Having lived in Rome during college, the thought of going to Athens didn’t at first interest me a ton. But once I realized the history, the ruins, the sights, the museums that awaited me – I couldn’t have been more excited! My sisters, friends and I explored tirelessly. We arrived in Greece during their economic crisis, and luckily only ran into a protest once – and Greece, as of 2018 at least, is still on the euro.
The Parthenon (Temple to Athena) was definitely a sight to see. It was just as magnificent as I expected it – except for the fact that it was under construction. Which, I guess it has to be renovated some time. But of all times, when I am there? Oh well.
We went to this amazing museum that featured artifacts from a ship from the bottom of the sea, one of which is hailed as the world’s first computer. But many of the others were near intact sculptures – typical Greek gods and such. But the unique thing about these statues is that they have been corroded by so many years under water. Some were unrecognizable. Others were almost completely intact. The water damage was creeping up this statue below, and it looks like it was saved just in time.
The Panathenic Olympic Stadium near the Temple of Zeus was used in Ancient Greece and then restored for the modern Olympic games. Each year they still hold Olympic events on the grounds, and there’s a portion of the tour where you can see old torches and many posters from past Olympic events. It was a beautiful structure with a breathtaking view of all the main Athens sights when you climb (up these very stairs) to the top.
Tess, Marcos and I climbed Lycabettus Hill, an epic climb from the Greek Parliament building through posh restaurants and cute streets before we reached the cement trail that took us all the way up to the top of the hill – just in time for sunset. I booked it the fastest of the three, past cacti and beautiful views.
We found this view at the top as the sun started to set and reflect off these bare trees and the Acropolis which you can see in the background. The clouds were gorgeous.