Destination Spotlight: Athens

Known as the birthplace of Western civilization and democracy, Athens is literally steeped in history, and this makes it an incredible place to visit and explore.

Athens is a vibrant, cultural hub with rich art and ancient architecture. You will find world-class museums, unique cultural events, fun music festivals, and theater - after all, it’s the birthplace of theatre!

You will view different architectural styles, ranging from ancient Greek ruins to neoclassical buildings and modern structures - which gives the city a very distinctive landscape. Take time to explore the charming neighborhoods on foot to truly experience their charm.

Let’s not forget the cuisine! Greek food is well-loved, and Athens is the perfect place to indulge in tavernas and trendy restaurants to taste a variety of culinary delights. 

Afterward, explore the nightlife scene. Throughout the city, you’ll find fun bars, clubs, and live music. In addition to this, Athens is situated near the coastline and has beautiful beaches. Nearby islands make for perfect day trips. 

Visit Athens for an unforgettable experience of rich history, culture, and cuisine. Also, Greeks are known for their hospitality and are ready to welcome you.

5 Things To Do

  1. The Acropolis: This is a must-visit site in Athens - a piece of incredible history! Explore the greats: the Parthenon, the Erechtheion, and the Temple of Athena Nike. You’ll also be able to enjoy beautiful views of the city.
  2. Ancient Agora: When you think of Athens, you probably picture ancient ruins. Well, this is a perfect spot for viewing this history. The Ancient Agora was historically a marketplace and civic center. You’ll be able to immerse yourself in the ruins of ancient temples, like the Stoa of Attalos and the Temple of Hephaestus.
  3. The Plaka neighborhood: Plaka has the most charming streets to casually walk around. It’s one of the oldest neighborhoods in all of Athens. You’ll see incredible architecture, sweet shops featuring local crafts, and find traditional tavernas to experience fabulous authentic Greek cuisine.
  4. Athens Central Market: This vibrant market is bursting with bustling stalls of fresh foods, spices, and Greek delicacies. It's the best place to view local culture - and the food is so authentic.
  5. National Archaeological Museum: Are you a fan of Greek history, art, or myths? This museum contains ancient artifacts, sculptures, pottery, jewelry, and more. Perfect for art fans and history buffs.

5 Hidden Gems

  1. Philopappos Hill: Located near the Acropolis, Philopappos Hill offers stunning views of Athens and the Parthenon. There are picturesque walking trails where you can view ancient monuments, too. So, if you like to hike, picnic, and explore, this is for you!

  2. Anafiotika: Anafiotika is a beautiful neighborhood that resembles those white-washed houses seen on the Greek islands (picture the Mamma Mia film). It’s so peaceful, and the perfect quick escape from the city for a day trip. You’ll be able to relax as you wander around pretty alleyways surrounded by vibrant flowers. And, the views are incredible. Bring your camera for insta-perfct moments.

  3. National Garden: This peaceful park is a hidden oasis in the heart of the city! There are stunning gardens, a pretty lake and zoo, and pretty shady pathways to explore.

  4. Kerameikos Cemetery: While you might think to skip seeing a cemetery, this gem is right near the Ancient Agora and is truly fascinating. The site features archeological history alongside green space, monuments, and ancient tombs.

  5. Gazi Technopolis: Catch all kinds of events, concerts, and such at this vibrant culture center that once was a gasworks factory. There are exhibits and festivals to check out, too. It’s the perfect place to experience the city's contemporary art scene.

5 Foods To Try

  1. Souvlaki: You may have had this at a Greek restaurant near you. This popular Greek street food skewer has grilled meats (usually pork, beef, or chicken) served on a skewer - or wrapped in a pita. It’s topped with delicious tzatziki and tomatoes and sometimes served with a side of fries.

  2. Loukoumades: This is a special sweet treat! It is small deep-fried dough balls found throughout Athens. They are light and fluffy and drizzled with honey and cinnamon. (sometimes served with nuts or ice cream) Kids love these!

  3. Moussaka: Moussaka is warm and delicious. It consists of layers of baked eggplant, minced meat, and a béchamel sauce. It’s hearty perfection.

  4. Taramasalata: This yummy unique dip is made from fish roe. It’s usually an appetizer. You dip bread or pita in it. It is pink, rich, and tangy. 

  5. Spanakopita: This pastry is made with crispy phyllo dough filled with a mixture of spinach, feta cheese, onions, and herbs. It’s a perfect snack on the go or a side dish - nice and savory.

Enjoy your visit to Athens!

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