When Greece is mentioned, people tend to think of the white sand beaches and blue water, Santorini and Rhodos or Corfu with “My Family and Other Animals”. But as said, Greece is so much more. I recently spent four days in Athens and could easily see myself there for a week or longer.
Acropolis and the Parthenon
The most famous sight in Athens and a cultural landmark like no other, the Acropolis is a historical citadel located above the city of Athens and contains the remains of several ancient buildings, the most famous being the Parthenon.
Although an impressive example of the great ancient Greek architecture you might end up finding that the hike to Acropolis and the views from there are just as memorable as the sites it holds.
Like a colorful village in the city, Plaka is one of the oldest and most beautiful neighbourhoods in Athens. Cute cafes and little shops line the narrow labyrinthine streets and neoclassical architecture.
Monastiraki Square, the one of a kind blend of styles and cultures, always lively and dynamic is more known as the flea market neighborhood and one of the main shopping districts in Athens.
At 300 meters above sea level, the Mount Lycabettus offers the best and by far widest views of Athens. It’s definitely worth going, but go early to get a better spot, because it’s also really popular and tends to get crowded.
You’ve hiked to the Parthenon and enjoyed the views from there, now it’s time to see from afar, how the setting sun works its magic on it. Hike up the Filopappou hill just next to the Acropolis and in a city of 6 million residents with probably just as many tourists you will find a rather secluded hilltop to enjoy 360 degrees views over the city. And if you’re lucky, you can run into some lazy turtles on the way up like I did 🙂
Yep, Athens has some beaches too. Not the white sand postcard beaches, but those less crowded and beautiful refreshing turquoise water ones are really inviting on a hot day.
One of the best things you can do when traveling 🙂 I started to walk away from Plaka and ended up discovering a residential neighbourhood with such narrow streets that I did had to walk sideways every now and then. Lovely white houses with blue doors and purple flowers, cats sleeping on windows and no other tourist within sight.
… and you will end up with the best experiences. That’s how I found a family owned little restaurant with almost no menu, but food prepared according to my wishes and so delicious that I was eating there every day during my trip.
And that’s not all. Athens has countless museums, events, concerts, parks… But if you’re a traveller like me and like to take it slow, enjoy the people and neighbourhoods, have long dinner and lazy walks, you will love discovering my must see and do list in Athens 🙂