As many of you know, I decided to take a crazy trip after my already crazy month-long adventure to Uganda. My first stop was Athens, because, well, I was already on that side of the Atlantic. 😉
My final destination was actually Crete, a Grecian island about an hour’s flight from Athens. But when I realized that flights depart about once an hour (meaning I would have some flexibility with my layover), I decided to spend the day in Athens. And lucky me, my boyfriend flew in from NYC to meet me.
I’ve heard mixed reviews on Athens, but let me clear that one up for you: It’s absolutely wonderful. I was pleasantly surprised by everything around me, from the historic layout of the city to the friendly nature of the people I met. And I’m totally in love with the street art; it’s so unique to the area and creates such an interesting composition between the old buildings and new art.
Here’s my tips for how to spend a day in Athens:
We left our luggage at the airport (they a super easy/inexpensive storage system there) and took the subway to the main part of the city. I did a lot of research pre-Athens when I was deciding the best way to get around… A lot of forums advise you to take a cab because it’s easy, but this city girl opted for public transport at a fraction of the cost. Anyone who can handle the NYC subway won’t have a problem.
We had about six hours in the city and spent the majority of the time visiting the Acropolis. Admission is about 12 euros if I remember correctly, and definitely worth it. You climb up a path that winds around the mountain and you’re led to some of the most breathtaking city views.
Afterward, we went to lunch for my first real Western meal in over a month and oh my goodness, let me tell you about Greek food. I just about died. I love Uganda, and I had an amazing cook while I was there, but after a month of different variations on beans, rice and potatoes… The. Greek. Food.
Here’s my first meal, an authentic Greek salad. We wandered into a little restaurant a few blocks from the Acropolis to try to find something less touristy and our little sidewalk table was just oh-so-perfect.
After a 40-minute scenic subway ride, we were back at the airport (the first of very, very many over the next few weeks) and the next chapter of our adventure began. Until next time, Athens.