Be inspired by nature, local culture, tradition and be fueled by excellent local food.
Travel to Zakynthos island for seven days to paint with artist Mika Simvoulidou and stay with host Vythoulkas family, who will ensure you experience not only a memorable painting holiday, acquiring or enhancing your painting skills in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere, but also a cultural one.
Be inspired by nature, local culture, tradition and be fueled by excellent local food. Taste local village bread, olive oil, a variety of local cheeses, the legendary moussaka, seasonal fresh fruit and seafood. Stunning countryside, green mountains, little fishing ports, rural villages, local architecture, mesmerizing beaches and sea caves, provide an abundance of subjects to paint or sketch under the invigorating Ionian light.
Mika, is a highly qualified and experienced artist, with numerous exhibitions to her name. She will provide you with all necessary equipment, materials, inspiration, guidance and will encourage you to also paint on your own. You may choose to paint with water colours, oils, acrylics or use mixed media. As you are practicing in a small group of no more than eight people, tuition will be adapted to each participant’s specific needs, whether it is learning the fundamentals or taking your existing skills to the next level.Book this holiday package »
Please note, the following itinerary is for guidance only and subject to change depending on the season and group’s needs and wishes, but all the following activities will take place some time during the week.
On arrival you will be transferred to your accommodation, Villa Spiros in Laganas. Famed as the home of the sea turtle Caretta Caretta, Laganas will be your base for this exciting painting holiday. You will have time to unpack and settle in your new surroundings.
A little while later your hosts will invite you to join them and fellow guests for an informal welcome meeting and home cooked meal over which you can discuss the week’s proposed itinerary and familiarize yourself with the many things there are to do and see in this diverse, lively resort.
In the evening, you may like to enjoy a leisurely stroll along the unending Laganas beach. Let the sound of the sea and the gentle breeze melt away the stresses of your journey. There are plenty of seaside tavernas if you would like to enjoy dinner, with magnificent views over Laganas Bay.
Today your painting experience begins. After breakfast your host Antonio will drive you to Koiliomenos village, set 7 km away from Laganas resort. Koiliomenos village with a longstanding architectural tradition, the impressive bell tower and stunning countryside will be the source of inspiration you need to be creative on the canvas later.
There, you will meet Mika, our wonderful artist for this creative and fun painting holiday experience. Mika, will welcome you and show you to the best of her village and share with you the beauty of the local traditions and history before you arrive at Abelostrates estate, hosting Mika’s residence, art studio and rustic taverna. There, you will endeavor to a three hour plain air workshop, under the shade and fresh air of the walnut trees. Enjoy a rustic homemade lunch prepared by Mika, before you return to the villa.
Back to Villa Spiros, you can freshen up and maybe enjoy a relaxing afternoon in lovely Laganas resort. You can swim at the sweeping Laganas bay, 500m from the bay with the unending sandy beach and shallow, crystal clear water. You can stroll, swim or snorkel. If you are lucky, you may even find yourself swimming alongside the loggerhead turtles Caretta-Caretta. They swim freely in the bay from the beginning of May until the end of October.
In the evening, explore Zakynthos main town. First stop is at the Church of the island’s patron saint, St. Dionysius. The huge inside is richly decorated with gold and icons. The saint’s remains are here in a silver casket, which on some occasions is open for viewing. Later, enjoy a gentle walk and get familiarized with the Ionian architecture, recharge your batteries at a café by San Marcus square before you enjoy a gentle walk in the market street to taste and buy local products and delicacies.
Wake up to another fun and exciting day. Today, discover the west coast of Zakynthos on a 4h boat trip, where you can also take your sketch book and draw on board.
From Agios Sostis fishing port, board “Poseidon” boat, for a once in a lifetime boat trip experience towards the breathtaking west coast of Zakynthos with the secluded coves, crystal clear water, dramatic blue caves to arrive at mesmerizing Shipwreck bay for swimming. You might also see turtles at the Turtle island. This is what we call a natural eye delight. If the weather is too windy for the boat, we will drive north and still be able to admire the shipwreck from the viewing platform set into the cliff top.
In the evening, join your hosts for a meal and enjoy the traditional pita souvlaki with either pork or chicken skewer at Villa Spiros gardens.
Today after breakfast, you will continue your painting and art work at Mika’s estate for another 3 hours with a half an hour lunch break.
Return to Villa Spiros, where you will have the opportunity to explore the local cooking techniques and aromas of Zakynthos local herbs. Put your apron on and let your host Effie reveal to you the secrets of the healthy, local cuisine.
You will be cooking her favourite recipe “Gemista”, stuffed vegetables, a traditional light dish full of vitamins, summer colours and great aromas and you will make a colourful organic Greek salad with feta cheese. Effie welcomes questions, as she is proud to share her knowledge and experience of Zakynthian cuisine with you.
While tonight’s dinner is cooking, you may like to simply relax at the Villa or spend a leisurely day down the beach. Sun beds are plentiful if you just want to relax, and if you are adventurous enough why not go skinny dipping at the nudist beach a little further away. Alternatively, choose to continue with your art work at the villa or by the beach.
In the evening, join your hosts for dinner with the meal you helped prepare, alongside Antonio’s chilled house wine, in the little, pretty garden of Villa Spiros.
Today, you will have the opportunity to paint on your own by the seaside. The owners of Blue Sea tavern, right on Laganas beach, will welcome you and make you feel comfortable at their family run tavern. You may stay there and paint for as long as you like. Just a little way out to Laganas bay, the secluded uninhabited Islands of Pelouzo, Cameo and the Turtle Island, provide a stunning backdrop to a spectacular setting for today’s painting inspiration. Time now to truly unwind and enjoy a relaxing morning painting, among the relaxing sounds and aromas of the Ionian Sea. Simple, yet wonderful!!!
Later, when you feel hungry, you can enjoy a light lunch at the tavern and if you feel hot, simply go for a swim, it is all there laying on your feet.
In the evening, you are very welcome to join your host Andriana and Yoga teacher for a sunset yoga class.
After breakfast, back at Koiliomenos village to put the final touches to your works of art, each as individual as the person who created them. After this evening’s class you will have the opportunity to visit a traditional local womens’ cooperative and meet the ladies who lovingly produce and sell their own homemade, natural products such as wine, honey, bread, cheese, vinegar, soap, candles, local sweets, jams, liquors, embroideries and much more.
Later, back at Villa Spiros to enjoy your day at leisure or paint on your own. Your hosts will be happy to drive you at some place you saw and want to go back and draw.
Enjoy a homemade dinner at the villa, in the evening.
Today after breakfast, together with Antonio, drive to Lagopodo village and visit Grampsas winery run by the third generation of the family, widely respected by Zakynthians and international clients alike. During the summer months the yachting fraternity visit regularly to restock their boats with wines for their Greek Island Odyssey.
The winery is beautifully presented, from the neat rows of vines to the display of winemaking equipment from bygone days. Son Tassos will talk you through the whole wine making process before inviting you to sit on the shady terrace to sample white and red wines with local cheese.
Continue your day with swimming at Laganas beach and prepare your drawings to take back home. Your hosts will provide you with materials to wrap them up to travel home safely.
In the evening, dress up for the farewell party at “Dennis”, our favourite tavern in Lithakia village. There, we will enjoy a traditional Greek celebration, with great BBQ and plenty of local wine and of course Greek live music and dancing. Enjoy the sounds of bouzouki while learning how to dance syrtaki.
Phew! A grand finale to a great week!
This morning enjoy a lovely traditional breakfast, maybe a walk to Laganas Main Street for last minute shopping, or a stroll to Laganas beach to take a last dip.
Your driver will take you to the airport or port in good time for your departure. By now you will truly be feeling at home here, Zakynthian through and through, and definitely like a member of our family.
“Kallo Taxidi! (safe journey)
Self-catering studios and apartments
Join your welcoming hosts for your holiday on this gorgeous Greek isle, away from the workload and rush of the rest of the world. Stay at Villa Spiros, located on the Ionian Island of Zakynthos, with access to lovely cafes, seaside tavernas, a great spa and beauty salon and just 300 metres from Laganas sandy beach.
Private villa with pool
Perfect for those who seek privacy, Villa Antonio, is tucked away in the peaceful and picturesque village of Romiri, set over 2000 sq meters of private fenced olive grove land, with its own outdoor swimming pool & breathtaking views to the countryside.
Please note that prices for the holidays do not include flights. We recommend using skyscanner.net to check flights.
Holiday start days:
March / April / October / November
May / June / September
July / August
7 nights/ 8 days
- It is possible to add extra nights accommodation to this holiday. Please contact us for more information »
- It is possible to stay min 3 nights.
Just pay a deposit now to secure your place
Our booking system allows you to keep your money with you for longer. This is how it works: there's no need to pay for the entire holiday course up front – all you do is pay a 20% deposit and then pay the remainder upon arrival.
We accept: Credit / Debit Card (Mastercard / Visa) or bank transfer to a GR bank account
Full details of how and when to pay the balance will be given during the booking process and will be printed on your confirmation voucher.
The following activities are priced seasonally, but your hosts will get you the best prices while you’re there:
Non activity participating guests are welcome to join. Prices will be discounted accordingly. Please contact us for more information »