This year, while planning your next holiday, please say YES to Athens.
Why? Athens is inspiring in so many ways…Friendly people, colorful buildings, pedestrian streets, amazing food and of course, the magnificent stories to tell. Apart from that, weather is nice, it’s not too expensive and there’s so much to explore.
Just to inspire you a bit, I leave you with some Athenian moments you can experience while visiting Athens.
1. Put on your walking shoes and explore each neighborhood of Athens from the colorful Plaka with ancient houses and monuments to Kolonaki with chic boutiques, innumerable restaurants and cafes to see and be seen.
2. Admire the Acropolis, the athen’s ancient citadel built on a top flat rock. Feel the history, the beauty and imagine what is was like to live in 500 BC (go early, before the crouds).
3. Head to Anafiotika, the hidden jewel of Athens and one of my favourite parts of the city, inspired by Anafi a small island east of Santorini, with pretty gardens, whitewashed houses with blue shutters and many cats along narrow streets up the hill of the Acropolis.
4. Enjoy the street art. Athens was described by the New York times as the ‘contemporary mecca for the street art in Europe’ with a community of over 2,000 street artists.
5. Climb the Philopappou Hill, have a picnic with greek delicacies and enjoy the amazing views
6. Walk along the famous ‘Grand Promenade’ or the Phanathenaic way around the Acropolis.
7. See the Acropolis Museum and learn about the Greece’s role in world heritage masterpieces. My favorite piece was the Caryatids and the mysteries behind it.
8. Go to the Ancient Agora, where all the philosophers, politicians, priests (and prostitutes) led their daily lifes.
9. Watch a movie in an open-air theater in Athens like Cine Paris, 22 Kidathinanion, Plaka
10. Head to the coast in about 30 minutes of driving distance you find amazing beaches and seafood.
PLACES TO SHOP:
By your hand-crafted leather sandals at Melissinos Art -The Poet Sandal Maker where John Lenon, Sophia Loren bought theirs greek sandals.
Head to Avyssinias square or the Monasteraki Market if you love vintage shopping.
There’s a nice design shop called Forget me not at 100, Adrianou Street where I found this shirt…
PLACES TO EAT:
Elvis (Kerameikos): Delicious Souvlaki shop and a hipsters paradise
Seychelles Restaurant (Keramikos area): restaurant with loving food
Kostas (located near the Syntagma square) one of the best Greek snack food I’ve had in the area.
Kafeneion style Aegeon (City Center-Panepistimiou) delicious local donuts (loukoumades) with honey and cinnamon, since 1926.
Bios (Gkazi area) a great vibe with athenian hipsters.
PLACES TO HAVE A NIGHT OUT:
6 d.o.g.s (Monastiraki area). To party at night and have coffee during the day, an all crowded all day long entertainment center combining a Gig Space, a Project Space, a Bar, a Foyer and a Garden!
Drunk Sinatra, Thiseos 16. Amazing soundtrack and cocktails.
PLACES TO STAY:
City Circus Athens, beautiful luxury hostel with ensuite double bedrooms and great design.
The Metro is the best way to get around within Athens and it’s very easy to find your way.
Taxibeat is an app where you get to choose your driver according to the ratings from previous passengers, the car model, the extra services offered (e.g. free wifi) or alternatively you can just hail the nearest car when in a hurry. Just download the taxibeat app on your mobile.
Note: If you have one or two nights extra, hop on a plane and visit Santorini. More information about Santorini see here.
And don’t forget to try OUZO, an anise-flavoured aperitif. Cheers!
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See you soon!