I stayed here with my Boyfriend in Aug 2012. Basically we were looking for somewhere near the beach but on a budget and good for the loggerhead turtles, and this ticked all the boxes. Don't book if you are looking for any great home comforts or 4* service - its a basic apartment block, cheap, cheerful and typical cheap Greek apartments. The rooms are basic but clean and felt secure (since we were robbed in Turkey a few years back). Ours did not have a fridge or any glasses - you have to book self catering for that, B&B rooms do not provide one, so beware. If you have never been to basic Greek apartments before, get used to the fact the shower cubicles are small and water can be tepid if showering at peak times/after dark as it is solar heated. We never had a problem with running out of hot water, but the small cubicle can mean puddles on the bathroom floor. Also get used to the fact you cannot flush toilet paper etc down their toilets due to narrow pipes/rubbish sewers - take an abudnant supply of cheap nappy bags and there will be no whiff from the bin if you use one bag per toilet trip. There is no air con so it can get a bit hot if you leave the balcony doors closed over night (although was often quite cool in the eve for Greece), but never had any mosquito problems. Never ate/drank at the Alkyonis so I can't comment on breakfast/snacks. Due to the fact you are in Laganas and its a party resort, expect some noise from the other rooms - there is usually loud music in the pool area in the eve and some rooms had music on in the early hours or would be taking with friends, but no one was ever rowdy or trouble from what we saw/heard. Alot of people were only going out as we were getting back in so they were usually sleeping early eve. We ended up having a couple of early nights what with diving trips and sun stroke, but the hotel noise never bothered us. Pool was clean and fairly quiet late afteroon, but we went to the beach every day, we just had the occasional pool dip late afternoon.
Turn left out of the hotel and you will be at the Kalamaki end of Laganas beach, which is cleaner, quieter and has nicer food. If you go to the other end of the resort at the the bottom of the srip area the beach is horrible, dirty and noisy and early in the morning has people sleeping there after a heavy night. Sunbeds do cost but I dont recall them being too expensive and the sun bed guy is friendly and remembered us every day. For lunch on the beach, go to the Blue waves Taverna - friendly staff and tasty food. Greek dishes such as souvaki are reccomended. The Taverna on the other side of the road by the beach wasn't very nice for food, but had toilets. beware there are nesting turtles/eggs on the beach so please respect the area if the 'turtle police' ask you to move away from the nests. If you are lucky you may get to see some of the turtles hatch in early eve - amazing but everyone crowds round. Lookey-lookey men aren't too much hassle - just say no and they don't bother you. If you are up for a walk, walk along the beach to Kalamaki for a change of area. We saw loggerhead turtles in the sea over here and the beach is quieter and more relaxed. Its def worth getting a mask and snorkel.
The restaurants near the hotel and on the way towards the srip are nicer than the ones on/near the strip. most were offering deals. garden of eden and the steak house were nice (but service was sooooo sloooow on our last day), as were a few others on the way from the hotel towards the strip, but I think if you want to have nicer food, go to a different resort, as it felt like it was geared up for party goers and not for nice traditional food. jug of house wine is cheap but nothing amazing, but worth it if you are counting pennies. The local dishes (stifado etc) are def the best though and worth a try.
There are a couple of little shops near the hotel fine for all the basics - ie a breakfast yogurt (bring plastic cutlery/cups with you), drinks and the odd snack. locals are friendly if you are friendly and it is a nice touch to learn how to say a couple of basic greek words such as 'thank you'.
There was a bowling bar near the hotel (opposite the Canadian) with new friendly reps we went to for chilled out drinks. big tv, pool table, mini bowling and nice cocktails. often empty but we didnt always want full on bars as we are not big clubbers. the strip wasn't as full as expected, but we did our thing and had a very drunken night in some of the bars and smaller clubs and paid for it the next day with hang overs.
beware of the heat there - although it didnt feel stupidly hot on the beach (tolerated 35c+ in Bulgaria and survived Egypt for 2 weeks with no problem) we both suffered with a little sun stroke (despite bf being 1/4 Egyptian and dark skinned!!) and sun burn - something we also rarely suffer from. Make use of the parasols on the beach, go for regular paddles, drink LOTS and don't use P20 sun cream!!!! We usually use Piz Buin day long and this usually works well but didnt this year and suffered for it.
Nice day trip options are diving/snorkelling - some of the dive schools aren't amazing but OK for a taster day, the glass bottom style boat trips looked oK but didnt book any. we hired a quad bike (car/moped also an option) and went for a day trip around the peninsula east of Laganas and Kalamaki. There are some lovely little quiet resorts around there and some amazing beaches. Its certainly worth getting out of the town and seeing some more of the island and the real Zante. There is a little beach in the peninsula called turtle beach (if you get a map the car hire places/locals will tell you where is nice to visit), which if you have a powerful enough quad (ours was very underpowered) you can get up over the hills and down to the beach - its meant to be a great place for nesting turtles, but we didnt see any as it wasn't the idea time of year. it is VERY steep in places and our quad was too underpowered to drive both of us up some of the hills though, so beware if there are two of you (I should add neither of us are overweight).
Unfortunately my camera broke, so i didn't get any photos of the rooms, but have added a few of the nearby beach and baby turtle.
- Also Known As:
- Alkyonis Hotel Laganas
- Alkyonis Zakynthos/Laganas