May - (Best Time to Visit)

Paula S           

Hi, Was just looking for a wee bit of advice. My fiance and I are heading out to Zante on 2nd May 04 for two weeks. It will be our first time visiting and infact the first time we have been abroad together. Can anyone tell me what to expect from the Ikaros hotel, Laganas and if there are any good restaurants/pubs or daytrips we dont want to miss out on? Also what is the average cost of eating out and stuff? Any comments would be much appreciated. Thanks Paula

May - (Best Time to Visit)

Paula S           

Thanks for your advice Colin. Not long to go now so we're starting to get really excited. Will post back with comments after we get back. Thanks Again. Paula

Kostas Taverna - (Restaurants in Laganas)

Paula S  (19 May 2004)         

We have just got home from Zante and I felt I had to post a comment about this restaurant, we passed by it on the way to our hotel on the first day and thought it looked nice so after unpacking our bags we went for a bite to eat. The service was fantastic and our meal was brill too. Manos, the guy who stands at the front door, is a real gent and really friendly and helpful, giving you any info you need about the island. We ended up eating here at least another 8 times during our fortnight's stay and I can honestly say, it was the best place we tried. We could get a 2 course meal with drinks and a bottle of wine for under 20!! What a bargain! Good food to try is the Chicken Souvlaki, Garlic Chicken, Vegetarian Pasta. You get a good helping of bread, rice, veg and chips with every meal. Cooked to perfection, the chicken melts in the mouth! Breakfast is also excellent either the full english or omelettes. We were just so pleased with the service we received every single time we ate here. Towards the end of our holiday, it was absolutely full every night but the waiters were always friendly, professional and provided a good laugh! The restaurant itself is a good size and clean as are the toilets. Can highly recommend Kostas. We spoke to a few couples who had only found it on their last night and were wishing they had found it at the start. Go on, give it a try, you wont be disappointed and you would be hard pushed to find such great food at such good prices anywhere else.

Weekend trip to Athens by coach - (Zante Excursions)

Paula S           

Well what a let down this was! When we arrived in Zante at the beginning of May this was the first excursion we booked as we thought it would be amazing. How disappointed we were. Firstlt, it takes around 6 hours to get there. 1hr and 20 mins by a dirty cramped ferry and 4 hours plus by a coach with bad air conditioning. The two stop offs for lunch/coffee were poorly organised and the places they stopped at were a dump. The Corinthian Canal was beautiful and one of the only good things worth seeing. Never mind, we thought, we're about to arrive at our 5 star, air conditioned hotel in the centre of Athens. Fawlty Towers didn't have a look in!! They split the coach into two groups, one group were going to the Athens Gate Hotel in the Placa (centre) and the other (our group) were going to the Candia Hotel. The Candia Hotel was on the outskirts of the city and I knew when we arrived outside it wasn't going to be good. It looked filthy from the outside. When we arrived in the reception area it looked a bit better and i hoped my instinct was wrong. Turn the stairs and bam! What a dirty, filthy, poorly kept hotel. The carpets were so dirty and stained, you were in danger of sticking to them! Got to our room where there was grafitti all over the door,the carpets were ripped, burnt, stained etc. The surfaces were dirty and sticky and the sheets were stained and unwashed. There was no air conditioning and the "view" was into a manky street. I had to complain to the guide and we were offered a different room (grudgingly) on the fifth floor which was at least clean and had obviously been refurbished quite recently. The "roof garden and pool" was another joke! When you went up to the 6th floor and outside it was a complete building site! There was rubble and tools everywhere and no barrier at the roof side, no signs or warning signals that it was a sheer drop to the ground below and I dread to think what could have happened if a child had ran out for a look. It wasn't just unclean and falsely advertised, it was downright dangerous! The "pool" was a tiny empty hole in the ground! Despite the fact that I enjoyed seeing the sights the following day, I was enraged by what we had been sold and felt duped and ripped off. I wouldnt say that it's a good trip for children either due to the incredibly long, hot journey to get there and the amount of walking involved the following day. A few of our party were unable to visit the Acropolis the following day due to the steep hills and sheer amount of climbing/walking involved. The other party who went to the Athens Gate hotel said there hotel wasn't much better than ours although I think it was at least clean. The Candia Hotel is in a no go area of the city. A five minute walk outside the door to the left leads you to a square where drugs were being openly sold on the street and you were being eyeballed by the local junkies and alcoholics. Be very careful. I wouldn't advise going into this area as we were scared stiff and it meant we were stuck in for the rest of the day and night. If you book this trip, I would ask what hotel you are going to be put it and stress the fact theat if the services advertised are not offered then you want a full refund. Good Luck! Incidently, some people on our trip had done it before and said it was far better but the it had gone way downhill.

Ikaros Hotel - (Accommodation in Laganas)

Paula            

Lovely modern hotel which was clean with very friendly and helpful staff. The rooms are basic but spotlessly clean and the maids came every day of our fortnight and cleaned the bathroom and floors etc. Sheets and towels were changed twice a week but the maids were happy to change towels more frequently if needed. The hotel is in an excellent location, only 5 mins walk to the main strip but far enough away from the rabble. Breakfast at the hotel was fine. You got bread/rolls, 2 slices of cheese, ham, jam and butter, tea/coffee, fresh orange, 2 choices of cereal, greek yoghurt and honey and a few days, we also got boiled eggs. The Chicago rock bar down the stairs was good. Cheap coctails after 7pm, 2 pool tables and karaoke or quizzes most nights after 10pm. Again staff very friendly. Mike who runs the pub is the hotel owners son. We only ate here once and weren't really impressed although the strawberry milkshakes are to die for! I would suggest taking a 2 minute walk down the road to Kostas which we found was the best taverna in Laganas by a mile. The hotel has a lovely big pool but I did find it was a bit heavy on the chlorine so you will need your goggles! Loungers at the pool are free and a mat will cost you 1.50E per day. Safety deposit boxes are available and cost us 20.00E for the fortnight. A good mix of ages in the hotel from young families, young couples and singles to older groups. There was no air conditioning in our room in the 2 weeks we were there in May but I believe they do put it on once it starts to get hotter (incidently we were roasting as we're scottish!) On the downside, the hotel was quite noisy but this was mainly due to the ignorance of other guests, slamming doors, shouting in the corridors and playing extremely loud music. You will hear the music from the pub downstairs but this generally quitened down after 10pm as there are new rules in greece about outdoor noise levels after 10pm. We would stay here again and would recommend it to anyone!

Amigos - (Bars in Laganas)

Paula            

Good atmosphere however paying 12E for two coctails was just too much especially in comparison to everywhere else. Only went once but there are far better bars with better prices along the strip.

Artemis Rock Club - (Bars in Laganas)

Paula   (23 May 2004)         

Rock club! Nah, not at all. Music was pure crap and the only rock they played was dire straits (one song). Drinks were over priced and the toilets were filthy. Didn't rate it at all. It had the potential to be good but the staff acted as though they couldn't care less. It obviously showed as every night we passed it and it was empty, while all the bars around it were rammed.

Ikaros Hotel - (Accommodation in Laganas)

Paula            

It is not that far a walk to the main strip by the way, i'm starting to wonder if we are talking about the same place on here! It only takes a few minutes to get down on the main road leading on to the main strip. My god people! Some people are never happy, want everything on their doorstep then moan about the noise! Anyway, your on holiday so you should be taking it easy and enjoying the walk!