Considered the symbol of Athens and Greece, and indeed of Western civilization, the Acropolis is a rocky mound rising in the heart of modern Athens, crowned by three magnificent temples dating from the 5th century BC. The best known and most distinctive is the Parthenon, originally made up of 58 columns supporting a roof and decorated by ornate pediments and a frieze.
Skirting the foot of the Acropolis and connecting it to the city’s other major ancient attractions — the Ancient Agora , the Roman Forum, Kerameikos, and the Temple of Olympian Zeus — is a 2.5-kilometer walking path known as the Archaeological Promenade.
Home to some of the world’s most important historical sites, along with some 6,000 islands, Greece is known for its natural beauty and fascinating culture. Ancient archaeological sites, cliffs tumbling into sparkling blue water, sand and pebble beaches, and a balmy Mediterranean climate make Greece one of Europe’s prime tourist destinations.
Besides the capital, Athens, top things to see on the mainland include Ancient Delphi and the monasteries of Meteora. But most people come here to catch a ferry to the islands; Santorini, Mykonos, Zakynthos, Corfu, and Crete are the most popular. Plan your trip with our list of the top attractions in Greece.
A symbol of Western Civilization at its most magnificent, Athens’ illustrious history stretches back more than 3,000 years. The city flourished during classical antiquity and was the birthplace of Socrates, Pericles, and Sophocles. More than just a relic of its glorious past, today Athens is a bustling and modern capital city and home to some of the country’s most important tourist attractions.
The Acropolis is one of the world’s most breathtaking ancient ruins, and the city’s exceptional museums display fascinating artifacts uncovered at local sites. Other hidden charms awaiting discovery are the dazzling Byzantine churches found all over the city and the village-like neighborhoods north of the Acropolis.
When you think you’ve run out of things to do in Athens, spend some time getting lost in the Plaka district’s narrow pedestrian streets, lined with quaint bougainvillea-draped houses and inviting restaurant terraces.
A completely different vacation experience from the idyllic Greek islands, Athens can feel hectic and busy during the summer season, but in the spring and fall, you can still enjoy good weather and see far fewer tourists.
Plan your sightseeing with our list of the top tourist attractions in Athens.