As my Facebook feed would demonstrate, the Greek debt crisis has made the country an even more popular travel destination. Greece will always have a special place in my heart. Over a February sunset atop Mount Lycabettus in 2011, I fell head over heels for the birthplace of mankind. While most traveling to Greece now are flocking toward sun-kissed shores of the Greek isles, I urge everyone to make at least stop-stop in Athens, the historic capital of Europe.
Your day starts at Acropolis, above the city. The Acropolis is an ancient citadel that contains the remains of several ancient buildings, the most famous of which is the Parthenon. Constructed on the Parthenon began in 447 BC and was completed in 438 BC, the temple was dedicated to the goddess Athena, it is considered the zenith of the Doric order.
Temple of Olympian Zeus
The Temple of Olympian Zeus is the symbolic entrance to the city. The ruined temple was dedicated to Zeus, king of the Olympian gods.
Odeon of Herodes Atticus
Odeon of Herodes Atticus is a stone theater structure located on the southwest slope of the Acropolis of Athens. The theater was used for music concerts and can hold 5,000 people.
The Acropolis Museum is one of my favorite museums, it showcases the archeological finds from the Acropolis of Athens. The museum contains very artifact from the Acropolis, from the Greek Bronze Age to Roman and Byzantine Greece. The pristine museum is definitely worth a morning’s visit.
After the morning in the Acropolis, walk on over to the eastern slopes to find the historic neighborhood Plaka. The area is so charming, with its narrow streets and neoclassical architecture. Withs its quaint cafes and souvenir shops, Plaka is definitely worth a stroll.
If you haven’t picked up anything yet from Plaka, fear not - head on over to the Monastiraki flea market. This flea market is a favorite of locals and tourists. The area is also home to a major shopping district in Athens, where you can find many clothing boutiques, souvenir shops, and specialty stores.
Take note: Mount Lycabettus is a must-see. Time your visit by heading up there at twilight so you can catch the sunset over the city. At 745 feet, Lycabettus gives you a clear view of the view. To get there, take the funicular which leaves from Ploutarchou and Aristippou Street.