Athens Journals

Acropolis Now: Athens

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A September 2005 trip to Athens by jenandfrank

Hotel Grande Bretagne, Athens  Photo, Athens, Greece More Photos
Quote: Visit this ancient city and become entranced with the incredible structures that surround you.

Hotel Grande Bretagne, Athens

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Hotel Grande Bretagne, Athens  Photo, Athens, Greece
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Hotel Grande Bretagne - Constitution Square, Athens. 011-30-21-03330000 or http://www.grandebretagne.gr/ Located on the "most prestigious block" in Athens, this hotel is almost 130 years old. Boasting views of Constitution Square, the House of Parliament, the National Gardens, and even the Acropolis (in the distance), the Bretagne has a perfect location for tourists and business travelers alike. The lobby is a very large and open space filled with antiques (including silk ottomans), fresh flowers, gold trimming, and high ceilings. To the left of the front entrance is the front desk, concierge, and bell hop, all of which we were well staffed during our stay. Directly ahead i...Read More

Athens Dining

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Athens Dining  Photo, Athens, Greece
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La Tayta - Adrianou Rd., 321-2347 Located outside of Ancient Agora, along a street packed with indoor-outdoor restaurants. A 1.50 Euro per person cover gets you a table and some seeded bread with olive paste. We were initially attracted to this restaurant because it was packed with locals who seemed to be having a great time. Try and grab an outside table, relax, and enjoy the show; this is a great place to people-watch. The crowd was mostly Europeans (no tourists) between the ages of 25 and 35, and it seemed to be a local hangout scene. We were there on a Sunday afternoon (around 1:30pm) and had to wait a few minutes for a table. The outdoor seating is completely covered with green umb...Read More

Acropolis

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Acropolis Photo, Athens, Greece
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Acropolis: Also referred to as the "Sacred Rock," it is considered the most important monument in Europe and is said to be the most photographed thing in the world. At the very least it is breathtaking and surreal. Standing virtually over the entire city, it is everything you'd expect it to be. The Acropolis was built 2,500 years ago and has had to endure earthquakes, wars, pollution, and every other calamity that you can think of. Consequently, the Acropolis is under constant renovation. Although many parts of it were under construction while we were there, we still had great views. I think the construction was very well planned in the sense that each site had a section under construction. ...Read More

Athens Attractions

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Athens Attractions Photo, Athens, Greece
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We visited Athens on a Sunday, so all admissions were free, with the exception of Mount Lykkavittos Hill & Funicular. To keep within word count restrictions, I have separated some of the spots we managed to squeeze into one day, but for other attractions and some of my notes, please see “Athens Attractions Part 2 & Notes & Thoughts”:Synatagma Square (Constitution Square):This is the center of modern Athens. Known to have "hosted" every major event in Greece, be it good or bad, the square is surrounded by the Hotel Grande Bretagne, the Athens Plaza Hotel, the King George Hotel, and the Parliament Building. We were told that the square is the scene for mass demonstrations: ...Read More
Athens Attractions  Photo, Athens, Greece
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While planning our trip to Greece, we were talking to friends and mentioned our intentions to go to Athens. Every single person said not to waste our time. "It's a city and it's ugly--there is nothing to see other than the Acropolis." I could not disagree more. Yes, it is true: the overall architecture is undistinguished, there is only one park that is worthwhile, and there are few, if any, beautiful tree-lined avenues. Nevertheless, we found Athens to be filled with history and warm and inviting people. Overall, it is an interesting city that should not be missed. Athens is a massive urban sprawl. There is a population of over 4 million, 95% of which are Greek Orthodox. However, the city ce...Read More