As the oldest city in Europe, Athens has an extensive history that includes stories of gods and goddesses. This diverse city boasts beaches with clear turquoise waters, a vibrant nightlife and upscale shopping.The city is famous for its archaeological ruins and monuments. However, Athens is not just about ancient ruins. This bustling city is also an important center for culture, nightlife and sports.
PLACES TO VISIT
The Acropolis, with its Parthenon temple perched high on a rocky crag keeping watch over centuries of civilization. With its monumental rows of Doric columns and stunning sculptural details, the temple is an awe-inspiring sight.
2.NATIONAL ARCHAEOLOGY MUSEUM
This museum is the largest archaeological museum in Greece and one of the greatest antiquities museums in the world. Five permanent collections with more than 11,000 exhibits are on display, offering a comprehensive overview of Greek civilization from prehistory through the classical period to late antiquity.
The museum displays a more than 25,000 artifacts including sculptures, paintings, icons, textiles, and mosaics of the Byzantine era. The museum's courtyard features a mosaic floor from the fifth century.
4.AGORA: RUINS OF THE ANCIENT MARKETPLACE
The ancient Agora was the marketplace and the center of everyday life in ancient Athens. An interesting feature is the 18-meter-long Royal Stoa, the seat of the Archon Basileus, who took over the cultic functions of the earlier kings. Athletic events and theater performances were also held here.
5.CHURCH OF THE HOLY APOSTLES
The church was the only building left standing when this entire quarter of Athens was demolished to excavate the Agora archaeological site. Notable is the exteriors ashlar masonry and its ornamental Kufic inscriptions. The dome supported on four columns, and the apse and transepts feature semicircular conches. The interior of the dome is adorned with original frescoes, adorable little cherubim, and archangels.
6.OLYMPEION: TEMPLE OF OLYMPIAN ZEUS
Dedicated to Zeus, the Olympeion was the largest temple in ancient Greece. More than a hundred enormous marble columns once supported the grandiose sanctuary. Only 15 columns remain standing, and another surviving column lies on the ground, but the ruins' monumental presence gives a sense of the massive size of the original building.
7.PANATHENAIC STADIUM & OLYMPIC STADIUM
The Panathenaic Staduim is Ancient Athens's largest building. Today the structure seen by tourists is a replica of the original stadium which was rebuilt for the Olympic Games of 1896 with 47 tiers of seating and a rounded southeast end.
The temple was built to honor the goddess Athena Parthenos, the patron of Athens, to thank her for protecting the city during the Persian Wars. The Parthenon originally held all kinds of treasures, but the main attraction was a huge statue of Athena that was made out of chryselephantine also known as elephant ivory and gold.
For romantic evenings, gorgeous sunsets and an amazing panoramic view of Athens. A cable car will take up to the top where you can watch a show in the amphitheatre and afterwards having a fantastic dinner in the cafĂ©.
10.MONASTIRAKI FLEA MARKET
It is an assortment of tourist shops, clothing stores, fur and jewelry stores. Monastiraki Square is still one of the most lively squares in Athens and at night it is filled with young people and street venders.
OTHER PLACES TO VISIT
The best time to visit Athens is in the fall and spring when the weather is agreeable and sunshine is pretty much a guarantee.
The best way to get around in Athens is by extensive and inexpensive public transport of buses, metro, trolleybuses and trams.