Athens — a multifaceted city with a rich history and an honorary status, such as the birthplace of democracy, philosophy, theater, Olympic games modern and ancient heart — the Acropolis. Greek capital contrast and temperamental as her locals. Athens is a city beyond time and space, polyon wonderful places and interesting things.
Interesting excursions from the locals in Athens
Jeanne Kutepova resides in Athens since 2013. In this article, she talks about the secret and charming places in the city, which is known only to the locals.
Which district to choose for living
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The historic centre is compact. All major attractions are close to each other and they can be reached on foot if you live in one of these areas, such as Plaka, Theseion, Koukaki, Makriyanni, Syntagma, Monastiraki, Kolonaki. With a clear plan and a leisurely pleasure all the historical sites to really see and visit in 2-3 days.
During long journeys in the warm season, and especially during the hot months (from mid-June to mid-September), in Athens the best place to relax under the scheme: the center of the sights for a couple of days and seaside holiday in the South suburbs of Athens, in the remaining days. Few people know, Athens is the only European capital with access to the open sea, with the city beaches and promenade, called the Attic Riviera, stretching almost 70 kilometers. In this case, for a seaside holiday suitable areas of Palaio Faliro, Alimos, Glyfada, Voula, Vouliagmeni, Varkiza. For quiet and secluded relaxation — Anavissos and Saronida.
hotel 2* Bedbox Hostel — 1 126 rubles/day;
the 3* Hotel Pythagorion stays from 2 842 rubles/day;
3* hotel Centrotel Hotel — accommodation from 2 895 rubles/day;
4* hotel on Syntagma square, Amalia Hotel — stays of 7 730 rubles/day;
hotel 4* Coco-Mat Hotel Nafsika — accommodation from 8 060 rubles/day;
5* hotel with views of the Acropolis Metropolis Electra — accommodation 12 019 rubles/day;
cozy boutique hotel Sweet Home Hotel — accommodation from 5 743 rubles/day.
Along with a list of the best areas there is an informal list of worst areas where it is desirable NOT to stop because of the darker side of life: Omonia, Exarchia, Neapoli, Victoria, Kato Patisia and near the railway station Larissis.
Where to eat
Most Greeks instead of Breakfast — a Cup of coffee , and cold. Frappe is served in a tall glass with a straw. Invigorating coffee drink a native of the Greek city of Thessaloniki, it is ideal in the summer heat. At other times of the year, the Greeks prefer cold freddo cappuccino. Traditional Greek coffee prepared in the coffee pot and on the hot sand.
Delicious coffee of different types can be enjoyed in Mokka (Athinas, 44). Cost of 1.5 euros per Cup, in addition as a compliment to Greek coffee is served a piece of Turkish delight, handmade (rose flavoured and mastai — delicious!).
The Greeks decided to buy the coffee to go in local institutions: Mikel, Everest, Grygoris, Coffee Island at a price of 1 Euro per paper Cup with a drink.
In the morning before work, the Athenians can afford on the run of koulouri — sesame bagel. Sold at a fixed price of 50 cents each on the street.
But the fresh, just pulled from the oven, hot to kuluri you can buy at the bakery To koulouri tou Psirri (Karaiskaki, 23). By the way, is one of the few stores operating in Athens around the clock, offering a delivery of bagels to homes and offices on company mopeds.
For a snack the locals choose cakes from thin dough of fillo, which in Greece are called pitas. Spanakopita — spinach pie, tiropita — cheese, kothapeta chicken. The cost of 1.2 euros for a huge piece of the pie.
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Hearty and fresh are sold on Ermou street, 98 in the juice bar café Cardia. The owner is a Greek Vasilis offers freshly squeezed juices from 80 cents a glass.
Taste of authentic Greek Mediterranean cuisine with fish and seafood is best at the Central market Varvakios (Athinas, 42). Huge selection of fresh seafood — octopus, squid, mussels, shrimp. Gourmet oysters, local clams, sea urchin ROE. The advantage is that when the market taverns where you can taste: fish Dorado grilled octopus chargrilled squid, prawns, mussels in an olive garlic sauce.
Note the tavern OI FILOI, where the hostess, a Greek woman, Anna, at the end of the meal treats sweet compliments. The portions are large, it is better to take the rate of one dish for two. The average bill for one is 15 Euro. Please note that opening hours every day from Monday to Saturday, from 7 am to 5 PM.
In the Greek kitchen is not provided by the first cooking of hot dishes. If you really want soup, for maguricea from the giblets or a skim patches for the price of 8 euros per portion should go to the tavern Epirus (on the market Varvakios).
Delicious soups from pumpkin, spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes cooked in vegetarian restaurants Avocado ( Nikis, 30) at a price of 6 euros per serving.
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The Greeks main meal — a late dinner, it starts not before 21:00. Until that time, lunch and afternoon tea, light snacks are welcome in the form of the Greek salad, and Greek salad is called “rustic” — horiatiki.
The Athenians eat Greek yogurt with a sweet filling of jam and marmalade. Be sure to try the smoothies on the basis of goat yogurt (without peculiar smell) with hazelnuts. Awesome and unique taste to the yogurt bar Fresko Yogurt Bar Acropoli at Dionysiou Areopagitou, 3. The smoothie Cup is from 4.5 euros.
To visit Athens and not to hearty gyros (minced meat, shot the knife from the spit, with the addition of French fries, onions, tomatoes and cucumber-garlic tzatziki sauce, all wrapped in a tortilla)? The most delicious gyros cooking at Monastiraki square in sebabnya Thanassis, Savvas, Bairaktaris. The cost of gyros is 2 euros.
Delicious ice cream in the center of Athens: Le Greche (Mitropoleos, 16A) be sure to try the flavored Mojito, DaVinci (Adrianou, 50), choose from more than thirty different flavors, and in a small home gelaterias Cremino (Nikis, 50 A) offer ice cream with natural and rare tastes. A scoop of ice cream costs 2 euros.
From the height of bird flight Athens appear even more majestic and immense white city with dense buildings. Enchanting view of the Monastiraki square, the old town of Plaka and the Acropolis open with panoramic roof, located in the hotel A for Athens. On the top floor there are bunk cafe bar and restaurant with amazing cocktails and cold appetizers, and the view from there just fine (Miaouli, 2). In the afternoon the cocktails cost 6 euros.
Gourmets and connoisseurs of Greek cuisine is to go to the restaurants Kuzina (Adrianou, 9), Kiouzin (Likavittou, 16), Avissinia (Kinetou, 7). The average expense of 50 euros.
Greek wines are not inferior to the French and Georgian. A huge selection of local wines is in the tasting kawah: Vintage Wine Bar& Bistro (Mitropoleos, 66), Oinoscent ( Voulis 45-47), Yoleni’s Greek Gastronomy Center (Solonos, 9). Order of red dry agiorgitiko and mavrodaphne, white — malagouzia and assyrtiko. Tasting glass costs from 3 euros.
What to watch (non-touristic places, unusual places)
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National Botanical garden is located in the heart of the city near Syntagma square. Former Royal gardens were artificially broken in the middle of the 19th century saplings of trees and bushes brought from all over the world. In our day, for local residents, the garden offers respite from the sultry heat of the city. Pond with turtles and goldfish, geese and ducks, cages with deer and rabbits, peacocks and parrots are transferred into the world of wildlife. Palm trees and a sundial — the pride of the Park. The Botanical garden is open the whole day — from dawn to dusk.
The scenic and petite Church of St. Demetrius Lombardesca (Church of Agios Demetrios Loumbardiaris) built in the 17th century in greenery on the slopes of philopappou hill. Special and very quiet place migrates to another era, there feel the frantic pace of the city, and only peace and harmony.
Stadium Kalimarmaro. Marble “horseshoe” was built for the Olympic games of modern times in 1896 and has a capacity of 50 thousand spectators. This is the only place where there is an audio guide, including in Russian, but tourists inside the unit, most people prefer to look at the stadium from the outside. Few people know that the stadium is a cave that leads to the Olympic Museum, where the posters and torches, including the Moscow summer Olympic games 80-go year, with the winter Olympic games in Sochi in 2014. The cost of entry is 5 Euro.
Historic district Theseion with is old mansions is not inferior to the tourist area of Plaka, but mostly walk there by local residents. One of the first outdoor cinemas operating the Observatory, the Church of Agia Marina is only part of the objects that can be seen in the Theseion. The main thing is to wander the streets and sit at the table any cafes.
Anafiotika is a residential area of the island, located at the foot of the Acropolis. The descendants of the builders of the Cyclades live in little rooms surrounded by lemon and Fig trees, and among the whitewashed narrow streets walking well-fed cats. In this district there are two dozen residential houses, and with the “balcony” Greek offers one of the best views of the city.
Cultural center of Stavros Niarhos opened its doors in early 2017. The complex, built with the latest technology on the site of the former Hippodrome, consists of buildings of the National library and the National theatre. The perfect place to stroll with children and to go to the sea. Near scenic Bay Marina Flisvos, where the moored battleship military Averof — the current Museum on the water.
Sports complex OAKA is located in the North of the city in the Athens suburb of Maroussi. It was here in 2004 hosted the summer Olympic games. The facilities in the complex — acting and bizarre forms. On the way to the OAKA commuter train (green line metro) have the opportunity to see how live the North the Athenians almost the entire way around the track — ground.
What to do
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1. Trips to museums. A rich collection of coins stored in the Numismatic Museum, housed in a former residential Palace of the archaeologist-taught Heinrich Schliemann. A curious exhibition of Greek treasures from different time of years is preserved in the Museum of contemporary art Benaki. For originals and fans of auto unique Museum Hellenic Motor Museum.
2. SPA under the open sky. 25 kilometers from city centre thermal lake of Vouliagmeni, renowned for their healing properties and fish — Garra rufa fish. When bathing fish surround the human body and biting it making massage and cleaning up of rough skin. All year round the temperature in the lake does not fall below 22 degrees. On weekdays, the entrance is 12€, weekend — 15 euros.
3. The children can go to the zoo in Spata area in the suburbs of Athens, near the international airport “Eleftherios Venizelos”. A visit to one of the best zoos in Europe is not indifferent not only children but also adults. Local life skill: to combine business with pleasure, after the zoo go to the largest McArthurGlen designer outlet, located next door.
4. Mountain Parnitha. Nature enthusiasts should go to the North of the city in the Park Parnitha where freely inhabited by deer, foxes, hares. At an altitude of 1000 meters above sea level for lovers of gambling opened casino Mont Parnassus.
5. The Saronic Gulf Islands. One day you can reach the Athens port of Piraeus and buy a ticket to one of the six Islands of the Saronic Gulf with its unique architecture and nature. Fishing Salamis, pistachio Aegina, Angistri emerald, Royal Spetses, Bohemian island of Hydra, Poros art are relatively close to the Greek capital.