Athens Top 20
Collected by Rachel Howard, AFAR Local Expert
Filopappou, Athina 117 41, Greece
Marble footpaths meander up pine-clad Filopappou Hill, a peaceful hideout for picnickers and joggers. Hidden in a rocky clearing is the Pnyx, the world’s first democratic assembly, where the great orators Pericles and Themistocles held court in...
Acropolis, Athens 116 36, Greece
The Acropolis is, for most people, the "can't miss" site. Because of its popularity it can be very busy, and the hours seem to change constantly. There's also the possibility that the workers might go on strike, which can mess with your plans as...
Plaka, Athens 105 58, Greece
We picked up some gyros to-go during our stroll through the historic Plaka neighborhood below the Acropolis. Thespidos street was particularly memorable for the cafe we stopped at and discovering Brettos bar, which we decided to come back to enjoy...
Leoforos Vasilissis Sofias 22, Athina 106 75, Greece
One of the most important collections of Byzantine art in the world, this haunting museum contains over 30,000 artifacts from the 3rd to the 20th century. Ethereal icons, frescoes and mosaics, exquisitely carved tombstones and embroidered...
Neofitou Douka 4, Athina 106 74, Greece
This museum is small but perfectly formed, just like the enigmatic marble figurines that are the centerpiece of its collection. Their stark yet sensual forms inspired modern artists like Picasso and Modigliani. On the top floor, a virtual tour of...
Koumpari 1, Athina 106 74, Greece
An extraordinary repository of Greek culture through the ages, this eclectic museum has something for everyone: Bronze Age jewelry, Byzantine icons, traditional folk costumes, Lord Byron's pistols, Cavafy’s poems and 20th-century paintings. The...
Athinas 42, Athina 105 51, Greece
Among the tacky glow-in-the-dark temples, you’ll find plenty of stylish souvenirs at Monastiraki flea market: Look out for amber worry beads, leather sandals and backgammon sets. The central food market on nearby Athinas Street is a smorgasbord...
Polignotou 3, Athina 105 55, Greece
Slave-traders and shoe-menders, jewelers and moneylenders haggled and gossiped at this ancient marketplace the history of which spans five millennia. The Agora was also the stomping ground of rival philosophers Plato and Socrates—the latter...
On a craggy promontory overlooking the Aegean, Cape Sounion is a scenic drive 70 kilometers from the city center along the Athenian Riviera. There are dozens of blue flag beaches and seaside tavernas to explore en route to the gleaming Temple of...
Leof. Vasileos Konstantinou, Athina 116 35, Greece
Built in the 4th century B.C.E., rebuilt for the first modern Olympic Games in 1896, and refurbished for the 2004 Athens Olympics, this horseshoe stadium now serves as the finish line for the Athens Marathon. For centuries, nude male athletes...
28is Oktovriou 44, Athina 106 82, Greece
Vast and glorious, this is the largest archeological museum in Greece and considered one of the most important institutions for antiquity anywhere. Inside its collonaded neoclassical building are collections dating to prehistoric times and...
Athens 118 54, Greece
In the late 1990s, Athens revived this nineteenth-century industrial gasworks district and transformed it into a cultural center whose multiple buildings still buzz with energy. This is where the Athens Jazz Festival takes place each spring, but...
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