Looking for best things to do in Athens, Greece? Here is your Athens bucket list, complete with the best places to visit in this wonderful city.
As the capital of Greece, Athens is a city rich in history and culture, making it a must-visit destination for travelers. Renowned as the birthplace of Western civilization, the city of Athens is home to iconic historical sites.
One of them is the Acropolis, a UNESCO World Heritage site that houses the Parthenon, an ancient temple honoring the goddess of wisdom, Athena. The Acropolis offers stunning city sights and glimpses into Greece’s rich history.
In addition to its historical treasures, Athens boasts a vibrant modern culture. Visitors can explore the charming Plaka neighborhood with its narrow streets, traditional Greek tavernas, and quaint shops.
The Benaki Museum, as well as The National Archaeological Museum, are perfect for those seeking a deeper understanding of Greece’s past. Athens is also famous for its culinary scene, with an abundance of local dishes like moussaka and souvlaki to savor.
Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or simply looking to soak in the Mediterranean ambiance, Athens has something for every traveler to enjoy.
Interesting Facts About Athens
Athens, Greece’s ancient and vibrant capital, is teeming with intriguing facts and history. Were you aware that Athens has a history that extends back over 3,400 years, making it one of the world’s most ancient and continuously inhabited cities spanning over 3,400 years?
It’s often referred to as the birthplace of democracy, as the city-state developed the concept of citizen participation in governance in the 5th century BC.
Another fascinating fact is that Athens uniquely blends ancient and modern. Amidst its historical treasures, you’ll find the Athens Metro, which features archaeological exhibits in some of its stations, showcasing artifacts unearthed during construction.
Furthermore, the city is known for its strong coffee culture, where ordering a Greek coffee can be quite the experience. Be sure to explore the vibrant neighborhoods, like Exarchia, which has a rich counterculture and artistic expression history. Athens is a city where the past and present beautifully converge, offering many enriching experiences for travelers.
Best Things to Do in Athens, Greece
Exploring Athens, Greece is like stepping into a living museum of history and culture. The best things to do in Athens span millennia, from ascending the iconic Acropolis to marvel at the Parthenon’s ancient grandeur to strolling through the charming Plaka neighborhood’s cobblestone streets.
Don’t miss the chance to visit the National Archaeological Museum, home to a treasure trove of ancient artifacts, or indulge your taste buds in traditional Greek cuisine at a local taverna.
Athens blends its rich past with modern vitality, ensuring every traveler leaves with a profound appreciation for this captivating city.
1. The Acropolis and the Parthenon
The Acropolis of Athens is the quintessential symbol of ancient Greece’s architectural and cultural achievements. Perched atop a rocky hill overlooking the city, this UNESCO World Heritage site is home to the Parthenon, an enduring testament to the 5th-century BC Athenian civilization.
This Doric temple was dedicated to the goddess Athena, the city’s patron deity. Its impressive columns, meticulously carved friezes, and remarkable symmetry showcase the Greeks’ architectural prowess, while its intricate sculptures depict scenes from Greek mythology. The Acropolis, Athens’ most popular attraction and one of the oldest, is among the city’s foremost points of interest.
One of the most intriguing historical facts about the Parthenon is its enduring legacy. Over the centuries, it has served various purposes, including as a Christian church and an Ottoman Turkish mosque.
Additionally, its stunning optical illusions, such as its slightly curved columns and slight incline, were deliberately designed by the ancient Greeks to counteract the visual distortion created by the human eye when viewing the temple from a distance. These captivating details visit the Acropolis, an awe-inspiring journey into the heart of ancient Greece’s art, history, and ingenuity. During your trip to Athens, take in the stunning view of the Acropolis, as it’s one of the city’s top attractions.
It is one of the world’s oldest landmarks, so when you find yourself at the foot of the Acropolis, take photos of Athens, as the view is spectacular.
Ticket Cost: The ticket to visit the Acropolis in Athens is priced at €20 during the peak season, which runs from April 1 to October 31. However, if you plan your visit during the off-peak period, from November 1 to March 31, you can enjoy a reduced ticket price of €10.
Combination tickets: These tickets offer access to the Acropolis and six additional historical sites: the Ancient Agora, the Roman Agora, Hadrian’s Library, the Temple of Olympian Zeus, Keramiekos, and Aristotle’s School. The cost of a combination ticket is €30, making it a valuable choice if you intend to explore the Acropolis along with at least two of the other sites.
2. Acropolis Museum and Explore Its Wonders
Located near the Acropolis, The Acropolis Museum in Athens is a modern architectural marvel that serves as a gateway to the rich history of the Acropolis itself. Opened in 2009, this museum was designed to house and display the archaeological treasures found on the Acropolis and its slopes.
One of its most unique features is the glass floor on the ground level, allowing visitors to peer directly into the ancient ruins beneath, providing a striking connection between the museum and its archaeological context.
One intriguing historical note regarding the Acropolis Museum pertains to its relentless efforts to repatriate the Elgin Marbles, also recognized as the Parthenon Marbles. These sculptural masterpieces, initially taken from the Parthenon by Lord Elgin during the early 19th century, presently reside in the British Museum in London.
The Acropolis Museum has a designated gallery to house the missing sculptures once they are returned, creating a poignant narrative of its history. With its stunning modern architecture and a collection that beautifully complements the Acropolis itself, this museum is a must-visit for anyone wanting to achieve a deeper understanding of Athens’ ancient heritage.
Cost: The Acropolis Museum ticket costs 15 euros from April 1 to October 31, and €10 from November 1 to March 31.
Hours: The Acropolis Museum is open daily from 9:00 to 17:00 or 22:00, depending on the day of the week. Hours may vary between November 1 and May 31.
3. Ruins of Ancient Agora in Athens
The Ancient Agora is an archaeological gem that provides a captivating window into the daily life and governance of ancient Athens and another one of the places in Athens we recommend visiting. Dating back to the 6th century BC, this historic site served as the city’s political, commercial, and social center.
At its heart, the Agora housed the Stoa of Attalos, a magnificent two-story colonnade that once served as a marketplace and gathering place for Athenians. The Stoa has been meticulously reconstructed and now serves as part of the Agora Museum, where visitors can discover a plethora of artifacts, including pottery, sculptures, and ancient documents, shedding light on the city’s vibrant life.
An intriguing historical fact about the Ancient Agora is its role as the birthplace of democracy. Here, citizens of Athens gathered to engage in public discourse, debate, and decision-making.
Notably, it was also the location of the world’s first known paid public prosecutor, who ensured that public officials were held accountable for their actions. Walking amidst the ruins of the Ancient Agora, visitors can feel the echoes of ancient debates and witness the foundations of democratic governance that have profoundly influenced societies worldwide.
4. Temple of Hephaestus
Among the best spots in Athens, we mention the Temple of Hephaestus, also known as the Hephaisteion, one of the best-preserved ancient Greek temples in Athens, dating back to 415 BC. Dedicated to Hephaestus, the god of craftsmanship and metalworking, and Athena Ergane, the goddess of artisans and crafts, it is a testament to the city’s reverence for skilled labor.
This Doric-style temple is located atop the Agoraios Kolonos Hill, near the Ancient Agora, and its remarkably well-preserved condition is attributed to its later use as a Christian church in the Middle Ages. The temple’s friezes depict scenes from the Labors of Hercules, offering a unique artistic perspective on Greek mythology. Today, visitors can explore this architectural marvel, appreciating its historical significance and its role as a lasting tribute to the skills of ancient craftsmen.
Cost: The cost to visit the Temple of Hephaestus in Athens varies by season. During the summer months, from April 1 to October 31, the ticket price is €10. In the winter months, from November 1 to March 31, the ticket price is reduced to €5.
Hours: The opening and closing hours of the Acropolis can vary by season, so it’s advisable to check the updated hours before planning your visit.
5. Roman Agora: Discover the Relics of Athens’ Imperial Past
The Roman Agora is a must-see in Athens. This fascinating historical site offers a glimpse into the city’s transition from ancient Greece to the Roman Empire. Built during the 1st century BC, it was established by the Roman general Julius Caesar and later expanded by the Roman Emperor Augustus.
The Roman Agora was designed as a marketplace and administrative center featuring notable structures. One is the imposing Tower of the Winds, an ancient clocktower that served as a weather vane, sundial, and water clock. Its intricate friezes and intricate carvings showcase the remarkable craftsmanship of the time.
An interesting historical fact about the Roman Agora is its connection to Stoicism, a significant philosophical school of thought in ancient Greece and Rome. The philosopher Zeno of Citium, who founded Stoicism, taught at a stoa (covered colonnade) within the Roman Agora, later known as the Stoa of Zeus. This philosophical school profoundly influenced the development of ethical and moral principles in Roman society.
Today, the Roman Agora stands as a captivating historical site where visitors can appreciate the fusion of Roman and Greek cultures and explore the enduring legacy of Stoicism in Athens.
Price: The Temple of Hephaestus in Athens has varying entry fees based on the season. During the summer months (April 1 to October 31), the ticket costs €8, while in the winter months (November 1 to March 31), it’s reduced to €4. An alternative is the combination ticket for €30, which includes access to the Temple of Hephaestus along with other historical sites in Athens.
Hours: The hours for the Temple of Hephaestus in Athens can vary depending on the season. To get the most up-to-date information about its hours, please check before your visit.
6. Hadrian’s Library: Where Ancient Wisdom Meets Modern Exploration in Athens
During a day trip to Athens, we recommend visiting another important archaeological site, Hadrian’s Library. Situated in the centre of Athens, it was an ancient Roman library constructed by the Roman Emperor Hadrian around 132 AD.
This elegant structure once housed countless scrolls and books, serving as a center of intellectual and cultural activity during the Roman era. The library featured a peristyle courtyard, reading rooms, and lecture halls, making it a hub for scholars and philosophers.
Interestingly, the library’s exterior was adorned with statues, many of which celebrated the Greek philosophers, poets, and historians. Today, visitors can explore the site’s ruins, which provide valuable insights into the fusion of Roman and Hellenic culture in Athens during the 2nd century AD, highlighting the city’s enduring role as a center of learning and knowledge.
Price: The ticket price for visiting Hadrian’s Library is €6 if you choose to explore it independently. Alternatively, it is included in the combination ticket, priced at €30, which grants access to the Acropolis and several other historical sites in Athens.
Hours: The operating hours for Hadrian’s Library can vary depending on the season. To ensure you have the most current information, please check the updated hours before planning your visit.
7. The Benaki Museum’s Hidden Wonders in Athens
Another place to visit in Athens is the Benaki Museum. Established in 1930 by the Greek art collector Antonis Benakis, it is one of the foremost cultural institutions in Athens. Housed in a neoclassical mansion in the center of the city, the museum’s diverse collection spans Greek history and culture from antiquity to the modern era.
An interesting historical fact is that the museum originally intended to house Antonis Benakis’ collection of art and historical artifacts, which he donated to the Greek state to express his patriotism and love for his homeland.
Today, the Benaki Museum boasts an extensive and eclectic array of exhibits, including ancient Greek and Byzantine art, Islamic art, and a remarkable collection of artifacts from the Greek War of Independence.
This museum provides a captivating journey through Greece’s rich heritage and is a must-visit for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of the country’s culture and history.
For more details, access their website.
8. Visit The Temple Of Olympian Zeus
Among Athens attractions, we mention The Temple of Olympian Zeus, also known as the Olympieion, a monumental ancient temple. This immense temple underwent construction spanning numerous centuries, with its roots tracing back to the 6th century BC, coinciding with the reign of Athenian tyrants.
Nonetheless, the temple’s finalization was eventually overseen by the Roman Emperor Hadrian during the 2nd century AD, solidifying its status as one of the most significant temples in antiquity. The temple was made in honor of Zeus, the king of the Greek gods, and featured 104 towering Corinthian columns, of which only a few remain standing today.
One interesting historical fact is that the temple construction took so long that it symbolized the ancient Athenian tendency to procrastinate. Visiting the Temple of Olympian Zeus allows one to marvel at the sheer scale of ancient Greek and Roman architectural ambition, offering a fascinating glimpse into the city’s past and reverence for the divine.
9. The National Archaeological Museum
Another museum in Greece that you must see in Athens is The National Archaeological Museum. It is a treasure trove of ancient Hellenic history and culture. Founded in 1829, it is one of the most important archaeological museums in the world. The museum contains a vast array of relics spanning from ancient eras to the late antique period, providing visitors with a thorough exploration of Greece’s abundant historical heritage. Among its notable exhibits are the Mycenaean treasures, including the famous “Mask of Agamemnon” and an impressive array of sculptures, pottery, and jewelry from various periods.
The museum’s collection was significantly enriched by Heinrich Schliemann, the pioneering archaeologist who excavated the ancient city of Troy. Visiting the museum is like stepping back in time, providing profound insights into ancient Greece’s art, history, and civilization.
Cost: The cost of entry is €12 during the summer months (April 1 to October 31) and reduces to €6 in the winter season (November 1 to March 31).
Hours: From April 1 to October 31, the site is open from 8 am to 8 pm daily except for Tuesdays when it opens at 1:00 pm and closes at 8 pm. During the winter season, from November 1 to March 31, reduced hours apply.
For more details, access the official site.
10. The Temple of Poseidon
During your time in Athens, make a trip to The Temple of Poseidon, which stands in grandeur atop the cliffs of Cape Sounion, approximately 43 miles to the southeast of Athens.
It is a renowned ancient Hellenic temple dedicated to the god of the sea, Poseidon. Built in the 5th century BC, this Doric-style temple offers breathtaking panoramic views of the Aegean Sea and is known for its breathtaking sunsets.
Historically, it served as a significant landmark for sailors navigating the treacherous waters of the Saronic Gulf. An interesting fact is that Lord Byron famously carved his name into one of the temple’s columns during his visit in the 19th century, leaving a lasting mark of his admiration for Greece’s classical heritage.
11. The Panathenaic Stadium
When you visit Athens, make sure you see The Panathenaic Stadium, also known as Kallimarmaro, an iconic athletic arena in Athens, Greece, with a history dating back over two millennia.
Constructed initially in the 4th century BC, the stadium was later meticulously restored in marble by the Roman senator Herodes Atticus in the year 144 AD. It is renowned for its U-shape design and stunning white marble architecture.
The stadium was the site of the Panathenaic Games, held to honor the goddess Athena, and hosted various sporting events, including the ancient version of the Olympic Games.
The modern Olympic Games were revived at this stadium in 1896, making it the birthplace of the modern Olympic movement. It is now a must-visit location for sports fans and history aficionados alike because tourists may follow in the footsteps of ancient athletes, be in awe at the majesty of this historic place, and even see the Olympic Flame lighting ceremony during the modern Olympics.
12. The Museum of Cycladic Art
The Museum of Cycladic Art is another important museum of Greek culture. Known as a cultural gem dedicated to the art and history of the Cycladic islands in the Aegean Sea.
Founded in 1986, this museum displays an impressive assortment of ancient Cycladic artifacts, primarily emphasizing the Cycladic civilization from the 3rd millennium BC. Its exhibits include iconic marble figurines, pottery, and everyday objects that provide insights into this ancient civilization’s artistic and cultural achievements.
The museum was founded by the late collector and philanthropist Nicholas Goulandris and his wife Dolly, who sought to share their passion for Cycladic art with the world. Today, the Museum of Cycladic Art stands as a testament to their vision, offering visitors a captivating journey through the timeless beauty and charisma of the Cycladic islands.
13. The Church of Panagia Kapnikarea
The Church of Panagia Kapnikarea is a historic Greek Orthodox church nestled amidst the bustling streets and another important attraction in Athens. Dating back to the 11th century, it is one of the city’s oldest and most enduring religious landmarks.
This Byzantine-style church features a distinctive cross-in-square design with a dome and a narthex, showcasing the architectural elegance of the era.
Panagia Kapnikarea has witnessed numerous historical events, including the Ottoman occupation of Athens and subsequent restorations. The church is renowned for its intricate mosaics, frescoes, and religious icons, offering a glimpse into Athens’s rich religious and artistic heritage.
Amidst the modern cityscape, this ancient church is a serene oasis of history and spirituality, attracting history enthusiasts and devout worshipers alike.
14. The Parliament Building
Visiting the Parliament Building in Athens is a captivating experience that offers a unique blend of history and contemporary politics.
Located in Syntagma Square, this neoclassical structure was built in the 19th century as a royal palace for King Otto of Greece. It later became the Greek Parliament House in 1935, following the restoration of the monarchy, and is now home to the Hellenic Parliament.
Parliament’s changing of the guard ceremony, known as the Evzones, takes place in front of the building and is a captivating display of tradition and precision.
You can witness this ceremonial ritual, admire the grandeur of the architecture, and explore the interior of the Parliament to gain insights into Greece’s political history and democratic traditions. Whether you’re a history enthusiast or simply curious about contemporary Greek governance, visiting the Athens Parliament Building is educational and culturally enriching.
15. See The Changing of The Guard
One thing to see and do in Athens is witness The Changing of the Guard, known as the Evzones. This centuries-old ceremonial tradition occurs at key historical sites such as the Greek Parliament and the Presidential Mansion.
This captivating display of precision and tradition involves the Evzones, elite members of the Presidential Guard, dressed in their iconic white kilts, red fez hats, and pom-pom shoes, executing a meticulously choreographed guard changing every hour.
The tradition has its roots in the 19th century during the reign of King Otto and has continued to symbolize Greece’s commitment to preserving its rich heritage.
16. Visit The Tomb Of The Unkown Soldier
Athens’ Syntagma Square is home to the poignant and historically significant Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
This monument honors the countless Greek soldiers who sacrificed their lives in various wars, particularly during World War I. The tomb itself is guarded by the iconic Evzones, elite members of the Presidential Guard dressed in traditional attire.
This site is even more compelling because the monument incorporates classical Greek elements into its design, with the central relief depicting a hoplite, an ancient Greek warrior, alongside modern soldiers.
The guard changing ceremony here is a solemn and meticulously choreographed ritual that pays homage to Greece’s rich history of bravery and sacrifice, making it a must-see attraction for visitors to Athens.
17. Edem Beach
Edem Beach, situated on Athens’ Riviera, is a charming coastal getaway that provides a delightful respite from the vibrant city. Its sandy shores and beautiful waters draw both residents and tourists seeking relaxation and sun-drenched pleasures, making it a favored destination.
Interestingly, the beach derives its name from the Greek word for “paradise,” and it certainly lives up to the moniker.
Here, you can soak up the Mediterranean sun, swim in the azure sea, and enjoy beachside dining at the local tavernas. This amazing site in Athens provides a tranquil haven that showcases the natural beauty and seaside allure of Athens, making it an ideal spot to unwind and enjoy the Athenian Riviera.
18. Go shopping in the Plaka
Shopping in Plaka, one historic neighborhood in Athens, is a delightful experience that combines the charm of winding, cobblestone streets with an array of boutiques, souvenir shops, and traditional Greek handicraft stores.
You can find everything from handcrafted jewelry and ceramics to iconic Greek souvenirs like worry beads and olive oil soap here. The Plaka offers a unique shopping adventure, where you can discover the city’s rich cultural heritage while picking up memorable keepsakes and gifts to remember your visit to Athens by.
19. The Monastiraki Square
Monastiraki Square is a vibrant hub of history, culture, and commerce. Its name, derived from the Turkish word for “small monastery,” reflects its historical roots as a site with a small church and monastery during Ottoman rule.
Today, the square is a bustling marketplace, hosting a renowned flea market where you can find an eclectic array of antiques, jewelry, clothing, and souvenirs. Surrounded by historic landmarks like the Tzistarakis Mosque and the ancient Hadrian’s Library, Monastiraki Square blends the city’s past with its present. Thus, it offers a captivating glimpse into Athens’ dynamic character and providing the perfect backdrop for a stroll or a taste of Greek street food at one of its numerous charming cafes and restaurants.
20. Enjoy a day trip to Hydra
Make sure to add a day trip to Hydra to your list of “things to do in Greece.” One of the enchanting Saronic Islands is a journey back in time where history meets natural beauty.
Hydra, known for its pristine waters and traditional architecture, has a fascinating historical background. It was a thriving maritime hub in the 18th and 19th centuries, with its wealthy shipowners contributing to the island’s grand mansions and elegant stone-built houses.
However, Hydra remains a car-free island, preserving its charm with donkeys as the primary mode of transportation.
Explore the island’s rich history by strolling through the town’s narrow cobblestone streets, admiring the architecture, and visiting the Historical Archive Museum, which houses maritime artifacts and documents from Hydra’s glorious seafaring past.
A highlight of any trip to Hydra is the chance to relax on its pristine beaches, such as Vlychos and Bisti Beach, and to experience the unique charm of Hydra Town, where you can savor fresh seafood at waterfront tavernas.
The island’s picturesque harbor and tranquil atmosphere make it a perfect destination for a day trip from Athens, offering a delightful blend of history, culture, and natural beauty.
21. Go sailing for a day
If you are a sea lover, you can’t visit Athens without enjoying a little adventure out on the water.
Starting a day of sailing from one of Athens’ marinas is an exciting experience that unveils the city’s coastal beauty and maritime spirit. With the azure waters of the Saronic Gulf at your fingertips, you can set sail from the Athens Riviera to explore nearby islands like Aegina, Poros, or Hydra.
Along the way, you’ll bask in the Mediterranean sun, dive into crystal-clear waters, and discover hidden coves and secluded beaches.
Whether you’re an experienced sailor or new to the sport, a day on the sea provides a refreshing perspective of Athens, combining relaxation, exploration, and the thrill of the open water for a memorable maritime escape and, in our opinion, one of the best experience when taking a day trip.
22. Visit The Athens City Center
Visiting the city center of Athens is an immersive experience that allows you to dive into the heart of the Greek capital’s vibrant energy and history.
At its core, you’ll discover Syntagma Square, home to the Greek Parliament and the iconic Evzones guards. From here, stroll down Ermou Street, a bustling shopping avenue with a blend of high-end boutiques and local stores.
Nearby, explore Monastiraki, a historic neighborhood that showcases a bustling flea market and the captivating remnants of ancient Greece. As you wander through the streets, you’ll encounter charming cafes, traditional tavernas, and an array of cultural attractions, making it the perfect starting point for your Athens adventure.
23. Enjoy a Greek coffee
Sipping a Greek coffee during a day in Athens is a delightful cultural experience not to be missed. This strong and aromatic coffee, prepared with finely ground coffee beans, sugar, and water, is a staple of Greek coffee culture.
Served in a small cup, it’s enjoyed slowly, often accompanied by a glass of water and a piece of lokum, a sweet confection.
The best place to savor this traditional brew is at a local kafeneio (coffee shop), where you can relax, people-watch, and immerse yourself in the relaxed pace of Athenian life. It’s the perfect way to soak in the city’s ambiance and taste a bit of Greek tradition in every sip.
24. Eat The Best Souvlaki, Loukoumades and Yogurtlu in Athens
Indulging in Greek’s culinary delights is one of the best things to do in Athens, a must for any food lover. Try the city’s best souvlaki, a beloved Greek dish featuring succulent skewered meat, often served in a warm pita with fresh vegetables and creamy tzatziki sauce.
For a sweet treat, savor loukoumades, delectable honey-soaked doughnuts sprinkled with cinnamon and walnuts, best enjoyed fresh from the fryer.
And don’t miss yogurtlu, a flavorful combination of yogurt, meat, and pita bread that tantalizes the taste buds with its rich, savory flavors. Athens’ street food scene offers these mouthwatering classics, allowing you to savor the city’s authentic culinary traditions while exploring its vibrant neighborhoods.
25. Eat The Best Gyros
Among the plenty of things to do and see in the city is, of course, devouring a gyro in Athens. It is a quintessential culinary experience that encapsulates the essence of Greek street food. A gyro is a mouthwatering delight made by stacking seasoned slices of meat, typically pork or chicken, onto a vertical rotisserie.
These savory slices are carved off and wrapped in a warm pita, accompanied by fresh vegetables, onions, tomatoes, and a generous dollop of creamy tzatziki sauce. The result is a flavor explosion that dances on your taste buds, offering a perfect blend of textures and tastes.
Whether you enjoy it as a quick grab-and-go snack or savor it at a local taverna, relishing a gyro in Athens is a must, showcasing the city’s rich culinary heritage and satisfying your appetite with every flavorful bite.
26. Participate In A Guided Food Walking Tour
One of the most unique things to do in Athens is embark on a guided food walking tour, as it is a delectable journey that combines culture, history, and culinary exploration. With a knowledgeable guide leading the way, you’ll meander through the city’s charming streets, discovering hidden culinary gems and savoring various authentic Greek dishes.
From sampling creamy tzatziki and crispy spanakopita to indulging in succulent souvlaki and sweet loukoumades, these tours offer a delightful immersion into Athens’ gastronomic treasures.
Along the way, you’ll uncover fascinating historical anecdotes and gain insight into the city’s vibrant food scene.
Whether you’re a food enthusiast or simply eager to taste the best Greek cuisine, a guided food walking tour in Athens promises an unforgettable epicurean adventure.
27. Bar hopping in Athens during the nighttime
Exploring the city of Athens through a night of bar hopping is an exhilarating adventure that unveils the city’s vibrant nightlife and social scene. As the sun sets, the Greek capital comes alive with a plethora of bars, each offering its unique ambiance, cocktails, and live music.
From the lively Plaka district to the hipster vibe of Gazi and the chic bars in Kolonaki, Athens has something for every taste. You’ll have the chance to mingle with locals, sample Greek spirits like ouzo or raki, and dance to both traditional and contemporary tunes.
Bar hopping in Athens is a fantastic way to experience the city’s dynamic after-dark culture and create unforgettable memories in the heart of Greece. Make sure to include rooftop bars on the list to enjoy the view of Athens.
Where to Eat in Athens
Athens boasts a vibrant culinary scene that caters to diverse tastes, offering traditional Greek cuisine and international flavors. One must-visit place is the historic district of Plaka, an area of Athens known for its charming streets lined with tavernas and cafes.
Here, you can savor classic Greek dishes like moussaka, souvlaki, and fresh seafood while enjoying a picturesque view of the Acropolis. For a more upscale dining experience, head to the Kolonaki neighborhood, where you’ll find chic restaurants serving contemporary Greek cuisine and international fusion dishes.
Another culinary gem in Athens is the Central Market, also known as Varvakios Agora. This vibrant marketplace is a haven for culinary enthusiasts, with booths overflowing with fresh fruits, spices, cheeses, and meats.
You can indulge in street food delights like gyro and koulouri, a sesame-covered bread ring, or explore the market’s seafood section to sample the day’s freshest catch. Whether you’re seeking an authentic Greek dining experience or a gastronomic adventure, Athens offers a plethora of options to satisfy your culinary cravings.
More Things to Do in Athens
The National Garden in Athens
Discovering the National Garden in Athens is a delightful escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. This lush oasis in central Athens offers nature lovers and history enthusiasts alike a serene haven.
Once the royal garden of Queen Amalia, who was the first queen of Greece and married to Otto von Wittelsbach, the first kind of modern Greece, it’s now a tranquil retreat filled with various plants, trees, and wildlife.
You can meander through shady avenues, admire neoclassical sculptures, and even stumble upon ancient ruins, like the Temple of Pan, hidden amidst the greenery. It’s a peaceful respite that allows you to recharge while enjoying a slice of natural beauty in the heart of the Greek capital.
Dive into the nightlife of Exarchia
Diving into the nightlife of Exarchia is like stepping into Athens’ alternative heart. This vibrant and bohemian neighborhood is one of the spots we recommend you visit. It comes alive after dark, offering a unique blend of the best bars, cafes, and live music venues that cater to a diverse and eclectic crowd.
Known for its counterculture spirit and street art, Exarchia’s nightlife scene is a hub for artists, intellectuals, and free spirits. You can enjoy live indie music, sip on craft cocktails, or simply people-watch at one of the many lively squares.
Whether looking for an underground music scene or a laid-back evening with locals, Exarchia’s nightlife promises a memorable and offbeat Athenian experience.
Discover the charming neighborhood of Anafiotika
Check out one charming neighborhood called Anafiotika. Discovering it is like stumbling upon a hidden Greek island village in the heart of Athens. Nestled beneath the Acropolis, this picturesque enclave was constructed in the 19th century by immigrants from the Cycladic island of Anafi.
Its narrow, winding streets, whitewashed buildings, and blue-domed churches create a dreamy, Mediterranean ambiance that starkly contrasts the urban hustle nearby.
Wandering through Anafiotika feels like an enchanting journey back in time, offering stunning views of the Acropolis and a tranquil escape from the city’s modern chaos. It’s a gem for those seeking a unique and romantic Athens experience.
Purchase Custom Made Greek Sandals
During your time in Greece, particularly Athens, purchase custom-made Greek sandals. It is a delightful way to take home a piece of authentic Greek craftsmanship and an amazing experience in this city. These handcrafted leather sandals, known as “sandalia,” can be tailored to your style and preferences, ensuring a perfect fit and a unique design.
Many artisans and shops in Athens offer this personalized service, allowing you to choose the type of leather, color, and embellishments.
Whether you opt for a classic and elegant pair or something more bohemian and adorned with intricate details, these custom-made Greek sandals are not just a fashionable souvenir but a wearable piece of Hellenic culture and artistry that will keep you connected to your Athens adventure long after you’ve left the city.
How Many Days Should You Spend in Athens?
Deciding how many days to spend in Athens depends on your interests and travel itinerary. A stay of at least 3 to 4 days is recommended to comprehensively explore the city’s historical and cultural attractions.
This allows you to explore renowned attractions like the Acropolis and the Ancient Agora at a relaxed pace and to meander through neighborhoods such as Plaka and Monastiraki, celebrated for their delightful streets, boutiques, and restaurants. You can also allocate a day or two for day trips to nearby destinations like Delphi or the Saronic Islands, adding depth to your Athens experience.
However, if you have a more specific focus, such as solely exploring Athens’ archaeological treasures or enjoying its vibrant food scene, a shorter 2 to 3-day visit can still provide a rewarding experience. Ultimately, the ideal duration for your stay in Athens should align with your interests, allowing you to strike a balance between immersing yourself in the city’s historical wonders and savoring its modern delights.
Visiting Athens During The Summer Months
Visiting Athens during the summer months is an experience filled with warmth in terms of climate and hospitality. The Greek capital comes alive with a vibrant energy as locals and tourists take to the streets, savoring the Mediterranean sun and the city’s rich culture.
It’s the perfect time to explore the historic sites, enjoy al fresco dining at charming tavernas, and relax on the nearby beaches of the city’s Riviera for a day tour from Athens.
While the summer heat can be intense, the city’s many parks and coastal breezes provide respite, and the lively atmosphere and festivals make it a memorable season to immerse yourself in Athens’ unique blend of ancient heritage and modern charm.
Getting Around Athens
Getting around Athens is relatively easy and offers a range of transportation options to explore this vibrant city. The Athens Metro system is a convenient and efficient way to navigate the city, with three lines connecting major attractions, neighborhoods, and the city center.
Buses and trams complement the metro network, providing extensive coverage throughout this city. Consider purchasing an integrated transport ticket that allows unlimited travel on all public transportation modes for a specified period, making it cost-effective for exploring various parts of the city.
Another enjoyable way to explore the city is on foot, especially in districts like Monastiraki and Plaka, where small lanes are packed with quaint shops and restaurants.
Taxis are widely available, but ensuring the meter runs is essential to avoid overcharging. For a unique experience, ride on the Athens Tram along the scenic coastal route, offering stunning views of the Saronic Gulf. Overall, this lovely city offers a well-connected and diverse transportation system that caters to locals and tourists, making it easy to discover the city’s rich history and culture.
Moreover, the capital of Greece offers an extraordinary experience for travelers searching for a harmonious fusion of history, culture, and contemporary vibrancy.
The city’s rich heritage, epitomized by iconic landmarks like the Acropolis and the Parthenon, offers a profound glimpse into ancient Greece. At the same time, its thriving neighborhoods, culinary delights, and dynamic nightlife showcase a city that’s very much alive today.
Athens is where history meets modernity, where you can wander through millennia-old ruins in the morning and indulge in delectable Greek cuisine at a bustling taverna in the evening.
With its warm hospitality, diverse experiences, and a sense of timelessness that resonates in every corner, Athens undeniably ranks as one of the world’s great cities to explore and cherish. Whether you’re an art aficionado, a history buff, a food lover, or a curious traveler, Athens beckons with open arms, promising an unforgettable journey through Greece’s multifaceted and captivating capital.
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