Are you looking for the perfect itinerary for the city of Athens, Greece? Perhaps you only have 48 hours in Athens but you want to make the most of your trip. Well no worries! I myself only spent 48 hours in Athens and was able to see and do a lot of what this ancient Greek city has to offer! Below I have shared my itinerary so you too can spend a perfect 48 hours in Athens, Greece!
Just Pita is right around the corner, serving local beers, such as Mythos, and a variety of traditional Greek meals. Pita’s, Falafels, salads, Souvlaki, Gyros, Moussaka… this restaurant has everything you could possibly want, and it’s budget friendly! Finish off your night with some treats from one of the three nearby bakeries. You can’t miss them when you walk back to the hotel. Their large display windows brightly lit up and filled with delicious Mediterranean goodies – like Baklava and Koulourakia! Head to bed at a decent time to sleep off the jet lag and rest up for tomorrow.
Allow yourself to sleep in for an hour or two, you’ll need your rest for today’s busy itinerary! Leave the hotel and head to the corner coffee shop less than 100 meters away from The Artist Athens. Creme Royale has a variety of specialty coffee’s, pastries, and breakfast sandwiches to jump start your day. After you are fully satisfied, take the five minute walk to Monastiraki Flea Market.
Spend the rest of the morning into the afternoon walking through the cobblestone streets of Monastiraki. You will find it lined with hundreds of local shops and vendors, selling anything from trinkets to handmade house decor. This is the absolute best spot in Athens to pick up some souvenirs for your loved ones back at home! There are also stops along the way that sell snacks and refreshing drinks in case you get hungry or thirsty.
Use the rest of the afternoon to check out the ancient ruins. Make sure you take the time before your trip to read up on the history of the ancient structures. It is important to know why these places exist and it is well worth the read! The Agora of Ancient Athens and it’s museum is right near the flea market. An “agora” was a place Athenians could gather during ancient times to discuss current events. You may purchase a ticket to visit the remains for 30 euros. This will provide you entrance for most of the other ruins in the city, valid for 5 days.
Spend half an hour admiring the Agora and the collection of ancient artifacts located in the museum. Hadrian’s Library, which was the largest library of it’s time, should be your next stop, followed by the Roman Forum of Athens. The last archaeological sites of the day will be the majestic Hadrian’s Arch and the Temple of Olympian Zeus. These two sites, built to celebrate Emperor Hadrian and the Greek god Zeus, are in the Plaka district, a bit further away from Monastiraki. It may be necessary to catch a bus or taxi depending on the time. The temple grounds, like many of the others, do close well before sunset.
If you are not too tired from your long day, you may want to check out the Athens nightlife. Gazi is a neighborhood with a thriving nightlife scene, offering clubs and bars for drinking or dancing. It’s about a twenty minute walk back to the hotel so keep this in mind when planning out your evening. If you’re tired or had a bit too much to drink, it may be best to call a cab.
The ticket you bought yesterday will give you entrance to the hill, which houses one of the most famous architectural feats of the ancient world. Your ticket allows you to see all the monuments along the Panathenaic Way and at the top. Most notable are the Parthenon, the Temple of Athena Nike, the Erectheion, the Theatres of Dionysos and Herodes Atticus. Prepare for a good amount of physical activity. It takes some effort to climb the hill and the steps of the Parthenon. It is well worth it, however, because the monuments and the view from the hill are spectacular. Take your time exploring the sights. When you are finished head back down and go to the Acropolis museum, also included in your ticket to learn some Greek history.
On your walk back to pick up your luggage, stop for a bite to eat. Mnisikleous Road will take you from Acropolis halfway back to the hotel. There are hundreds of restaurants to choose from on this road. You will pass many restaurants with rooftop seating, which are highly recommended for the view alone. No matter what kind of food you may be craving, you will find it here. After a delicious meal, and perhaps some gelato (found everywhere!) retrieve your luggage and head on to your next destination! Looking for a suggestion as to where that should be? Stay tuned for another blog post!