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National Observatory of Athens

National Observatory of Athens: Our most recommended tours and activities

Athens: Early Morning Acropolis & Plaka Guided Walking Tour

1. Athens: Early Morning Acropolis & Plaka Guided Walking Tour

Meet your guide early in the morning and start your tour of the Acropolis before the heat of the day sets in. Admire the Theatre of Dionysus on the south slope of the Acropolis as you make your way up the hill to view the ancient structures located there. Tour the Parthenon, the Erechtheion, the Propylaea, the Temple of Athena Nike, and the Pedestal of Agrippa as your guide shares the fascinating history of this ancient site.  Next, head downhill in the direction of Plaka, admiring views of the Ancient Agora and the National Observatory of Athens as you walk. Explore the cobblestone streets of Plaka with your guide as you discover secrets unknown even to the locals. Enjoy the tranquility of this village within a city as you explore the many narrow passages and discover hidden gems. See the Bathhouse of the Winds, the Roman Forum, the Fethiye Mosque Museum, and Hadrian's Library as you head towards Monastiraki Square where your tour comes to an end.

Athens: Guided E-Scooter Tour in Acropolis Area

2. Athens: Guided E-Scooter Tour in Acropolis Area

Meeting point: Odeon of Herodes Atticus - the restored roman theatre that hosts many performances under the Athenian sky. Constructed in 161 AD with the expense of Herodes Atticus, as a memorial to his wife, Regilla. Station 1: Philopappou Hill The Monument of Philopappos built by the Athenians in 114-116 AD, to honor their benefactor, Gaius Julius Antiochus Philopappos. The Prison of Socrates: Even though it has been disputed by many that this cave was the real prison of Socrates, this name has still caught on. Church of Saint Dimitrios Loubardiaris: A byzantine church located in a picturesque grove under the Filipappos hill and restored in 1955 by the architect Dimitrios Pikionis. Station 2: Pnyx - The meeting place of the Athenian democratic assembly. Station 3: National Observatory of Athens - Designed by the famous architect Theophil Hanse and founded in 1842, with the contribution of Georgios Sinas. Station 4: Dionysiou Areopagitou Street - One of the valuable pedestrian streets, in terms of archaeological significance, in the whole world. We will drive and learn about the history of the New Acropolis Museum and the Monuments of the Acropolis Station 5: Temple of Olympian Zeus – The monument was starting to build in 174 BCE and only finally completed by the Roman emperor Hadrian in 131 CE. Station 6: Arch of Hadrian - A monumental, marble arch built by the emperor Hadrian as the formal gateway to Athens

Athens: Sunset Bike Tour

3. Athens: Sunset Bike Tour

Discover the must-see sights of Athens at the best time of day on an afternoon bike tour of the historic monuments. Avail of the breathtaking views of the ancient city as you cycle to landmark monuments, starting at the National Gardens, followed by the Panathenaic Stadium and Presidential Mansion. Get off your bike to take short walks to different locations, and journey through the history of Ancient Greece at monuments such as the Roman Agora. Admire the columns of the Zappeion exhibition hall, and cycle through the charming Plaka district at dusk. Make your way to Kerameikos just north of the Acropolis and explore the hip district of Thisseio.

Athens: West Hills Walking Tour and Herakleidon Museum Visit

4. Athens: West Hills Walking Tour and Herakleidon Museum Visit

Discover the road less traveled in the West Hills of the Acropolis with a shared group tour with an expert historian and archaeologist. Discover the birth of democracy in Ancient Athens and learn all about the construction and intricacies of this influential building. Begin the walking tour just outside of the Acropolis Metro Station, Dionysiou Areopagitou exit. Get acquainted with the group and receive relevant directions from your historian-archaeologist. Head west walking on Dionysiou Areopagitou Street, one of the most beautiful walking streets of Athens. The first stop is next to the Dionysian Theater, on the southeast slope of the Acropolis hill, as you hear facts about the ancient Greek theater and its role in Athenian society. Walking parallel to the archaeological site, and standing outside of it, the second stop is the Odeon of Herodes Atticus. It exhibits the evolution of the theater as a constructed physical space, but also as a form of art, from the Greek-Hellenistic era, towards the Roman times. Leaving the Acropolis behind, the group continues to head West through the Mouseion Hill (also known as The Philopappos hill) and the Pnyx Hill. Encounter the ruins of the ancient gate of the first wall of Ancient Athens and then head north towards the Pnyx. On the walk, two stops are made to see the Deme and the streets of Ancient Athens, and admire the view from the top of the hill, all the way to the Piraeus Port and the sea. Turning east, take in the breathtaking view. It's said this is the best view of the Acropolis, the Ancient Agora, the Mount Lycabettus, and of the modern city today. Take your time to witness the remnants of ancient history. See the expanse of Pnyx in front of you, where Ecclesia, the Parliament of Athenian Democracy, once held its meetings. Afterward, make a brief stop outside the nearby National Observatory of Athens, where you can learn important historical information about the building. Head to the Herakleidon Museum and take the opportunity to admire the specifics of the exhibition, Eureka, Science, Art, and Technology of the Ancient Greeks. To end your journey through time, enjoy some refreshments as your guide answers questions and offers advice about must-sees, cool activities, and most importantly, what to avoid on your stay in Athens.

Other Sightseeing Options in National Observatory of Athens

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What people are saying about National Observatory of Athens

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 139 reviews

What an amazing way to discover the amazing and beautiful city of Athens. Well maintained bikes, knowledgable guide and lots of fun. If you have a good sense of direction and memory, you will be able to retrace your steps on foot another day, to go and re-visit the places that caught your eye whilst on the ride.

Our guide was extremely knowledgable. He did a great job providing historical context for everything we were seeing and able to explained the history across thousands of years and connect with what we were seeing in the acropolis. Fantastic tour and perfect amount of time.

Very nice tour with a friendly guide. It was perfect to do this early in the morning when the heat wasn’t too much.

Perfect 3-4 hour intro to Athens and the Acropolis. Excellent guide Marina . Just very windy on the day

Very nice guide with a lot of knowledge. It was hot, but doable in the early morning.