From the first moment I arrived in Athens, I was in love. It’s one of those cities that simply has everything: from ancient temples to modern rooftop bars and the most stunning beaches- not even to mention the amazing Greek food. Athens is the first stop of my one-month Famous Hostels Eurotrip!
The endless summer days, beach parties and easy connection to the most beautiful islands makes Athens the perfect place to be around.
I actually already arrived in Athens a couple of months before my trip would start. In early February, when Athens was the only place in Europe where the sun was shining, I walked around the city and decided to stay. I moved to Glyfada, a beach town next to the Greek capital and loved it there.
The start of this trip, however, is also the moment I will leave Athens. I will move to Barcelona at the end of my Eurotip and therefore packed my whole life into a backpack again and jumped into the tram to the capital city. The first stop of my Eurotrip was AthenStyle hostel, located in the heart of the old city center. Staying there was perfect to end my time in Greece, as I actually never spent a night in the city center before.
The hostel was amazing, you could literally walk to all the sites in the city and there’s even a rooftop bar from where you have an incredible 360 degrees view over Athens (I love rooftop bars).
At the rooftop I met Sofia, one of the owners. She’s a young Greek/half Italian lady and such an inspiration. After travelling all around the word she decided to quit her job as a lawyer and transform an old building into a hostel. When someone like her opens a hostel you can be sure it’s an excellent one with all the facilities you could ask for. Hence, there are plenty of lockers for your luggage if you decide to head to the islands, there’s laundry service, WiFi, computers and even a cinema. There are couches you can chill on and some rooms even have their own kitchenette and terrace. I stayed at the female dorm but also had a sneaky look into the private rooms. They looked better than most hotel rooms and some even have a view over the Acropolis. I couldn’t believe how cool hostels actually can be and wonder why I sometimes still stay in hotels when this is so much more fun.
Even though the hostel made it appealing to just stay and hang around there, Athens has a lot of other things to offer. On my last day there I went to my favourite spots, starting with the change of the guards at Syntagma square. Every Sunday at 11AM there is a big ceremony and it’s a must see if you’re around. If you’re not there on a Sunday, don’t worry, the guards change their position after standing perfectly still every hour which is really cool to watch too. There is no fixed time for that so just walk to the square to see if anything is going on.
After attending the ceremony I went to A for Athens. This is a rooftop bar with view over Monastiraki Square and the Acropolis. I love to go there before exploring the city so I have an idea where to go and where everything is. You can see a lot of the sites from there and make a plan where to go next.
It’s twenty euros to get in but free for EU students (bring your student pass!). For 30 euros you can also get 5-day pass to visit both the Acropolis and other sites in the city.
When you’re in Athens actually all you want to do is visit the Acropolis. If you’re on a rooftop or just wandering around the city, your attention is drawn to the hill with 21 archaeological remains. From most places you can see the Parthenon, which is the most famous Greek temple. I’ve visited this place so many times!
From the Acropolis you can walk into Plaka, which is Athens’ oldest neighbourhood. It’s one of these areas with lots of little streets, shops and nice restaurants. I went to the Stairs of Plaka, which is my favourite street. You can get Greek food and drinks there for a normal price and there’s always a great atmosphere.
If you want to try something very Greek make sure to go to the local distillery, Brettos.
There you can try Ouzo, a Greek liquor with 37,5 to 44 percent alcohol. The Greeks drink it everywhere and it’s something you must try when you’re in the country. Also, the bar just looks amazing so whether you want to get Ouzo or not definitely go for a drink there!
After visiting these places I went to Monastiraki flea market, which is right next to the hostel. Even though the name says it’s a flea market, it’s actually a normal street with a lot of souvenir shops. I bought some really cool souvenirs for my friends and family (sometimes I can be such a tourist) and said goodbye to my favourite city!
The next day I took the ferry to Italy to visit Rome with my インターレール Global Pass– where I am now! I will write more about my time here soon. In the mean time make sure to follow my journey on Famous Hostels Instagram as well!
Visit Daisy’s Blog My Travel Tricks for more info.