Things to do in Athens


As a kid, I was always fascinated by ancient Greece and dying to visit Athens. Where can you be closer to the ancients than Athens. After all, some of their buildings or ruins are still standing! With so many things to do in Athens, I’ve been dying to visit this city for the longest time.

But just before my long-awaited trip, my brother put an end to my expectations. “Athens is the dirtiest capital I have ever seen!” He said. My brother has seen a lot of capitals.

So I traveled to Athens with mixed feelings. Are you really going to be that dirty? Or, like Naples, does the city have magic at a second sight? Or will my childish notions of antiquity be confirmed?

Athens is a less dirty city than advertised. I actually fell in love with the city at first sight – when we looked out over Athens on the rooftop terrace of our rental apartment and saw the Acropolis towering in front of us, it was amazing!

But even my childish ideas about this ancient city were not 100% realized. Because of course in Athens there are many ancient buildings that really amazed me.

However, the city has also understandably weathered the passage of time, so it has some modern influences. However, the modern influences are very different from what I remember from Northern Europe. The structure reminded me in part of Spanish towns; In part, Amman is in Jordan. Not surprising given Greece’s very southeastern location within Europe.

I was pleasantly surprised My first impression of Athens And even more like the second!

I really enjoyed my time in the city, both during the day and at night. It is an interesting, diverse and lively place.

During the day, the city’s skyline is dominated by tourists, scurrying through the narrow streets from one sight to the next under the blazing sun. However, in the evening, this picture transforms and the locals live their lives on The streets of Athens. Good music, great conversations and the best wines are pre-programmed.

So take your time in Athens for bothTourist days to get to know all the sights; And the vibrant nights for the real Athens experience!

Related reading: A guide to Athens, Greece

Visit the famous Acropolis

The Acropolis is one of the most famous sights of Athens, so a trip here is a must! But what is actually behind it?

The Acropolis is not just a building, but a potential to be The most famous city-fortress in ancient Greecewhose ruins on the hill of Athena Castle still watch over the city today.

The entire complex includes several buildings. Probably the best known of these is the Parthenon, the ancient temple complex that gives the Acropolis its face. In addition, there are many other ancient buildings such as the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, the sanctuary of Artemis Brauronia and the Theater of Dionysus. All of this will make you dream of an old time.

For the famous view of the Acropolis, you must also go to Areopagus Hill. The hill is known as a “tourist mountain,” but the view of the Acropolis from here is unmistakable.

By the way, admission is free for EU citizens under 25 years old.

Read also Travel advice on how to buy tickets to the Acropolis.

Enjoy views of Athens

You can’t get enough views of Athens. Therefore, we were especially pleased that our apartment had a rooftop terrace with an amazing view of the Acropolis. However, fret not! If your accommodation doesn’t have a rooftop terrace, there are plenty of options for you to enjoy a great view of Athens.

There are 100 rooftop terrace feeling titles. A popular one is the rooftop A hotel for Athens. However, my favorite in terms of views is the view from Lycabettus Hill, as you can look over the Acropolis out to sea from here. The hill is very popular, especially at sunset. No wonder she is so beautiful. But then it is also crowded.

The view from Philopappos Hill is similarly good. Here it is less crowded. So if you want to enjoy some peace and quiet while looking at Athens, you are at the right address.

Explore the streets along the Acropolis

The Acropolis is definitely worth seeing, however Do not miss the Anafiotika and Plaka neighborhoods under it. Both are known for their beautiful Greek-style alleys.

Anafiotica is called “Little Mykonos” for a reason. You will feel like you have escaped from the city for a moment while you are on a Greek island. The streets are so picturesque that it’s fun to walk around here.

The streets of Plaka are similarly picturesque, but much busier. In addition to some restaurants, there are small shops selling Greek souvenirs, etc. Plaka is definitely one of the most scenic places in Athens, but not without good reason – tourists are always drawn to beautiful places.

Streets and square near the Acropolis in Athens, Greece.
Streets and square near the Acropolis in Athens, Greece.

Ancient buildings are part of Athens

If you are a fan of old buildings like me, you will love Athens Academy.

It is the leading institution for non-university academic research in Greece, and its work is divided into three departments: sciences, literature and fine arts, and moral and political sciences. There is a nice building for each department, and they just keep getting better.

Oh, and the Central Market in Athens not far from the Academy. You can buy all kinds of food there, from fish to fruits. Open daily from 7 am to 6 pm, except Sundays.

A guide to the best street food in Athens

Off the beaten track in Exarchia

Exarchia is An alternative neighborhood in Athens. The hub of the neighborhood is Exarcheia Square. From here you can explore the surrounding streets.

On the other hand, you will wander through empty, dilapidated buildings. On the other hand, you will discover great graffiti and bars. I would recommend you to go on a little excursion through this very different neighborhood of Athens and then sit in a restaurant.

After a little rest you can go to Archaeological Museum in Athens, which is just a stone’s throw away. Here you will be able to follow in the footsteps of ancient Greece.

Walk around the national park

The national park and the surrounding area make for a great walking tour. In addition to the park’s beautiful green spaces, you’ll also see some of Athens’ most famous sights, such as the Zappeion, the Olympic Stadium, and the Hellenic Parliament. The Zappeion is a historic convention building from 1888 that was originally built to be the site of the Olympics Committee.

The Panathenaic Stadium, where the first modern Olympic Games were held in 1896, and the ruins of the Temple of Olympian Zeus are nearby.

On the trail of antiquity

To learn more about ancient Greece, my main goal was to visit the site of the ancient Agora in Athens on my vacation. Since the Central Market was once the economic and political center of Athens, today you can find many well-preserved remains there.

However, the whole complex has more to offer than just the old market – you can also admire the Temple of Hephaestus with its impressive view of the city. You will feel transported back in time.

By EU citizens under the age of 25, get entry for free!

Monastiraki – Explore the ancient city of Athens

Monastiraki is the old quarter of Athens, and is home to some of its most famous attractions.

Calling Monastiraki brings one particular vision that lingers in my mind – the flea market that meanders from Monastiraki Square to the adjacent lanes. There you can find a variety of retailers selling non-flea goods such as handmade soaps and oils, carefully crafted sandals and hats, along with casual t-shirts as well as souvenirs for your collection.

I had such a good time strolling these streets while avoiding the popular fashion outlets!

Not far away lies Pittaki Street; This road was once neglected and used mainly as a public toilet but has now been transformed beyond recognition after the designers gave it an amazing makeover!

Home of the Olympic Games

Greece is the birthplace of the Olympic Games, which means that visiting their famous sports center in Athens should be at the top of your list!

We were excited to explore and boarded the tram which took us right there. The complex was almost deserted except for an occasional jog here or there, but it still made for some nice photos.

A word of caution, however—unless you’re lucky enough to attend a special event, this spot might not offer much other than stunning views, so don’t expect too much from your trip.

Joined Private day tour of the ancient city of Olympia.

Conclusion on things to do in Athens

If you are looking for a city that has something to offer both during the day and at night, then Athens is the right place for you. It is a city with a unique and vibrant atmosphere, which can be experienced in different ways depending on the time of day.

During the day, tourists can explore a wealth of historical sites, while in the evening, locals come out enjoying good music, great conversation, and delicious wine.

So, if you are looking for an unforgettable experience, spend some time in Athens and enjoy all it has to offer!


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