The beach became famous due to the incredible color of the water, as well as the natural beauty. Navagio from Greek means shipwreck. Beach got its name in 1980 when coastal police pursued smugglers from Turkey to Italy. It has been rumored the ship was smuggling contraband such as cigarettes, wine and women. The vessel was thrown on the beach and became it's symbol.
This beautiful story spreads from website to website and no one even tried to find out the truth. Greek journalists found the captain of the ship (Charalambos Kompthekras) and recorded a video interview, in which he told how everything really happened. On the evening of October 2, 1980, the ship "MV Panagiotis" left the port of Durres and headed for Kefalonia island with regular commercial cargo. Due to bad weather and technical malfunction the ship ran aground on the beach of St. George (now Navagio Beach). The captain reported the situation to the authorities, but due to the fact that the beach is inaccessible from the ground, the police could not reach it and put a guard. As a result, after a few days half of the goods, as well as the ship’s equipment, were stolen. The captain appealed to the police, who organized searches in the nearby villages and... everything was found. 29 persons were imprisoned.
The captain was ordered to remove the vessel from the island, but when he arrived there in good weather, an incredibly beautiful landscape opened before his eyes. The authorities were asked not to remove the vessel from the beach and, as we see, it is still there, delighting numerous tourists.
In the summer, unfortunately, there are really a lot of tourists here. They arrive by boats. Do not visit the beach during the daytime, as there are often up to 20 ships with up to hundred of people on each of them! Better to be there early in the morning or after 16:00.
There is an option to look at the beach from above. Come here N 37 51.699 E 20 37.561, ten meters from the parking there will be an observation deck. But it is not very good, therefore we advise you to walk 500 meters along a cliff, approximately here N 37 51.901 E 20 37.478. From there you can make the best photos.
In September 2018 a wall collapsed on the beach and at that moment there were a lot of tourists. There was even a panic.
Getting there: there is no public transport to the upper viewpoint! Only taxi. Taking into account prices on this website https://www.zantetaxi.gr/rates/, a taxi from the capital of the island will cost 45 euros (2018). It would be more profitable to rent a car or a scooter. You can sail to the beach by boat from Porto Vromi (N 37 49.358 E 20 37.900), Agios Nikolaos (N 37 54.305 E 20 42.477) or with Potamitis Brothers (N 37 55.963 E 20 42.011, http://www.potamitisbros.gr/). There is no public transport to these places either. Therefore, if you travel without a car, you can go to the beach from the port of Zakynthos. Or with a guided tour, they are everywhere, since it is the main business in summer.