The remarkable city of Athens; known as the world’s ancient capital.
Strewn throughout its ancient neighborhoods surrounding the infamous Acropolis, visitors can find a variety of activities, like my list of 13 remarkable things to do in Athens!
From history hunters to party seekers to foodies, Athens really has something for everyone.
For individuals who love the history of a destination, fascinating museums can be found throughout Athens. For people who love their alcohol or just love a good party, there’s an abundance of bars and clubs scattered in various neighborhoods. And for those who want to eat their way through the city, delicious street food or up-scale restaurants can be found everywhere.
Although, if you’re unsure on what to do or need a few ideas, here are 13 remarkable things to do in Athens:
1. Visit the Acropolis & other ancient ruins
If you only come to Athens for a short time, this should be the one place you visit.
The Acropolis is a major historical landmark and is famous throughout the world. If you’re unsure on what exactly an “Acropolis” is, it’s a large hill with an extremely flat top.
In Athens case, it’s the hill — featured above — with the flat top that has ancient sites like the Parthenon, Athena Nike, and the Erechtheion on top of it. In addition to the Acropolis, Ancient Agora, the Roman Agora, and the Temple of Zeus should be checked out.
More on the Acropolis and other sites to visit can be found in a similar blog post on wandering the ancient ruins of Athens, Greece.
2. Visit the area of Monastiraki
The neighborhood of Monastiraki is a flea market neighborhood with tons of shops and little stands selling things like handmade bracelets, food, trinkets, and more.
It’s also one of the main shopping districts in Athens and known for its bargain shopping; it’s great for people on a budget.
Also, as pictured above, the neighborhood has unique doors. Which is great, because unique doors are the coolest.
3. Check out the ancient neighborhood of Plaka
Plaka, known as the “neighborhood of the gods,” is a historical area with beautiful, ancient looking homes, cobbled streets, and neoclassical architecture.
Once you step into this enchanting neighborhood, you’ll feel as though you’re back in ancient times.
4. Marvel at the artifacts in the Acropolis Museum
The Acropolis Museum is another one of those things to do in Athens that you should definitely do.
The museum houses every significant artifact and piece of history that was found on or near the Acropolis. It’s pretty fricken cool and one of my favorite things to do in Athens.
5. See the Metropolitan Cathedral of Athens
The Metropolitan is an important Greek Orthodox cathedral and is the largest cathedral in all of Athens. This was the first cathedral built when Athens became the official capital of Greece.
6. Have a drink at a rooftop bar
There are tons of rooftop bars throughout Athens that have fantastic view of the Acropolis — this particular picture was taken at the 360 Cocktail Bar (my favorite rooftop bar I visited).
Another rooftop bar that I visited was the A for Athens bar near Monastiraki square. I didn’t particular like this one, probably because it was enclosed when I visited. I felt a little claustrophobic.
7. Check out the Greek Parliament Building
This is also where you can watch the changing of the guards (read below).
8. Watch the changing of the guards
Watching the changing of the guards is fascinating. No lie.
I’m not even quite sure how to explain it; they kind of do like a sort of dance to change. You should definitely go see it. They also wear very attractive outfits, as you can see above. 😉
(funny thing that happened to me: I meant to record the changing with my GoPro but never actually put it on video mode. So I just sat there the entire time holding my camera up like I was taking a video, when in reality, I just took two pictures. *laughing at myself, but also kicking myself*)
9. Take a stroll through the National Gardens
The National Gardens is a huge public park located directly behind the Greek Parliament building. The park is full of ruins, beautiful greenery, and orange trees!
10. Walk to high ground & take in the views
Around Athens, there are a couple of hills that have great viewing points overlooking the city. The two most popular ones are Mount Lycabettus and Filopappos Hill.
So strap on those comfortable walking shoes, build up some motivation, and hike up those hills to take on a different view of Athens!
11. Have a drink at Brettos
You can’t miss this unique bar! Just look at that colorful wall of booze bottles. Mesmerizing.
Also, Brettos is the oldest bar and distillery in Athens! Pretty cool.
12. Just walk around the tiny streets of Athens
The streets of Athens are extremely charming; if you have time, just take a stroll through the old neighborhoods. My favorite thing is to keep an eye out for unique doors.
13. Eat delicious street food
Some of the best foods on earth (in my opinion) can be found in this part of the world. I absolutely loved everything I ate there — and all of it was vegan.
Pictured above: a vegan gyro with grilled vegetables tossed in an amazing blend of spices cozily wrapped in a warm pita.
If you’re not vegan, friends of mine said the regular gyros were their favorite things to eat while we were in Athens.
All in all, there are definitely more things to do in Athens than mentioned but I didn’t have a chance to explore everything while I was there.
If you visit, or are thinking of visiting, it’s an awesome city to explore!
Wander on friends,
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