Optional Activities About Athens

About Athens

Athens is the capital city of modern Greece, at 0m-107m altitude with a metropolitan population of 3.7 million inhabitants. It is located in the prefecture of Attica and extends to the peninsula that reaches up to Central Greece. It is surrounded by three mountains Ymmytos, Pendeli and Parnitha and seven historical hills: Acropolis, Areopagus, Hill of Philopappus, Observatory Hill (Muses Hill), Pnyx, Lycabettus, Tourkovounia (Anchesmus). The Acropolis and Lykavittos are the most prominent ones.

There are many places, monuments and museums to visit some of them are the following:

Acropolis Monument
Ancient Agora with Hephaistos and Zeus Temples
Plaka area
Syntagma Square with the Tomb of Unknown Soldier
Panathenaic Stadium
Acropolis Museum
National Archeological Museum
National Gallery - Museum Alexandros Soutzos
Museum of Cycladic Art
Byzantine and Christian Museum
Archaeological Museum of Kerameikos
War Museum of Athens

Athens is often related to the Greek mythology according to which it was once ruled by Aegeus and his son Theseus. After the death of his father Aegeus, Theseus went to Athens to claim the kingdom as his birthright where he remained king until he retired to an island and killed by Lycomedes.
Furthermore, many historical personalities were born, lived and worked in Athens.
Some of them are the following:

Some key historical events for the city of Athens were:

  • the Turkish invasion in 1456 which lasted for about 400 years;
  • the joint occupation by Germany, Italy and Bulgaria which lasted until 1944 and brought about terrible hardships;
  • the Greek civil war 1946-1949 during which Athens was a battlefield;
  • the dictatorship which started in 1967 and lasted until 1974.

Nowadays, Athens is the capital city of Greece and the centre of the Greek financial, industrial, political and cultural life.

Olympic Games
Athens hosted the 2004 Summer Olympic Games which were organised with an amazing success gaining recognition from all over the world.
It is worth mentioning that the Olympic events were hosted in various sport complexes all around Attica, some of which are as follows: Agios Kosmas Olympic Sailing Center, Faliro Coastal Zone Olympic Complex, Hellinico Olympic Complex Athens, Olympic Sprorts Complex Athens (O.A.K.A.) e.t.c.

There are several beaches close to Athens. The most popular ones are in Vouliagmeni, Varkiza, Nea Makri, Lagonisi,  Kavouri and Alimos. Most of the beaches in Athens are organized and there is a small entrance fee which covers the cost of keeping them clean.

There are many shopping streets some of them are Ermou (Syntagma square), Glyfada and Kolonaki.
Moreover, in Plaka you'll find lots of souvenirs from all over Greece whereas, in Monastiraki there is a great flea market with many antiquity shops. These are just a few examples though; there are shops just about everywhere.


The climate is one of the best in Europe, with mild winters and very hot summers.