Athens!

Athene

Even though I had only just returned from Dublin, the first week of June marked my trip to Athens! This time I did not travel on my own, but with my best friend Alieke (who I finally decided to mention by name -which she said is okay- because she’s the one accompanying me on most of my trips anyway!). The both of us spent five years in high school learning about Ancient Greece and we agreed that we wanted to see the ruins with our own eyes.

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So, from June 1st up to June 4th, we were strolling around Athens! We had rented a fairly cheap and surprisingly luxe apartment through Airbnb -which is highly recommendable!-. The first day consisted mostly of getting to the apartment and exploring the Museum of Archaeology, which was right next door to our apartment.

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The second day we spend at the Acropolis and the Ancient Agora. The Acropolis is a must if you ever visit Athens, obviously.

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Not only does it stand out enormously because of it’s height, but it’s also rich of culture and absolutely worth the climb. It is quite busy at the top, but you can still make your way around easily.

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Don’t forget to take sunglasses, though, since the sunlight and the white temples make for a very bright sight. Also, after you’ve visited the Acropolis itself, make sure you head into the Acropolis Museum.

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It holds a lot of the (copies of) statues that originally were found on the Acropolis. A nice plus is the fact that there’s no entrance-fee for students from inside the European Union, so bring you student card!

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The Ancient Agora is a lesser known place in Athens, though it does house the Temple of Hephaestus. This temple is in way better shape than the Parthenon on top of the Acropolis is.

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The rest of the Ancient Agora is also very interesting and nice to walk through. There’s ruins and remains almost everywhere you look, and when we visited the Ancient Agora, we were almost on our own.

The third day, we decided to have a lazy day on the beach. We went to Palaio Faliro and walked to the beach from there on out. After spending the whole day lying in the shade with an occasional dive into the Mediterranean Sea, we walked to Piraeus to get back to Athens. It made for a lovely relaxing day out of the busy city. However, take some slippers or sandals with you, as the beach is made of stone and can be quite painful to walk on with bare feet.

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Our last day in Athens we went to see the library and the university, which are located near Syntagma Square. We also paid a visit to Hadrian’s Arch and the Temple of Olympian Zeus.

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The remains of this Temple are very impressive, even more when you walk around and try to image the enormity of the temple when it was still intact.

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After we’d seen our fill, we walked through Plaka for a bit. It’s a very touristy, but lovely and kind of cosy neighbourhood. If you still need souvenirs, you’re definitely at the right place in Plaka.

Since we flew back late in the evening, we had this whole last day of Athens to see the last few things we still wanted to see. After strolling around Plaka for a little while, we headed back to the airport for our trip home. Athens is, without a doubt, worth a visit. The culture is so incredibly rich and there is so much to see. We went four days and it was enough to do the absolute must-sees and a bit more. If you ever get the chance to visit Athens, you should absolutely go!

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