What to do in Athens : A travel guide from a local perspective.

by Giwta

If you want to visit a beautiful place full of history, good food and with an interesting culture, you should put Athens in your bucket list !

Giwta, a graduate of Librarian Art and Information studies department in Athens, Greece  shares with us the best things to in Athens !

So what to do in Athens ?

First, visit Syntagma

The subway arrived on Syntagma Square. While you are going upstairs with the escalators you can see on the walls ancient pots and skeletons from the ancient years. Behind the square, there is the Parliament and the National Garden with the cutest children’s library, the small lake and some archaic marvels. Before 1940 there were living deers, roe deers and exotic birds. Now, National Garden has only some ducks and birds.

If the hot weather tired you from your ambulation to the fully green landscape, then you can rest in a café/bar on Voulis Street or on the beautiful Kolokotroni Street. Syntagma has a 24th-hour bus so don’t be in a rush.

Also, if you want to go for shopping then Ermou Street, which crosses over Monastiraki neighborhood, is ideal.

AthensSyntagma Square: View from Vassilis Sophias Street 


Plaka , the perfect place to “get lost” 

If you want to “get lost” in the small alleyways before you reach Monastiraki then you should walk to Syntagma streets which lead you to Plaka or Ancient Athens. Plaka is full of paved roads, old houses with yards, quaint churches and lots of museums which are almost in a row for you to choose. There are also many café and taverns.



Then go to Monastiraki :

After you walk on Lussia Street, you will reach Monastiraki with the ancient underground river Iridanos from 5th Century B.C and with the ancient church. To the right, there is the little tourist alley where you can buy souvenirs. And it joins up with Aiolou Street and Saint Erin Square which is a center for cafés.



Monastiraki Square


Psurri : 

If you take the road down to your left you can reach the Psurri locality. This road has only bars, small tavernas with live music for wine and food.  In that small neighborhood at the corner of

In that small neighborhood at the corner of Iroon Square you can find the most delicious sweet store with tables on the sidewalks. Remember, you are still next to the subway station and metro also. For a nice

Then, for a nice walk you can continue on Ifaistou Street [its old name was Giftadika]. Now, Ifaistou Street is the Flea Market of Monastiraki and it is opposite of Psurri. There you can find small clothing stores, antique shops and cafes in the small alleys with excellent view in Acropolis.




If we move straight ahead you will reach the ruins of the Ancient Agora of Athens, the heart of the old city.

Lengthwise, there are numerous stores for food and coffee.  At the end of the road is Thissio train station.

For a nice walk, stroll to the pavement of Saint Paul with the flea jewelers and souvenirs market which is between the train station and Dionysiou Areopagitou Street, where the Museum of Acropolis and Odeon of Herodes Atticus is located.

Odeon of Herodes Atticus is a stone theater, which was made at 2th Century A.C, in honor of Aspasia Annia Regilla. On the other side of Dionysiou Areopagitou Street is Filoppapou Hill or Hill of the Muses named because of the Monument of the Muses. Filopappou is perfect for hiking and admiring the ancient ruins. There are small labels with the history of each monument.



Panoramic view of Dionysiou Areopagitou Street

And then, for the night entertainment, you will love a visit at Gazi neighborhood, on the other side of Thissio. Lots of clubs that play all kind of music, from Rock to indie, house, electronic and greek of course. If you want to eat something after your drunkenness you can find traditional souvlaki, burgers, pasta, pizza and Mexican food. It is cheap and tasty. In fact, Gazi has also a metro station “Kerameikos”, which Fridays and Saturdays works till 2’oclock p.m  and a night bus that gives you the opportunity to go everywhere you want. 

However, remember, all of these neighborhoods are in an “imaginary” circle. So whatever road you follow, there is no chance to lose your way.  Because they are so close to walk them by feet and all the roads lead to:

  • Ancient ruins
  • Cafes and bars
  • Food stores
  • Happy people



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1 comment

Dory May 23, 2017 - 4:03 pm

Where would you recommend staying in Athens?


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