Often cited as the cradle of Western civilization, Athens is a 2,500-year-old mix of concrete upon brick upon stone. Despite recent bad news about Greece’s economic woes and rigorously imposed retrenchment measures that have had a particularly negative impact on the average Greeks, the great city remains a must-do for culture buffs.Since 2004, the newly-inaugurated Archaeological Promenade, a 2.5-mile long, pedestrian-only, tree-lined pavement the foot of the Acropolis and linking all the city’s major archaeological sites, has created the town center infinitely more walkable and reduced the infamous traffic and waste.
But guests don’t return here only for the ancient monuments. Modern Athens boasts one in all the foremost happening nightlife scenes in Europe, that currently centers on the urban-chic bars and cafés between Syntagma and dingy Monastiraki (at the foot of the Acropolis), and therefore the lively neighborhood of Metaxourgio, best-known for its art galleries and hip eateries. And somewhat astonishingly, more new bars and restaurants keep launching, even in times of trouble.The modern art scene is flourishing too, with low-cost rents prompting young artists from Greece and abroad to line up studios here. In 2017, the National Museum of Contemporary Art and therefore the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center opened – each venue are on Syngrou Avenue, connecting the town center to the coast, where you may additionally find the Onassis Cultural Center, that was inaugurated back in 2010.
Piraeus: The Biggest Passenger Port in Europe
Athens is served by Piraeus, the biggest passenger port in Europe and therefore the primary node for the numerous ferries, catamarans, and hydrofoils that serve the Greek islands. The port has eleven trendy piers for cruise ships and might accommodate even the world’s largest vessels. Piraeus is a significant embarkation/disembarkation purpose for short cruises around the Greek Islands, and lots of firms embrace it as a port of call on their the Mediterranean and world cruises. The major draw is the opportunity to explore the city’s splendid summit Acropolis, home to the majestic fifth-century BC Parthenon, and additionally to form excursions inland to the much-photographed archaeological site of Delphi.