| Laganas of Zakynthos and special forms of tourism
The plans for developing special forms of tourism in Laganas of Zakynthos as they were presented at the 23rd national tourism exhibition Philoxenia.
The Mayor of Laganas Mr. Dionisis Komiotis in the press conference he gave during the national tourism exhibition Philoxenia talked about tourism in Laganas and the way to develop special forms of it. He also talked about improving the tourist products and how to show the less known privileges of Zakynthos island.
Laganas is the most developed, in tourism, municipality of Zaknthos island. 40% of the tourists visiting Zakynthos prefer Laganas. That means more than 600.000 tourists annually. Locals and businessmen work mostly with tourism. Zakynthos is a really privileged island with many natural beauties. Some of them are commonly known, like the only maritime park for the Caretta – Caretta turtle, but there are others which remain relatively unknown.
Laganas is a place that combines natural beauties and serenity with the cosmopolitan life and culture. Tradition, arts and environmental training with entertainment to satisfy all demands.
The Mayor Mr. Komiotis said "Laganas satisfies all senses. Your sight fills with colours, your nose with smells, your taste with local specialties and your hearing with sounds from nature".
A QUALITY INVESTMENT
Continuing his speech, Mr. Komiotis said that Laganas is one of the few places in Europe attracting young tourists who want to have fun. It is estimated that 100.000-120.000 young people visit the area every year with this type of tourism. This tourism is mostly of low budget and is controlled by tour operators. Our aim is to attract high finance tourists and prolong the tourist period. We are making a big effort to eliminate black economy.
In our effort to improve the service and lodgings¢ quality we co-operate with all the tourist bussinesmen in Zakynthos.
We have also taken over an initiative to study the same thing in other regions. On November 17th the 1st National Mayor Meeting will be held in Laganas. We do believe that the results will be very useful”, said the Mayor Dionisis Komiotis.
LAGANAS – A TOURIST RESORT FOR ALL TASTES
Laganas has everything a tourist can ask for: endless beaches and hidden caves, picturesque ports and islands, unique sunsets, green paths and picturesque villages. Gastronomic delights with local products, the local wine, pasteli and mandolato. Many hotels and all sort of lodgings, restaurants, nightclubs and shops.
SPORT - OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES
Laganas has a lot of activities to offer. You can do all sort of water sports, sailing, surfing and diving in one of the most beautiful bottoms of the sea in Greece. You can also take a walk at the mountainous paths with the age-long pine trees, ride at the 2 Jockey clubs, parachute, bike and drive in special race-tracks.
Laganas appeals to all type of tourists. Families can swim in the cove of Laganas, while the lovers of nature will be shown around by hospitable boatmen in the natural refuge of Caretta-caretta.
The swimming races “Vetalia” are held every year in Laganas. They were named after the 1st Belgian anatomist, who, in 1560 shipwrecked in the island and stayed there until his death. Swimming clubs from all over Greece participate in the race.
GASTRONOMY – AGRICULTURAL ACTIVITIES
Olives and raisins are cultivated in Laganas.
The traditional collection of olives, the modern oil presses and the vine harvest offer visitors unique experiences expanding the tourist season.
Bread and pies are baked in traditional ovens. It is worth trying the cheeses, raisins and the traditional sweets pasteli and mandolato.
ENTERTAINMENT – RECREATION
Laganas can satisfy all music preferences. Traditional music in quiet bars and taverns, pop and dance music in cosmopolitan clubs.
CULTURE – ARTS
The cultural events organized in Laganas all year round give visitors the chance to see unique local plays and festivals. Apart from the famous kantades, visitors can attend “omilies”, satirical plays where only men performed.
Starting from this year, a three-day summer festival is being held in the new open theater in Damaria Lithakias. Dionisis Savvopoulos and a band from Sicily participated in the festival. The incoming from both concerts were given to those suffered from the fires in Peloponese.
A lot of festivals are held in various villages of Laganas on August 15th.
We also organize exhibitions with books, agricultural products and items of folkloric art.
The prefecture has many sites to see: traditional settlements, dome-shaped graves in Keri, the “Paleo Ktisma” of the 15th century, which hosts an Exhibition of Folkloric Paintings in Agalas, the “12 Pigadia of Andronios”, and the churches of: Sotiras or Pandokratoras of the 16th century, the church of Panagia the Viglatsoura of the 16th century in Mouzaki, the church of Faneromeni and the Mansion of Malouhos in Lithakia.
THE SCOPES FOR IMPROVEMENT CAN ONLY BE RESTRAINED BY … INACTIVITY
Mr. Komiotis said: “Now that we have full responsibility of the local self-government, we are planning on showing the less know tourist products, on attracting special groups of tourists, and developing special forms of tourism such as family tourism, school and ecological tourism, etc. Our aim is to prolong the tourist season and attract the financially upper classes”.
The Municipality of Laganas promotes these forms of tourism by:
creating resting spots (benches, kiosks, etc)
creating a small marina in Keri, where tourist boats can anchor. Laganas is a safe natural port used by many crafts.
ECOLOGY – ENVIRONMENT
Laganas has the National Marine Park of Zakynthos. The park preserves the island¢s natural inheritance and was created in 1999. We are trying to attract students and not only, who want to combine holidays with education.
Author: Aspasia Polymerou