Monday, August 6, 2012

Places to go in Greece

Athens is one of the oldest and most famous cities in the world, thanks for its fabulous historical and cultural legacy, a plenty of natural resources and friendly people. Many interesting tourist attractions can be found in Athens. Athens is rich in various buildings, monuments, and ancient art. One of the most famous is the Acropolis is to be one proof of the classical Greek art. Here are the 9 best tourist attractions in Athens and I will give you a couple of Islands to visit, the ones I went and recommend.

Acropolis and the Parthenon Temple

The word Acropolis means fortress in ancient Greek or it could also mean building heights that are in place, like on top of the hill or the highest city. Acropolis in Athens is best known as the Acropolis in the world. This cultural and historical place is located right in the center of the city, where a flat and massive rock creates a perfect foundation for a couple of buildings and monuments. Some of the most famous is the Partheon, the Erechtheum, the Propylaea and the Odeon of Herodes Atticus stone theatre. Area of ​​3 hectares is located at an altitude of 150 meters on the hill. Located a few kilometers from the center of Athens, Greece. The main attraction of the Acropolis is the Parthenon temple exactly in the middle of this hill.

Parthenon is a temple of the Greek Goddess Athena who is regarded as the guardian deity of the people of Athens. Built over a period of twenty-five years in the fifth century BC, it included decorative statues and was regarded as the highest artistic value of its time. Parthenon is used as a symbol of the former ancient Greek democracy, and is the world's largest historical monument.

National Archeological Museum

National Archaeological Museum of Athens is one of the best museums in the world. It has the most complete collection of ancient Greek heritage found anywhere. The statues and sculpturesare truly amazing, all the figures of Greek Mythology can be seen there, as well as the real heroes of Greece. This museum is located in the Exarhia area in central Athens between Epirus Street, Bouboulinas Street and Tositsas Street while its entrance is on the Patission Street adjacent to the historical building of the Athens Polytechnic.

The Ancient Agora

In Greek, agora is a central spot, typically a meeting place. The Ancient Agora is within walking distance from the Acropolis and once included housing. Later the housing was torn down and it became the administrative center of  Athens and  included temples to Zeus, Apollo and others. The site of the Ancient Agora is in a very green space and has a beautiful view of the Acropolis. You will also see the Temple of Hephaestus, the best preserved ancient Greek temple.

Mount Lycabettus

One of the best ways to spend a morning or late afternoon in Athens is to trek up Mount Lycabettus, the city's highest vantage point. It is capped with a tiny, white washed church, a restaurant and a cafe. From there you can see the whole of Athens. Take good walking shoes, the steep path up zig-zags through pinewoods and sub-tropical vegetation. Expect it to be hot and humid if you are going in the summer.


With its neoclassical mansions and houses with red tiled roofs Plaka attracts all the visitors of Athens.  Its small winding roads with their steps, balconies with bougainvilleas, geraniums and jasmines is a sight to behold. Plaka is called many times in the Greek literature as the neighbourhood of the Gods.

Academy of Athens

The Academy of Athens is an iconic cultural landmark, situated in the center of Athens. The building itself  is a very impressive sight to witness, thanks to its incredible architectural style. The columns and the statues in front the facades transform the building of the Academy of Athens into one of the most remarkable and distinctive sights in the capital of Greece. The Academy is built in a Neoclassical architectural with marble as a main material. Two huge statues of Plato and Socrates, respectively, are situated at the foot of the main staircase that leads to the entrance. There are also two higher columns with statues of Athena and Apollo at their tops, to create the most picturesque scene for taking a picture. Overall, the Academy of Athens is definitely a place to include in your travel list.

The National Garden

The National Garden is a very appealing place to escape from the hustle and bustle of the metropolis. Picturesquely situated right next to the building of the Greek Parliament in the city center, the National Garden tempts the visitor with its beauty. You will find a network of walking paths, which are great for sightseeing as well as jogging among the tall trees. During your relaxing trip in the park, you will also find ruins, mosaics and many other antiquities. Moreover, arguably the most scenic area is a small pond with a charming bridge, where the only sounds are from  the birds and the water. There are also many other interesting things to do and see in the National Garden, but, don`t forget your camera, because this place can recharge your energy as well.

Panathenaic Stadium

The Panathenaic Stadium is located right in the city center, along the southeastern side of the National Gardens. The stadium was first built years before Christ, then rebuilt after an excavation and restoration during the end of the 19th century to offer its current inspiring outlook. In 1896 the stadium hosted the first Olympic Games, while in the recent years it was used mainly for celebrations and music events. However, the Panathenaic Stadium is arguably the largest and the most impressive tourist landmark in the city center. The stadium is most famous for its white marble construction, where numerous steps of marble create a seating for over 45,000 visitors. The stadium also has a long track, which uniquely allows you to imagine the sport atmosphere of that time.

Temple of  Olympian Zeus

Also in the center of Athens is located another popular attraction - the remains of the Temple of Olympian Zeus. It is believed to have been built in 6th century BC; but, the final construction was accomplished after many decades. Today you can take advantage of a splendid view of several columns, which rise majestically over a green square. The major section includes columns, which are ornamented at their tops with precise details. In general, the whole area of the Temple of Olympian Zeus is a mystic place to visit, while the view to the horizon is incredible, especially at sunset.

Now to the Greek Isles. 


If you’re going to visit only one Greek island in your life then let it be Santorini. Breathtaking volcanic views and one of the best sunsets in the world. Place it at the top of any Greek islands list. Its beaches are very peculiar (and do not appeal to everyone) due to the black and red volcanic sand. Couples should opt for tranquil and romantic Oia, where luxury rooms with a Caldera (the volcanic crater) view can cost a fortune, whereas those young at heart should choose Fira, the lively capital of the island built on top of the Caldera cliff with equally fantastic views. The eastern side of the island is generally cheaper and has little of the magic Santorini feel.


The largest Greek island, Crete has a distinct local culture and will satisfy whatever it is you’re looking for. Busy touristy resorts, wonderful old towns like Chania and Rethymno, amazing deserted beaches even in August (especially on the south coast), unspoiled mountain villages with people utouched by the tourism ‘gold fever’, and the best food by far among all Greek islands. It is a trecker’s paradise, with top attraction the challenging Samaria Gorge and one of the highest mountains in the country Idi (locally known as Psiloritis). It is imposible to ‘do’ Crete in one visit so try to concentrate either on the East (based around Agios Nikolaos) or West (based at Chania or Rethymno). A car is neccesary in any case.


A cross between Capri and Ibiza, you will find Mykonos boasts of the best beaches in the country, the craziest nightlife and the most ridiculous prices you’ll pay in Greece. Celebrities, and "wannabes" flood the island every summer.

Mykonos is famed as a cosmopolitan destination and widely recognised as one of the great travel meccas. It is one of the most visited islands in the Aegean. This means that any visitors should be prepared for loud dance clubs, English breakfasts and over-priced merchandise. Mykonos, along with Santorini, is more expensive than other Greek islands.

Mykonos tends to be extremely crowded with visitors in July and August. The best time to visit Mykonos is mid-May through June (early season, accommodation is much cheaper and it's not that hot), or September through mid-October.

Hope you have a wonderful trip to Greece like I did.



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