4 Days in Athens – What to see and do.
What are the absolute must sees and do’s during an city trip of 4 days Athens? The Acropolis is perhaps the first thing you think about when you hear Athens. Athens is a beautiful city where you easily can spent a few days. Athens is the capital of Greece and with a few hours of flying I’m there. The weather in Athens is great, there is so much to see and do and the food is delicious. I stayed 5 nights in Athens and I saw a lot of the city at a wonderfully relaxed pace. Athens has a good metro network and all sights are easy to reach. Tip: buy a ticket for the metro for 5 days. It’s cheaper than single day tickets.
Day 1: Parliament, National Park and the old Olympic stadium
After breakfast at the hotel you go out to the city. Take the metro to Syntagma and get off in front of the parliament building. The building that used to be the Royal Palace is now the home base for the parliament. Pay particular attention to the guards in traditional costume. From the parliament you can walk to the only National Park of Athens. You might expect a mega-sized park because it’s so called National Park, but it’s not. The park is certainly big for a city like Athens and it is nice to walk through. The park is nice and quiet and you really escape from the hustle of the city. When you walk all the way through the park you will leave the park close to the old Olympic stadium. Buying a ticket to go inside is definitely worth it. A great spot to take lunch is the Aeglie Café. A nice café near the old Olympic stadium.
Day 2: Acropolis, Acropolis museum and the Temple of Olympian Zeus
Are you going to the Acropolis? Then go early before it’s to busy. I was there exactly at the time the Acropolis opened and there weren’t any crowds. On the Acropolis hill there are many relics from the ancient Greek period. The Parthenon is the largest remaining building. During my visit they were busy with the restoration of this impressive building. Take the time to read all information boards. It definitely gives you a better idea of what all buildings have served for.
After you’ve seen everything, walk down to the city street from the backside of the Acropolis. On the way down you get a bit of an idea of how local people live. Back down you can also visit the Acropolis Museum. I did but didn’t really think it was worth it. Anyway, I’m not a real museum person either.
In the vicinity of the Acropolis there are plenty of restaurants where you can have a good lunch. Enjoy the beautiful weather and taste the atmosphere of the city. After lunch you can walk to the temple of the Olympic Zeus. Through a small park you walk along the Hadrianus arch to the complex. I found the temple of the Olympian Zeus very beautiful to see. The old columns are so immensely big. It’s very impressive when you wonder how these buildings have been built in the old days.
After a full day of strolling through the city, the restaurant Ciccus near Syntagma square is recommended for dinner.
Day 3: Lykavittos Hill and the War Museum
You can go to the top of the Lykavittos hill by taking a cable car. But to get to the cable car, it’s already quite a climb. A steep slope brings you to the entrance of the cable car. The entrance is rather small and not easy to find. Buy your ticket and get on the cable car to be brought upstairs. On top of the hill is a small white church. Very cozy and fun to look inside. Better is the view that you’ll have over the city. Enjoy a cold drink, just plop down on a bench and enjoy! You can go down with the cable car. I chose to go back by foot. A nice walk and on the way down you come across an old arena.
In the afternoon I visited the war museum. The museum has an extensive collection. Be sure to walk outside to the patio to admire the old fighter planes.
Opposite to the museum is a small park. You can relax here for the rest of the afternoon.
Day 4: Olympic stadium, Piraeus and Plaka
Today take the metro to the Olympic stadium. The Olympic stadium can be called a small village and of course much more modern than you have seen earlier these days. The Olympic village consists of various stadiums, a swimming pool and apartments. What’s unfortunate is that everything is completely deserted and it seems that the complex is hardly used anymore. A sin for all the nice facilities.
After the visit to the Olympic stadium you can take the metro to Pireaus. Stroll along the harbor and enjoy a drink on one of the terraces.
In the afternoon, definitely go to the district of Plaka. It’s a super cozy neighborhood. There’re many shops, restaurants, terraces and you can find your souvenirs you want to purchase before you go home.