Things To Do In Athens
The city of Athens with the Acropolis Museum, the Parthenon, Temple of the Olympian Zeus and so many other historic sites has to offer amazing food as well as enjoyment. The streets filled with shops allow you to shop Greek objects enjoy the marvelous architecture which dates back to centuries ago. The city reformed after it was chosen as the host for the 2004 Summer Olympics, becoming cleaner with a modern subway, spotless parks and a fully facilitated airport.
When To Go:
The best time to visit Athens would be during the fall and the spring so the months of March till May and from October till November. Being a coastal city, Athens faces harsh summers so the months from June till September can be really hot while the winters from December to February can be extremely cold. Even in the spring light jackets are recommended due to the chilly sea breezes entering the city. The nightclubs and restaurants tend to shut down during the summer period and if you visit in the fall you are bound to find them open and can advantage of them. Moreover, these periods make hotels cheaper to stay in making your trip less expensive and more fun. The winters have heavy rainfall with extremely cold weather, thus, it is not a good time to visit Athens.
These are the things to do while in Athens…
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If you are going to Athens then missing out on Athens Clue would be quite foolish. The first ever 4-D game room in Athens, where two to five people in a group get locked in one room and then work together to find the key to get out. More excitement comes in with the time limit of 60 minutes. One hour to get out. All you have to do is work as a team and find keys which lead you to other clues and then more keys to help you escape from the room.
The atmosphere is absolutely amazing with the mysterious surroundings, making you the detective. The game masters provide you with the clues so it is possible for you to complete the game within the time limit. None the less after the playing this game you would want more. Take your kids with you and try the Lev Pasted Room which is the hardest one to solve and only has a 30% chance of getting solved! So what are you waiting for? Get your booking done now and enjoy being the detective.
Temple of Hephaestus
The first temple in Athena to be made of marble was started in 449 BC, two years before the Parthenon was started to be built. The unnamed architect is said to be the one who has made buildings throughout Attica. Some believe it was made by the architect who also designed Parthenon, Iktinos in 450 BC. However, the Doric style temple is one of the few left in Athens which is still completely standing. It is also called the Theseum due to the belief that this temple was in fact a shrine dedicated to Theseus and not Hephaestus. It has 13 columns on each side and 6 in every close.
The front of the temple has sculptures which show the labors of Hercules. On the west side there is a sculpture of the fall of Troy and on the east another frieze depicts a battle scene. In the 7th century the Temple of Hephaestus was converted into Church of St. George Akamas. Then in the 19th century this church from a temple became a burial ground for Protestants and those who had died in the Greek War of Independence of 1821. Then it became a museum in the 1930’s after which it was restored to its original appearance. So take a trip down to this temple on top of a hill and explore it.
The Parthenon is one of the oldest buildings in Greece and has stood upon the Acropolis Hill since more than 2500 years. It was built as a salutation to the Greek goddess Athena for salvation in wars. The official name was Temple of Athena the Virgin but was later changed to Parthenon from the word ‘Parthenos’ which means virgin. Construction of this building began in 447 BC and was completed by 438 BC. The statue of the Athena that stood inside this temple was made from gold entirely. In the 5th century after Athens was no longer a provincial city, the statue was looted by one of the emperors and taken to Constantinople where it was completely destroyed.
Then the Parthenon became a church dedicated to the Virgin Mary which involved removing some of the columns and walls with creating an apse on the eastern side. Many of the sculptures were removed and destroyed after being considered pagan. After the Ottomans took over, the Parthenon became a mosque and only a minaret was added leaving everything else intact. When Venetians attacked Athens a shell exploded in the Parthenon causing much of the building like the roof and some of the pillars to collapse. The sculptures left are mostly in the Acropolis Museum. The building has a lot of interesting history to tell and the amazing marble structure left is amazing. The night view is said to be lovely!
The Acropolis used to the fortified citadel and the state sanctuary in ancient times. In the Bronze Age the Acropolis was surrounded by a wall which was later destroyed as one civilization ended and another took over. The Doric temple of the Greek goddess Athena was first built here with other small structures around it. However, when the Persians took over the city many buildings were destroyed and it was in the middle of the 5th century that Athenians were convinced to rebuild the structures.
The most famous of them being the Parthenon, the Erechtheion, the Propylaia and the temple of Athena. Resting right in the heart of the city this hill holds facts and amazing relics from history. The climb to the hill is a bit steep, but if you are interested in the items there, just take a walk there and explore. Make sure you start your day early as there is a lot to be explored and discovered here. Don’t forget your camera and capture the beautiful moments including structures that are more than 2000 years old.
The Plaka is one of the oldest parts of Athens city and most of the streets have now been closed down for cars. This area is now famous for restaurants, cafes, jewelry stores and shoe stores along with many other attractions for tourists. Lying at the base of the Acropolis, Plaka is not difficult to find. Narrow streets allow you to roam around and get lost in the midst of Greek architecture.
The place has a very welcoming and nice feel. The shops have loads of souvenirs for people to take back home which include postcards, hand made objects and other wooden things which seem quite interesting. The cafes on the sides offer amazing Greek food which is hygienic and safe to eat. So wear your walking shoes and take a trip down this alley to find places to shop and eat.
This structure, like any other building in Greece is an important cultural and tourist monument. The Panathenaic Stadium is significant not just for Greece but for the entire world because this where the first ever Olympic Games began. During 555/556 BC the site for its construction was chosen and was considered to be the ideal spot. It was constructed on the place where an ancient stadium was before and where nude men had to compete in track events. With time changes were made to the place as Greece saw many rulers and civilizations.
When the Romans took over, the stadium became a place for bloodshed and gladiator competitions and then lost its popularity. With time the building has become an important part of Athens again as the Olympics 2004 began from this stadium all over. This is the place where the Olympic Flame begins its journey to other cities of the world. Wear your sneakers, explore the place and find posters from the oldest Olympics. Try to run in the grounds to feel what the competitors during those days felt. The Panathenaic Stadium is not to be missed.
Temple of Athena Nike
On the south-west side of the Acropolis is the Temple of Athena Nike. This structure is a tall mass of rock which is built in such a strategic manner that it protects the most vulnerable access point and the citadel. The history and researches show that the temple used to be a place of worship of many gods and goddesses. The temple was fully constructed in 420 BC. The statue of Athena Nike was made of wood and held a pomegrade in the right hand and a helmet in the left. It was said that the statue was given no wings so it could not fly. The temple got the name Apteros Nike (wing-less victory.) the building faces the east with the entrance lined with four Ionic columns which support a small porch.
The west end has the same structure but it precedes a blind wall. Four columns were added to the back of the temple as it faced the entrance to the Acropolis. The parapet which surrounds the temple has relief structures elaborately designed on it and are seen best by visitors climbing down from the Propylaia. In 1988 the temple was reconstructed and the actual frieze was placed in the Acropolis Museum. Go ahead and take a look at how this marvelous structure has stood against time and civilizations still looking magnificent.
This place is what you need to soothe yourself and relax. No need of spas needed, just go down to Lake Vouliagmeni to replenish your energy. A volcanic crater filled with the bluest of waters keeps on overflowing with the hot springs located underneath it. This lake is known to have minerals, which cure some of the worst skin diseases and other problems like headaches, severe gynecological issues, lumbago and many more. Filled with minerals like potassium, lithium, calcium and many others this lake also has radioactive qualities which are good for the body.
The appearance and the qualities of the lake make it a unique place to be. History says that it actually used to be one large cave with a lot of hot springs in it until the roof of the cave collapsed due to moisture and heat to become a lake. Surrounded by beach chairs and umbrellas this is a relaxing spot for one. There are beautiful restaurants and bars around the lake too, and a candlelight dinner is highly recommended. So take a plunge in the water and get all the tension away from your body.
Right beneath the Acropolis, in the courtyard of the amazing Athens University History Museum building watch the trial of the famous philosopher with your own eyes. This place is a few steps away from the actual place where the Greek philosopher was actually sentenced to death more than 2500 years ago. Take part in what is known to be one of the most controversial trials of all times.
Sit in the audience and listen to Socrates himself with his wit, logic and courage. You have the opportunity to consider the judgment based on his arguments on justice, hope in death, politics, virtue and love. Wait for the post performance time to discuss your judgment with the actor himself. This is not some ordinary play for the excitement of the people, but an amazing chance to relive history with Socrates himself. The amazing actor being the Emmy award winner Yannis Simonides. Do not skip this part from your trip and get the dates and bookings checked immediately!
Want to bring that oomph factor to your entire trip to the great city of Athens? Take a climb to the Mount Lycabettus. From here you can get an entire view of Athens down below. A bit more than 750ft this climb is definitely worth the effort! The best time to go would be twilight. Some beautiful restaurants up there provide amazing food.
If you are too tired to walk yet want to see the view, take the funicular which takes you to the top of the mount and catch the breathtaking view of the city down below. This is a place where the camera should not be forgotten as you get a complete 360 degree view of Athens from above the ground. Take as many pictures as you can and make it a day!
Getting bored of all the history and relics around you? Take a trip down to the Flisvos Marina where you will be surrounded by water and boats. This place has to offer yachting. On the last day you could book a boat or yacht all to yourself and go in the sea to fish or even do some surfing.
Spend the daytime on the boat and after enjoying the setting sun and the beautiful water come back to the land to eat some amazing dishes from Greece. The fish here is supposed to be pretty famous. There are other cafes, bars and restaurants that you could try for a late night out. This place is lovely with the boats and water around you. So why not stroll here and enjoy one of the best moments of your trip in the city of Athens.
This is another secluded spot to sit alone or with someone and enjoy the serenity around you. The National Gardens are an oasis away from the hubbub of the city with greenery playing an important role in the beauty of the surroundings. There are some small ponds around with ducks, a lot of benches, cafes and even a small zoo. Find some exotic flowers within this garden to add to the loveliness. After walking too much, you might consider relaxing in this beautiful place which is calm and peaceful. Read a book. Go on a picnic and take some snacks. This is one of the best places to enjoy such activities. It’s said to be cooler than the city itself. Take a walk down this garden and find a secluded place to enjoy your isolation before entering back into the busy and populated city.
A trip to Athens means history, fun and adventure. The Athens Clues is a different and unique thing to do in such a culture filled city. Strolling down the Plaka to shop and eat is an experience in itself. Find some amazing Greek sandals to wear with those traditional dresses they have to offer. Going to the Vouliagmeni Lake is an exotic experience which offers you a health rejuvenation treatment while mesmerizing you with the splendid beauty of the lake. The history of the city runs deep and the more you explore, the more you find. Go to the temples and hills to find yourself in history. Make this trip the best trip of your life and enjoy it because it is indeed worth it.
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