1. The Acropolis
When most people think of Athens an image of the Acropolis will form in their mind. Perhaps the most iconic of all the structures of the ancient world the Acropolis allows visitors to imagine and almost feel themselves back in the time when Greece was a byword for poetry, philosophy and everything civilised in the world. The ‘love of knowledge’ is continued nowadays by a rather nice student discount for those studying at any institution in the EU.
2. The Agora
Resembling, and indeed foreshadowing, the Roman forums, the Agora is both delightful in itself and provides one of the best views of the Acropolis. As you stroll around you will find the remains of many ancient buildings as well as some tasteful reconstructions. Las Vegas this is not. Those travelling with a large group will find that the Agora is the perfect place for you to wonder off and explore for a while on your own or simply sit peacefully and watch the world go by.
3. Syntagma Square
As the main hub for public transport in Athens it is likely that visitors would be passing through Syntagma Square at some point in their visit, but it is worth exploring in its own right. The Greek parliament and national gardens are located off the square and visitors can watch the changing of the guard in front of the tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Visitors used to the London version of this ceremony will be pleasantly surprised by the Greek interpretation, although check for times before setting off.
4. Free bike tour
Athens is a very polluted city and visitors will understandably not want to add to this by their presence. It is also a very congested city and so a tour taking to the roads is not going to be very satisfactory. Thankfully there are free bicycle tours at the weekends that solve both of these problems at once. Kids especially will love the tours and adults may find it a great way to tire them out. Ask at your hotel for details of when and where the tour begins.
Visitors to Athens do not usually come expecting a traditional beach holiday, but there are gorgeous beaches just a short distance away from the centre of the city. A good idea is to take a picnic as this means you can move along the beaches away from the crowds and do not need to return for meals in expensive beach front snack shacks. The best beaches lie to the south of the city and you will have to combine a metro and bus journey to get there. Ask at your hotel or tourist information centres for advice on the latest beach and journey tips.
Top 5 Popular Athens Hotels on Venere.com
- AVA Hotel – 4-star Hotel – Double Room from €175
- Hotel Athens Gate – 4-star Hotel – Double Room from €155
- Hotel Periscope – 2-star Hotel – Double Room from €180
- Hotel Attalos – 2-star Hotel – Double Room from €85
- Eridanus Luxury Art Hotel – 5-star Hotel – Double Room from €140
Photo of Athens’ Parthenon, Greece, by Lapidim