Athens
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Top Tours & Activities in Athens

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Top 10 things to do in Athens

Once the heart of a civilization more advanced than any to come for centuries, visiting Athens reveals just how far mankind can go when holding art and wisdom above waging war. Here are the best things to see and do in Greece's proud and passionate capital.

Monastiraki

The Old Town market district Monastiraki is a favorite among tourists and locals alike. Though cheap souvenirs dominate its storefronts, there's plenty on offer for sophisticated tastes too!

Parthenon

More than the ruins of an old temple, the Parthenon is an icon of Western civilization, making it the site of Athens' most essential tours!

Acropolis of Athens

Many of Ancient Athens' most important buildings were erected in the Acropolis to protect them from invasion. Ruins they may be, but most still look pretty good for their age!

Erechtheion

Built on the site where legend tells Poseidon and Athena competed to be the city's patron god, the Erechtheion was actually considered more holy than the Parthenon in its time!

Acropolis Museum

Of course, the Acropolis is now mostly in ruin – a monument to Athens' former glory – but almost 4,000 objects excavated from the area can be seen at the Acropolis Museum!

Photo: Xuan Che @Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

National Archaeological Museum of Athens

Widely considered to be one of the best museums in the world, the National Archaeological Museum of Athens boasts many of Greece's most important artifacts, from the prehistoric age to Late Antiquity.

Syntagma Square

Named after the Greek Constitution of 1844, the grand Syntagma Square at the foot of the Old Royal Palace has been the epicenter of Greek politics ever since!

Temple of Olympian Zeus, Athens

In ruins, but once considered the epitome of Doric architecture, the important temple Olympieion was home to the gold Statue of Zeus – one of the original Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

Temple of Athena Nike

Nike is the Ancient Greek word for victory, and the prominently placed Temple of Athena Nike on the Acropolis was built to aid the Athenian Empire's wars against Sparta. It didn't work!

Plaka

This historic district at the foot of the Acropolis is also known as the "Neighborhood of the Gods." Plaka is a great place to wander around and maybe even see an archaeological dig!

Planning Your Athens Visit

Where to stay?

If sightseeing around the Acropolis is your main concern, Plaka is probably the best place to stay. Despite being a highly recommended tourist spot in itself, its streets are pleasantly quiet. The main attractions can also be reached easily from the Monastiraki area, which ought to appeal more to those attracted to Athens' lively street life.

How many days?

How long to spend in Athens depends on how much of it you want to see, of course, but with most of its historic landmarks situated at the Acropolis, you could cover its archaeological sites, best restaurants, and most popular markets in 3 days.

How to get around?

The city is served by buses and electric trolleys that must be waved down at the blue (bus) and yellow (trolley) stops. Tickets are cheap, but then so are taxi fares. Athens also recently opened a sleek new Metro network. Construction was greatly delayed because they couldn't dig for 5 minutes without hitting undiscovered antiquities!

Good to Know

  • Language
    Greek
  • Currency
    Euro (€)
  • Time Zone
    UTC (+02:00)
  • Country Code
    +30
  • Best time to visit
    Athens is most pleasant during the spring and fall, when the temperatures are warm and the tourist traffic is at a minimum.

Things to Do in Athens

Top Attractions in Athens

Other Sightseeing Options in Athens

Want to discover all there is to do in Athens?  Click here for a full list.

What People Are Saying About Athens

Well organized , guide was very knowledgeable about the place.

Thoughtfully planned tour, guide showed her excellent knowledge of the history of Delphi, very fluent in English, lunch was well organized.

Delphi Day Trip from Athens Reviewed by Jee Say, 01/07/2017

Everyone with any spirituality must go if the occasion arises

This trip was an incredible, mind blowing experience ! One I will treasure for my entire life! The commentator Marianna Tsigaridou was so easy to listen to (like a female Greek David Attenbourgh ) from the moment we got on the bus her spirit and energy placed every one at ease, and the general info to the sight was really interesting! The site of Delphi is a must if your able to have the time. The only down side was the rush to thru the site 30 minutes of free time would have been better if you where given an hour! ( the last stop at the shop was a waste, 30 people got of 1 purchased items, there was nothing very interesting and I had money I wanted to spend ! No statues of Apollo or Socrates ! No Greek prayer beads! Just tacky t shirts and carpets as a traveler not so easy to pack even if they offered to send them home) this is where that 20 minutes would have been better spent sitting and taking in all the energy and spectacular views! Museum was awesome, Marianna Taigaridou thank u

Delphi Day Trip from Athens Reviewed by grant, 12/29/2016

Beautiful area of Greece. Very helpful and pleasant guide.

Beautiful location. Would not select the group lunch option though - would prefer more choices.

Delphi and Arachova Full-Day Tour from Athens Reviewed by Jennifer, 12/15/2016

Absolutely stunning experience thanks to the crew members and captain.

We were lucky and only had 6 people join in total, this made for much more enjoyable excursion. We had plenty of space, the crew was very helpful and knowledgeable about Santorini "Fira" and its surroundings. The food that was prepared was excellent and plentiful for the 6 of us. The swim to the hot springs left more to be desired but was nothing the crew could control. We would definitely do this excursion again!!!

A great initial investment to explore the city first.

This is the best way to do it. Tour the city first by their bus and then you can choose your priority which is more important to you to explore. The ride was excellent and very convenient. The people (driver and greeting ladies) operating the system were very courteous and friendly. Good job and well done. I'll do it again.

Athens, Piraeus and Beaches Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Reviewed by Michael, 11/18/2016

Athens
4.4
Based on 622 reviews by GetYourGuide customers