Let me tell you something! I’ve been to many Greek islands, but Zakynthos is my favorite! I loved its never-ending beaches, delicious food and amazing vibe.
The landscape in Zakynthos is a rich tapestry of dense woodland and olive groves in the interior, surrounded by a coastline of long, shallow, golden beaches, secluded coves, towering white cliffs, all lapped by the inviting crystal blue waters of the Ionian Sea.
Among all this breathtaking beauty, there are certain places you dare not miss, whenever you visit this island – one of them is the Mizithres Beach, Zakynthos! The island is often referred to by its Italian name of Zante, having been under Venetian rule for over three centuries.
Rising straight up from the depths of the sea, beneath the towering 300 metre vertical white Keri Cliffs, the two massive conical-shaped rocks of white limestone at Mizithres, are a feast for the eyes. The Mizithres Rocks were sculpted by nature and are the result of violent and destructive seismic activity over thousands of years.
The most recent earthquake occurred in 1953. It claimed many lives and destroyed most of the buildings on Zakynthos and the neighbouring island of Kefalonia. A smaller earthquake also hit the island in 2018 but caused no deaths and minimal damage.
1. Where is Mizithres?
The two Mizithres rocks are located on the south-western peninsula of the island, less than two kilometres from the small village of Keri and only 15 kilometres from the main town of Zakynthos.
There are three main vantage points from where you can admire Mizithres:
- from atop the Keri Cliffs
- from Keri Lighthouse
- from a boat on the water
All the places listed above are quite unique and truly magnificent. While the view from the cliffs looking down to Mizithres is regarded as the best viewpoint in Zakynthos, viewing Mizithres from the sea, with the dramatic white cliffs and the blue Mediterranean sky as a backdrop, gives you a certain sense of scale and grandeur of this magical setting.
2. Mizithres Viewpoint Zakynthos – what to expect and how to get there
The Mizithres Viewpoint can be reached by car, motorcycle or on foot, being a mere kilometre from the small village of Keri, from where you can proceed to the Keri Lighthouse.
Once you reach the historic Keri Lighthouse and restaurant, you can park your vehicle there, and continue on foot for about 10 minutes following a gravel road running through a dense forest. If you’re there in the middle of the summer and in the middle of the day, keep in mind that it becomes incredibly hot.
Once you reach the edge of the cliff, the splendour of Mizithres below will come into view – a sight that will stay with you for the rest of your life. The blue sea, the white cliffs, the white beach, the rocks…it’s so, so beautiful. Photographers will simply never stop clicking.
There are no railings on the edge, so be extra careful when venturing close to the cliff face, especially if you have children. People have fallen to their deaths here. For cell phone photographers, a long selfie stick would be useful to capture the dramatic scenery without venturing too close to the edge.
If you have some energy in reserve, a 10 minute hike further up the hill will lead you to several other viewpoints, directly above the Mizithres rocks. I stayed for about 30 minutes here, admiring the views. It’s a lot of beauty to take in!
There are also several sightseeing tours available from the main town, taking you to various tourist attractions in Zakynthos, including the Mizithres Viewpoint. These organised tours save you time and take out the stress of driving around on your own, by picking you up and dropping you off at your door.
Renting a car or an ATV is the most popular way for tourists to get around the island, but to get the best prices, it’s best to book online before you arrive. I will talk about transport in Zakynthos in detail below.
For a truly unforgettable hassle-free experience, you can book a day tour online. Your itinerary will include a 100 metre walk across a rope and wooden bridge to the picturesque Cameo Island, where you may spot a turtle or two, the Keri Cliffs and Mizithres viewpoint.
You then travel north for about 10 kilometres through the lush countryside, to the village of Agalas from where you proceed down a 150 metre path to the legendary Damiano’s Cave. This massive cave is filled with stunning stalactites, stalagmites and exquisite rock formations, from where fantastic views of the sea and the hilly countryside can be seen. End your tour at one of the sites nearby, enjoying a stunning and romantic sunset.
3. Keri Lighthouse Restaurant – best view of Mizithres
For one of the best restaurant views on the planet, stop for a snack at the Keri Lighthouse Restaurant. Or even better, after a long day relaxing on the beach and taking in the majestic scenery, pop in here at sunset and enjoy a glass of wine or cocktail, looking down onto Mizithres and watch the blue of the Mediterranean and the white cliffs turn all shades of red and gold as the sun sinks into the horizon. Not a bad way to end a perfect day!
The restaurant has a viewing platform with protective railing, jutting out of the cliff, for epic photos and views of Mizithres and the scenery below. It’s definitely not a place for those who are afraid of heights. Fortunately, I’m not, so I enjoyed this place for a couple of minutes, until other tourists came, wanting to take photos.
And the menu? Wow! Where do I start? Freshly caught seafood, meat, poultry and vegetable dishes, like you have never tasted before. All dishes come with the aromatic fragrances of traditional Greek herbs that grow wild virtually everywhere around here.
The roast lamb (kleftiko) with potato edges infused with freshly-picked oregano, or the traditional moussaka, and souvlaki, are not to be missed. For the adventurous, dishes like grilled octopus, rabbit stew and pan fried goose, are sensational, and so are the pizzas.
I have to admit, I fell in love to their pizzas, they’re sensational! I love it so much that I came back to this restaurant near Mizithres twice!
Whatever choice you make, the stunning views enjoyed from your table, will make your meal a memorable occasion. Drown all that with a glass of wine or a refreshing shot of ouzo, and if you dare, try the local tsipouro, which is the closest thing to rocket fuel.
If you have a sweet tooth, you are in deep, deep trouble. Greek desserts will have you salivating, and are extremely sweet, but oh so yummy. If you are one of those that watches your figure and counts your calorie intake, I’m afraid you’re in the wrong country.
Set in this majestic location, and serving such delicious Mediterranean style food, Keri Lighthouse Restaurant gets packed during the peak season, so it’s best to book online a few days ahead to secure a table. For more info or reservations, check out their website.
While you’re there take a stroll to the century-old Keri Lighthouse, perched on top of the cliffs for even more breathtaking views of the Mizithres.
4. Mizithres Beach and how to get there
Nature’s architects were not entirely satisfied with their works at Mizithres, and decided to throw in another jewel into this already beautiful landscape for us to enjoy… Mizithres Beach!
Situated along both sides of the Mizithres rocks, and directly beneath the Keri Cliffs, this secluded snow white pebbly beach is accessible only by boat. As far as beauty goes, Mizithres Beach is a serious competitor to Navagio Beach and Porto Limnionas as the most beautiful beach in Zakynthos. The views from the foot of the cliffs and the Mizithres rocks, are simply out of this world!
The easiest way to get to this exotic location, is to rent a motorboat from Keri Beach. No skipper’s licence is required, and you can choose between a full and half day rental. There are many rental places right on Keri Beach. If the price doesn’t sound right, make sure to ask somewhere else.
A four hour rental may set you back around €80 per boat, but prices do vary depending on what’s on offer. There are also various organised cruise tours available, taking away the stress of handling the boat on your own, and allowing you to totally relax whilst enjoying the views.
When we visited, we chose to rent a boat by ourselves and it was the best decision! On our way to Mizithres, we stopped a few times to take in the views and when we came back, we stopped for a few minutes at Marathonisi Island, also known as Turtle Island. This island is famous as a place to snorkels with turtles.
No matter which option you choose, the trip along the way is a joy all on its own, passing by Turtle Island, and the famous Keri Caves, where you can stop for a snorkel in crystal water among incredible undersea caves and fascinating rock formations. You can actually stop anywhere along the route to snorkel or just admire this beautiful and rugged coastline from your boat.
There are no facilities whatsoever on Mizithres Beach, Zante so take all your supplies and gear with you. No toilets, no showers, no bars no restaurants, no nothing. It’s just you, the cliffs, the Mizithres rocks and the crystal blue Ionian Sea. Snorkelling here is sublime. Best to bring your own diving gear.
You are not allowed to beach your boat. You must drop anchor a little offshore and swim to the beach. If you anchor gets stuck on the reef, a local diver staying nearby will retrieve it for you, at a cost of around €20.
5. Kayaking to Mizithres Beach
If you’re an experienced kayaker, there is no better way to appreciate the splendour of this coastline, than from a kayak. A three hour paddle from Keri Beach to Mizithres Beach and back, may just be one of the most scenic trips you’ll ever take. Check the weather forecast and sea conditions before setting out, as the mountainous and rocky shoreline does not allow you to land anywhere, if you become tired.
Viewing Mizithres Beach, the rocks, the cliffs in the background and the rest of this rugged and imposing coastline, slowly and really close up from a low vantage point, is a unique experience that cannot be appreciated from fast moving boats.
A personally rewarding experience…as only serious kayakers will know. The water is so clear, you’ll think you’re floating in mid-air. Just do it! Important note – this route is only for advanced kayakers.
There are several kayak and snorkelling tour companies along the Laganas Bay. Usually, tours start from Keri Beach and you can read more about kayaking to Mizithres here.
6. Car and scooter rental in Zakynthos
Most tourists choose to rent cars, scooters or ATVs to get around the island. Having your own vehicle gives you the freedom to come and go as you please, with no time restrictions or deadlines, and they are fairly cheap to rent.
There are literally dozens of rental companies scattered in and around the main town, at the airport and the harbour. All offer a wide range of cars from luxury to economy and minivan, while motorcycle sizes vary from 50cc up to 300cc and even quad bikes.
Prices for vehicles start from around €35 per day, while scooters may cost as little as €15 per day. Most rental companies offer free pick up and return, either to or from the airport, harbour or your door, within a 10 km radius from their depots. All come with standard 3rd party insurance and all bikes come with helmets.
Booking online and well ahead, especially at peak season, is highly recommended to ensure you get the cheapest prices. For more information or bookings, click here or here.
7. Where to stay in Zakynthos
If you’re looking for accommodation in a good location, at a good price, I’ve got you covered. Here are the best value-for-money options for each budget!
- Budget – Aggeliki Studios – beautiful rooms in good location, beautiful garden, amazing hosts, good amenities
- Mid-Range – Alterego Studios – awesome location, clean and spacious rooms, beautiful pool, close to many restaurants and shops
- Luxury – Zante Maris Suites – beautiful views and infinity pool, excellent restaurant on site, luxurious and spacious rooms, friendly staff
Whether you view Mizithres Rocks, the Keri Cliffs or Mizithres Beach for the first or the hundredth time, the natural and raw beauty of these geological wonders, will never cease to amaze you. With the two colours of blue and white featuring so prominently in this section of the island, this is the spot where the largest Greek flag in the world is located.
All this time, you may have been wondering how Mizithres got its name. Well, the Greek people always like to keep things uncomplicated. The rocks just resemble two heads of mizithra, a local ricotta-type cheese, rising up from the sea.
If you expected some long mythical fairy tale or a historical explanation, sorry to have disappointed you. It was just cheese!
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to let me know in the comments section below. May the travel bug bite you!