Weekend Breaks to Athens
Planning a short break to Athens? Check out Travel Library's recommended Top 10 Things To Do in Athens. It's a perfect companion for weekend city breaks to Athens. Once you've been you can add your own tips and suggestions to help other visitors.
Top 10 Things in Athens on a Short Break
The monuments and buildings on Acropolis Hill, also called Sacred Rock of Athens, reflect the successive phases of the city's history. The three most important temples erected during the Classical Period (450 to 330 BC) are the Parthenon, dedicated to Athena Pathenos, this is the most recognisable symbol of ancient Greece an is built almost entirely of Pentelic Marble.
The Pathenon has eight columns on either side and seventeen on each of the long sides, inside is the statue of Athena made by Phedias. The second most important building is the Erechtheion dedicated to Athena Polias, and built in 420 BC with the famous porch of the Caryatids on the south side. The main temple has two sections and a relief frieze depicting the birth of Erechtheus.
The Temple of Nike, dedicated to Athena Apteros, Nike is the third important building. It was constructed by Kallikrates in a Amphiprostyle and has relief friezes depicting battle scenes and the conference of Gods.
The Propylaea is the majestic gateway of the Acropolis wich comprises a central building and two lateral wings with wall paintings and decorated ceilings.
this is one of the most important museums in the world and contains onl the stone sculptures from the monuments of the Acropolis. The museum was constructed between 1865 and 1874 and designed by Panage Kalkos.
Some of the major collections in the museum are the Pathenon friezes, Erechtheion frieze, frieze of the Athena Nike Temple, sculptures of the Severe style and the Caryatids. Be sure not to miss seeing the relief of The Mourning Athena, dating to 460 BC, it depects the Goddess with her head slightly bent towards the Stele infront of her. Also see the Kritios Boy statue and section of the Pathenn frieze depicting Poseidon, Apollo, Artemis, Aphrodite and Eros.
construction of the museum started in 1866 and was completed in 1885 and houses collections representing all the cultures of Greece and ancient Greek art. Exhibits include prehistoric items dating back many centutries, sculptures, pottery and minor art by Greek artists, bronzes and beautiful Egyptian art.
The museum also hosts and presents temporary exhibits as well as various lectures on various archaeological topics, educational projects and a shop selling posters, postcards and various memrobilla. Located at Patission 44, St Athens 10682. Open 8am to 8:30pm daily. E mail for futher information firstname.lastname@example.org
named after the community of potters that origionaly settled here, the area is divided into two sections, the inner and outer Kerameikos by the walls of Athens. There are two gates in the wall, the Dipylon and the Sacred Gate built by Themistocles in 478 BC that allowed passage of the sacred way which was the processional way that led to Eleusis Keramiekos.
The site also includes systematic excavations which begun in 1870, the Pompeion, Grave circle and the Hypostyle fountain located on the left hand side of the Dipylon gate entrance and provided a continuous water supply to the city's inhabitants.
the gallery has been in operation since 1976 and is devoted to the subject of the history of Greek and western European art. The gallery now has a specialised library on the history of art and hosts various workshops such as a modern conversation workshop, complete photographic workshop and a carpentry workshop.
The ground floor of the building has a gallery of sculptures dating from the 19th and 20th century and the Greek art on display dates from prehistoric times to present day.
this large theatre like area situated on the hill west of the Acropolis was the place where the assembly of the Athenians held their meetings. The most important monuments on the site include the two large Stoas on the southern side of the terrace to shelter people in bad weather and the cutting for the altar of Zeus Agorais belonging to the period of the Pnyx (330 to 326 BC).
Another important monument is the sanctuary of Zeus Hypsistos which housed the cult statue of Zeus, King of the Gods, and dates back from the Roman period.
this site was inhabited in the prehistoric period by the cult of Zeus. Between about 124 and 132 AD construction started on the magnificent temple of Zeus. The building has two narrow and two long side and is surrounded by 104 Corinthian columns and houses the beautiful statue of Zeus built of gold and ivory.
Olympieion also includes a temple of Apollo Delphinios, Roman baths built in AD 124 to 132, Temple of Cronos and Rhea as well as Hadrians Arch dating from around AD 131 and constructed by the Athenians in honour of their emperors.
origionaly built as a palace of Otho, the first King of Greece after Turkish occupation, between 1836 and 1840. Built in a early Greek Neo Classical style, the building has strict geometrical lines with two courtyards and Doric style columns in the back and front of the facade.
After huge fire damage in 1909, the royal family abandoned the building the following year and in 930 the palace was remodled to house the Hellenic Parliament and five years later the National Assembly moved in.
one of the most important sanctuaries in Attica, Sounion is first mentioned in the Odyssey and legend has it that this is the place where Menelaos buried his helmsman on his return from Troy.
The Sanctuary of Poseidon is on the southern most side on the highest point. The Sanctuary of Athena, 500 meters north east of The Sanctuary of Poseidon, has inside it the beautiful Temple of Athena whose altar is oddly situated in the south of the temple.
situated at 27 Makrigiani Street at the Acropolis. The atmosphere inside this famous restaurant is friendly and cozy and the service is excellent.
The cuisine is traditional Greek as well as some fusion dishes that will have your mouth watering. Choose from delicious fresh fish, a variety of spaghetti dishes and Vitro's specialities of lamb and stuffed eggplants.
This is also the perfect place to listen to Greek and foreign piano and guitar music while reflecting on the ancient sites of the Acropolis.
For info go to www.greektaverna.gr/
Delfino Restaurant - Restaurant or Cafe
Excellent seafood restaurant. www.delfino.gr
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