From sea turtles to shipwrecks: What you can see on a boat trip from Zakynthos
The glittering blue waters of the Ionian Sea have an irresistible, mythical allure that makes travellers want to spend their holidays in Zakynthos again and again. These are the seas that Io, a beautiful Ancient Greek princess, flew across when she became Zeus’s paramour. Legend says that this tumultuous affair is the origin of the name Ionian.
Zakynthos is one of the Ionian Sea’s most picturesque destinations. Home to a mountainous interior, lush forests and striking coastlines, this island is one of the finest locations in Greece and an excellent base to explore the surrounding waters by boat. Unsurprisingly, this beautiful isle has inspired many myths in its own rite. The hunting goddess Artemis is said to have wandered the verdant woodlands while Apollo, her brother, sang of Zakynthos’ beauty from beneath its aromatic bay trees.
Today, the island is known for its sheltered beaches and rugged coves, as well as its rare marine life, which includes the beautiful but endangered loggerhead sea turtle. If you feel the call of the Ionian Sea, allow our guide to whisper the secrets of Zakynthos’ coastline to you. Our villas in Zakynthos include spectacular coastal properties that are the perfect base for those who want to hop on a boat.
Aquatic activities to enjoy on a boat trip from Zakynthos
Hidden coastal caves, endangered monk seals, leaping dolphins, rare turtles, sunrise voyages, the mesmerising Blue Caves... it’s evident that Zakynthos’ coast is best explored by boat. From the water, travellers can discover beaches inaccessible by land and get closer to the island’s famed marine life. Our spectacular Zakynthos villas to rent, Aurora and Villa Roxa, offer panoramic views of the Ionian Sea, calling guests to explore Zakynthos’ shores.
Our Local Specialists have curated a list of the very best aquatic activities to enjoy from on deck around the coast of Zakynthos.
When you select a villa from The Thinking Traveller, our carefully chosen Experiences can be added into your itinerary. Below you will find a number of Experiences to enjoy on Zakynthos. Simply let us know which experiences you are interested in and let us take care of all the little details.
1. Explore Shipwreck Beach, Zakynthos
Also known as Navagio Beach or Smuggler’s Cove, this stunning cove was voted the world’s best beach in 2018. The beach’s nickname comes from the wrecked hull of the MV Panagiotis, which ran aground in 1980. The boat still lies half-buried in the sand, adding to the romance of this cliff-lined cove. That this beach is only accessible by boat only increases its charm. Towering white cliffs encircle it, which means explorers must charter a boat to reach its sandy shores.
We can assist with every aspect of your visit to Zakynthos’ Shipwreck Beach. We know the perfect times to soak up its unforgettable atmosphere before the crowds arrive. We will arrange your morning boat trip to the cove, complete with towels, snorkelling equipment and even a champagne brunch as part of this Experience.
2. Sail to the National Marine Park of Zakynthos
Zakynthos is one of the Mediterranean’s most important nesting sites for the endangered loggerhead turtle. The island’s glittering waters are rich with marine life - so much so that the National Marine Park of Zakynthos was established in 1999 to protect the sealife and diverse creatures that call the coastline home.
Loggerheads are the world's largest hard-shelled turtle, measuring up to 95cm in length, and these creatures have an ancient history. They are members of the Cheloniidae genus, which first appeared 40 million years ago. Although loggerheads are rare, particularly in the Mediterranean, during their summer nesting season, they can often be sighted in Zakynthos’ waters.
Book an Experience to explore the National Marine Park of Zakynthos and meet its creatures by environmentally-friendly boat. During your voyage, you may also encounter some of the park’s other inhabitants, including monk seals and dolphins, which sometimes swim alongside our boats.
3. Discover your fantasy beach
When we close our eyes, the shores we each picture are almost certainly different. Some of us long for endless stretches of unblemished sand, while others crave coves with character and crystal waters. Adventurous souls dream of beaches perfect for snorkelling, rock climbing and watersports, while those in search of relaxation picture cocktails, sunloungers, peace and tranquility.
The sheer diversity of Zakynthos’ coastline means that there is a fantasy beach for every visitor to the island. From lively stretches of sand to small coves with charming tavernas, we can recommend a beach you will fall in love with. Perhaps you will fall for the stunning ‘secret’ swimming coves of Porto Roxa and Porto Limnionas, which lie below Villa Roxa, or the charming village and beach of Agios Nikolaos, a 10-minute stroll from Aurora.
If you’d like to explore Zakynthos’ many beaches for yourself, add an Experience to your stay. We will find the perfect guide to take you to the very best beaches on a private chartered boat.
In the meantime, have a look at our selection of the beaches in Zakynthos.
Beaches with activities on Zakynthos
Agios Nikolaos - Watersports and tavernas
Xigia - Healing sulphur waters, scuba diving and snorkelling
Alykes, Alykanas, Vasilikos, Banana and Plaka - Lively, with bars and tavernas
Kalamaki - Tavernas, sun loungers and pedalos, with quiet stretches
Quieter beaches on Zakynthos
Gerakas - Sometimes home to nesting turtles
Swimming coves on Zakynthos
Our Zakynthos villas by the water
Boasting breath-taking sea views from its clifftop location, Villa Roxa's beautiful grounds overlook the glittering Ionian Sea and sit above the scenic swimming coves of Porto Roxa and Porto Limnionas. Shipwreck Beach lies just 20km north of this secluded villa, which sleeps up to eight guests. Panoramic views of the sea can be enjoyed from all corners of this remarkable villa and its grounds, including its infinity pool, terraces, outdoor dining spaces and cosy, traditionally stone-walled bedrooms.
From Aurora, which sleeps up to eight guests, you can drink in the dazzling waters of the Ionian Sea from the infinity pool. A 10-minute walk from the charming harbourside village of Agios Nikolaos, Aurora’s sleek contemporary yet traditional architecture is gorgeous. It is perfectly situated to enjoy commanding views of the Ionian from beside the villa’s fireplace, while soaking in the jacuzzi, as you enjoy a meal in one of the al fresco dining areas or while you relax in one of the many exquisitely designed bedrooms.
Take a deep breath...
...and plunge into the best Zakynthos has to offer. At The Thinking Traveller, we will help you craft an unforgettable stay with sparkling views of the Ionian Sea. Allow us to recommend our luxury villa in Zakynthos surrounded by breathtaking coastal scenery and share the best-kept secrets of the island with you. Nature, gastronomy, relaxation, adventure: we provide insider recommendations that ensure you experience the real Zakynthos.
Make your next holiday something special with our exclusive villas. Our team regularly stays at the properties we offer, ensuring first-hand knowledge of our villas and their surrounding areas. Contact one of our Villa Specialists and allow us to handcraft your stay.