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ZAKYNTHOS

Zakynthos (Zante) is a verdant island endowed with fertile valleys and a temperate climate. The diversity of its landscape has resulted in different types of beaches: there are sandy beaches in secluded coves where the tranquil waters are deep blue on the island’s southeastern side; but, if you prefer rugged cliffs and the underwater world, try the west side of the island.

ZAKYNTHOS

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Zakynthos is yet another Ionian island endowed by nature with unique beauties. It is the southernmost island in the group with its third largest population. It is located south of Kefalonia and west of the Peloponnese.
The city of Zakynthos (Hora) is the capital and cultural centre of the island and has many interesting places such as the Byzantine Museum, the Museum of Solomos and Kalvos, the Church of Agios Dionysios and the Church of Agios Nikolaos.
Venetians occupied the island from 1484 to 1797, and called it “Fioro tou Levante” (Flower of the East) for its 7,000 species of flowers. It is the third-largest of the Ionian Islands, after Corfu and Kefalonia. The island is known internationally as “Zante”. Its founder, the hero Zakynthos, son of Dardanos, king of Phrygia, was the island’s first inhabitant who founded the ancient citadel. The Venetian castle was built over the ruins of the island’s citadel.
The Venetian architectural influence is visible on Zakynthos, despite the damage it has suffered at times from the intense volcanic activity in the region. After the disastrous earthquake in 1953, and the fire that followed, a significant number of historic monuments and churches were destroyed, with the result that the cultural treasures housed in these buildings were lost forever. The city was rebuilt with strict anti-seismic specifications and respect for the architectural tradition.
Zakynthos is a mountainous island characterized by pine-clad mountains and fertile plains that create endless green landscapes. The island’s idyllic beaches, rocky coasts, and impressive sea caves win the admiration of visitors. Some of the most famous Greek island beaches are here, such as Navagio, Laganas, Volimes and others.
Zakynthos is an island with a special culture. It has seen great intellectual flourishing and has produced important people who have distinguished themselves in the fine arts, literature, poetry etc. It is the homeland of the national Greek poet Dionysios Solomos, of Andreas Kalvos, and the home of Grigoris Xenopoulos and other famous names of our more recent history.
On Zakynthos an effort has been made to protect two endangered species: the sea turtle caretta-caretta and the Mediterranean seal monachus-monachus. In the gulf of Lagana a National Sea Park was established to protect them.

Source: Visit Greece - The Official website of the Greek Tourism Organisation