by Kyrios Iasonas
January 23, 2006
The beach here is the closest decent beach on the Mediterranean if you are staying in the center of Athens. It is very easily accessible by bus or by tram (Edem station). The beach a mix of sandy and fine pebbles which makes for an easy cleanup and not so much sand in your bathing suit if you are lying or playing on the beach. There are a couple of little cafes and coffee bars at this beach which is convenient if you want a nice iced coffee (frappe), beer, retsina, soft drink, etc and a sandwich or small snack. There is also a kiosk on the sidewalk at the tram station which you can buy drinks and snacks for a bit less than the cafes as well as general beach supplies for surprisingly reasonable prices. If you are in the mood for something more than what the cafe or the kiosk can offer, there is a nice market directly across the beach (Poseidonos Ave) where you can buy practically anything in the way of ready made foods and general fare (I recommend the "Apecto" croissant sandwiches in the cooler section).
The beach is an easy trip from the tourist center of Athens, only 10-15 minutes by express bus (E2 or E22 are the express buses from the Plaka area at Sygrou Street) or you can pick up the tram which begins at Syntagma and will take you 20-25 minutes. Late Spring through mid autumn are high season at any beach in or near Athens, so be prepared for crowds sometime. I have been to this beach dozens of times from June through September and have never ever had a problem finding a decent place to lay out my may and relax. I would however recommend the 5 Euro fee and get a nice lounge chair under one of the huge shade umbrellas if you plan to be visiting for the afternoon. The Greek sun is powerful in the high season and you'll be glad you spent the small fee on the comfort and safety of the umbrella and lounge chair. The water is usually nice and clean, but depending on the chop of the water, you may experience some cloudiness or sometimes some debris. This is the case at any beach near the city and you wont have much luck finding an "Island" type of beach unless you drive another 20-45 minutes south and well outside the city. All in all, the experience is very nice, the locals and tourists alike all seem to get along in perfect harmony and the sheer convenience coupled with the fact you are on a nice beach on the Sarconic gulf in the Mediterranean makes this a "no brainer" when it comes to how to spend a nice, lazy, sunny day.
From journal Athens, Greece: In-Depth