Athens Greece in Sept

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WhiteMaxima
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Athens Greece in Sept

Post by WhiteMaxima » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:11 pm

Any recommend? Last time there was 1999-2000 New Years day. 18 years, a lot might have been changed.

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neurosphere
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by neurosphere » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:28 pm

WhiteMaxima wrote:
Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:11 pm
Any recommend? Last time there was 1999-2000 New Years day. 18 years, a lot might have been changed.
I will also be in Greece in Sept!

Acropolis museum is a must see, it's a gem. Personally I don't care for the city of Athens and only spend a day or two when I'm there (I'm biased, have been 20+ times :D ). A day trip from Athens to the ruins of Delphi was one of my most enjoyable experiences as a "tourist" near Athens.

There are great views from this hill https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Lycabettus. There is a café and restaurant at the top (pricey, I have memories of a $5 coffee and $6 coke) but plenty to see and places to sit that do not require any purchasing. One can walk to the top or take the funicular: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lycabettus_Funicular

That's all the Athens advice I have, because when I'm there I don't "do much" as I'm "stuck" seeing a ton of extended family. :D
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Conch55
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by Conch55 » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:31 pm

Maybe take the subway to Piraeus and catch a ferry to one of the islands close to Athens. Aegina is one suggestion.

kmox
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by kmox » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:44 pm

As others have mentioned, don't spend too much time in Athens. The Acropolis Museum is a definite, though. After that, catch a train to Thessaloniki (Salonica) and spend a few days there. Rent a car and drive back south. This way you can go visit a lot of good stuff up north (like the archaeological sites around Veria) or head east and visit Athos. Head south from Salonica and go hike up Mt. Olympus. Farther south and visit the monasteries at Meteora. There's also a lot of good stuff to see west of Athens around Parnassus and Delphi.

Enjoy your trip, it is a good time of year to visit.

angi10
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by angi10 » Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:49 pm

I was there last Christmas..and I enjoyed hiking to Acropolis from the Agora -the long path(2km) facing the downtown versus the main entrance on the side of the Acropolis museum.We also tried to find a path from Plaka part on the hill although very authentic neighborhood on the east part of the hill..there was no entrance to Acropoli though worth the walk.We enjoyed the pedestrian area that starts at Adriano next to the Acropolis museum
(worth visiting to see the precious exhibits that are not on the hill) and becomes Aiolou and totals something like 3 miles of all kinds of shops from super touristics to second market cloths.At the end, close to Omonia the less touristic part, there is an adjacent food authentic market that is an experience by itself.The night life was mainly in Monastiraki but maybe because was winter.

dbr
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by dbr » Fri Mar 02, 2018 3:24 pm

While there are several worthwhile sights in Athens, which are probably already familiar to you, Athens is one of the few (actually the only) city in the world I would probably choose to never visit again. (Disclaimer: I have not been to some of the really unfortunate parts of the world, to be fair.) All the rest of Greece and Crete is fabulous as far as I am concerned.

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neurosphere
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by neurosphere » Fri Mar 02, 2018 3:37 pm

I do enjoy walking through this market when I'm in Athens. Don't go if you don't like seeing hanging meat and butchering.

https://www.athensguide.com/agora.html

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arcticpineapplecorp.
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by arcticpineapplecorp. » Fri Mar 02, 2018 5:46 pm

Conch55 wrote:
Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:31 pm
Maybe take the subway to Piraeus and catch a ferry to one of the islands close to Athens. Aegina is one suggestion.
Went back in 2016. We were planning on using the subway to get everywhere, but were strongly advised (warned) by basically all the locals not to take the subway because of youths harrassing/stealing, tourists (and locals) at that time. Don't know if it's still that way. So we took buses and cabs and walked all over. A cab to piraeus was not expensive for a 20 minute ride from central athens. Bus would have been cheap as well (we looked at that option too but with luggage, felt the cab was easier). We arranged beforehand and the price was set so we were not taken advantage of pricewise, which can happen. If you use cabs and don't prearrange make sure you know how much it should cost (ask your hotel) and get an agreement on the price before you get in the cab.

Most stay in Athens for a couple of days to see the sights and then ferry to the islands where they spend most of their time. Santorini (one of the islands) is a must.
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AntsOnTheMarch
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by AntsOnTheMarch » Fri Mar 02, 2018 6:36 pm

My wife and I were there in 2004. I don’t know how things may have changed since due to the financial crisis/austerity but yes to everything acropolis, agora, and the surrounding areas. At that time, the metro was brand new after the Olympics. The locals all avoided it but we took it everywhere and it was clean and efficient. The Flea Market at Monastiraki was an excellent way to spend some time.

We like cities so we enjoyed walking around in different neighborhoods. We were there for 2 weeks and also went to Delphi, visited some villages about 100 kilometers outside Athens, and flew to Crete. September and October are probably the best months for weather in Greece so you’re going at a good time. Not sure I’d recommend driving there—especially in Athens. It’s very intense.

It’s a beautiful and interesting country steeped in history and the people are very interesting and usually friendly. The servers at restaurants sometimes have an attitude but total strangers on the street treat you like long lost friends. Go figure. Also, if you can speak a world of Greek, people go nuts—like you should get a Nobel prize. Everyone in Athens spoke English. Maybe my information is dated. Not sure. I’d love to go back and find out for myself.

Mickey7
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by Mickey7 » Fri Mar 02, 2018 11:11 pm

Opa!

Being a fan of Rick Steves I kind of did my 4 days in Athens by following some of his ideas. Rather than staying in an "American" style hotel, I opted for a nice local hotel near Syntamagma and the beginning of the Plaka. The Plaka has some really nice restaurants to hang around at night. The Acropolis Museum, the Acroplois itself and the Agora were within walking distance. Do see if you can time it so that there will be a performance at the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, but don't pay for it! Instead be up on the Acropolis overlooking it. The sound rises up and you can look over the Odeon and out to the sea. As the evening progresses the guards will ask you to move along, but they will normally stay up there with you for awhile before telling you to leave. Really cool!
At the Museum grab a lunch and eat there. Two birds with one stone. For my day trip I caught a hydrofoil for a trip over to Poros and rented a bike to go to a local beach.
When you go to the Agora, try the Philopappos. This is a hill where you can see the Parthenon and you can take a good photo of it. Take water with you!
Also try to use a little Greek. It really helps and besides, for myself at least, it was bad enough that most Greeks would then speak English!

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Watty
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by Watty » Fri Mar 02, 2018 11:33 pm

I don't know what types of thing you are interested in but the hotel prices on the less popular Greek Islands drop like a rock in the middle of September and you can get very acceptable hotels near a beach for maybe $50 a night(or less) on islands like Naxos. We were there in late September and the weather was still fantastic for going to the beach. You can just take the ferries to several islands.

One important tip though, if you go to the Greek Islands then plan your time in Athens when you return from the islands. Occasionally there will be a strike or a ferry might be canceled because of mechanical problems or weather and if you have to spend an extra day on a Greek Island(oh the tragedy!) then you will not need to worry about about missing your flight.

When we went to the Greek Islands we did make sure that we had travel insurance that includes medical evacuation in case we were injured and needed to be flow back to Athens. On some of the islands you are a long way from more than basic emergency care.

I agree that unless there is something specific that you want to see in Athens that two days in Athens would be plenty to see the highlights. One full day in Athens could also be enough if you wanted to hurry.

criticalmass
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by criticalmass » Sat Mar 03, 2018 9:06 am

Athens is an amazing city with a lot to see and eat. September is a perfect time to busy because the weather will be good, the crowds will be greatly reduced, and high season prices are over. If you aren't comfortable exploring cities, you will miss a ton of interesting places. If you have 2-3 days or more, get the pass that includes admission to the 5 or so major historical sites (NOT the "City Pass" which are usually rip-offs). I highly recommend the Lonely Planet book which provides a ton of context for what you see and recommendations from locals. Be prepared to do a lot of walking to see the major and interesting sites like The Acropolis, Theatre of Herodes Atticus, Ancient Cemetery of Kerameikos, Filopappos Hill, Ancient Agora, Temple of Olympian Zeus, Panathenaic Stadum. You'll have plenty of time along the way to stop in cafés, eat amazing food, or people watch. Don't miss the Acropolis museum, as others have suggested, and its cafe is a great spot at night. (reservations recommended). Many of the friezes from the Acropolis are now in this incredible museum for protection (the rest are stolen and remain in the British Museum). The museum display is oriented with, and directly across the street from the Acropolis outside the window. Take the time to see Acropolis at sunset, and wander around at night too to see many sites lit with great lighting.

Athens can be a bit grimy in places, but certainly no worse than Philadelphia, San Francisco, etc. The metro is super modern and very clean (at least lines 2,3) as it was built in time for the 2004 olympics there. Don't be afraid of the Metro at all, it is a gem and super clean, but of course be street smart, just as you would be on the DC Metro. You can buy a daily pass for a few euro that covers everything but the airport. (The metro is a great way to get into the city from the airport, although there are express buses too.) The Metro stations are museums in their own right, as you can look through glass at historical artifacts and city infrastructure from 2000+ years ago found during its construction. Athens is generally very safe, at least in the areas that you would frequent. The Athens crime rate is far far lower than Washington DC. Again, know where you are going. Boston is fairly safe too, but I would never recommend that a tourist there start wandering around much of Dorchester at night.

In advance, take a little time to study the Greek alphabet. You will be amazed at how many signs you can read with a little knowledge of Greek. (Having background with math, Cyrillic languages, etc. is a great start). Take a few minutes to learn to say please and thank you in Greek. You can fall back to English, but knowing a few basics of the local language goes a LONG way in any culture, even here in USA.

Take some time to do some research. Restaurants are ecstatic for your business and you should be able to find great deals on hotels too. I stayed at a family owned hotel at the ΣΤ ΜΕΤΑΞΟΥΡΓΕΙΟΥ metro station, which was lovely. The metro saved time to go a few blocks downtown, but sometimes I walked too.

TravelforFun
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by TravelforFun » Sat Mar 03, 2018 5:31 pm

Not much has changed. The Acropolis is still there and it's still crowded. I'm going back to Athens and Santorini for the third time in September as well.

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WhiteMaxima
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by WhiteMaxima » Fri May 11, 2018 12:36 pm

I will be there this Sept. Last time was Y2K New Year's eve. Lighting and fireworks over the Acapolis was truly amazing. The cradle of western civilization. US federal reservation, White house, and Lincoln mermorial are all copies of this 3000 year old ancient Greek temple. Very interesting to see so many cats around acaplios area.

likegarden
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by likegarden » Fri May 11, 2018 2:11 pm

I had a 3 week vacation in Loutraki in 1966, but historical places do not change or only get better to view. I enjoyed the bus trip to Delphi and the bus trip to Corinth, Mycenae and Epidaurus, (and had several day trips to Athens then). You can reach these places via bus tours from Athens. Friends of mine liked their weeks of stay in Santorini and Crete.

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Pajamas
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by Pajamas » Fri May 11, 2018 2:22 pm

WhiteMaxima wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 12:36 pm
Very interesting to see so many cats around acaplios area.
Friends were in Greece earlier this year and more than half of their photos included cats, sometimes on purpose and sometimes by accident. Apparently many of the cats are sort of communal or neighborhood pets that are fed by many people. They were present at all of the outdoor tourist sights, restaurants, etc.

There were also a good number of dogs which were apparently not owned by any one person but also were not obviously feral, neglected, or in poor health as they so often are in other countries.

aristotelian
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by aristotelian » Fri May 11, 2018 2:26 pm

My favorite sight on our Greece trip was the Oracle at Delphi. Mycennae was also cool. Athens didn't do too much for me. Agree that bulk of time is best spent on an island.

camden
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Re: Athens Greece in Sept

Post by camden » Fri May 11, 2018 4:19 pm

If you are up for a some exercise, take an early morning climb up Mount Lykavittos to the 19th century St. George chapel at the top. You will be alone (ahead of the tourists who ride the funicular up), and can get a great view of the entire city in peaceful quiet. Nice break from the crowds around the Acropolis.

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