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Athens

Athens
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yummy ! ! ! Athens  Greece
Greek History Athens  Greece
Awesome Athens with Kids Athens  Greece
Athens Tips Part 3 - Transportation Around the City Athens  Greece
Athens Tips Part 1 - Strikes Not Protests Athens  Greece
Athens, Lykavittos Hill Athens  Greece
Athens Tips Part 11 - Walking Athens  Greece
Athens Tips Part 14 - Stray dogs and cats Athens  Greece
The Cradle of Democracy Athens  Greece
Market Day Athens  Greece
Athens Tips Part 21 - Street Vendors Athens  Greece
Athens...city of beauty.  Athens  Greece
yummy ! ! ! Athens  Greece
Greek History Athens  Greece
Awesome Athens with Kids Athens  Greece
Athens Tips Part 3 - Transportation Around the City Athens  Greece
Athens Tips Part 1 - Strikes Not Protests Athens  Greece
Athens, Lykavittos Hill Athens  Greece
Athens Tips Part 11 - Walking Athens  Greece
Athens Tips Part 14 - Stray dogs and cats Athens  Greece
The Cradle of Democracy Athens  Greece
Market Day Athens  Greece
Athens Tips Part 21 - Street Vendors Athens  Greece
Athens...city of beauty.  Athens  Greece

yummy ! ! !

Two traditional dishes found in Greece are the famous "Giros", which can be made of beef or chicken and dressed with the fresh white "Tzatziki" sauce. then we have "Souvlaki" which are skewers of meat (pork, lamb or chicken) seasoned with "Tzatziki" and usually accompanied with french fries.

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over 4 years ago

Greek History

It was the Greeks who first moved the goal posts to the back of the endzone.
over 4 years ago

Awesome Athens with Kids

Athens, Greece -- No matter your age, it's a thrill to visit the Parthenon -- one of the world's most famous landmarks. Yet Athens has much more to offer than simply traveling from one magnificent ruin of the city’s classical past to another. For instance, there are the kid-friendly events at the New Acropolis Museum whereas individual family backpacks are provided to families upon arrival. The backpacks provide games and fun gadgets for children to use while visiting the museum, such as the challenge of finding 12 representations of the goddess Athena located throughout the museum. The quest for Athena can really bring the museum’s antiquities alive for the younger visitors.

Duplicates of the family backpacks are available in the gift shop as souvenirs of the museum. (Retail value: $85) Plus, the outside cafe on the 2nd floor of the building offers free WiFi and an amazing overhead view of the Acropolis that might leave one thinking he or she was looking down on it from Olympian heights.
over 4 years ago

Athens Tips Part 1 - Strikes Not Protests

When people are planning a trip to Athens, the first worry that seems to come up is the fear of the protests. I'd be lying if I told you that these protest weren't a little dangerous, but really they're easy to avoid. Many tourist don't even notice them when visiting the popular sites. The protests often stay in pre planed areas (Syntagma Square, Omionia Square, and the areas around the Universities), and even when they get violent, it's often contained to very particular places.

Strikes in Athens can make life very difficult for tourists, particularly if they're un-aware. Many strikes only last for a day or less, but they can force you to change your plans at the last minute. Most notable strikes are:

Metro, bus and taxi strikes, for obvious reasons this can cut off any ground mobility you might have in the city, it also increases the traffic in the downtown area making it loud and crowded on the streets.

If they ferries are on strike and you have plans to visit one of the islands, your plans are sunk.

When tourist sites go on strike that means your visit to the Acropolis isn't happening, museums are also often closed as well.

Because strikes can pop up out of nowhere, the best plan in Athens is to get the sites you really can't miss over with as soon as possible, just in case you can't make it later. Ask at your hotel before you venture anywhere to make sure you wont run into any problems.
over 4 years ago

Athens Tips Part 3 - Transportation Around the City

Four forms of transportation, Metro, bus, trams, or taxi cover public transportation in Athens:

The Metro, is fairly clean, fast, and efficient. There is a slight problem with petty theft on the Metro, so keep eye open. The Metro is also the best way to travel from the airport, as well as the ferry port, it also services most of the tourist hotspots.

The buses in Athens are fairly clean, and efficient. The problem with the buses is trying to figure out the system. Google maps is a good source I've found for schedules and routes. Along with the Metro you can pretty much get anywhere in the city with relative ease using the buses.

The tram in Athens is more of a tourist attraction than a good source of transportation. The only reason you would want to take it is if you plan on visiting the beach. Getting from downtown to the sea via tram is a long trip; you’re better to use the Metro to meet up with the tram at the sea.

Taxis in Athens are fairly reasonable price wise, but really that's the only positive thing I have to say about them. I've encountered rampant overcharging, and many cabs reeking of cigarettes. If you do take a taxi from the airport, keep in mind that there is a flat fee from the airport to downtown. If you feel like you're being ripped off, tell the driver to take you to a police station to sort out any discrepancy.

As far as driving in Athens, my only tip is don’t, unless you have to leave the city.
over 4 years ago

Athens, Lykavittos Hill

The central "breast" of Athens is an obvious destination point; the peak is visible for miles. My sisters and I couldn't find the funicular up, so we walked the entire way, in the heat of an August afternoon, after being well satiated at the highly recommended Ta Kioupia (which I hear has since closed), in Kolonaki. The climb was well worth it, and the views from the top were incredible.
over 4 years ago

Athens Tips Part 11 - Walking

If you're visiting Athens you're probably going to do a lot of walking. Unless you have a car and driver to chauffeur you around town, public transportation and walking are really the best way to get around. Fortunately all of the main tourist sites are close together and all in the downtown area. The streets of Athens however aren't really that walking friendly. They can be narrow, broken, and filled with danger. For a city that relies so much on walking, they sure don't take very good care of their streets and sidewalks.

The downtown of Athens is a mess of small streets twisting and turning in all directions. If you're looking to walk someplace in particular it can be confusing, if you're looking to just explore it can be very fun and adventurous. The best landmark to get your bearings is the Acropolis, however with all of the narrow streets and tall buildings you can lose sight of it very easily.

You also have to be very weary of cars, potholes, and broken sidewalks. Drivers can be rather inconsiderate of pedestrians in Athens, and cars are often parked in the middle of the sidewalk. You’ll also come across many sidewalks that are falling apart, have trees blocking the way, or are completely taken over by local business. It’s also important to note that Athens is not a flat city at all, there are hills everywhere and some streets are so steep they require you to use stairs. Walking around can be a challenge, but it can be a challenge that heeds great rewards.
over 4 years ago

Athens Tips Part 14 - Stray dogs and cats

If you don't like stray animals, Athens can be a little traumatic at first. On just about every city street you will find some kind of furry creature going about his or her daily business. For the most part these animals are fairly harmless, unless you drive a motor bike, because they love to chase them. While they are harmless, the dogs in particular are not really friendly. While they sometimes follow people around (this helps them navigate the streets safer) many don't like to be touched, and all of them are fairly dirty and infested.

Cats on the other hand are much more the scavengers, with tourists often providing for them. I've seen many a cat use its feline whiles to score a meal or two. They are often more likely to accept a scratch on the head than a dog, but I'm sure they expect a table scrap for this service. As with the dogs, the cats of Athens are also fairly dirty, and if you can't resist giving one a pat, make sure to wash your hands immediately after.
over 4 years ago

The Cradle of Democracy

Athens, the cradle of Democracy, is one of those cities of the world that will not disappoint. The history, the art, the architecture and the food are all as good as you imagined. And the people are genuinely kind and love their country.

There are old neighborhoods, historic neighborhoods and vibrant new neighborhoods full of artists and young people.

The area that most people visit are around the Acropolis, known as the Plaka, as it has the concentration of all the historical sites one will want to see, which include the Parthenon, Temple of Zeus, Temple of Athena, the new Acropolis museum, the park-like area of the Ancient Agora with streets that Socrates walked on, as well as the nearby National Garden of Athens next to the Greek Parliament.

For me, one of the most exciting areas outside of the historical center is Gazi, which was where the old Gas Factory used to be. It now is a new hip area full of young adults and college kids all hanging out at clubs and restaurants and bars with their wide sidewalks and newly converted buildings into shops, condos and galleries. It has also become the gay mecca for Athenians. A must visit for anyone going to Athens.

And try the food. The cucumber and tomato salad with feta is the freshest and best tasting I ever had. And I visited before becoming a vegetarian and really enjoyed the lamb. And finally, as touristy as it sounds, have some ouzo. It's good.

I would go back to Athens every chance I got. Go, you will love it!
AFAR Local Expert
over 4 years ago

Market Day

The main meat market in downtown Athens provides hours of inspiration (just come prepared - if cow heads and swimming snakes aren't your idea of the perfect mid-summer lunch, this place could be slightly disturbing). And make sure you bring your camera for beautiful pictures of local produce and gorgeously colored eggs.
over 4 years ago

Athens Tips Part 21 - Street Vendors

When you visit Athens you're going to find street vendors all over the place. From the tourist streets of the Plaka to the street corners in the every day neighbourhoods, there's always someone willing to sell you something. You can really boil these vendors into 3 groups; people selling fake high-end merchandise, people selling legitimate products, and people selling food.

The people selling knock off merchandise are probably the most prolific. You can find them everywhere either selling their wears or running from the authorities. Two things to keep note, it is illegal to do business with these vendors and the items they sell are poor quality.

The people selling legitimate items tend to congregate in groups, the biggest and best of these groups can often be found around Thissio Metro station, particularly on a warm summers night. My favourite of these vendors are the folks selling hand made crafts, art, and jewellery. The quality of the hand made items depends on the craftsmen, however you'll likely walk away with something unique and original. Around this area you may also find a few vendors selling Greek antiques, some less antique than others. Many vendors sell antique Drachma, which makes for a pretty interesting souvenir.

The street food in Athens is average at best. Stopping at a place like Monastiraki for a Koulóuria (bread ring) or some fruit from the local vendors is fine, but if you want a meal you're better off stopping at a taverna or gyros shop.
almost 4 years ago

Athens...city of beauty.

As an ancient art historian, hobby archaeologist, and ancient Med studier, Athens was a DREAM. Every time I caught sight of the acropolis rising above the city, my breath caught. We would turn a tight corner and an ancient remnant stood crumbling. I was amazed at how the modern population of Athens interacted with these ancient wonders...nearly as if they didn't exist (unless it was their job to get me to visit them!) I love this city, and I will be back soon. Eat at the small restaurant in the city square right by the market streets. The man who owns that restaurant helped my friends I out numerous times, even getting us out of the potentially dangerous situation. And stay the Athienaikon!