Zakynthos, also called Zante, is a famously green Greek island with sparklingly blue seas, rugged cliffs and caves, celebrated wildlife, such as loggerhead sea turtles, and popular sites, including Shipwreck Cove. Whether you’re looking to experience traditional rural village life, relax at a luxury resort by a private pool or get your adrenaline fix through a series of outdoor adventures, you’ll need a great place to stay. Here’s our pick of the island’s best hotels, all bookable with Culture Trip.
Sitting atop cascading green hills, the five-star Olea offers a peaceful retreat from the lively Zakynthos town centre. Rooms are fitted with oakwood furniture, woven wall panels and terraces that lead straight to a private pool or multi-level communal pool. Relax in the sand-bottom poolside bar (frozen margaritas, anyone?), and take in views of rolling olive groves and the sparkling sea beyond. The restaurant buffet showcases live cooking, local flavours and colourful desserts fit for any Instagram feed.
Next to the harbour on Zante’s famous Dionysios Solomos Square, Phoenix Hotel promises the soundscape of rolling Ionian waves. Colourful Venetian streets and al fresco taverna dining are steps away, while the hotel has a restaurant where you can watch life unfold in the square by day and enjoy romantic, candlelit dinners by night. Rooms are simple but elegant, with sleek cream and grey furnishings.
These luxury seaside villas on a private beach overlooking nearby Kefalonia island and the Peloponnese peninsula have ample space, marble-lined bathrooms with whirlpool tubs and private pools with a view. You can arrange an in-villa private dining experience or reserve a table at the beachfront Maya Restaurant for some top-notch Asian fusion cuisine. During the day, treat yourself to a massage at the waterfront spa, and join a hotel excursion to go caving or turtle-spotting.
Stay at St John Resort for its private swimming pool and gardens, where you’ll easily pass the time. Other highlights include its central building that houses a spa, a beauty salon and a restaurant shaded by a pergola, overlooking the rolling hills and the sparkling Ionian Sea. Statement walls and colourful fabrics bring these private villas to life, while plush beds and floor-to-ceiling drapes create a homely vibe.
Just a short drive from the island’s famous Blue Caves, Skinari Lighthouse and Shipwreck Cove, Lithies Boutique Hotel is a great option for adventure seekers. Hire a free bike from the hotel and cycle around the surrounding hills before stopping off and swimming in the island’s clear waters. Back at the resort, the outdoor pool provides further respite from the heat, while barbecue facilities and ping-pong tables make it all the more tempting to stay in for the night, away from the crowds.
Lesante Classic Luxury Hotel and Spa, just 80m (262ft) from Tsilivi beach and 5km (3mi) away from Zakynthos, is the epitome of a luxurious five-star hotel. It boasts three swimming pools and a kids’ pool, a sauna room and a fitness hall, while its rooms include a plasma-screen television and free wifi. The on-site Ambrosia Restaurant offers a rich buffet every morning and local and Mediterranean specialities for dinner.
The eco-friendly Zefyros is surrounded by olive trees and vineyards – a typical Zakynthos landscape. Its 71 rooms have wifi, cable television, air conditioning, minibars and furnished balconies, complete with views of the garden and the hotel’s swimming pool. Enjoy your breakfast on the restaurant’s terrace; at night, savour the dinner buffet with Greek, Italian and international dishes.
In a quiet setting close to the city centre, Palatino Hotel offers elegant rooms with views of the Ionian Sea or the surrounding mountains. Its rooms and suites, complete with balconies, are nicely decorated, air-conditioned and equipped with cable television and wifi. Start your day with an American breakfast, and finish it with a cocktail and local Mediterranean specialities made with fresh ingredients.
Hotel Plagos Beach is a large property with 161 spacious rooms. Travelling with the kids? Book into a family-friendly room and make use of the children’s activity club, which will keep the little ones suitably entertained while you relax by the pool or enjoy a game of tennis. Free breakfast is on offer daily.
Sitting in the village of Kampi, 29km (18mi) from Zakynthos, Mabely Grand Hotel lives up to its name, with a grand offering of two swimming pools, a kids’ pool, a gym, a restaurant and much more. The 108 rooms have air conditioning, luxurious furniture, cable television and great views of the Ionian Sea or the hotel’s garden; some even have shared or private pools. The on-site restaurant serves European breakfast every morning and local and traditional tastes of Zakynthos throughout the day.
Katerina Palace Hotel sits in the small village of Argassi, but it’s just a few kilometres from Zakynthos and its airport. Its spacious rooms and suites have balconies to enjoy the views, along with air-conditioning and minibars. Expect two swimming pools, a kids’ pool, a restaurant offering a morning buffet every day and a lively bar.