The largest and the capital city of Greece, Athens is both an ancient as well as a modern city. Most often than not, tourists choose to visit the nearby Greek islands over this historical city. However, reconsider your choice because this city is the ideal vacation spot for foodies, history buffs, and party lovers. On your visit to Athens, it can feel a bit crowded and hectic but it makes up for it with some spectacular cultural experiences.
Boasting a well-known history that dates back more than 3000 years, this city offers you some of the most breathtaking ruins of Ancient Greek origin. If you are a history buff, you will definitely be overjoyed by looking at the architectural details of these ruins and marvel over their epic proportions. Some of the most popular ruins that must be visited during your visit to Athens include the Acropolis, the Parthenon, the Agora, the Hadrian’s Arch, and the Temple of Zeus. You can also visit the Acropolis Museum or the National Archaeological Museum to brush up on your knowledge of Ancient Greece, when you are here.
If you are a foodie, you will have the time of your life while wandering around Athens. Try specialties from every part of Greece and enjoy authentic Greek cuisine, which is characterized by simplicity and freshness. Some of the core ingredients of Greek cuisine are lemon, olive oil, fresh herbs, cheese, pork, seafood, and tomatoes. One of the beverages that the Greeks love is coffee, so you must have a cuppa at any café in Kolonaki Square to get an ‘Athenian’ experience.
For shopaholics, Athens is a dream destination because there is a vast selection of art galleries, beauty stores, artisan shops, souvenir shops, and fashion labels available here. Almost every neighborhood in this city offers you the opportunity to shop for anything you like. Some of the things that you can buy in Athens includes handmade leather accessories, natural beauty products, and skillfully crafted Byzantine-style jewelry. Just visit Ermou Street, Plaka, Kolonaki, and Monastiraki, which are considered to be the main shopping areas in this city.
The city of Athens is very easy to get around and has well-developed transportation and infrastructure systems. But the best way to discover everything that Athens has on offer is to go one of the Athens walking tours. Join one of these tours and stroll through ancient as well as modern monuments, the Acropolis, and the gardens. There are so many options to choose from when you are thinking about booking one of the Athens walking tours, each of these with their own special highlight. Once you have decided on an itinerary, choose between a private and a group guided tour. Some of the popular Athens walking tours include:
Athens Walks offers this private ‘History of Athens tour’ that starts at the Acropolis station. It is a four-hour walking tour and includes the archaeological monuments that are included on the UNESCO World Heritage Monuments list. The first sight that you visit is the iconic Acropolis, which is a reminder of the majestic glory of ancient Athens. Originally the center of the ancient city, Acropolis is home to the Temple of Asclepius, the Theatre of Dionysus – humanity’s first theatre, and the Odeon of Herodes Atticus. You will also see the Porch of the Caryatids at the Erechtheion, the gateway of the Propylaea, the Parthenon, and the Temple of Athena Nike. When you choose this tour over the other Athens walking tours, you will be accompanied by your very own private licensed guide. Throughout your tour, the guide will be giving you information about the various monuments and the roles that they played in the ancient civilization. You will then be escorted to the Acropolis Museum to see some amazing displays of relics from Ancient Greece.
This total cost of this tour is somewhere around US$ 40 and this price does not include the entrance fees to the Acropolis Museum. This tour is perfect for first time visitors who would love to learn more about Ancient Greek civilization.
Athens City walk is a tour that is offered by Alternative Athens. One of the oldest cities in the world, Athens has a recorded history that spans over a period of 34 centuries. There have been a lot of radical changes which have evolved the birthplace of democracy into a sprawling metropolis today. When you choose this walking tour over the other Athens walking tours, you actually understand how this city has evolved over the ages, where the ottoman, the ancient, the neoclassical, and the modern, coexist. The places that you will visit on this 4-hour walking tour are modern markets, royal palaces, ancient rivers, and infamous prisons of World War II. Preserved ottoman neighborhoods, 19th Century landmarks of industrial revolution, streets that divide the past from the present, as well as ancient tombs, are some of the other places of interest that will be included in your itinerary. At the end of the tour you will see Athens for what it truly is, a multilayered, complex, historic city.
The cost of this tour is around US$ 40 and children under 12 can join free of cost. This is a group tour which takes you on a journey through the 3400 years of history of Athens.
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