A first impression of Athens, Greece – Travel Photo Mondays
Athens, is such an amazing place to visit and filled with so much history, architecture, amazing food and exciting, youthful areas that are popular in spite of the economic downturn in the country. I really enjoyed that the city is relatively compact within the historic districts and most of the main attractions, squares and places of interest are centered within the historic district.
Here are highlights of my first impression of Athens, Greece below
I love walking down the many squares, narrow streets and busy avenues of Athens – it’s so alive and filled with energy. One minute you are walking down an ancient ruin, thousands of years old and adjacent is a trendy area filled with restaurants and live performances that are free to enjoy. There’s so much variety of places to explore old or new, Athens street art mixed in with trendy neighborhoods next to ancient sites….or perhaps just a nice walk along an area that has antique markets mixed in with many cafes and pastry shops makes for a nice break during one of those walks around the city. To get my bearings around Athens and what to do, I loved referring to this infographic shortcut travel guide to Athens.
There are so many interesting neighborhoods to visit and experience in the city, many of them in the historic district and very close to many of the national monuments of the city including the Plaka and Monastiraki districts that are shown on this post.
A beautiful and quiet area in the busy Plaka district in Athens
Just above this quiet area of Anafiotika in the Plaka sits the majestic Acropolis – the main landmark of Athens. This whole area has also been in constant flux and improvement with a stunning Acropolis museum along with retrofitting and upgrading the Unesco site above. Later in the day is a great way to avoid the crows and enjoy the late after light and into the sunset time frame which is quite spectacular from above and looking down into the city. The Plaka has lots of cool bars, restaurants, galleries and fun shops to buy souvenirs if you are looking for things to buy in Greece.
The famous balcony of the Erechteion with the graceful Caryatids (maiden statues) which are actually copies, the originals placed in the new Acropolis Museum just located below the Acropolis and have been painstakingly cleaned and placed in a prominent spot in the museum so you can see them very close. Visiting the Acropolis is definitely what Greece is famous for its iconic temple located on a prominent bluff overlooking all of Athens along with other significant landmarks in this impressive site.
There are exceptional views of the entire city and many of the ancient landmarks around the Acropolis, it seems like everywhere that you turn, there is something even more magnificent to discover and enjoy including the Roman Odeion theater of Herodes Atticus next to the Acropolis.
The artifacts and interior of the Acropolis museum are a must visit attraction
There’s so much to see and explore in this dynamic city. Even climbing up the hills of the city affords amazing views and panoramas especially at Lycbettus hill which has such a stunning view overlooking the Acropolis and the entire city from the surrounding hills down to the ocean at Piraeus port. While your up there, stay for the sunsets, it’s worth the climb and the views.
Sunset approaches on Athens from Lycabettus Hill
Evening view of the Acropolis from Lycabettus hill
There’s still so much of Athens to explore and this is just a first impression of my first visit to the city. Even easy access from the airport to the main city center via bus, taxi or metro system and is so well laid out. Stay tuned for more stories about the neighborhoods, food, culture and history of this amazing city in the Aegean capital. If you’re exploring outside of Athens, a perfect day trip from Athens is a visit to the Temple of Poseidon in Cape Sounion.
Check out these other posts on Athens & region
Thanks for visiting this first impression of Athens, Greece, hope that you enjoyed the highlight tour of the city.