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Dreamy turquoise water, gentle waves and endless days of deep-blue skies and sunshine. That's just one way to describe summer holidays to Kalamaki, Greece.
One of Zakynthos’ most peaceful and naturally beautiful beach resorts Kalamaki, is tucked away on the island’s southern coast, a few kilometres outside Zante Town. Known for its carefully preserved beach that’s popular with rare nesting turtles, the resort is ideal for couples and families looking for a relaxing break with lovely Greek tavernas, markets, and a top waterpark nearby.
This resort is also within easy reach of the airport, so you’ll be relaxing at your hotel before you know it.
Kalamaki enjoys warm, Mediterranean summers and mild winters. Sunshine is almost guaranteed from June to August, and it's often warm enough for a comfortable dip in the sea from around late May until October, or even November.
3 hours and 30 minutes
Zakynthos International Airport (ZTH).
Book your holiday to Kalamaki with Thomas Cook to spend the sunny days on a golden beach, exploring Zakynthos’ rolling countryside and visiting Tsilivi Water Park with the kids.
What is included ?
What is included ?
What is included ?
What is included ?
What is included ?
Even if your holiday is only a few days, you must make time to visit Navagio, an amazing sandy cove with huge cliffs and the remains of a shipwreck. While it can be very busy in the peak season, you can beat the crowds by arriving in the early morning when you'll have more space to relax on the beach before the cruise ships arrive later. You can also see the cove from the viewpoint, 600 feet above the ground, where you'll probably recognise the view from postcards and travel guides.
Another great idea is to find a west-facing viewpoint to watch the sunset, which Zante is renowned for. There are a few restaurants where you can get unspoilt views of the soft evening light, although arrive at least an hour before the sun sets so you can grab a seat and have a drink.
The beach at Kalamaki is one of the best in Zante, with miles of uninterrupted sands and plenty of sun loungers. At the height of summer, it can get busy near the restaurants and bars, although you can easily find quieter sections between Kalamaki and the resort of Laganas. Another excellent beach on the island is Agios Nikolaos beach, where you'll find a good range of water sports and a British bar, all accessible via a free shuttle service from the main resort.
Visit the Blue Caves, where you can see some incredible rock formations via a boat tour from three destinations around the island: Cape Skinari, Keri and Porto Vromi, although many would argue that the caves near Cape Skinari are the most impressive. From this cape, you can also spot the ruins from the earthquake that struck Zante in 1953.
Zante, like the other Greek Islands, is famed for its Mediterranean cuisine, with ingredients like olive oil, fresh herbs and seafood. Try the mouth-watering aubergine and meat moussaka, or treat yourself to an anise-flavoured Ouzo aperitif, similar to Sambuca and popular throughout Greece. Zante also has restaurants serving international cuisine such as Italian, Indian, and British, so there's something for all tastes during your holiday.
Beach lovers: The spotless white sand is the perfect place to relax, with wild beauty and a peaceful atmosphere.
Families: Families of any age will love Kalamaki’s beaches, mini-golf and bike rides, plus one of the island’s best waterparks.
Couples: Explore the peaceful countryside, dine in a seafront taverna, and take a walk along the beach after dark to spot the turtles during your holiday here.
Language: The language spoken is Greek, although you'll find a basic level of English is spoken in most hotels, restaurants, and other tourist locations. Local people always appreciate any attempt to speak their language, even if it is just a few words, so grab a Greek phrase book or download an app.
Currency: The currency used is the Euro (€).
Local time: 2 hours ahead of GMT/UK time.
Fly to: Zante is served by Zakynthos International Airport (ZTH), which is just 3km from Kalamaki.
Flight time from UK: Approximately 3 hours and 30 minutes from the UK.
Tourist information: Further Kalamaki tourist information can be found at www.visitgreece.gr/en/greek_islands/ionian_islands/zakynthos
Visa health: Before you travel, visit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/greece for recommendations and advice on visas and health for your holiday to Kalamaki
Temperature: 10-27 (°C)
Explore Kalamaki’s wild countryside in the spring, before the peak crowds have arrived and temperatures hover in the mid-teens (°C). The town’s long, dry summers start in May and run through to September or even October. Average temperatures in the mid-20s make this the ideal time to hit the resort’s famous white sandy beach, but remember to bring sunscreen on your holiday so you can make the most of those lazy days on the beach without burning.
It's not unusual for the thermometer to climb well above 30 (°C) in July and August, although temperatures will still be much cooler than on the Greek mainland. Things start to cool down in autumn, and rain becomes more common by October, but you can still enjoy plenty of sunshine and warm sea water even at this time. Winter in Kalamaki is wet, but still much milder than what you'd expect in northern Europe. Temperatures very rarely drop below 10 (°C) throughout this season.
By bike: Kalamaki is a small and reasonably flat resort that is enjoyable to explore on two wheels. Bicycles can be hired from local companies or your hotel, for just the day or longer.
By bus: Zakynthos is well connected by buses, which are a cheap and efficient way of getting around the island. A bus service stops regularly at the resort, on its way to neighbouring resorts like Zante Town.
By taxi: Grabbing a taxi is a quick option for short journeys, including airport transfers, as Zakynthos Airport is just a 10-minute drive away. There's a taxi rank in the centre of Kalamaki, although always remember to agree a fare before you set off.
By car: Hiring a car can give you more flexibility on where you travel to and when during your holiday here. However, Zante is a small island with a good public transport network, so hiring a car is not essential.
Carnival: The favourite event on Zakynthos’ calendar is Carnival, held for two weeks every February to March. Nearly all towns and cities on the island take part, with traditional parades, food and dancing, as well as events like bike rides, concerts, and street theatre. This is a fantastic way to experience a traditional Greek celebration during your Kalamaki holiday.
St. Dionisios celebrations: In August every year, the island’s residents get together to celebrate their patron saint. As well as a large market, there’s a parade through the town where the body of the saint is carried in his golden casket; people suffering from illnesses will lie on the floor so the casket passes over them, as the saint is believed to be capable of performing miracles. The town celebrations end with a spectacular fireworks display.