating an impressive view at nights.
Saint Marcus (Agios Markos), located at San Marco square, dated back in 1516. This is a catholic church and its belfry is a copy of the one of Saint Mark’s basilica in Venice. During the summer a Mass in English is celebrated every Saturday at 19.00 and Sunday at 10.00 and 19.00
The Monastery of Panagia Skopiotissa, located at the mount of Scopos, was constructed in 1624. It’s a scenic 4-km climb from the Village of Argassi with a walking trail surrounded by unspoiled nature. From this monastery, there is a view of the entire island.
It’s a landscape that the Venetians gave the name of Belvedere. According to ancient scripts, the Monastery was built on the ruins of the ancient temple of Artemis in Byzantine style.
St. Nicholas Kiliomenou Church, located at Kiliomenos Village
St. Mavra Church, located at Maherado Village, according to the legend the icon of the saint to whom the church has been dedicated is dated back to the third century A.C. and comes from Egypt where Saint Mavra lived and underwent martyrdom.
Virgin Keriotissa Church, located at Keri Village
Saint Nicholas, located at Vassilikos Village, a church on the sea, which is not possible to enter but is open to celebrate weddings
St. George Krimnon Monastery, located at Anafonitria Village. The church was destroyed by pirates in 1553 and then rebuilt in Venetian style with a circular tower was built as a measure of defence from assaults.
Virgin Anafonitria Monastery, located at Anafonitria Village, features a tower of the 15th Century at the entrance, partly destroyed and it is used as bell tower. The church hosts the icon of the Virgin dated back to the 15th Century coming from Costatinopolis. Saint Dennis (Aghios Dionysios) lived here as a monk.
Monastery of Eleftherotria, located at Maherado Village, is a nunnery that is possible to visit.
Summarising on the map!
The museum’s main attraction is the collection of Orthodox icons and wall-paintings collected from monasteries which were destroyed in 1953 earthquake. A model of Zakynthos Town before the earthquake shows what the town looked like before the tragic event.
This museum was founded in 1959 and is located in San Marco square. It is also dedicated to the life and relic of the poet penned the Greek national anthem, the Zakynthian author Dionysios Solomos and the poet Andreas Kalvos, along with other notable islanders with their portraits and a collection of coats of arms. . The museum hosts local artworks, ancient instruments and 18th and 19th century paintings.
Town Hall Library
Town Hall library is located at the central town square “Solomos Square”. Prior the earthquake of 1953 and the fire that followed, the library kept unique scripts and books of poets of the past.
Following donations by Zakynthians from private collections, the library stock was rebuilt and nowadays is possible to trace books referring to the history, photos and tradition of the island, and other various important historical events.
The Naval Museum is located at the Tsilivi Village. It’s a museum dedicated to maritime history of the island from the 17th century and its founder is Anthony Miller.
The museum features the evolution of maritime transport and a variety of Byzantine ships from the beginning of the Byzantine Empire until its destruction by the Turks in 1453.
Helmi's Natural History Museum
Helmis Museum is located at Agia Marina Village and features specimens from the flora and fauna of the Zakynthian nature. These include birds, shells, rocks and minerals etc. It is considered as an exciting experience for children
History War Museum
The History War Museum is located in Laganas Galaxy Beach resort Hotel. The museum was founded in 2018 and is a postmodern museum, with authentic scene representations of real war setups, of the World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War.
The setups are enriched with authentic vehicles, equipped with artillery, creating a representation of actual events which affected World History.
National Marine Park
Zakynthos Marine Park is a non-profit institution, part of the Natura 2000 ecological network and covers an area of 135 square kilometres.
National Marine Park of Zakynthos covers a significant area which spreads from the southern west coast at Marathia’s Cape up to the Southern east coast to the beach of Gerakas, including the outback of the beaches of Limni Kerì, Laganas and Kalamaki and the Strofades islands which are located 50 miles away at the south of Zakynthos. Due to the development of the local tourism industry which is considered as a potential threat for the protected area's existence, the National Marine Park was founded in 1999 with the main purpose of defending the particular fauna of the southern part of the island and of its integration with the local society. The most important animal specimen to protect are the turtles Caretta-Caretta and the Mediterranean Seals Monachus-Monachus. On top of the aforementioned specimens, the park intends to protect also other animal specimen such as birds, reptiles and amphibians and mammals.
Marine Park map with the different protected areas
In the map there are three different areas of the park and the relative existing restrictions for each of the them. The area of the marine park is 14,4 square km, 89,2 square km of sea, 31,2 square km of peripheral area. Many info points are located in the Gulf of Laganas and the rangers in charge are both guardians and guides of the protected areas.
In the map there are three different areas of the park and the relative existing restrictions for each of them. Many info points are located in the Gulf of Laganas and the rangers in charge are both guardians and guides of the protected areas.
Zakynthos Marine Park is a no profit institution and for its good functioning it counts on the indispensable contribution of the tourist in respecting the rules. The marine park is a first and innovative step towards nature and ichthyic environment preservation in Greece; Zanteisland.com thanks in advance the tourist for his co-operation.
Marine Park rules
Within the Marine Park area it is forbidden:
In the beaches where the turtles spawn ( ), it is forbidden:
Zakynthos island benefits from the high fertility of its land. The island’s agricultural production includes numerous goods with olive, currants and wine to be the ones that dominate local production. Currants are materially included in the agricultural products of Zakynthos. This grape apart from its use in the food industry it is also a material ingredient for alcohol production.
Zakynthos benefits from its significant wine and olives production since the majority of its lands are covered with vineyards and olive trees. Every visitor is admired with the huge very old olive trees which are planted all over the island. Olive oil is produced by almost every family that lives in Zakynthos and is also considered as a main source of income.
Honey is produced in the mountainous area of Zakynthos by local producers and its purity certifies its high quality.
Furthermore, the Island is well known for the production of olive oil cheese (called “Ladotyri) and sweets such as “pasteli” and “madolato”.
For travelers that are interested to the islands local products, it’s worth a visit to the following landmark spots :
Aristeon press olive museum, located at the Village of Lithakia (navigate on map)
Travelers will have the chance to explore the process of olive oil production step by step and can book a guided tour for the history of oil production for the last 200 years. The museum provides the opportunity to taste olive oil and olives with fresh baked bread and visitors have also the option to buy local olive oil products securely packed for their travel.
Basta Cheese, located at the Village of Agios Leon (navigate on map)
Zakynthos is proud for its local cheese production, since its local cheese under the name-brand “Ladotyri” is included in the majority of the dishes served at the islands traditional restaurants and travelers are amased by its unique taste. This cheese is kept in special pots and becomes harder and spicy if its kept for long time.
The Melisiotises, located at the Village of Kiliomenos (navigate on map)
Melisiotises is an innovative association at Kiliomenos Village and its name comes from the Monastery of the area. Here, travelers will be able to buy honey, cheese, marmalade, homemade sweets and other products which are traditionally produced at the area.
Therianos Organic Farm, located at the Village of Kallithea (navigate on map)
The organic farm of Therianos family is considered among the “must” visits. This family produces its own natural products like walnuts, olive oil, vegetables, fruits, wine and much more. Depending on the time of year, visitors may have the benefit to see closer and participate in various agricultural works, such as olive and vine harvesting, animal feeding, participating in cooking local dishes and so on. This farm has products available such as wine, olive oil, local sweets, body oils and more.
This family is among the most hospitable families of Zakynthos and can introduce you to a Greek authentic way of living and get in touch with nature.
Callinico Winery, located at the Village of Kalipado, (navigate on map)
Callinico is a traditional winery which now operates under the third generation. This winery is active since 1918 and the original machines used as well as the modern technology used today, the cellars and the stored bottles of wine are available to be seen by the visitors. Callinico family provides information about the wines they produce and offers a wine tasting session experience.
Its worth to mention that the typical wine of the island, is the white wine “Verdea”, produced since the early 18th century, while its name comes from the Italian word "Verde" or “green” due to the grapes color. This wine is classified as dry with fruity aromas.
Solomos Wine Estate, located at the area of the Venetian Castle of Zakynthos, (navigate on map)
This Wine Estate is a family generation businesses dated since the mid-18th century. The Winery is equipped with modern mechanical equipment which ensures high quality wines and produces at least 17 wine varieties, with “Verdea” and “Augusty”, white and red wine respectively, to be the most known. However, the variety of wine selection is impressive, all with long aftertaste, pleasant acidity and rich body with aromas of lemon, chrysanthemum, cherry blossoms and more.
Travelers are enjoying a wine tour and learn about the history of the family who runs this estate since 18th century, while having the opportunity to taste various wines from their unique selection.
Grampsas Winery, located at the Village of Lagopodo, (navigate on map)
Grampsas Winery Estate was developed in 2011 by Grampsas family with the aim to elevate the unexplored richness of Zakynthos varieties, including “Avgoustiatis” and “Goustolidi” but always respecting tradition and applying vinicultural developments on a scientific level.
Travelers are more than welcome to visit their vineyards and cellars where their wines age and mature. At the winery travelers are introduced to the a selection of wine flavors, while other local products are available such as virgin olive oil produced by the family.