Why everyone should go to Zante at least once

Drink as much as you want in Aussies for just €10

Zante is a place that conjures up an image of dark rooms full of tank top wearing gym bunnies gyrating rhythmically against one another to a booming sound system, in a futile attempt to escape the crippling loneliness and insecurity that defines their very existence.

Not exactly a place where you’d expect me, a 5”8, soft-bodied, bleeding-hearted-liberal to recommend you go on holiday. But stranger things have happened.

When I left school, 12 of my nearest and dearest ventured to this warped paradise where we faced an assault to our senses made up of unlimited alcohol, €1 slices of pizza, and more sun than the West of Scotland has seen in a century.

This was the most civilised we’d be all week

The clubs

You’re going on holiday with 12 of your friends, and in a year’s time you’ll have lost contact with about half of them. Why try and force cultural exploration on them with inter railing and not stick to what you’ve been doing since you were 15 – getting drunk and trying to pull. Except it’s like that on steroids.

Preing then stumbling into Rescue or Zeros, two identical superclubs, becomes second nature. Both are huge and have weird podiums where girls are put on a literal pedestal. There’s a different theme every night, such as foam parties, UV paint parties, or tropical themed.

Zeros has a rain party where thousands of gallons of water are dumped on your sun-ravaged body, getting in your drinks, and destroying your iPhone. Save traversing European cities for your new intellectual friends that you’ll meet in your first linguistics lecture – don’t waste it on people you have seen lick a dog shit for half a bottle of vodka.

It’s got everything

Cheap drinks? Check. Sun? Check. Culture? Maybe not.

However, if you do feel you should have gone backpacking across Thailand then fear not, and head down to Cherry Bay for their very own Full Moon Party. Complete with sand castle buckets full of alcohol.

Thanks to the British people’s reluctance to explore anything European or cultural, and a legacy of colonialism,  you’d be hard pressed not to find a place serving Full Englishes or show Sky Sports. Head to Maggie Mays for breakfasts just like your local does, or BJs for a slice of pizza if you’re feeling slightly more adventurous.

It’s a stepping stone to uni

Freshers’ week is likely the first time you will have unfettered access to booze and whichever genders you favour, free from interfering parents and teachers. Unless you want to be known as the lad who pissed himself on the first night for the rest of your academic career, it’s best you know your limits and a leavers’ holiday is the best way to do this.

Aussie’s has a deal where you can drink as much as you can for an hour for only €10. Get a few headfuckers in you and next thing you know it’s tomorrow morning and you’re wearing a sombrero and someone else’s swimming trunks.

Waking up late afternoon and drinking yourself into a stupor by sunrise is even easier on a Greek island without all those pesky introductory talks to interrupt friend making. You’ll have better stories to tell in freshers’ as well. After Zante, telling people about how one of my friends tried to lose his virginity in my bed whilst another mate slept in the adjoining room was a prominent icebreaker.

This is the last chance you have before freshers’ fifteen hits


Gaz from Geordie Shore opened a beach club called Pure that is actually sick. There’s a huge pool and lots of bars, complete with cabanas and sun loungers. If you’re lucky, the man himself may be hosting an event but you could settle for Dan, who was PRing for it when I was there.

There’s a pool party that can act as a great predrinks for a night out, but as the night gets later, pool activities get more amorous, and your leisurely swim may be interrupted by waves from a vicious fingering against the pool filter.

The boat party

Zante’s many boat parties actually leave away from Laganas, the main party area of Zante, and it gives you a brief glimpse of the sleepy seaside towns that populate the rest of the island.

A welcome respite before the five hours of carnage. DJs who are frankly too old to be there will orchestrate drinking games, you’ll mistake your drunkenness for sea sickness and have your mouth crammed full of vodka that you struggle to keep down.

The boat drops anchor at some point to allow you to dive off the boat and have a swim, which is pretty disconcerting if you wake up and this is the last thing you remember from the night before.

Credit: Privilege Zante

The reps

There is nothing quite like arriving at a dingy hotel at 6am before two sunburnt girls from Leeds usher you into a room before telling you that a Radio 1 DJ is playing a foam party tonight, and that you should all go because all the girls will be there “clits out, tits out”, and that it will change your life, and shots are only €1 before being faced with the crushing news that tickets to this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity cost €40.

The reps in Zante were like the RAs I soon met at uni. Except with fewer clothes and social boundaries. RAs aren’t likely to solicit sex from your best looking mate at 10 am, ten minutes after talking about their holiday with their boyfriend.

Avoiding eye contact with them as you ignore the shit bar they’re representing becomes an art that is put into practice at uni when avoiding the charity muggers who hound you across campus. If someone is offering you 70 cent shots from Cocktails and Dreams then tell them to jog on, because they’re probably being paid less than that to peddle you glasses of anti-freeze.

One rep boasted how he’d come out to Zante the summer before he came to uni and then just never gone home.

You’ll learn people skills

Whether debating with a security guard at the Zante Plaza whether or not he should beat you up for being in a hotel room that isn’t your own, or actually being beaten up by a local eight-year-old for refusing to buy a rose from him, my friends learnt a lot about how to deal with other people.

Key skills when attempting to peer pressure your mate into coming out tonight.

Rome is a fucking paradise compared to Laganas

You’ll see every other holiday through rose-tinted glasses

Sunburnt in Rome? Jetlagged in Rio de Janeiro? Taken hostage in Cairo? At least your toilet hasn’t backed up because someone in the next room flushed away some loo roll and and there is now pieces of actual human shit beside your bed.