25 Best Things To Do In Athens, Greece

Athens, the capital city of Greece, is a captivating blend of ancient history, vibrant culture, and modern urban life. With a history spanning over 3,000 years, Athens is considered the birthplace of democracy, philosophy, and Western civilization.

Today, it stands as a dynamic metropolis, attracting visitors from around the world with its iconic landmarks, archaeological treasures, and warm hospitality.

  1. Historical Significance: Athens is steeped in history and boasts an impressive array of archaeological sites that tell tales of its glorious past. The Acropolis, a UNESCO World Heritage site, reigns supreme, featuring the iconic Parthenon, Erechtheion, and Temple of Athena Nike. These ancient structures offer a glimpse into the achievements of ancient Greece and the architectural brilliance of the classical era.
  2. Cultural Heritage: Beyond its ancient ruins, Athens embraces a vibrant cultural scene. The city is home to numerous museums, including the Acropolis Museum, the National Archaeological Museum, and the Museum of Cycladic Art, which showcase an extensive collection of Greek antiquities and artworks. The historic Plaka neighborhood, with its charming alleys and traditional tavernas, preserves the city’s traditional character, while areas like Psirri and Gazi offer a more contemporary atmosphere with trendy bars, restaurants, and art galleries.
  3. Modern Urban Life: Athens is a bustling modern capital that embraces cosmopolitan living. Syntagma Square, the heart of the city, is a bustling hub where locals and visitors gather to watch the changing of the guard ceremony at the Parliament building. Monastiraki and Ermou Street are popular shopping destinations, offering a wide range of boutiques, souvenir shops, and vibrant street markets. Athens also hosts a vibrant nightlife scene, with rooftop bars, live music venues, and clubs that cater to various tastes and preferences.
  4. Gastronomic Delights: Greek cuisine is renowned worldwide, and Athens offers a plethora of culinary delights. From traditional tavernas serving mouthwatering souvlaki and moussaka to chic restaurants offering innovative interpretations of Greek cuisine, visitors can indulge in a variety of flavors. Exploring the central markets, like Varvakeios Agora, allows you to experience the vibrant atmosphere and savor fresh local produce, cheeses, and aromatic herbs.
  5. Gateway to Greek Islands: Athens serves as a gateway to the Greek Islands, with the port of Piraeus offering ferry connections to popular destinations such as Mykonos, Santorini, and Crete. Many visitors use Athens as a starting point to explore the stunning island landscapes, pristine beaches, and picturesque villages that Greece is famous for.

Athens, a city steeped in history and culture, seamlessly blends the ancient with the modern. Its rich archaeological heritage, vibrant neighborhoods, delectable cuisine, and warm hospitality create an enticing destination for travelers seeking a blend of cultural exploration and cosmopolitan experiences.

Whether you’re strolling through ancient ruins, enjoying a sunset at a rooftop bar, or immersing yourself in the city’s vibrant energy, Athens offers an unforgettable journey that celebrates the legacy of ancient Greece and embraces the excitement of the present.

1. Explore the Acropolis: Visit the iconic ancient citadel and marvel at the Parthenon, Erechtheion, and other historic structures

Acropolis athens, Greece

Exploring the Acropolis is a must-do activity when visiting Athens. The Acropolis is an ancient citadel situated on a rocky hill overlooking the city.

It is home to some of the most significant and iconic ancient Greek architectural structures, including the Parthenon, the Erechtheion, the Propylaea, and the Temple of Athena Nike.

As you ascend to the Acropolis, you’ll be greeted with breathtaking views of Athens and the surrounding area. Walking among the ruins, you’ll feel immersed in history, surrounded by the remnants of a civilization that dates back thousands of years.

The most prominent structure within the Acropolis is the Parthenon, an imposing temple dedicated to the goddess Athena.

Its intricate marble columns and exquisite architectural details make it a true masterpiece of ancient Greek craftsmanship. The Erechtheion, with its iconic porch of the Caryatids (statues of maidens serving as columns), is another remarkable structure that captivates visitors.

Exploring the Acropolis allows you to witness the grandeur of ancient Greek architecture, appreciate the skill and artistry of the craftsmen, and gain insight into the cultural and religious significance of these structures in ancient times. It’s an awe-inspiring experience that offers a glimpse into the rich history and legacy of Athens and its ancient civilization.

2. Discover the Acropolis Museum: Learn about the history and art of ancient Athens with a visit to this world-class museum

Acropolis Museum Athens, Greece

Discovering the Acropolis Museum is an enriching experience for anyone interested in ancient Greek history and art. Located near the Acropolis itself, the museum is a modern architectural marvel that houses a vast collection of artifacts and artworks from the Acropolis and its surrounding area.

The museum is designed to provide a seamless journey through time, offering visitors a comprehensive understanding of the ancient Athenian civilization.

As you enter the museum, you’ll be greeted with a glass floor that reveals the archaeological excavations beneath, showcasing the layers of history upon which the museum is built.

The exhibition spaces are thoughtfully organized and beautifully displayed, allowing you to explore the history of the Acropolis and its monuments in a chronological manner.

The collection includes a wide range of artifacts, such as statues, friezes, pottery, and architectural fragments, many of which were originally part of the Parthenon and other iconic structures.

One of the highlights of the museum is the Parthenon Gallery, which houses the original frieze of the Parthenon. The gallery offers a unique opportunity to view the frieze at eye level, providing a close-up look at the intricate details and figures that once adorned the temple.

Throughout the museum, multimedia presentations, informative displays, and interactive exhibits enhance the visitor’s experience, offering insights into the historical context and significance of the artifacts on display.

3. Wander through Plaka: Explore Athens’ oldest neighborhood, known for its charming streets, traditional architecture, and quaint shops

Plaka Athens, Greece

Wander through Plaka is a delightful experience that takes you into the heart of Athens’ oldest neighborhood. Known for its charming streets, traditional architecture, and vibrant atmosphere, Plaka offers a unique blend of history, culture, and modern-day allure.

As you stroll through Plaka’s narrow, winding streets, you’ll be captivated by the neighborhood’s distinct character. The buildings in Plaka feature traditional Greek architecture with colorful facades, flower-filled balconies, and quaint courtyards. This creates a picturesque and inviting ambiance that feels like stepping back in time.

Plaka is also home to a plethora of shops, boutiques, and souvenir stores, where you can find a wide range of Greek handicrafts, jewelry, clothing, and traditional products. It’s a perfect place to pick up a unique memento or indulge in some retail therapy.

The neighborhood is brimming with traditional taverns and charming cafés, offering an array of delicious Greek cuisine and refreshing beverages. You can savor traditional dishes like moussaka, souvlaki, and spanakopita while enjoying the relaxed and inviting atmosphere.

Plaka is also home to several significant landmarks, such as the Tower of the Winds, the Roman Agora, and the Lysicrates Monument. Exploring these historic sites adds another layer of interest to your wanderings.

4. Visit the Ancient Agora: Step back in time at the marketplace of ancient Athens, where Socrates and other philosophers once walked

Ancient Agora Athens, Greece

Visiting the Ancient Agora is a fascinating journey into the heart of ancient Athens. The Agora was the central marketplace and civic hub of the city, where ancient Greeks gathered for social, commercial, and political activities.

As you explore the Ancient Agora, you’ll find yourself surrounded by the remnants of a bustling marketplace and important civic buildings.

Walking through its open spaces and colonnades, you can imagine the lively scenes that once unfolded here thousands of years ago.

One of the most prominent structures within the Agora is the Temple of Hephaestus, also known as the Hephaestion. This exceptionally well-preserved ancient temple stands as a testament to the architectural prowess of ancient Greece. Its Doric columns and intricate details are awe-inspiring and offer a glimpse into the grandeur of the past.

The Stoa of Attalos, a reconstructed ancient building, is another highlight of the Ancient Agora. This two-story colonnade served as a commercial center, housing various shops and businesses during ancient times.

Today, it has been meticulously reconstructed and functions as a museum, showcasing a wide range of artifacts and exhibits related to ancient Athenian life.

Aside from the architectural wonders, the Ancient Agora also holds historical significance. It was a gathering place for philosophers, politicians, and ordinary citizens alike. It served as a venue for debates, elections, and the dissemination of ideas, making it a vital part of ancient Greek democracy.

5. Stroll around Syntagma Square: Observe the changing of the guards at the Hellenic Parliament and enjoy the vibrant atmosphere

Syntagma Square Athens, Greece

Strolling around Syntagma Square offers a vibrant and dynamic experience at the heart of Athens. Located in the city center, Syntagma Square is a bustling hub where history, culture, and modern life converge.

The square is anchored by the Hellenic Parliament building, which is an architectural marvel in itself. One of the main attractions in Syntagma Square is witnessing the changing of the Evzones, the ceremonial guards, in front of the Parliament. Their distinctive uniforms and precise choreography make for a captivating sight.

As you walk around Syntagma Square, you’ll encounter a lively atmosphere with a constant flow of people, both locals and tourists.

The square is surrounded by shops, cafes, and restaurants, making it a popular gathering place. It’s a great spot to relax, people-watch, and soak in the vibrant energy of the city.

Syntagma Square is also well-connected to other parts of Athens through public transportation. The square serves as a major transportation hub, with buses, taxis, and the Syntagma Metro Station providing easy access to various destinations across the city.

Additionally, Syntagma Square holds historical significance. It has been a focal point for many important events in Greek history, including political rallies, demonstrations, and celebrations. Its central location and historical significance make it a symbolic and important place for the Athenian community.

6. Explore the National Archaeological Museum: Delve into Greece’s rich archaeological heritage at this museum, home to an extensive collection of artifacts

National Archaeological Museum in Athens, Greece

Exploring the National Archaeological Museum in Athens is a captivating journey into the rich history and ancient treasures of Greece. As the largest archaeological museum in the country, it houses an extensive collection of artifacts that spans thousands of years.

Upon entering the museum, you’ll find yourself immersed in a world of ancient wonders. The museum’s exhibits are thoughtfully curated, showcasing artifacts from various eras and civilizations, including the Minoan, Mycenaean, Classical, and Hellenistic periods.

The collection is vast and diverse, featuring sculptures, pottery, jewelry, frescoes, and everyday objects that provide insights into ancient Greek life and culture.

Some of the museum’s most notable exhibits include the Mask of Agamemnon, the Antikythera Mechanism (an ancient analog computer), and the bronze statue of Poseidon.

Exploring the National Archaeological Museum allows you to delve into the world of ancient Greek art, mythology, and history. The exhibits are accompanied by informative signage and descriptions, providing context and enhancing your understanding of the artifacts on display.

In addition to the permanent collection, the museum often hosts temporary exhibitions that delve deeper into specific topics or showcase unique archaeological finds.

These temporary exhibits offer a fresh perspective and provide an opportunity to discover lesser-known aspects of Greek history.

7. Admire the Temple of Olympian Zeus: Marvel at the colossal ruins of this ancient temple dedicated to the king of gods

Temple of Olympian Zeus Athens, Greece

Admiring the Temple of Olympian Zeus is an awe-inspiring experience that takes you back to ancient Greece’s grandeur. Located in Athens, this colossal temple is dedicated to the king of gods, Zeus.

The Temple of Olympian Zeus is an impressive architectural marvel, showcasing the magnificence and ambition of ancient Greek construction.

Although much of the temple is in ruins today, the remnants give a glimpse of its former glory. The surviving columns, some of which reach a height of over 17 meters (55 feet), stand as a testament to the temple’s immense scale.

Walking among the temple ruins, you’ll feel a sense of the monumental presence it once had. Imagining the temple in its complete form, with its numerous columns and intricate details, you can appreciate the immense effort and craftsmanship that went into its construction.

The temple took several centuries to complete, and its construction spanned the reigns of multiple ancient Greek rulers. Despite its unfinished state, it remained an iconic symbol of power and reverence throughout antiquity.

Adjacent to the temple, you’ll find the Arch of Hadrian, a triumphal arch that was built to honor the Roman Emperor Hadrian. This adds another layer of historical significance to the site, representing the blending of Greek and Roman cultures.

8. Explore the Benaki Museum: Discover Greek art and history from antiquity to modern times at this renowned museum

Benaki Museum Athens, Greece

Exploring the Benaki Museum in Athens is a captivating journey through Greek art, history, and culture. Founded by Antonis Benakis, the museum is housed in a beautiful neoclassical building and offers a comprehensive collection that spans several millennia.

The Benaki Museum features a wide range of artifacts and artworks from different periods, including prehistoric, ancient, Byzantine, Islamic, and modern Greek art.

As you explore the museum’s exhibits, you’ll encounter a diverse array of sculptures, paintings, textiles, jewelry, and everyday objects that provide insights into Greece’s rich cultural heritage.

The museum’s collection is thoughtfully displayed and curated, guiding visitors through the chronological and thematic aspects of Greek history.

You’ll have the opportunity to witness the evolution of Greek art and craftsmanship over time, from ancient pottery and sculptures to Byzantine icons and intricate Ottoman-era textiles.

In addition to the permanent collection, the Benaki Museum also hosts temporary exhibitions that delve into specific themes or showcase contemporary Greek artists. These exhibitions provide a fresh perspective and contribute to the museum’s dynamic and ever-evolving character.

Beyond the artwork, the museum also houses a library, a conservation workshop, and an educational center. These facilities further enhance the visitor experience and provide opportunities for research, learning, and engagement with Greek culture.

9. Take a walk through the National Gardens: Enjoy a peaceful retreat in the heart of Athens, featuring beautiful landscapes, ponds, and ancient ruins

National Gardens Athens, Greece

Taking a walk through the National Gardens in Athens is a delightful escape into nature and tranquility within the bustling city. Located near the city center, these lush gardens provide a serene oasis for both locals and visitors to enjoy.

As you enter the National Gardens, you’ll be greeted by a peaceful and verdant environment. The gardens span over 38 acres and are beautifully landscaped, featuring a variety of trees, plants, and flowers from Greece and around the world. It’s a perfect place to escape the urban hustle and bustle and immerse yourself in a calm and green sanctuary.

As you stroll along the winding paths, you’ll come across charming ponds, small lakes, and flowing streams, adding to the serenity of the surroundings. Benches and shaded areas are scattered throughout the gardens, providing peaceful spots to rest and soak in the natural beauty.

The National Gardens also house several notable landmarks and attractions. One of the highlights is the Zappeion Hall, an impressive neoclassical building that hosts various events and exhibitions.

Additionally, you’ll find the Botanical Museum, a small but informative museum dedicated to the study and preservation of plants.

The gardens are not only a haven for nature lovers but also a favorite destination for families. They offer playgrounds, a small zoo with animals like peacocks and turtles, and even a small café where you can grab a refreshment and enjoy the tranquil atmosphere.

10. Climb Mount Lycabettus: Hike to the top of this hill for breathtaking panoramic views of Athens

Mount Lycabettus Athens, Greece

Climbing Mount Lycabettus is a rewarding adventure that offers panoramic views of Athens from its highest point. Located near the city center, this limestone hill stands at approximately 277 meters (908 feet) above sea level and provides a unique vantage point to admire the city’s skyline.

To reach the top of Mount Lycabettus, you have the option to either hike up the winding paths or take a funicular railway that operates during certain hours.

Whichever route you choose, the journey to the summit is invigorating and offers glimpses of the surrounding landscape as you ascend.

Once you reach the top, you’ll be greeted with breathtaking views that stretch across Athens and beyond. From this elevated vantage point, you can admire iconic landmarks such as the Acropolis, the Parthenon, and the sprawling cityscape. The panoramic vistas of the city during sunset or at night when the lights twinkle below are particularly enchanting.

Aside from the spectacular views, Mount Lycabettus is home to the Chapel of St. George, a picturesque white-washed church perched at the hill’s summit. The church, with its beautiful interior and serene atmosphere, adds a touch of tranquility to the surroundings.

There is also a cozy café and a restaurant at the top of Mount Lycabettus, where you can relax, grab a bite to eat, and enjoy the stunning scenery.

11. Explore the Panathenaic Stadium: Visit the stadium that hosted the first modern Olympic Games in 1896

Panathenaic Stadium

Exploring the Panathenaic Stadium is a journey back in time to the birthplace of the modern Olympic Games and a significant landmark in Athens. This historic stadium, also known as Kallimarmaro, is located in the heart of the city and holds immense cultural and historical importance.

The Panathenaic Stadium is an architectural marvel, meticulously constructed with white marble. It is the only stadium in the world built entirely of marble, giving it a unique and grand appearance. The stadium has a horseshoe shape and can seat up to 50,000 spectators.

As you explore the stadium, you’ll be able to walk along the track where ancient and modern athletes once competed. The track follows the same layout as the original stadium that was built in the 4th century BC.

It was reconstructed in its current form for the 1896 Olympic Games, which marked the revival of the modern Olympics.

The stadium holds great significance as the venue for the opening and closing ceremonies of the first modern Olympic Games. It continues to host various athletic events and ceremonies, including the marathon finish line for the Athens Classic Marathon.

Visiting the Panathenaic Stadium allows you to immerse yourself in the history of the Olympic Games and experience the ambiance of this iconic sporting venue.

The stadium also houses a small museum where you can learn more about the history of the games, see artifacts, and view memorabilia from past Olympics.

Additionally, the panoramic views of the surrounding city from the top of the stadium are breathtaking. You can marvel at the sweeping vistas of Athens, including landmarks such as the Acropolis and Lycabettus Hill.

12. Shop at the Central Market: Immerse yourself in the bustling atmosphere of Athens’ vibrant food market

Central Market Athens, Greece

Shopping at the Central Market in Athens is a vibrant and sensory-filled experience that allows you to immerse yourself in the local culture and culinary delights.

Located in the bustling neighborhood of Varvakeios, the Central Market, also known as Varvakeios Agora, is a bustling marketplace where locals and visitors come to buy fresh produce, meat, fish, and more.

As you enter the market, you’ll be greeted by a lively atmosphere filled with colorful displays and the hustle and bustle of vendors and shoppers. The market is divided into different sections, each offering its own unique array of products.

The meat section of the Central Market is a standout feature, with rows of butcher shops showcasing a wide variety of cuts and meats.

Here you can find everything from local Greek meats to imported specialties. The fish section is equally impressive, with a vast selection of fresh seafood brought in daily from the nearby ports.

Aside from meat and fish, the Central Market also offers a range of fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs, spices, cheeses, and other local products. Exploring the market gives you the opportunity to see and sample the diverse flavors and ingredients that make up Greek cuisine.

In addition to the food items, you’ll find other vendors selling household goods, kitchenware, and traditional Greek products. It’s a great place to pick up souvenirs, local delicacies, and unique ingredients to bring back home.

The Central Market provides an authentic glimpse into the daily life of Athenians and offers a chance to engage with the local community.

The vendors are often friendly and eager to share their knowledge and recommendations. It’s a bustling and vibrant place where you can experience the sights, sounds, and aromas of Greek culinary traditions.

13. Visit the Museum of Cycladic Art: Discover the art and culture of the Cycladic civilization, known for its distinctive marble figurines

Museum of Cycladic Art Athens, Greece

The Museum of Cycladic Art is a cultural institution located in Athens, Greece, dedicated to preserving and exhibiting the art and culture of the Cycladic civilization. The Cycladic civilization thrived in the Cyclades islands of the Aegean Sea during the Early Bronze Age, from around 3200 to 2000 BCE.

The museum provides visitors with a fascinating journey into the world of the Cycladic people. Its collection primarily focuses on the iconic marble figurines that have become synonymous with Cycladic art.

These figurines are known for their minimalist and abstract forms, portraying human figures with folded arms and elongated shapes. They were crafted with great skill and precision, despite the limited tools available during that time.

Aside from the figurines, the museum also exhibits a wide range of other artifacts from the Cycladic civilization. These include pottery vessels, tools, weapons, jewelry, and everyday objects, offering insights into the daily life, religious beliefs, and artistic achievements of this ancient culture.

The museum provides a comprehensive overview of the Cycladic civilization through its permanent and temporary exhibitions.

It combines archaeological artifacts with interactive displays, multimedia presentations, and informative descriptions to engage visitors and enhance their understanding of the Cycladic art and culture.

14. Take a day trip to Cape Sounion: Visit the Temple of Poseidon and enjoy stunning views of the Aegean Sea

Cape Sounion Athens, Greece

Cape Sounion is a picturesque promontory located at the southernmost tip of the Attica Peninsula in Greece, just 70 kilometers (43 miles) southeast of Athens. Taking a day trip to Cape Sounion offers a wonderful opportunity to explore ancient ruins, enjoy breathtaking views of the Aegean Sea, and immerse yourself in Greek mythology.

The highlight of Cape Sounion is the Temple of Poseidon, a majestic ancient Greek temple dedicated to the god of the sea, Poseidon. Perched on a cliff overlooking the Aegean Sea, the temple is known for its stunning Doric columns and commanding position, which provides panoramic vistas of the surrounding coastline.

The temple’s architectural beauty, coupled with the mesmerizing sunset views, makes it a popular destination for visitors.

In addition to the temple, Cape Sounion boasts a rugged and scenic landscape, with cliffs and rocky formations that create a dramatic backdrop. You can take a leisurely stroll along the coastal paths, breathing in the fresh sea breeze and taking in the awe-inspiring scenery.

For those interested in Greek mythology, Cape Sounion holds a mythical significance. According to legend, this was the spot where Aegeus, the mythical king of Athens, stood and anxiously awaited news of his son Theseus’s return from Crete after slaying the Minotaur.

When Theseus forgot to raise the white sails on his ship, Aegeus, believing his son was dead, leaped into the sea, which was then named the Aegean Sea in his honor.

15. Explore the trendy neighborhood of Psiri: Discover its vibrant street art, trendy bars, and traditional taverns

Psiri Athens, Greece

Psiri is a vibrant and trendy neighborhood situated in the heart of Athens, Greece. Known for its artistic ambiance and lively atmosphere, exploring Psiri offers an exciting journey into the city’s contemporary cultural scene.

Psiri is characterized by its narrow streets, colorful graffiti-adorned buildings, and a mix of traditional and modern establishments. It has undergone a transformation in recent years, evolving into a hub for creativity, entertainment, and gastronomy.

One of the main highlights of Psiri is its thriving nightlife. The neighborhood comes alive after sunset, with numerous bars, clubs, and live music venues offering a diverse range of entertainment options.

Whether you’re looking for a cozy bar to enjoy a craft cocktail, a lively club to dance the night away, or a live music venue to experience local artists, Psiri has something to cater to every taste.

In addition to its vibrant nightlife, Psiri is also home to an array of trendy restaurants, cafés, and taverns. Here, you can indulge in both traditional Greek cuisine and international flavors, as the neighborhood offers a mix of traditional taverns serving local delicacies and modern eateries with innovative menus. Psiri is an excellent place to savor delicious food and explore the evolving culinary scene of Athens.

Art enthusiasts will find themselves captivated by the street art and creative spirit that permeates the neighborhood. Psiri is dotted with art galleries, studios, and independent boutiques showcasing the work of local artists and designers. Take a leisurely stroll through the streets, and you’ll encounter a variety of unique artworks, from colorful murals to contemporary installations.

Psiri is also conveniently located near major attractions in Athens. It is within walking distance of Monastiraki Square, the Ancient Agora, and the lively central market of Athens, allowing visitors to easily explore the historical and cultural landmarks of the city.

16. Walk along Dionysiou Areopagitou Street: Enjoy a scenic promenade that leads from the Acropolis to the neighborhood of Thissio

Dionysiou Areopagitou Street Athens, Greece

The Walk along Dionysiou Areopagitou Street offers a delightful and picturesque promenade starting from the iconic Acropolis and extending to the charming neighborhood of Thissio in Athens, Greece.

This pedestrian street provides an enchanting pathway for locals and tourists alike to immerse themselves in the rich history and breathtaking beauty of the city.

As you embark on this walk, you’ll find yourself surrounded by a blend of ancient and modern elements. The street itself is lined with neoclassical buildings, charming cafes, and vibrant greenery.

It serves as a gateway to some of Athens’ most renowned archaeological sites and landmarks, creating a unique and immersive experience.

The highlight of the walk is undoubtedly the magnificent Acropolis, a UNESCO World Heritage site and a symbol of ancient Greece.

As you stroll along, you’ll catch glimpses of the Acropolis hill and its iconic monuments, such as the Parthenon, which stands majestically above the cityscape. The juxtaposition of the ancient ruins against the modern urban backdrop is truly awe-inspiring.

Continuing along the promenade, you’ll encounter several notable attractions, including the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, a well-preserved ancient theater that hosts performances and concerts, adding a touch of cultural vibrancy to the area.

The pedestrian street also offers access to the ancient agora, an archaeological site that once served as the heart of Athens’ political and commercial activities.

Beyond the historical sites, the walk presents an opportunity to soak in the lively atmosphere of Thissio. This neighborhood is renowned for its picturesque streets, charming squares, and a plethora of cafes and restaurants where you can relax and savor authentic Greek cuisine.

17. Visit the Church of Panagia Kapnikarea: Admire the beautiful Byzantine architecture of this historic church in the city center

Church of Panagia Kapnikarea Athens, Greece

The Church of Panagia Kapnikarea is a historic church located in the city center of Athens, Greece. It is renowned for its beautiful Byzantine architecture, which showcases the rich cultural and artistic heritage of the Byzantine Empire. The church dates back to the 11th century and is dedicated to the Virgin Mary (Panagia in Greek).

One of the notable features of the Church of Panagia Kapnikarea is its compact and symmetrical design. It has a domed cruciform shape, with a central dome supported by four columns, representing the traditional Byzantine architectural style.

The exterior of the church is adorned with intricate brickwork and decorative elements, exhibiting the craftsmanship and attention to detail characteristic of Byzantine architecture.

Inside, visitors can admire stunning frescoes and mosaics that depict religious scenes and figures from Byzantine art. The atmosphere is serene and offers a glimpse into the spiritual significance of the church.

The interior design is marked by its simplicity, with marble elements and beautiful iconography adding to the overall aesthetic appeal.

The Church of Panagia Kapnikarea stands as a testament to the enduring legacy of Byzantine architecture and its influence on Greek culture.

It is not only a place of worship but also a significant cultural landmark that attracts visitors from around the world, offering a captivating experience for those interested in history, art, and architecture.

18. Explore the neighborhood of Monastiraki: Browse through its flea market, visit the Monastiraki Square, and enjoy the lively atmosphere

Monastiraki Athens, Greece

Monastiraki is a vibrant neighborhood located in the heart of Athens, Greece. It is known for its bustling atmosphere, historical landmarks, and a lively flea market that draws both locals and tourists alike.

At the heart of Monastiraki lies Monastiraki Square, a lively gathering place surrounded by shops, cafes, and restaurants. The square is a hub of activity and offers a great starting point for exploring the neighborhood. From here, you can soak in the vibrant energy of the area and witness the blend of ancient and modern elements.

One of the main attractions in Monastiraki is its famous flea market. The market is a treasure trove of unique finds, ranging from antiques and vintage items to traditional Greek crafts and souvenirs.

Wandering through the narrow streets, you’ll come across numerous stalls and shops, creating a vibrant tapestry of colors and sounds. It’s a fantastic place to hunt for bargains, discover hidden gems, and immerse yourself in the local culture.

Aside from the flea market, Monastiraki is also home to several historical landmarks. The neighborhood is nestled beneath the Acropolis, and you can catch glimpses of this iconic ancient citadel as you explore.

Nearby, you’ll find the Roman Agora, an ancient marketplace, and the Tower of the Winds, a fascinating ancient clocktower.

Throughout the day, Monastiraki buzzes with activity, and its lively atmosphere continues into the night. The area comes alive with street performers, musicians, and the aroma of delicious Greek street food. It’s a great place to relax at a traditional taverna, savor local delicacies, and soak in the vibrant ambiance of Athens.

19. Visit the Byzantine and Christian Museum: Explore the rich history of Byzantine and early Christian art and artifacts

Byzantine and Christian Museum athens, Greece

The Byzantine and Christian Museum is a must-visit attraction for history and art enthusiasts in Athens, Greece. Located in the heart of the city, this museum showcases a vast collection of Byzantine and early Christian artifacts, providing a fascinating insight into the rich cultural heritage of the Byzantine Empire.

The museum houses an extensive collection of religious art and artifacts spanning from the 3rd century AD to the 19th century.

Visitors can explore a wide range of exhibits, including Byzantine icons, intricate mosaics, religious sculptures, textiles, manuscripts, and jewelry.

These artworks offer a glimpse into the religious and artistic traditions of the Byzantine era, highlighting the fusion of Greek, Roman, and Christian influences.

The museum is organized thematically, allowing visitors to explore various aspects of Byzantine and early Christian culture. From the evolution of iconography to the development of Byzantine architecture, each section provides a comprehensive narrative of this influential period in history.

One of the highlights of the Byzantine and Christian Museum is its collection of Byzantine icons. These sacred paintings on wood or canvas showcase the unique artistic style and religious symbolism of Byzantium.

The intricate details and vivid colors of these icons offer a visual feast and provide valuable insights into the spiritual beliefs and practices of the time.

Additionally, the museum regularly hosts temporary exhibitions and educational programs, further enriching the visitor experience.

These exhibitions often delve into specific themes or showcase artworks from different periods, providing a deeper understanding of Byzantine and early Christian art and culture.

20. Relax at the Athens Riviera: Enjoy the beautiful beaches and vibrant nightlife along the coastline of Athens

Athens Riviera , Greece

The Athens Riviera is a stunning coastal stretch that extends along the southern suburbs of Athens, Greece. It offers a tranquil escape from the bustling city, providing visitors with an opportunity to relax and unwind in a beautiful seaside setting.

The Athens Riviera is characterized by its crystal-clear blue waters, picturesque beaches, and scenic landscapes. The coastline is dotted with numerous organized beach resorts, beach bars, and luxurious hotels, catering to a wide range of preferences and budgets. Visitors can choose to lounge on sunbeds, soak up the sun, and take refreshing dips in the Aegean Sea.

Beyond the beaches, the Athens Riviera offers a variety of recreational activities. Water sports enthusiasts can indulge in activities such as snorkeling, scuba diving, jet skiing, and paddleboarding.

The coastline is also ideal for leisurely walks or bike rides along the promenades, enjoying the refreshing sea breeze and panoramic views.

The Athens Riviera is not only about sun and sand; it also boasts a vibrant dining and nightlife scene. The waterfront is lined with seaside tavernas, restaurants, and cafes, offering a wide array of delicious Greek cuisine and international dishes. You can savor fresh seafood, enjoy a leisurely meal with a view, or simply sip on a cocktail as you watch the sunset over the horizon.

For those seeking a touch of luxury, the Athens Riviera is home to several upscale beach clubs and exclusive resorts. These establishments provide top-notch facilities, private beach areas, and sophisticated amenities, ensuring a truly indulgent experience for visitors.

21. Take a ferry to the nearby island of Aegina: Explore its charming villages, visit the Temple of Aphaea, and indulge in local pistachios

Aegina Athens, Grreece

Aegina is a charming island located near Athens, Greece, and taking a ferry to this idyllic destination is a popular day trip for visitors. Known for its rich history, beautiful landscapes, and delicious pistachios, Aegina offers a delightful escape from the mainland.

The ferry ride from Athens to Aegina takes approximately one hour, making it a convenient and enjoyable journey. Upon arriving on the island, you’ll be greeted by picturesque harbors and a laid-back atmosphere that immediately sets the tone for a relaxing day.

Aegina is renowned for its archaeological sites, with the most prominent being the Temple of Aphaia. This well-preserved ancient temple, dating back to the 5th century BC, offers stunning views of the surrounding landscape and the Aegean Sea. Exploring the temple grounds allows visitors to delve into the island’s fascinating past and appreciate its historical significance.

Another highlight of Aegina is its charming main town, also called Aegina. This bustling port town boasts a picturesque waterfront promenade lined with cafes, restaurants, and shops. You can take a leisurely stroll along the narrow streets, admire the neoclassical architecture, and soak in the lively atmosphere.

A visit to Aegina would not be complete without tasting the island’s famous pistachios. Aegina is renowned for its pistachio orchards, and you’ll find an abundance of local products featuring this delicious nut.

Don’t miss the opportunity to try freshly roasted pistachios, pistachio ice cream, or other treats made with this unique ingredient.

Aegina also offers beautiful beaches where you can relax and enjoy the crystal-clear waters of the Aegean Sea. The island has a variety of beach options, from organized beaches with amenities to more secluded spots for a peaceful retreat. Whether you prefer sunbathing, swimming, or engaging in water sports, Aegina has something for everyone.

22. Explore the ancient site of Eleusis: Visit the ruins of the ancient city and the sacred site of the Eleusinian Mysteries

site of Eleusis Athens, Greece

Exploring the ancient site of Eleusis offers a fascinating journey into the past, taking you to the ruins of an ancient city and the sacred site of the Eleusinian Mysteries. Eleusis, located in Greece, was one of the most important religious and cultural centers of the ancient world.

The city of Eleusis was renowned for its religious significance, as it was the site where the Eleusinian Mysteries were celebrated.

These mysteries were a series of secret initiation rites held annually, dedicated to the goddesses Demeter and Persephone. The mysteries were shrouded in secrecy, and the exact details of the rituals remain largely unknown.

Visiting the ruins of Eleusis allows you to explore the remains of this ancient city. You can wander through the archaeological site, which includes the remains of the Temple of Demeter, the Propylaea (monumental gateway), the Telesterion (initiation hall), and various other structures. These ruins offer insights into the religious practices and daily life of the people who once inhabited this site.

The sacred site of the Eleusinian Mysteries holds a special aura, as it was here that initiates underwent the secretive rituals, believed to grant them a deeper understanding of the mysteries of life and death.

Although the specific rituals are lost to history, standing in this historic place can evoke a sense of wonder and awe, connecting you to the ancient past.

23. Enjoy a performance at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus: Attend a concert or theatrical performance in this ancient amphitheater beneath the Acropolis

Odeon of Herodes Atticus Athens, Greece

Enjoying a performance at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus is a truly enchanting experience that combines history, culture, and the performing arts.

The Odeon, located on the southern slope of the Acropolis in Athens, Greece, is an ancient amphitheater known for its grandeur and breathtaking setting.

Built in the 2nd century AD by Herodes Atticus, a wealthy Greek aristocrat, the Odeon was initially intended as a venue for musical performances and theatrical productions.

Today, it continues to serve that purpose, hosting a wide range of artistic events, including concerts, operas, ballets, and theatrical performances.

The Odeon of Herodes Atticus stands as a testament to the architectural brilliance of the ancient Greeks. With its stone seats, semicircular design, and impressive stage, it provides excellent acoustics and offers a visually stunning backdrop for any performance.

The theater is nestled amidst the historic surroundings, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the rich cultural heritage of Athens.

Attending a performance at the Odeon allows you to witness the fusion of ancient history and contemporary art. You can expect to be captivated by the talent of musicians, actors, and dancers, as they showcase their skills in this iconic venue.

The combination of the magnificent setting, the vibrant energy of the performers, and the echoes of centuries past creates a truly memorable and immersive experience.

24. Discover the Museum of Islamic Art: Explore the largest collection of Islamic art in Greece, housed in the Tzistarakis Mosque

Museum of Islamic Art Athens, Greece

Discovering the Museum of Islamic Art is a journey into the rich and diverse world of Islamic culture and heritage. Located in Doha, Qatar, the museum is a testament to the beauty, history, and artistic achievements of Islamic civilizations spanning over 1,400 years.

The Museum of Islamic Art’s architecture alone is a marvel, designed by the renowned architect I.M. Pei. The building’s geometric shapes and clean lines evoke a sense of harmony and grandeur, while its location on a man-made island in Doha Bay offers stunning views of the city’s skyline.

Inside, visitors are greeted by an extensive collection of artifacts from across the Islamic world. The museum’s exhibits showcase a wide range of Islamic art forms, including intricate calligraphy, beautifully woven carpets, exquisite ceramics, delicate glasswork, and fine metalwork.

Visitors can marvel at ancient manuscripts, rare textiles, and priceless artifacts that represent the artistic achievements and cultural contributions of various Islamic dynasties and regions.

The museum’s galleries are carefully curated, taking visitors on a journey through different periods of Islamic history, from the early days of Islam to the golden age of the Islamic empires. Each exhibit provides insights into the faith, traditions, and customs that have shaped the Islamic world.

Whether you are an art enthusiast, a history buff, or simply a curious traveler, the Museum of Islamic Art offers a captivating experience.

It provides an opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of Islamic culture, appreciate its artistic diversity, and celebrate the universal human creativity that transcends borders and time.

25. Visit the Athens War Museum: Learn about Greece’s military history and explore a vast collection of weapons and artifacts

Athens War Museum, Greece

Visiting the Athens War Museum provides a unique opportunity to delve into the military history of Greece and gain a deeper understanding of its rich heritage.

Located in Athens, Greece, the museum is dedicated to preserving and showcasing artifacts, exhibits, and information related to Greek military history from ancient times to the present day.

The Athens War Museum offers a comprehensive collection that spans thousands of years, covering various periods and conflicts.

It presents a wide range of military artifacts, including weaponry, uniforms, armor, medals, and documents, allowing visitors to explore the evolution of Greek military technology and tactics throughout history.

The museum’s exhibits are thoughtfully organized, providing insights into significant battles, military campaigns, and the courageous individuals who fought to defend their homeland.

Visitors can learn about ancient Greek warfare, the exploits of famous Greek generals, as well as the country’s involvement in modern conflicts, such as World War I and World War II.

In addition to its extensive collection, the Athens War Museum often hosts temporary exhibitions and special events, shedding light on specific aspects of military history or showcasing unique artifacts.

These offerings provide visitors with a chance to explore different themes and gain deeper insights into specific periods or military campaigns.

Whether you are a history enthusiast, a military buff, or simply curious about Greek heritage, a visit to the Athens War Museum offers an immersive and educational experience.

It allows you to connect with the past, appreciate the sacrifices made by those who fought for Greece, and gain a greater appreciation for the country’s military traditions.

Remember that this is just a selection, and there are many more things to see and do in Athens. Enjoy your visit!

Food In Athens

Food In Athens, Greece

Athens, the historic capital of Greece, not only mesmerizes visitors with its ancient landmarks and vibrant culture but also tantalizes their taste buds with a rich culinary tapestry.

Greek cuisine, renowned for its Mediterranean flavors, fresh ingredients, and hearty dishes, takes center stage in this gastronomic adventure.

From traditional tavernas to trendy eateries, Athens offers a diverse range of culinary experiences that showcase the country’s culinary heritage. Join us as we embark on a delectable journey through the vibrant food scene of Athens.

  1. Authentic Greek Flavors: Greek cuisine is a celebration of simplicity and fresh ingredients. One cannot visit Athens without savoring the quintessential Greek dishes that have stood the test of time. Indulge in classic mezedes (appetizers) like tzatziki (yogurt dip with cucumber and garlic), dolmades (stuffed grape leaves), and fava (creamy split pea dip). For the main course, relish the famous moussaka (layered eggplant, minced meat, and béchamel sauce), souvlaki (grilled skewers of meat), or the succulent lamb dishes.
  2. Exploring the Central Markets: A visit to Athens wouldn’t be complete without a stroll through the bustling central markets. Begin at Varvakeios Agora, the Athens Central Market, where a kaleidoscope of colors and aromas awaits. Here, you can wander through stalls brimming with fresh fruits, vegetables, olives, spices, and local cheeses. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere and interact with the friendly vendors, who are always eager to offer samples and share stories about their products.
  3. Dining in Plaka: Plaka, the historic neighborhood nestled beneath the Acropolis, is a culinary haven. Its charming streets are lined with quaint tavernas, enticing visitors with their inviting ambiance and mouthwatering dishes. Feast on traditional Greek specialties while enjoying live music and the warm hospitality of the locals. Don’t miss the opportunity to try the iconic Greek dessert, baklava, with its layers of flaky pastry, nuts, and honey.
  4. Modern Greek Cuisine: Athens also boasts a vibrant contemporary food scene, where innovative chefs blend traditional flavors with modern techniques. Venture into the trendy neighborhoods of Psirri and Kolonaki to discover chic restaurants serving creative interpretations of Greek cuisine. Sample dishes like octopus carpaccio with citrus-infused olive oil, delectable seafood risottos, or imaginative vegetarian creations. These culinary hotspots offer a fusion of flavors that appeal to both locals and international visitors.
  5. Sweet Temptations: Greek desserts are renowned for their decadence and sweetness. Indulge in loukoumades, bite-sized doughnuts drizzled with honey and sprinkled with cinnamon, or revani, a moist semolina cake soaked in syrup. For a refreshing treat, try the classic Greek yogurt topped with local honey and chopped walnuts. The abundance of sweet delights in Athens is sure to satisfy every sugar craving.

Embarking on a culinary adventure in Athens is an experience that delights all the senses. From the ancient flavors of Greek cuisine to the contemporary twists offered by innovative chefs, the city’s food scene offers a taste of Greece’s rich cultural heritage.

Whether you explore the traditional tavernas, navigate the bustling markets, or dine in modern eateries, Athens promises a gastronomic journey that leaves a lasting impression. So, grab a seat at a lively taverna, raise your glass of ouzo, and savor the mouthwatering delights that Athens has to offer. Kali orexi! (Bon appétit!)

Top 20 Best Restaurants In Athens, Greece

Restaurants In Athens, Greece

  1. Funky Gourmet
  2. Spondi
  3. Varoulko Seaside
  4. Hytra
  5. Kuzina
  6. Mavro Provato
  7. Aleria
  8. Ta Karamanlidika Tou Fani
  9. Nolan
  10. Tzitzikas kai Mermigas
  11. Seychelles
  12. Strofi
  13. Zonars
  14. Eleas Gi
  15. Papadakis
  16. To Kafeneio
  17. Psaras Taverna
  18. Kriti
  19. Estiatorio Milos
  20. Lithos

These restaurants offer a variety of cuisines, ranging from traditional Greek to modern interpretations, seafood, and international flavors. They are known for their high-quality ingredients, skilled chefs, and exceptional service, providing memorable dining experiences in Athens.

Transportation In Athens

  1. Metro: The Athens Metro system is a reliable and convenient way to travel around the city. It consists of three lines (green, blue, and red) that connect various neighborhoods and important landmarks. The metro is known for its cleanliness, speed, and air-conditioned trains, making it a popular choice for both locals and visitors.
  2. Bus: Athens has an extensive bus network that covers the entire city and its suburbs. Buses offer a cost-effective means of transportation and serve destinations not easily accessible by the metro. While buses can be crowded during peak hours, they provide a comprehensive network that allows you to reach various parts of the city.
  3. Tram: The Athens Tram connects the city center with the coastal suburbs, offering scenic views along the way. It provides a relaxed and enjoyable mode of transportation, particularly for travelers heading to the beach or exploring the coastal areas of Athens.
  4. Taxis: Taxis are widely available in Athens and can be hailed on the street or found at designated taxi ranks. They offer a convenient way to get around, especially for shorter distances or when carrying heavy luggage. It’s advisable to ensure that the taxi meters are used and request a receipt for your journey.
  5. Suburban Railway: The Athens Suburban Railway connects the city center with the wider region of Attica, including areas like the Athens International Airport. It is a useful transportation option for travelers who need to reach destinations outside the city limits.
  6. Car Rental: Renting a car provides flexibility for exploring Athens and its surrounding areas at your own pace. However, keep in mind that traffic in Athens can be congested, especially during peak hours, and parking can be challenging in the city center. It’s advisable to familiarize yourself with the local driving regulations and plan accordingly.
  7. Walking: Athens is a pedestrian-friendly city, particularly in its historic center. Walking allows you to soak in the atmosphere, explore narrow streets, and discover hidden gems. Many major landmarks and attractions are within a reasonable walking distance from each other, making it an enjoyable way to experience the city.

When using public transportation in Athens, it’s recommended to obtain an ATH.ENA card, which is a reloadable smart card that can be used for multiple modes of transport, providing convenience and discounted fares.

As with any city, it’s advisable to plan your routes in advance, consider peak travel times, and be aware of any potential disruptions or changes to the transportation network. By utilizing the available modes of transportation, you can efficiently navigate Athens and make the most of your time in the city.

Exploring the 25 best things to do in Athens, Greece, is a journey that unravels the city’s rich tapestry of history, culture, and modern allure.

From its ancient landmarks, like the Acropolis and the Parthenon, to its vibrant neighborhoods and delectable cuisine, Athens offers an unforgettable experience for travelers of all interests.

As you traverse the iconic ruins and stroll through the charming streets of Plaka, you’ll find yourself transported back in time to the birthplace of democracy and philosophy.

The city’s museums, filled with treasures from antiquity, offer an opportunity to delve deeper into Greece’s extraordinary heritage.

Venturing into the bustling markets and contemporary districts, you’ll discover the city’s dynamic pulse, with trendy eateries, art galleries, and live music venues offering a taste of modern Athenian life.

Don’t miss the chance to savor traditional Greek cuisine, from flavorful mezedes to sweet baklava, and to immerse yourself in the warm hospitality of the locals.

As the gateway to the Greek Islands, Athens allows you to extend your journey, exploring the picturesque landscapes and azure waters that adorn the country’s island gems.

Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a food lover, an art aficionado, or simply seeking an immersive cultural experience, Athens has something to offer every traveler.

So, embrace the juxtaposition of the ancient and the modern, the bustling and the serene, as you create memories that will linger long after you bid farewell to this captivating city.

Embrace the spirit of Athens, where antiquity and innovation coexist harmoniously, and allow yourself to be enchanted by the timeless allure of this legendary destination. The wonders of Athens await, ready to captivate your heart and soul with their enduring charm.

Daniel Babis

Hey, I'm Daniel and I'm the vlogger in the family. I recently became infatuated with video and that's how the idea of our Youtube channel was sparked.

View stories
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
© 2019-23 - The Go To Family. All Rights Reserved.