Greece: My future honeymoon destination. I fell in love with this country while studying abroad in Athens in Fall, 2013. Walking those limestone pedestrian streets, gazing up at the illuminated Acropolis with a pink sunset behind it, or dipping my toes in the epicly blue Aegean Sea are all magical experiences. For me personally, it also brings up memories of feelings of excitement and freedom that comes with living abroad for the first time.
During my year of working as an Au Pair in the Netherlands, I took a long weekend to revisit Athens, and all the old feels rushed back immediately. I didn’t stop smiling my whole time wandering and enjoying the capital of this gorgeous Mediterranean country. I’m now sharing my favorite photos of the city, along with suggestions of food to enjoy, places to wander, and a hostel that I loved so that hopefully you will fall in love with the city too!
My Favorite Route to Wander:
Start the day for a rooftop coffee at A is for Athens in Monastiraki Square.
After you are sufficiently caffeinated, wander through the streets of the Plaka area. Here you can just have a look around or shop for souvenirs- maybe some leather Greek sandals?! If you’re hungry, stop for lunch at whichever restaurant catches your eye (they tend to be pretty similar in terms of menus and prices in this area).
After you’re full of delicious Greek food, making sure to wander up hill through the neighborhood at the base of the Acropolis, Anafiotika. This neighborhood was built in the same style of architecture as many of the Greek Islands. You may also feel like you’re not meant to be walking there, as the walkways are narrow and close to people’s front doors!
If you still have energy at this point, continue walking up the hill to the entrance to the Acropolis and appreciate the monument and the views over Athens.
Tip: If you’re interested in ancient history and want to see a lot of these sites, purchase a ticket package that also allows admittance into a few other historical sites.
If you still can’t stop looking at the Acropolis in amazement, finish the day off with a rooftop drink in Monastiraki Square. 360 is a good option!
- Souvlaki, which is a gyro with chips, tzatziki, onions, and tomatoes inside. If you order it from a restaurant, though, it will be a platter rather than a pita wrap.
- Tiropita, bougatsa, kolouri, spanikopita, etc. Just order everything you can.
- Greek Coffee. It tastes earthy but it definitely grew on me while I was studying abroad there!
- Frappe- a delicious, milky version of instant ice coffee. Definitely worth a try!
- Courgette or tomato balls as an appetizer
- Greek Salad obviously. Don’t expect lettuce!
- Moussaka, which is a lasagna-like dish with mince meat and eggplant
- Fresh fish or octopus
-Psirri: a neighborhood next to Monastriaki Square with heaps of outdoor, street vibe bars, full of people chilling and smoking hookahs
Where to Sleep: On my most recent trip, I stayed in the City Circus Athens which I loved! Such a beautiful boutique hostel! It had a rooftop area to chill, a restaurant downstairs, comfy beds, and is close to a great area with bars and a metro station, Monastiraki. Another small tip- if you book directly through their website, you will get a free breakfast buffet!
A few of my friends have asked me about places to stay in an Air B&B- A few options for neighborhoods to stay in would be Monastiraki, Plaka (touristy but nice) and Syndagma (city center), Kolonaki (a bit of a fancy reputation).
What was your highlights of your Athens trip?