A Travellerspoint blog

My first day and finding my feet in Athens

After a really good sleep I did what I normally do and wasted the morning waking up slowly. When I was fed and showered I headed out on a beautiful morning to tentatively find my bearings in Athens. I managed to work the ticket machine, even though it was in Greek, at the nearest metro station and took a 10 minute two stop trip to Monasteraki, which is one of the central places in Athens. It is from here that most people begin their climb up the hill to reach the major attractions of the Acropolis and the Parthanon. Today I just wanted to familiarise myself with the area and see what it felt like to just wander around aimlessly. The first thing I noticed was the church of the Pantanassa which is across from the Metro station, and is a lovely bit of 10th century architecture. It is all that is left of a large monastery on the site, and I thought I was good to pop inside and take a few photos. As soon as I got to the door though I had a hand shoved in front of my camera and a little guy yelling NO PHOTOS at me. "No worries mate" was my reply as I backed out of the door before he called the cops with guns. Walking down the so called fleamarket lanes past ancient ruins on one side and a busy main street on the other was a buzz. So many things to see and wonder about. The street could be anywhere in the world, but every so often you would get a reminder that you were walking in the shadows of the capital city of ancient Greece, the cradle of European civilisation, and that's where the main buzz came from. It was the 'I can't believe I am really seeing these things" feeling. It was a hot day and after a couple of hours of wandering around my legs were feeling the strain, so I headed back to my lodgings to have some late lunch and plan what I was going to do in the next couple of days. The first couple of photos show what I consider to be street art I passed on the way to the local metro station. It is lovely compared the massive explosion of just downright ugly graffiti that deface half of the buildings in this and many other European cities I have passed through....

Nice bit of street art just around the corner

Nice bit of street art just around the corner


and next to it is this

and next to it is this


which leads to this

which leads to this


The 10th cent. monastery church in Monasteraki

The 10th cent. monastery church in Monasteraki


A quick photo from the door before I was told NO..

A quick photo from the door before I was told NO..


The Stoa of Attalos, a reconstructed ruin..

The Stoa of Attalos, a reconstructed ruin..


Start of bazaar

Start of bazaar


a hundred or more shops

a hundred or more shops


shop on side street that only sold birds and cages

shop on side street that only sold birds and cages


ruins of Hadrian's library looking up to Acropolis

ruins of Hadrian's library looking up to Acropolis


zoom view of Acropolis from Monasteraki

zoom view of Acropolis from Monasteraki


by the cafe an ancient site being uncovered

by the cafe an ancient site being uncovered


lots of careful digging in the 28 degree sun

lots of careful digging in the 28 degree sun

Posted by astrix7 17:00 Archived in Greece

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