Athens’ revival in art and food has brought a new level of success. Here are ten reasons to fall for this bustling metropolis, as shared by the Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens.
1. An Epic Heritage. This landmark can be seen from virtually every street corner in Athens. But you must get up close and personal to see the Parthenon and its majestic columns. Just a few centuries later, you will be at Panathenaic Stadium. Also made entirely of marble, this is where the modern Olympic Games were held in 1896.
2. City by the Sea All Athenians can enjoy the best of the Greek islands. There are beautiful beaches stretching along a length of 31 miles (50km), so you can still enjoy traditional Greek life, including fresh seafood, while also swimming in the Aegean waters for most of the year.
3. Music & Theatre Beneath Acropolis From majestic dances and arias to old Greek tragedies, you will never forget an experience at the Odeon Herodes Atticus in June-October. Its exemplary acoustics are a reason the theatre is nearly 2,000 year old.
4. Poseidon Temple: Built to honour Poseidon god of water in the middle fifth century BC, this ancient temple can be found at the Sounion peninsula. This sunset is one of the most spectacular in Greece. It’s covered by bright reds, oranges, and it’s breathtaking.
5. EvzonesRain or hail, the Greek Presidential Guardians or Evzones march to Hellenic Parliament every Sunday in a spectacular ceremonial procession that has become synonymous With Athens.
6. Athens, The largest wine region of Greece. Attica boasts talented winemakers, who produce wine with the native grape savatiano.
7. Athenian Way of Life. The weekly farmers’ markets or laiki agora form an integral part of Athenian culture. These food fairs are open to all ages and can be set up in different parts of the city. Varvakeios Marketplaces in Athens (the largest) is open daily. They sell seasonal harvests and local delights.
8. Byzantine Orthodox Churches: Athens’ churches, which date from the Byzantine age and are distinguished with their tall domes adorned with arched window openings, is a place to be if you love beauty. The Church of Panagia Kapnikarea in Athens is the oldest, dating back to 1050 AD. All are invited to enjoy the unique frescos as well as beautiful iconography.
9. Athens has a unique combination of culture and art, which begins with the Acropolis Gallery. The Acropolis Museum features thousands of sculptures as well as artifacts from all over the city. It has floor to ceiling windows that allow natural light to flood in. The Museum of Cycladic Art has a magnificent collection of Cycladic figures and ceramics from 3rd millennium BC. A treasure trove awaits you at the National Archaeological Museum. It includes the Antikythera Mechanism (a gold mask by Agamemnon) and the Gold Mask of Agamemnon.
10. Athens’ New Agora. Athenians received a agora from the newly opened Stavros Niarchos Foundation. With its regular events, the Agora continues to be a symbol for ancient Greece’s central gathering areas. Renzo Piano was the architect who designed the entire building, which is a major addition to modern Athens.