The Anti-Tourist

I like to beat new paths for myself.

The Athens Layover: Tips and Tricks!

By 08:00:00 , ,

As you've probably realized, my first impression of Athens wasn't one of the best.

But with a whole morning to myself in the centre of ancient civilization, I was not going to let one scary-ass night get the best of me and make me miss out. Athens of all cities deserved a second chance, and by the time I was on the metro to the airport, I was more than happy with my decision!

So without further ado, here's how I made the most of my few hours in the Greek capital (warning: I'm a crammer and a speedy walker, and I somehow never feel tired when I'm exploring!):

8am: By this time, I had already sped out of my "hotel", and got myself to Monastiraki to leave my luggage at Athens Lockers. The place might not seem like much, but the company is very professional, and I was sure my luggage was safely stored. A few kilos lighter, I could explore the area at leisure. 

Monastiraki Square (above) is the hub for the main shopping district of Athens. Here, you can find pretty much anything you're looking for: from high-end stores to vintage, the shops are bustling with activity and life. 


9am: As soon as the shops end, the flea market begins. This is a true treasure trove, and my only regret was not having unlimited luggage space! I spotted some true gems, but I ruefully had to give them a pass. The area is full of locals, which is always a sign that you've hit jackpot! 


10am: With the clock ticking, it was soon time to head over to the ancient Agora - the true hub of life in ancient times. From trade to philosophical discussions on politics and religion, this was where it all happened. If you're in Athens for a few days, get a full package ticket (12 euro, 6 if you're a student!) which is valid for four days and gives you full access to all the sites, including the Acropolis. 


11am: After tracing Socrates' and Plato's footsteps in the Agora, I slowly made my way up to the iconic Acropolis. Even in the scorching sun, surrounded by hundreds of excited tourists happily snapping away with their selfie sticks, I couldn't help but be awestruck at the beauty and might of the whole rocky hill. Overlooking Athens, the imposing temples have seen a thousand generations come and go, a thousand battles and conflicts, but they still stand tall and proud. 

12pm: With my flight leaving in a few hours, I had to descend the mighty Acropolis and run back to collect my luggage and catch the Metro. I was pleasantly surprised with Athens, and I'll definitely be back for more wanderings! Do leave your favourite Athenian spots below, I'd love to check them out :)

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