This is post six of sixteen of our summer trip to Greece. Check out our other posts in the series here:
- Greece Lightning: Heading to Greece
- Acropolis for Breakfast: Staying at the Hilton Athens
- Starting at the Top: The Acropolis
- Oompa! Eating Athens
- Taking it Indoors: Athen’s Museums
- Athen’s Other Sites
- Room with a View: Staying in Santorini
- Santorini’s Spectacular Sights: Part 1
- Santorini’s Spectacular Sights: Part 2
- Looking for Santorini’s Best Eats
- It’s All Greek to Me: Heading to Naxos
- There’s a Meat Town in Naxos!
- Shots! Shots! ShotsShotsShots! Heading to Mykonos
- A Delightful Day Trip to Delos
- The Trashy Side of the Greek Islands
- Bling Bling y’all! Upgraded at the Hyatt Regency Montreal
While the Acropolis is arguably Athen’s main draw, there are plenty of other sites to see if you’re a ruins lover, many of which can be accessed for free with your Acropolis ticket.
Ascending up Mt Lycabettus
Rising 200 meters above the rest of the area, Mt. Lycabettus is a great way to get panoramic views of Athens. You can get to the top of the mountain one of two ways – walking, or paying 7 euros to take the funicular up to the top.
Since it was a boiling 88 degrees, Mrs. Selfish and I decided to conserve our energy and take the furnicular.
The furnicular comes roughly every 10 – 15 minutes and features a very cheesy light show. They even light up Greek words on the side of the walls as you go up. It is very Disney-esq.
Once reaching the top there are some pretty great views of the surrounding countryside. There’s also a café if you need refreshments.
The Arch of Hadrian and Temple of Olympian Zeus
Only a 5-minute walk away from the Acropolis Museum, the Arch of Hadrian and Temple of Olympian Zeus are two beautiful ruins that you gain access to with an Acropolis ticket.
The Arch of Hadrian (or Hadrian’s Gate) was thought to have been built for the Roman Emperor Hadrian as early as 132 AD.
The Temple of Olympian Zeus was also completed during Hadrian’s reign, though it was started over 600 years earlier. While only the pillars remain, it is still quite picturesque.
Located just Northeast of the Acropolis, the Agora is a sprawling set of ruins, made up of multiple buildings and dating back to as early as the 7th century BC.
I believe you can get an Acropolis/Agora combo ticket, though we didn’t (or ours had expired), so we ended up buying a separate ticket for 4 euros per person. Not too expensive, and the view of the Acropolis alone was worth the price of admission.
The Agora was destroyed and rebuilt several times, and has seen many additions over the years, like the Temple of Hephaestus, which was added in the 5th century BC.
There are also newer buildings, like the Church of Holy Apostles, built in the 11th century AD.
Lastly, located on the Northwestern side is a small, open-air museum featuring a lot of statue busts.
And with that, we’re out of Athens! Join us tomorrow, when we jump on a ferry and head to the first of three Greek islands, Santorini.