Places to Visit in Athens ( and around )

Places to Visit in Athens. Athens is one of the most ancient cities in the world with so much mystery and history hidden in every corner and square of the city. It is a beautiful mix of old and modern and is one of the liveliest cities in the world. 

Athens has become a tourist hotspot for so many reasons. One of the main reasons to visit Athens is to see the symbol. The Acropolis proudly nestled on top of a hill overlooking the city. The iconic neighborhoods of Monastiraki and Plaka with so many local tavernas, cafes, and stores all around; of course the Lycabettus Hill offers one of the most beautiful panoramic views in Athens much more. Keep reading to find out about the top things to do in Athens and enjoy this splendid city.

Visit Acropolis

It is hard to name a more iconic ancient site in the world other than Acropolis. Perched on top of a rocky hill preserved from 2,500 years ago, Acropolis will leave you speechless with its proud look and all the history behind it. After all, it is one of the wonders of the ancient world that symbolizes some of the highest achievements of humankind.

Get ready to discover some of the most antique monuments here. One of the most prominent ones is The Parthenon temple, dedicated to the goddess Athena which is considered the world’s most unique Doric masterpiece.

Other incredible sites are Erechtherion, Arrhephorion, and of course, the Temple of Athena Nike. Join a walking tour here to have everything explained as well as visit the new Acropolis Museum. See the virtual tour. Undeniably the Acropolis is one of the places to visit in Athens.

Acropolis location map

The Acropolis Athens
Acropolis Photo by John Koliogiannis on Unsplash

Plaka Neighborhood

One more of the places to visit in Athens is Plaka. Located right under the shadow of the Acropolis, great to walk through the narrow streets of Plaka, which is one of the oldest inhabited neighborhoods in the world.

It is possible to capture various old buildings from different eras, which are now coffee shops and stores. It is delightful to walk around this area in the early evening and perhaps also stop by a local Greek tavern for mouthwatering dinner.

Visit the famous Brettos distillery on Kydatheneon and discover ancient Greek and Roman ruins around the entire area of Plaka. Visiting Plaka should be included in your list of things to do in Athens.

Plaka Location Map

Athens, Plaka
Plaka image: JFKennedy at English Wikipedia / Public domain

Lycabettus Hill

Like almost all the metropolitans in the world, Athens has the highest pick, the Lycabettus Hill. You can either hike up a forested slope of the hill or get there by the funicular.

Expect to find one of the gorgeous views in Greece from the top. Great arrive here in the afternoon to capture the splendid sunset over the city of Athens. You can enjoy a glass of wine at the café while enjoying the breathtaking views.

Visit also the whitewashed church of St. George and the amphitheater. They are both located on top of the Lycabettus hill. In the summer, many well-known acts such as Leonard Cohen, James Brown, and Peter Gabriel take place in the amphitheater. It is one of the highlights of Athens you shouldn’t miss, and you can be sure to spend a memorable time up there.

Location map of Lycabettus

Lecabettus, Athens
Lecabettus, Athens Photo by Daria Volkova on Unsplash

Temple of Poseidon, Sounion

There is one more prominent site for the fans of Greek mythology, the temple of Poseidon. This incredible marble temple stands 60 meters above the sea level, dedicated to the god of oceans, Poseidon.

Overlooking the sea at the very tip of the Attiki Peninsula, this place is one of the highlights of Greece and is undoubtedly worth visiting. Located on Cape Sounio, the temple was first built by the ancient Athenians in the name of Poseidon to guide sailors safely home.

We have the ruins of the temple today, which look indescribably beautiful and mysterious in the sunset. This fantastic view sometimes even beats the sunset in Santorini.

Below the rock, there is a small beach where you can swim and enjoy the sun right under the temple. There are also some fish restaurants in the area where you can stop by for lunch or dinner. Of course, it is not exactly in Athens. Still, it is only a 1-hour drive from the city and is undoubtedly worth including in your itinerary to Athens.

Map of Sounion

Temple of Poseidon, Sounion
Temple of Poseidon by: Stephen D from pixabay

Explore Monastiraki

One more of the places to visit in Athens is Monastiraki. It is another busy neighborhood in Athens with so much to see and do. Expect to capture several ancient sights, rooftop bars, and of course, the vast flea market.

A perfect place to buy souvenirs, handmade jewelry, Greek signature sandals, olive oil products, and so much more. It is one of the liveliest places in Athens, always crowded with locals and tourists.

If you wish not to go in the crowded agora, you can still enjoy a nice cold frappe at one of the cafes and admire the Acropolis on top and Athens city life.

Location map of Monastiraki

Monastiraki, for souvenirs
Monastiraki image by: Kirk Fisher from pixabay

Athens is indeed one of the most iconic cities in Europe and the world, with many stunning sites and lively neighborhoods. It is, of course, a starting point for most holidaymakers visiting Greece who stops by the capital before heading to the islands.

This ancient city has so much to offer to all types of travelers with different preferences and age groups. There is undoubtedly something for everyone.

Visiting the Acropolis is, of course, a must as this site is something most travelers visit Athens for. Strolling around Plaka and Monastiraki’s narrow lanes will give you get a better feel of the city and discover many hidden spots possible to notice if you go there by walking.

There are indeed so many things to see and do in the capital of Athens. Impossible to manage within a few days. Still, you will surely have time to go through all the places listed above.

See also our web destinations

Read also: Historical sites in Greece