Athens Journals

5 days in Athens with the EU!

An April 2003 trip to Athens by isleroyal

Hotel Cecil Photo, Athens, Greece More Photos
Quote: Touring Athens while the EU is in town can be a bit daunting -- police roadblocks, closed businesses and attractions -- but we did it! Join us for a journey to museums, rooftop relaxation, and shopping in the world famous Plaka and Monastiraki.

Hotel Cecil

Best Of IgoUgo

Hotel | "Cecil Hotel"

Hotel Cecil Photo, Athens, Greece
Quote:
This is a older hotel recently rennovated with hardwood floors, fresh marble bathrooms, and very firm mattresses. The rooms are rather small by U.S. standards, but are more than adequate. We had a "suite", which was basically two connecting rooms with one bathroom. The water pressure here in the shower is amazing! Nothing beats a hot shower after "haggling" with the vendors in the Plaka. You can get a room price that includes breakfast, but in my opinion, it is not worth the 5€. Just pop next door for great coffee and a spinach or ham and cheese pie. The staff are very friendly, helpful, and speak very good English. The location of the Cecil was prime for us, situated between two major metro sto...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 6, 2003

Hotel Cecil
39 ATHINAS
Athens, Greece 10554
GR-302103218005

Byzantino

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant

Byzantino Photo, Athens, Greece
Quote:
Wow! We really liked this place! Most of the restaurants in Athens will approach you to eat with them, saying, "We are the best," etc. . ., and most will give you their card. Take this card! Their "street hustler" is the best in the business and you could spend an hour just watching him work. He is selective on who he approaches. If you are a family or a couple, have your hubby walk a bit behind your group. A single man is rarely approached, same for a woman with children and no man. Sexist maybe, but it works. You can sit and people watch with a reasonably priced bottle of wine or beer for hours during the day. Example: most expensive beer here 2.30€ -- next door, same view, cheapest beer 4.50€!!!! ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 6, 2003

Byzantino
18 Kidathineon Street (Plaka)
Athens, Greece
32 27 368

Benaki Museum

Attraction

Benaki Museum Photo, Athens, Greece
Quote:
We enjoyed the the atmosphere in which everything was showcased. The museum is much larger than it looks. This is a restored 19th-century Athenian town house (mansion), where modern Greece's first king lived while a more spacious royal palace was being built. Don't plan on taking your camera in -- it is safe with the coat-check gal. It is best to buy the book (15 euros) in the gift shop prior to entering, although you will recieve a floor plan, but with children, you will not see everything. This museum houses an amazing collection -- it can be overwhelming, so take it in bites. For the price, if you are into museums, make this a two-day affair. This gift shop is great -- it is actual...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 6, 2003

Benaki Museum
138 Pireos Street
Athens, Greece 106 74
+30 210 367 1000

Plaka

Attraction

Plaka Photo, Athens, Greece
Quote:
The Plaka is the oldest section of Athens and most of the streets have been closed to car traffic (motor bikes are another story -- they go everywhere). This is quite commercialized, but it is still a neighborhood, and one of the nicest in central Athens. This is the bargain hunters paradise. Prepare to bargain with the merchants, if you don't have shame. Not only are there stores of every kind, there are gypsies during the day who sell all kinds of wares -- we bought tablecloths (I wish I had picked up some more). There are mass-production jewelery stores and a few good jewelery stores -- this is where you will find very good 18K gold work. One such store is the Byzantio Jewelry sto...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 6, 2003

Plaka
Central Athens South
Athens, Greece

Brettos

Attraction

Brettos Photo, Athens, Greece
Quote:
I almost hate to call this a bar, it is so much more. Bretto's is the oldest distillery in Athens. The first thing you notice is the wall full of colored bottles that fill the entire back wall floor to ceiling. On another wall are the old barrels full of spirits that are still used. Bretto's has about 10 stools where you can sample his famous ouzo (very smooth) or brandy. If you want a good mild tasting ouzo, try his -- it is not available in any of the liquor or grocery stores. He sells various sized bottles of both his ouzo and his 3, 5 or 7 star, 35-year-old VSOP brandy. The ouzo can be bought in a great aluminum canister that is almost impossible to break, making ir gre...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 7, 2003

Brettos
Kydathineon 41
Athens, Greece

Athens Photo, Athens, Greece
Quote:
Well, it's Easter vacation for us U.S. citizens and our family of four (two adults, two kids -- 12 and 13) went to Greece, a place we have always wanted to go, but could not afford the airfare (we live in Michigan). A wonderful person on another travel board F.T. generously gave out some discount coupons that made this trip affordable. We landed in Athens at 1am pooped out grabed a taxi and headed into Athens. Our driver had never heard of our hotel, but luckily I always have the address written down. We took a lovely hair-raising ride into town, wizzed by some cool looking places, and then whipped into a parking place in front of the Hotel Cecil (see other entry). The drive was appox. 30 minute...Read More