Zakynthos is very popular with package tourists, the vast majority textile, with predictable results. Some visitors who visit with naturism in mind come away disappointed. However there are several beaches with plenty of naturist fans, although no guarantees that nudism is available in high season. Most of these beaches are around the Gulf of Laganas, set into the south end of the island.
Some Barefoot reporters suggest that some of the best beaches on Z cannot be reached by land. It's an idea to hire a boat and explore these, together with the tiny islands that surround Zakynthos.
Here the beaches are listed in clockwise order starting from Zakinthos Town
Banana Beach on the Vasilikos peninsula is a very long and, as the name suggests, banana-shaped beach. Can be a bit windy. When visited by my reporters in May 2005 it was very early in the season so not many people around. My contributors were the only naturists that they could see but no-one batted an eyelid, including the man who collected the money for the sun beds. A nice taverna just up from the beach is available and the week we were there they were just opening up the beach bars. So set the trend, folks, and try Banana beach. It was also the only beach that my contributors were told was naturist by their holiday representative.
Parked at the taverna car park on the beach (Male couple 2011) and walked to the left past several rows of sunbed sections (about 20 mins) to find a bay area that was unpopulated as we saw no other nudists there. Over the space of 2 hours a couple of walkers passed us by. At around 5pm two locals started to fish this beach and walked past us saying nothing but, on their return, said it was inappropriate as women and children use this area and threatened to call the police. We saw no-one else until around 6.30pm when women and children arrived at the next bay so we left the beach. This appears to have become a very heavily populated area and on the basis of our experience we could not recommend this to other nudists.
August 2014 - No nudist place. All textiles.
On the very most southern tip of Zakynthos Island there is a beach called Gerakas beach, the famous turtle beach. A long drive down from Zante (30mins) by car. Before the beach there is car parking, the lazy bar, a coffee hut and a shop. Walk down the slope onto the beach and turn right.
This beach has featured for many years in Cap'n Barefoot's Naturist Guide, but the indications are that it is not now really available for nudism. There are numerous stories of police activity, and even the conservation warden getting involved. It's much to be regretted but Gerakas cannot now be recommended as a naturist destination.
September 2011 - On the right hand side of the beach we were the first nudists around midday, and were soon joined by four others. It seemed others were waiting for someone to start the trend! The beach is a mixture of stone and sand. Clothed bathers either walked past and took no notice or turned back. There was no evidence of police or warden intervention.
July 2012 I can confirm that although this is a lovely beach it is not great for naturists. The right end is okay but is very stoney with lots of families with small children nearby.
The left end seemed to me to be used by those of a rather exhibitionist nature. Go to see as a lovely beach but with nothing else in mind.
June 2014 (lifted from the forum). We thought we would be coming home with Lilly White bums. But I'm very pleased to report that Gerakas Beach is very much open to naturists. Once you get to the beach turn right, the naturist section is on the far right. There were 5 or 6 couples enjoying the sunshine on all the days we were there.
August 2014. Naturist family on the right at the edge of the beach, after mud place.
August 2014 I was there four times, at the left end of the beach, and we are 6 or 7 couples naturist!
August 2015 - Only one nude couple on the left part of the beach, surrounded by textiles…
May 2016 - Naturists are back! On a quiet day on the left side were 3-4 nude or topless couples of all ages and 1-2 single nude males. Some left around 3pm, some others joined. Excellent place to strip down and enjoy the beautiful beach (best of the island). Only downside is a number of clothed people walking by to "view the fence at the end". Yeah right!
June 2016 Around 15 naturists on the far left of the beach. A mix of all ages, couples, families and single men. Beware the narrow minded textiles walking down to gawp!
If you want to read about Gerakas as it once was, see my "Some we have lost" archive.
Note from the Captain: It is well known that the sea turtles on Zakynthos are threatened. Tourism brings benefits to the Greek Islands but it can be ecologically damaging too. A considerable degree of responsibility is required of those who visit beaches which are also turtle nesting sites. In particular, any nests should not be disturbed, any turtles should not be "assisted" to the sea (it is essential to their development that they find their own way) and the beach should not be visited at night. And as with all beaches, litter should not be left. True naturists leave only footprints in the sand. This web page exhorts all those who visit Zakynthos to follow these guidelines. For more information visit the web site of the Sea Turtle Protection Society of Greece.
A nice long beach with some "private small bays" on the right.
From Zakynthos go towards Gerakas. after about 10km there is a road sign that points left to Porto Zoro (0.4 km), follow the road all the way: a great long beach.
July 2012 To the right of the beach as you look out to sea and past the large rocky outcrop there is an area where you could bare all, however I visited several times and it was not used by anyone probably because it really was not very nice. i would give this one a miss as it is really just a pile of rocks with no nice sitting and bathing area to speak of. Zorro beach is however very nice for textiles and about 15 minutes out of Zante town.
To reach this beach by car you drive the road eastward from Argassi, after about 6-8 km and after passing a nice taverna, very nicely situated high over the sea, turn to the right up for a hill, marked Dahfni beach (very hard to detect). If you miss that way, after another two km there is another way to the right marked Melia beach. The road to Dafni is improved this year (it has been levelled and concrete and stone added in places) but the road to Melia is still rough.
They lead to a former (1996) taverna in the south coast. Park the car and walk eastward along the beach around the hedge about 300 metres away. There is a wonderful beach just under very wild and high cliffs. You still have to walk round the cliff face to get to the beach at Melia. The beach is very little populated and the bathing is wonderful. It is quite narrow with a limited number of sandy areas, at most points you have to walk through stones and rocks while entering the sea.
Alternative directions: When going to Daphne, head for Porto Zoro on the Vasilikos peninsula. It is signposted, but only in Greek, off on the right when driving from Argassi towards Gerakas. You drive for about half a mile up very steep and winding tracks (about 3km) and it's better in a 4x4. It looks as though you are driving through someone's farmyard, but persevere.
There are three different roads off the main road road from Argassi which all lead to the beach, however for the nearest parking to the nude area, you will need to take the last turn-off signposted on the right on a sharp left-hand turn (but road is quite rough, as they all are).
Views are breathtaking, and it's a clothes-optional beach on the left when you reach the car park. To the right are bars, etc.
There were about half a dozen couples there and a family when my correspondent was there (June 2001), all nude. Another contributor from 2001 says the beach itself attracts families, couples and single men, sometimes in groups. It's relaxed and unthreatening, very little shade, and nowhere to throw rubbish. A long walk to get a drink. Be careful about spiking umbrellas in sand, as it's a turtle nesting beach, and spikes can damage nests (see Note from the Captain).
A June 2003 report described this as best beach on the island for nude sunbathing. Nude area at far left of the beach. Plenty of couples every day and a few nude men on their own (the far end of beach seems to be a pick-up point for gay men). Not many textiles and great for swimming.
Be aware, though, that like many beaches on Zakynthos the number of nudists - indeed whether there are any at all - varies, and the Captain has had reports of no naturist activity at all on Dahfni.
In the mornings (in August) you can count how many turtles came up in the night to lay their eggs or how many baby turtles had gone down to the water. (See Note from the Captain on this page).
One of my earliest contributors rated it 9 out of 10.
But reports from August 1999 suggest it was disappointing. There was a very small naturist section at the left end of the very crowded and hard-to-reach beach. It was rather dangerous to stay close to the rock fall. But if you go further to the left, involving some "not too difficult" climbing you can find a few other small naturist beaches. In August there were about 10 to 20 naturists there.
A report from July/August 2000 describes this as a lovely beach. Only 3 naturists including my contributor, though. If you don't mind being in a minority, you'll enjoy it here. Don't let the textiles worry you.
A report from September 2000 says the left end of the beach was frequented by naturists, especially couples: few people, no more than 5 couples. The beach is beautiful but dangerous because of falling rocks. Reports from September 2001 say it is a very narrow beach but quiet and long, there were only about 15 couples at any one time, the sea in front of the beach is very safe and quiet because it is a restricted area for the loggerhead turtles and no boats are allowed in the area. Another report from 2001 says the naturists are pushed to the far end of the beach where the shoreline is narrow but it is certainly pleasant enough. The naturist section was never busy, maximum around a dozen at any one time, and we would recommend the beach to anyone who likes a bit of peace and quiet.
Facilities are available on the main beach section. The only drawback my contributors found was the drive to get there, watch out for damage to your hire car on the long potholed track from the main road!
A report from summer 2002 confirms that naturist activity seemed well tolerated and also recommended the shingly cove just to the east.
Barefooters who visited in August 2005 got there early in the morning (around 11 am) and were the first nudists on the left part of the beach. In order to reach that part of the beach, they had to walk all the way to some rocks and even through the sea. For some time we were the only nudists there. Later only one couple joined us. The man decided to strip off, while the lady sunbathed topless. We have visited this beach on one more occasion (late in the afternoon) and this time there were three or four more couples, all naked.
But in June 2006 the beach was closed in order to protect the turtles. It was due to open on 1 July. Good news for the turtles, despite disappointing visiting Barefooters.
May - At the left end, just before the landslide, is a section with some fixed parasols and older white sunbeds for naturists. It is guarded by one or two men, like the other sunbed areas also have their own guardian cafes. Reporter has visited it with his girlfriend. One couple was enjoying the sun, the beds and the lack of wind on this part of the beach. Another nude couple was on the other side of the landslide.
This beach, at the extreme eastern end of Laganas bay is almost entirely naturist. Head for Kalamaki and turn up towards the Cave Bar - past that, take the left rough road and it will lead right to the beach. There are NO facilities at all and not many tourists. Many locals go there, a lot of single guys (some gay) and lots of couples too. Completely relaxed for all. One Barefooter rated it 100%.
It is 600mtrs from the Cave Bar. You can take a car most of the way but you will need to be very careful. You can also reach it by walking from the eastern end of Kalamaki just round some large rocks. The beach had single males, single females, male couples, female couples and mixed sex couples, 99% of which were nude when Barefoot reporters were there in early June 2008. Good access to the water which shelved gradually out. You could walk the length of the beach (about 600mtrs) totally naked.
September 2011 - Note the road to the Cave Bar is straight ahead on the left coming from Zante, don't take the right turn to Kalimaki. The road from the Cave bar is very rough, so using a hired car it's best to park there and walk to the beach (about 15 mins.). The beach was almost exclusively nudist with a mixture of singles and couples. It's a shingle beach but the furthest to the left had sandy patches and rock shelter. There are signs to a taverna on the road ahead of the last turn before the beach but we didn't see it. To get to Vrontonero from Crystal beach take the coastal path that leads from the beach upwards and along the coast for about 10 minutes. This cuts out the rather difficult walk from Crystal Beach. However i was accosted several times which I found uncomfortable. The beach was well worth it with several couples and 4/5 single men. Water and beach very clean. All in all a very nice beach for naturists.
August 2014 - Very nice place for naturists. I think that we can split this beach in two parts. The first, west side, is good for couples, family or single. The second, over the two great rocks and close to the cave, for swingers or exhibitionists.
August 2014 - Only for single mens!
is an unofficial nudist beach (report from September 2005). It is easily found by walking to the far end of the main road away from Laganas end and turning to the sea at the Taxi rank. Nudists used the far end of the beach away from the Hotel Cristal. The half-way point seems to be the cut off for reasonable distance from the hotel and as a guide the 'Camel's Hump' on the cliff is a landmark.
Some people walk past to the next bay but it is not a voyeur route. The water was crystal clear and still as a mill pond for a number of days but as the weather and full moon took its toll, the water was a little rougher. The beach was relaxed with the Turtle watch volunteers not worrying about nudists. The beach appears 'dirty' but most of the debris is natural with dried seaweed looking like shredded paper and 'sand balls' like Kiwi fruits. The time of year meant the beach was never overly busy and the nude end reflected that.
As you enter the beach by Crystal Beach Hotel you walk to the left for about 3 mins and you come to the section where everybody is enjoying the sun all over their bodies. The fruit seller comes and delivers his fruit about 5 times each day. After speaking to a few Greek people this beach is known by them and this is where the natives come and bathe naked. At this part of the beach you can also wade past the large rock obstruction and you come to a totally secluded beach solely used by naturists. The sea is shallow and warm, you can play bat and ball in the sea without much in the way of people staring (interestingly, my contributor says his attractive 21-year-old wife usually gets stared at on "regular" beaches, but was not on the nudist beach - an example of naturist beach users treating each other with respect that sometimes is lacking elsewhere).
2012 July - I think there might be a bit of confusion here. From Crystal Beach and looking out to sea and if you walk about 7/8 minutes to the left and over a little outcrop of rocks and a bit of wading you will find yourself on Vrontonero beach. As far as I could see there is NO naturism on Crystal Beach at all !
September 2012 - At the far left of the beach where Crystal Hotel is you need to wade around some rocks to get to the naturist area, past some rocks made up of millions of amazing crystals. Just after storm of 14/15 September this was like walking through thick vegetable soup, but soon cleared up after a few days. Can also be reached by a rough track by turning right off the main Kalimaki to Zakynthos road towards the Cave bar. Not sure if this beach is still Crystal Beach or becomes Vrontonero Beach after the rocks, but either way it is very nice. Not quite as sandy as Dahfni and more pebbly access to the sea, but once over the pebbles the sea is sandy and gently shelving. Less couples and more single males than at Dahfni on the two days we were there, but no problems. Some big rocks to left-hand end for a bit of shade, but this tended to be where the single males were.
My correspondents stayed at Kalamaki towards the Laganas side of the town in July 1999. The beach runs for 3 km from Kalamaki to Laganas. Either end of the beach near the two towns the beach is very busy with not too much 'topless' sunbathing. However if you walk towards the middle of the beach there are a lot fewer people, and those that are there tend to just walk along the sea edge. The beach is about 30 m wide but is backed by dunes. Although even the 'Thomsons' information sheet in the hotel identified the centre of the beach as 'naturist' my correspondents saw no-one fully naked. However they felt quite at ease going into the dunes, and were undisturbed except for the very occasional pony trekker (3 times in two weeks), and baring all. The sand is very hot and seemed to deter any of the walkers from venturing into the dunes. The downside was having to slip on 'bottoms' when wanting to go for a swim, although once into the water these could be removed for a 'freer!' swim as there were very few other swimmers in the water at this part of the beach.
The Captain thinks this all sounds a bit furtive for real pleasure, but hopefully if more and more naturists go there it will become more and more readily accepted. Unfortunately, more recent reports talk about "tourist industry", airport, hotels, crowds, tavernas, pubs, etc, etc. And a recent report pointed out that Kalamaki beach runs into Laganas beach and at the mid-point between the two beaches you might be able to disrobe, however the constant walking parade between the two resorts, and the need to stay within three metres of the sea made this a very uncomfortable exercise. No other fellow naturists were seen.
However correspondents who visited in June 2001 report that they went to the left-hand side of the main beach where it was was a clothes-optional beach. There were about 6 to 10 couples plus the odd single man there every day - all nationalities. No problems from textiles or voyeurs. There is a more secluded bay round the small headland to the left which can be reached by track behind Cava D'Oro tavern but this looked like it was mainly although not exclusively male.
A report from a visit in October 2003 says that both Kalamaki and Laganas beaches were packed with holidaymakers, but walking between the two for about a mile and the beach was empty except for tourists walking from one to the other. Only one other couple dared to bare, but if you go into the sand dunes for 25 yards nobody comes near. My contributors found themselves a little sun-trap between some dwarf pine and spent a couple of pleasant afternoons there, never seeing a soul.
And a Barefoot reporter tells me that in August 2007 he found Kalamaki beach divided by rocks that come out to the sea. [This will be well East of the Google Map spot selected above.] The second beach, on the left hand side, easily accessible by swimming or by following a path, is used by naturists - he rated it 90%.
September 2012 - even in the middle of September there were far too many people walking along from Laganas to Kalimaki to even consider going nude, although this was probably made worse by the beach at Laganas being covered in seaweed after the storm of 14/15th September. Did not even see any naturists in the dunes. Overall it was well [worth] the extra effort to walk further on to Crystal/Vrontonera beach.
September 2015 - The left side of the beach reported in 2001 with optional-clothes was constantly used by 2 to 20 naked people of all ages. The secluded beach that is very nice and big is accessible from that described road and also by crossing through the water some 25 metres further left. It is a large beautiful nude beach. In 14 days I have seen no police nor any other problems in either of the two places and I believe it is the most accessible and reliable place for sunbathing in Zakynthos.
A nice stone beach. Barefoot reporters who visited in 2004 said when they were there "we found an older naked couple and the rest (which were some distance away) were not disturbed by their nudity. Even the guy who charged them for the sun bed and umbrella (3 Euros each) was naked."
To go there you have to follow the road from Zakynthos to Keri. When reaching a road sign that points left to Ag. Sostis, Port and Koukla, turn left. After about 1.6 km turn towards "Magic Land" (a hand-made sign) and follow the road. The end is a hotel with stairs to the beach. Try to reach the beach from the stairs before.
A collection of stone frontage to the road and offers no solace for the naturist; if however on reaching the beach you head to the left around the headland and don't mind scrambling over rocks and suffering while crawling into the water, wearing protective shoes, and rock softening mats, then you could strip off. However naturism is not meant as a penal exercise and therefore not enjoyable. Unfortunately, reports from 2005 suggest that even this rocky retreat had disappeared.
Very small, beautiful shingle bay with excellent snorkelling. Hard to find too. The turning is 100 metres or so north from Mikro Nissi, down a concrete track. Not much parking, but beach is very small. Get there early and set the trend, go late and if textiles are there you may feel awkward. It's definitely a C/O place though, and when my contributor was there everyone seemed happy. Never more than 10 folk there at a time. This beach is not marked on the tourist maps. Don't shout about it either, don't want it spoiling. A report from June 2001 says it was deserted when my correspondent visited.
Unfortunately this beach seems to be less promising in 2003. A correspondent got there first to set the trend by going nude, following the Captain's advice, but nobody followed the trend on this beach. Mainly textile couples with no other nudes at all. Gave in in the end as the beach is now quite well known and must be a stop-off point on way to lighthouse at top of island. My correspondent also reported the water was freezing and seems to have an alga that makes the water blurry. The Captain feels sure that must be a temporary phenomenon.
Another report from July 2003 said there was one German couple nude on the beach. My reporters went nude and swam and sunbathed. My contributor says it was his wife's first time nude on a beach and a perfect place to start. The setting was beautiful, the beach peaceful and clean, the water perfect.
A lovely quiet beach with "a small private bay" to the right.
From Alykanas go North along the coast, after about 5 km there is a road sign that points right to Xigia beach, a tiny track takes you down to a small parking space.
September 2012 we visited the beach several times. Care needed to be taken as a recent storm had washed some of the road away. Leave the car park and walk back a few metres, then take the left path down the hill. The storm and some recent works had made this track very difficult. On reaching the main beach turn to look right, you will see the adjoining shingle cove behind a rocky outcrop. This can be reached by wading through waist-deep clear water. Past the large rocky outcrop there is an area where you can bare all and enjoy. We took plenty of supplies for the day and enjoyed totally unspoiled lunches and fantastically 'dreamy' afternoons. Hope it remains the same.
You can walk on the RIGHT from car parking….MUCH EASIER WAY!!!
August 2014 - Very nice place but too many people in August. Not nudists, just 100% textiles.
June 2015- Fantastic small beach! 100% nudists!
As you're on the main road, before turning to Xigia beach there's a taverna called Pelagaki. There you turn right… There's a dirt road where you drive for 5 minutes. It reaches to a hidden 800 metres shingle beach where you can swim and sunbathe nude! Great place for nudists!!! If you drive a 4x4 you can park it next to the beach, otherwise you'll have to walk 100 metres… If you walk 800 metres to the far left end there you'll find some cold water 'n sulphur springs!
June-September 2013 - Exhibitionist couples having sex.
August 2014 - Some naturist couples and singles. Not very good beach, but very clean sea. Quiet place for first experience or relax time.