Ancient yet modern, classic yet creative, traditional yet constantly changing… Athens is a city of memorable contrasts. An enduring symbol of democracy, philosophy and all those big-picture ideals of the ancients, Athens also has a unique way of living in the moment. It is versatile and inventive, alive with the power of possibility day and night.
The Acropolis is an iconic ancient citadel located on a rocky hill overlooking Athens. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the most important archaeological and historical landmarks in the world. The Acropolis is home to several ancient buildings, including the Parthenon (dedicated to Athena, the Goddess of Wisdom and Protector of the City), the Erechtheion, and the Propylaea, which showcase remarkable Doric and Ionic architecture. It is a symbol of ancient Greek civilization and remains a testament to the rich cultural and artistic achievements of the classical era. Today, it continues to attract millions of visitors who come to admire its beauty and learn about its significant historical significance. The Acropolis has witnessed every changing face of Athens since antiquity and she’s still there, a fitting monument to this great city and willing to share her story with everyone who wants to listen. Each of the Hestia building rooftops enjoys a view of this magnificent monument. The Acropolis Museum is a captivating cultural institution that offers a fascinating journey through ancient Greek history. Located at the foot of the Acropolis, the museum showcases an impressive collection of artifacts and sculptures from the iconic archaeological site. The sleek and modern building is designed to complement the ancient treasures it houses, creating a seamless blend of old and new. Visitors can marvel at the intricate Parthenon friezes, graceful Caryatids, and other exquisite masterpieces that once adorned the Acropolis.
Exarcheia, a bohemian neighborhood in Athens, is an area pulsing with a rebellious and artistic spirit. Famous for its counterculture and activism, Exarcheia has long been a gathering place for intellectuals, artists, and political activists. The streets are adorned with colorful street art and political graffiti, reflecting the area's history of social ovements and protests. Exarcheia is a haven for alternative music venues, indie theaters, and underground bars, making it a go-to spot for those seeking a taste of thens' vibrant subculture. The neighborhood's charm lies in its eclectic mix of bookstores, vintage shops, and vegetarian eateries, catering to diverse tastes and lifestyles. Despite its edgy reputation, Exarcheia welcomes visitors with a unique and authentic experience, immersing them in the raw energy and creativity that define this intriguing corner of Athens.
The Panathenaic Stadium
The Panathenaic Stadium, also known as Kallimarmaro, is an ancient marble stadium located in Athens, Greece. Originally built in the 4th century BC, it underwent extensive renovations in the 19th century to its present form. This iconic stadium was the site of the Panathenaic Games, a significant athletic and cultural event in ancient Greece. With its horseshoe-shaped design and white marble seating, the stadium can accommodate thousands of spectators. Today, it serves as a historic landmark and remains a symbol of the Olympic spirit, having hosted the opening and closing ceremonies of the inaugural modern Olympic Games in 1896. It is the venue of the epic finishing line for the annual Athens Marathon.
The Athens National Garden is a peaceful and lush green oasis situated in the heart of Athens. Together with neighbouring Zappeion Park, the National Garden covers a full 160 acres right in the middle of the city, offering a serene escape from the bustling city. Originally designed as a royal garden in the 19th century, it features a diverse array of plant species, charming pathways, and picturesque ponds. Visitors can stroll through the shaded alleys, admire colorful flowers, and relax in its tranquil ambiance. The National Garden is not only a popular spot for locals seeking tranquility but also an attraction for tourists eager to experience the natural beauty and serenity within the city center.
Lycabettus Hill is a captivating natural landmark in the heart of Athens. Rising 277 meters above sea level, it offers breathtaking panoramic views of the city and its iconic landmarks, including the Acropolis and the Aegean Sea. The hill is covered in lush vegetation and dotted with charming pathways, benches and even an outdoor theatre, making it a popular destination for nature enthusiasts and hikers. At its peak, stands the whitewashed Chapel of Agios Giorgos (St. George), adding to the hill's picturesque charm. Whether you choose to hike up or take the funicular railway, a visit to Lycabettus Hill promises a memorable experience and an opportunity to witness the beauty of Athens from a different perspective. There is also a cafe-restaurant for you to savour the moment.
Olympieion - Temple of Zeus
The Olympieion, also known as the Temple of Zeus, is an awe-inspiring ancient temple located in Athens. Constructed in the 6th century BC, this colossal structure was dedicated to the king of the Greek gods, Zeus. The temple boasted 104 Corinthian columns, with 15 still standing today, exemplifying the grandeur of ancient Greek architecture. The Olympieion was once one of the largest temples in the ancient world, showcasing the immense skill and engineering prowess of its creators. A visit to this historic site allows you to step back in time and marvel at the remnants of this magnificent temple, which continues to be a testament to the rich cultural heritage of Greece.
The Agora of Athens is a captivating archaeological site located northwest of the Acropolis in Greece. Dating back to ancient times, the Agora served as the heart of the city's social, political, and commercial life. It was a bustling marketplace where merchants sold goods, philosophers engaged in discussions, and citizens gathered to participate in democratic processes. The Agora is surrounded by well-preserved ruins of various buildings, including the Stoa of Attalos and the Temple of Hephaestus, providing a glimpse into the city's vibrant past. Exploring the Agora allows you to immerse yourself in the history and significance of this central hub, where the foundations of Western civilization were shaped.
Plaka is a charming and historic neighborhood nestled at the base of the Acropolis in Athens, Greece. Often referred to as the ``neighborhood of the gods,`` it is a picturesque area known for its narrow, cobblestone streets, neoclassical buildings, and vibrant atmosphere. As one of the oldest neighborhoods in Athens, it exudes a sense of timeless beauty and character. Here, visitors can wander through a maze of quaint shops, cozy tavernas, and traditional cafes, immersing themselves in the rich culture and warm hospitality of the locals. Plaka is steeped in history and a Must-Visit for any first-time visitor to Athens seeking to experience the authentic spirit of this ancient city. As you stroll through their charming streets, you'll encounter ancient ruins and archaeological sites, further connecting you to the rich heritage of Athens.
Kolonaki, an upscale neighborhood, exudes elegance and sophistication, making it a chic and fashionable destination. Nestled at the foot of Mount Lycabettus, Kolonaki is known for its posh boutiques, high-end fashion stores, and luxury brand outlets, making it a shopper's paradise. The area is dotted with stylish cafes, upscale restaurants, and trendy bars, offering a taste of refined Greek cuisine and a vibrant nightlife. Kolonaki's charm extends beyond its fashionable façade, as it also boasts beautiful neoclassical buildings and charming squares that add to its allure. With its mix of exclusive shops and cultural venues, Kolonaki attracts a diverse crowd, from affluent locals to discerning tourists, all seeking to experience the chic and cosmopolitan atmosphere. Whether you're indulging in a shopping spree, savoring gourmet delights, or simply taking in the refined ambiance, Kolonaki promises an upscale and memorable experience in the heart of Athens.
Monastiraki Square is the vibrant and bustling hub in the heart of Athens, known for its lively energy and eclectic mix of sights and sounds. The square is a popular gathering spot for locals and tourists alike, offering a diverse array of experiences. Here, you'll find a bustling flea market, where vendors display an array of unique treasures, from antiques and handmade crafts to vintage clothing and souvenirs. Surrounding the square, there are numerous cafes, restaurants, and street food vendors serving up mouthwatering Greek delicacies. It's a perfect place to sample traditional dishes and soak in the lively ambiance. History also comes to life at Monastiraki Square, with ancient landmarks like Hadrian's Library and the Roman Agora nearby. These historical sites add an extra layer of charm and significance to the area, making it a fascinating blend of the old and the new.
National Archeological Museum
The National Archaeological Museum is a captivating treasure trove that showcases the ancient history and cultural heritage of the country. As one of the most important archaeological museums globally, it houses an extensive collection of artifacts from various periods of Greek history, spanning from prehistoric times to the Roman era. Visitors can marvel at awe-inspiring sculptures, intricate pottery, ancient jewelry, and fascinating archaeological finds from iconic sites such as Mycenae and Santorini. The museum's exhibits offer a journey through time, providing valuable insights into the art, customs, and daily life of ancient civilizations that once thrived in Greece.
Syntagma Square, located in the heart of Athens, is a vibrant and dynamic gathering place that serves as the city's central hub. The square is known for its historical significance, as it has been the focal point of many important events and demonstrations throughout Greek history. The centerpiece of the square is the Hellenic Parliament building, where the changing of the Evzones, the traditional Greek guards in their iconic uniforms, is a popular attraction for visitors. Surrounded by neoclassical buildings, luxury hotels, and upscale boutiques, Syntagma Square offers a blend of modernity and tradition. It's a lively area where locals and tourists converge, and it serves as a meeting point for socializing, shopping, and enjoying the city's vibrant atmosphere.
Psirri, an eclectic neighborhood in Athens, located just northwest of Monastiraki Square, is a vibrant and artsy district with a distinct bohemian atmosphere. Psirri is known for its narrow alleys adorned with colorful street art and graffiti, creating a unique and edgy vibe. This hip and happening area is a favorite among locals and young creatives, drawing them in with its array of trendy bars, quirky cafes, and contemporary art galleries. As the sun sets, Psirri comes alive with its buzzing nightlife scene, offering a mix of live music venues, stylish clubs, and cozy tavernas where visitors can indulge in delicious Greek cuisine. The neighborhood's charm lies in its fusion of old and new, with traditional buildings standing side by side with modern architectural projects. Psirri's artistic spirit and youthful energy make it an exciting destination to explore, immersing visitors in the vibrant culture and creativity that define this dynamic corner of Athens.
Just above Plaka, you'll find Anafiotika, a hidden gem that seems like a tranquil village within the bustling city. This tiny district was built by immigrants from the island of Anafi, and it reflects the Cycladic architecture of its namesake. The whitewashed houses with blue shutters and colorful bougainvillea create a postcard-worthy setting, offering a delightful escape from the urban surroundings. The day-to-night transition is breathtaking and forms the perfect backdrop for a dinner setting.
The Odeon of Herodes Atticus
The Odeon of Herodes Atticus is an ancient amphitheater situated on the southern slope of the Acropolis in Athens. Built in the 2nd century AD, this iconic venue exhibits stunning Roman architecture. Its semi-circular structure once hosted music concerts, theatrical performances, and other cultural events, accommodating almost 5.000 spectators. Today, it remains an awe-inspiring sight with exceptional acoustics and continues to be used for various performances as well as the annual Athens Festival, making it a living testament to the city's rich artistic heritage.