|Main Attractions||Shipwreck Beach, Sea Caves, beaches|
|Food||Many excellent choices|
|Accommodations||Many excellent choices|
One of Lord Byrons favorite Greek islands, Zakynthos is 8.5 nautical miles south of Kefallonia. The Venetians called it "the flower of the east" and they occupied Zante long enough to smell the flowers and more. Many of the islanders have Venetian blood.
Tourism has made incursions on Zakynthos but nowhere near as badly as some Cycladic islands. Endanged species, such as the loggerhead turtle have not fared so well contrary to Greek and EU law. Turtles come from all over the Mediterranean to lay their 100 to 120 golfball-sized eggs in the sands and are suffering because of toursim and unrestricted development.
Zante or Zakynthos has much to recommend it, especially away from the main touristic areas of its southern shores. The island has exceptional natural beauty and outstanding beaches. Beaches in the north are the least affected by tourism.
The islands' west coast is cliff-like while the east has rolling hills and flatter terrain. Zakynthos Town, its capital and main port was destroyed by an earthquake in 1953. It was rebuilt along the same lines, and retains much of its charm.
In the Bay of Laganas, on the south coast, loggerhead turtles lay their eggs. The island villages of Maherado and Aghios Nicolaou have escaped the changes of tourism and are set in lovely country.