Athens – Best Locations, Shops, Culture: A Guide for Tourists
If you are planning your next big vacation, and are looking for a great place to visit, you should check out Athens. There are many breath taking sights at mountains and seashores near Athens. The weather is great, and it has some really spell-bounding views.
Athens is the capital of Greece and a truly charming city! The amazing collection of Greek ruins, artifacts, nightlife, day tours, restaurants, cafés and bars make Athens a primary destination for tourists across the globe.
Although there are several archaeological sites, architecture, restaurants, and many more attractions to see, yet you can explore it all by opting for a long weekend getaway.
Athens, having been inhabited since the Neolithic age, is considered Europe’s historical capital and one of the world’s emblematic cities. During its long, everlasting and fascinating history the city reached its zenith in the 5th century B.C (the “Golden Age of Pericles”), when its values and civilization acquired a universal significance and glory.
Why Visit Athens?
Because you will fall in Love. Athens is a great city to be in. Especially if you are visiting as a tourist you will love it. There is everything you might want. Food, Tradition, Music, in the center you can feel the city's life at its fullest.
If you are a history buff and a connoisseur of culture, then Athens would be the perfect place for you to be. Being the capital of Greece, Athens is the main social and cultural hub of the country. There is plenty of points of interest in Greece like the Acropolis and a number of other museums and official buildings of the past, only ruins of which remains now.
Other than satisfying the history buffs, Athens has some of the best quaint cafes, shops and flea markets that will help you soak more into the Greek culture. The entire cityscape looks right out of a dream sequence with beautiful roads, lined by houses complete with sea and mountains. The city is full of lively people and sight that ensures that you never have a dull moment around. If you want to explore Greece to the fullest, Athens will offer you with all of that.
You should plan at least a week’s trip if you intend to take rest in the hotel for some hours or go shopping to Athens local markets every evening. And, if you are the explorer type, we recommend at least 10 days.
Depending on your travel style, you can select the attractions in Athens that you want to visit. The best time to visit Athens is in April to June and September to November as the weather is pleasant. The months of December to March are cold as it snows in some parts of the city. By mid-June, summer season begins and it starts getting very hot. The month of July and August are not recommended for traveling as sightseeing can become very difficult due to the heat.
Best Outdoor Locations in Athens
Athens has been sprawling human settlements for more than 3400 years. The first settlement backs to the 11th or 7th millennium BC. The city is famous for art and old structures.
However, here are some major attractions that you should make sure to visit when you are in Athens -
The Acropolis & Parthenon
Both these historical places are the crown jewels of Athens. The Acropolis and the Parthenon is the absolute landmark of Athens for 2500 years. Build on a hilltop these magnificent monuments overlook Athens and give you the best view from the Acropolis to the city of Athens and the surrounding temples is one that will stay in your hearts and minds forever.
At the Acropolis, you can join a private tour and combine them with several different activities like lunch or dinner, food tour etc. Know more about it.
The Acropolis Museum next to Acropolis is a must see after the Acropolis and usually it is combined in the tours with Acropolis. You can purchase a discounted ticket that allows access to both, plus other local attractions. If you prefer, you can also book an organized tour ahead of time.
National Archaeological Museum
Recently renovated, the National Archeological Museum is one of the biggest and most remarkable museums in the world. You will travel back in several different times in Ancient Greece and to several different locations. There is no doubt that its treasures, sculptures, jewelry, wall paintings, will mesmerize you.
The Temple of Poseidon & Cape Sounion
According to Greek Mythology, Poseidon is the God of the Sea. And, the temple of Poseidon on Cape Sounion is a must visit! This is a hot spot both for locals and for the travelers. It’s probably the best spot for a sunset in Attica that combines a unique view to the Temple that gets a great orange color from the Sun. The temple of Poseidon, the ancient Greek god of the sea, dominates the southernmost tip of Attica.
Temple of Artemis
The sanctuary of Artemis at Brauron is an early sacred site on the eastern coast of Attica near the Aegean Sea in a small inlet. You will have the chance to see the Attica country side with the olive trees, the pines and most important with the vineyards.
Some other places in Athens that are worth a visit include The Marathon, Ancient Agora, Temple of Olympian Zeus, Odeon of Herodes Atticus, Technopolis (Gazi), and much more.
Enjoy Shopping in the Local Markets of Athens
If you love shopping, check out Kolonaki. It is the hub for upscale shopping, where international labels and Greek designer boutiques share space with sleek concept stores and galleries.
Alternatively, you can visit the Ermou street - it is the most renowned shopping street in Athens, Greece. You can find international brands, local clothing stores, beauty product outlets, etc. in here.
Another great shopper’s stop is Monastiraki. It is one of the major attractions of the Greek capital. Check out the packed vintage stores in this scenic cobblestone alley.
Planning a trip is difficult. We hope that this guide helps you enjoy your time in Athens. To conclude, your trip to Greece would be incomplete without visiting Athens. No matter what you are looking for, you will find it all in Athens! History, culture, food, shopping, and many more attractions would make your trip an enjoyable one.