Travel Log: Athens, Greece

Have you seen my Mykonos and Santorini travel logs from my recent Greek vacation?  Last month, my boyfriend and I spent nine days in Europe including three days in Mykonos, three days in Santorini, a ten hour layover in Athens, and two days in Rome.  Today I want to share the ten hour layover in Athens with you.  After six days on the Greek islands, we flew to the mainland to see all of Athens' main sites on a long layover.  We easily found the baggage storage counter at the Athens' airport--it was located right at the end of the arrivals terminal after baggage claim.  After we stowed our bags, we grabbed an Uber (Uber uses taxis in Athens, but the app and payment works the usual way) and headed straight for the Acropolis.  We landed in Athens on an absolutely gorgeous day, so please scroll through for photos and details of our time in this ancient, historical city.  I also included my casual, travel-friendly outfit details under the first photo below.

Sleeveless Chambray: exact here or check out this version with sleeves 
Shorts: exact here (on sale!)
Sunglasses: no longer available, similar MK pair here
Shoes: exact here
Bag: exact here 
Watch: exact here



The word "Acropolis" in Greek literally means “the highest point of the town.”  Although every town in ancient Greece had an Acropolis, the citadel in Athens was the most famous and the best remembered.  These ancient ruins cost 12 euros to tour, and you can purchase your ticket day of at the ticket counter.  There was no line when we arrived, we basically walked right in.

The Parthenon was a temple dedicated to the goddess Athena, completed between 447 and 438 BC.  During its heyday, the Parthenon was decorated with sculptures and an iconic frieze that covered its exterior walls. 

 The Parthenon suffered extensive damage in 1687 when the Venetian army bombarded the occupying Ottoman Turks.  The Turks used the Parthenon for gunpowder storage (don't ask me why), and it suffered a direct hit from a Venetian mortar shell.  In addition, the British gained approval from the Greek government to remove a significant portion of the Parthenon frieze and sculptures.  These currently reside in the British Museum. 

Greece has been in the process of repairing the Acropolis buildings since 1975, and the restoration is still a work in progress.  You can easily see the scaffolding and cranes in these photos.

Views from the Acropolis toward Mount Lycabettus.

Ruins of the Temple of Rome and Augustus, situated in front of the Parthenon.  It's amazing to see pieces of the columns up close!  There is a viewing platform and a Greek flag in the background.

Next to the Parthenon is the Erecthion, sitting on the most sacred ground in the Acropolis.  This is the spot where Poseidon and Athena had a contest to determine would be the Patron of the city, and the people chose the winner.  Poseidon thrust his trident into the rock and a salt spring flowed out.  Athena touched the ground with her spear and an olive tree grew out of the ground.  Because the water was salty, the people chose Athena as the winner.  The temple was dedicated to both Athena and Poseidon at the end of the day.

The Erecthion contains a side porch with six columns in the shape of young maidens.  Five of the six original column statues are in the Acropolis museum, the sixth is in the British Museum.

One last view of the Parthenon and its impressive columns.  After leaving the Acropolis, we walked down to the nearby (and ultra-modern looking) Acropolis Museum.  It only costs 5 euros each to visit the museum - absolutely worth it in my opinion!  You are not allowed to take any photos, but the museum is well put together with four floors of artifacts and a rooftop cafe!

After we toured the Acropolis Museum and had a delicious lunch on its rooftop cafe, we walked through the Plaka.  The Plaka is the oldest neighborhood in Athens, with plenty of shops and restaurants to peruse.  We continued north to Syntagma Square, also known as Constitution Square, which is Athens' photogenic central square in front of the Greek Parliament.

Syntagma Square is also a location where local protesters like to gather, because of its proximity to the Parliament building.  This particular Friday afternoon was pleasant and quiet, with just a few people walking through or hanging out in the square.

After Syntagma Square, we closed out our afternoon in Athens by walking a few blocks to a nearby Starbucks.  We grabbed drinks, souvenir mugs, and relaxed for a bit before hailing an Uber back to the airport.  We made sure to have our Uber drop us off at the same end of the same terminal where we started, so that we could easily grab our bags and check in for our next flight.

I hope you enjoyed these photos and tidbits of information from our ten hour layover in Athens.  Please stay tuned for one more travel log: Rome!  Thank you for visiting my blog today, and I hope you have a great rest of your week!

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