The city of Athens is full of tourist attractions. The capital of Greece is known worldwide for the presence of the ancient Acropolis and the most famous Greek temple, the Parthenon, a majestic building built between 440 and 430 BC. The whole area of the acropolis is a complex of buildings without equal in the world in beauty and importance.
Access to the acropolis is made through the ancient Beulè Gate. From here the path leads to the Propylaea, a monumental building that led to the sanctuary. Nearby is the temple of Athena Nike, and then at the top of the hill is the famous Parthenon. The masterpiece construction of Phidias, which is also the largest Doric temple built in Greece. This ancient temple is the most important of Athens’ tourist attractions.
The Parthenon was the place where the treasure was kept and housed a large statue of Athena, whose height, it is said, reached 12 meters. On the part of the acropolis considered more sacred, there is the Erechtheion with the Caryatids, that is, the six female figures supporting the southern portico. In addition to all these monumental sites, the Acropolis museum which collects all the fragments recovered in the area is worth a visit.
THE PLAKA DISTRICT
After visiting the Acropolis it is advisable to take a walk in the neighborhood that surrounds it, the Plaka district. Here there is a well-known and popular market, and in the narrow streets of the neighborhood you can discover characteristic restaurants and artisan shops. Among the archaeological remains in the Plaka area there are the ancient Odeon theater of Herodes Atticus, the Theater of Dionysus, the ancient Agora and the attached Museum.
Culture in Athens has been at home for millennia and even today there are world-famous museums. Like the National Archaeological Museum, which preserves a very rich collection of classical antiquities. This is probably the most complete in the world in relation to ancient Greek art. Dedicated to Greek art from prehistory to the 18th century is another famous museum, the Benaki Museum. While the Byzantine Museum collects an invaluable collection of sculptures, icons and mosaics.
TO SEE IN THE SURROUNDINGS
On the outskirts of Athens there are some interesting destinations to visit. In particular, the Pentesi Monastery, founded in 1578, and the Kaisariani Monastery with frescoes from the 15th century are worth a visit. In the port city of Piraeus, 10 km from the center of Athens, there are the Naval Museum and the Archaeological Museum.
The famous Cape Sounion, where the remains of the Temple of Poseidon dating back to 440 BC are visible on the promontory, is located about 50 km south-east of Athens. In this area are also some famous seaside resorts such as the towns of Lagonissi, Voula and Kalamaki.