My Greek getaway: Athens

As you will know from my previous post about my dream dress, I am currently sunning myself up (burning) in Greece for my family summer holiday. What began as a trip to Athens for a family friend’s wedding, blossomed into a three-week long tour of three gorgeous destinations. ‘When in Greece’ right? As our debut family holiday outside of France, it was a case of go hard or (quite literally) go home, so we thought we would make a real occasion of it, and it’s certainly been a memorable experience so far! If you follow me on my Instagram then you will have seen my endless stories (not sorry) of the blue Grecian skies, historic buildings and sandy beaches, but over time it has probably all blended into one long, indistinct holiday montage…or you’ve simply got so sick of seeing it that you’ve stopped watching altogether (still not sorry).

So I thought I’d make a three-part series about my Greek getaway to show you all the best parts of each destination I have visited should you ever find yourself holidaying here and you need a handy little guide. Don’t say I never treat you to anything. Let’s begin this neat little series with the awesome capital of Athens…

Arrival

A 3am start, taxi ride to London, two delayed flights and a stopover in Amsterdam later, we arrived at our apartment in Athens four hours later than planned, so decided to go straight to bed. Sorry did I say bed? I meant to the bar.

Some of the families were having a pre-wedding meet up at the 360 degree bar on the centre of Athens, a fancy cocktail bar and restaurant with, you guessed it, 360 degree views of the city. We spent the evening drinking and chatting against the pretty backdrop of the acropolis and the city lights.

I would definitely recommend this bar if you’re in Athens. It’s slightly pricier for drinks as all rooftop bars are, but this is to be expected and it’s so worth it for the amazing views and the lively atmosphere that you get there! This was the perfect place to spend our first night here.

The Acropolis

The next day, in what was perhaps a case of bad judgement following our night at the bar, we had an early start to go for a morning tour of the Acropolis. Probably one of the most famous attractions in Athens, the citadel has an array of ancient buildings including the Parthenon and the amphitheatre.

One of the best things about the acropolis was how high up it was situated, giving you panoramic views of the city below!

This place is a great attraction to visit but be prepared for big crowds. We went early in the morning to try and avoid this but there were still a lot of people there, so sometimes it felt like being in a herd of sheep, but this sort of thing is somewhat unavoidable when it comes to tourist attractions. Without a doubt it’s still worth a visit!

Shopping

I must admit it took us a while to actually find the prettier streets of Athens that you expect to see when on holiday, but when we did it was really nice to just walk around and take it all in. These streets were pretty much everything you would imagine them to be, with little souvenir shops, cafés and market stalls. You don’t need that long to explore this part, but it’s good for when you have some spare time.

The Bridal Party

Now came the exciting part, as the wedding celebrations began! The evening before the big day, all the women and all the men had stag and hen celebrations and I just wanted to share a bit of it with you because it was such a great night!

The bride and family were staying in a luxury villa so they hosted the hen do there, and it was absolutely gorgeous!

We enjoyed delicious food and drinks all night overlooking the sunset views of Athens, what more could you ask for? This left us feeling even more excited for the wedding!

Dress: Topshop

The Wedding

And so the big day finally arrived and it was every bit as wonderful as we had anticipated…

I don’t have much to say about this night other than that we spent it drinking, dancing, eating, and laughing. It was everything you expect from a wedding and more, and it was great to see the influence of the Greek culture on the ceremony as that was something I had never experienced before! Overall I was so happy to have been invited to such a beautiful event.

The National Garden & Olympic Stadium

On our final day in Athens it’s safe to say we were feeling slightly worse for wear, so we took a somewhat lazy approach to the day. Heading back into the centre, we first took a stroll around the national park. What appeared to be a normal park at first ended up being much bigger than expected, and even had a mini zoo within it! With pretty little archways, palm trees and winding paths, this is a great place if you’re looking for somewhere pretty to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.

After this we headed over to the Olympic stadium for one last tourist attraction. This is another really good place to check out if you’re in Athens and if you walk up to the top you have a wonderful of the city again.

Within the stadium there was also a little museum dedicated to the Olympics which showed lots of memorabilia such as the different Olympic torches that have been used over the years. This was a nice little extra to the attraction and if nothing else, provided some much needed air con during the visit…

And so our time in Athens came to an end, and it was off to the next destination of our trip. A short but sweet voyage, I had such a good time with all the wedding celebrations, and it was a great start to the holiday! I must admit that despite all of its tourist attractions, I did find Athens itself to be somewhat rundown as a city, and certainly not always the most attractive of places. Personally, I thought a few days there was enough to see what I wanted to see, and I was ready to move on to the next place.

I had a wonderful time here, but if you’re coming to Greece, I would recommend spending just a few days in Athens and then moving on to one of the other islands if you can, in order to see some of the prettier places Greece has to offer!

I hope my little lowdown of what Athens has to offer was helpful for anyone who’s planning to visit the Greek capital themselves! Have you ever been before? What did you think of the city? If not then I’d love to know about your favourite holiday destination. Let me know in the comments below!

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