After a spontaneous decision I decided to spent a whole day in Athens back in October 2017. What a great opportunity to get some sun, wear my summer-autumn clothes, shop and eat some delicious food.
Athens, one of Europe’s oldest cities has endless choices to offer. However, what do I do in 24 hours, so many choices so little time!
We found a cozy boutique hotel in Aiolou Street (Emporikon Boutique Hotel).
Aiolou Street is a street in downtown Athens and is named after Aeolus, the god of winds in Greek mythology. It is a very popular street for Athenians to hang out. Packed with bars, restaurants and shops this cozy street is going to give you a good idea of how the Greeks socialize.
Our room was spacious, with high ceiling and with a lovely, comfortable, queen size bed.
Highlight of our stay was the view from our 3 windows!
What do I always do in Athens
There are 4 things I always do when I am in Greece:
1. Go out for Coffee with my friends
I started the day with shopping. Prices in Greece are soooo much better compared to Scandinavian shopping prices (even Zara can be up to 25% cheaper here… I know I already got your attention).
All Inditex brands have a store here, ZARA, OYSHO, Stradivarius, Massimo Dutti and Berhska. I also love shopping in greek brands stores such as BSB, TOI & MOI and Attrativo. Greek brands produce high-quality clothes at affordable prices, let along that their clothing lines are suitable for women with curves BINGO!
Except for all the greek clothing brands, Athens has a lot of stores with Spanish and Italian products (clothes, shoes, and bags), so you can find everything you need here. From vintage to high end, I always feel that I am getting more for my money and what a better excuse than this to shop!
The main shopping market street Ermou was 1 min walk from our hotel What I mainly enjoy buying here except for clothes and shoes is makeup and skin care! For skincare, I always go with APIVITA. I love their masks, scrubs and hair products. When it comes down to makeup, there are amazing drugstore brands almost everywhere in Athens. Look for small makeup stores that have ANNIE products and buy lipsticks from 1,5 euro.
Food, food and more food!
After all the shopping we were hungry. We wanted something quick and filling. The sun is still up and there are more things to do than sitting at a restaurant at the moment. If you live in Scandinavia, like I do, you know what it means 23 degrees on October (partyyyy!)
We went to the hotel to leave our shopping bags and on our way there we noticed a traditional Greek souvlaki gyros place just around the corner from our hotel.
“A gyro please, yes with apola*”
*apola: greek expression απ΄όλα, means with all the standard filing included
If you are a beer person try some greek beers! Yes greeks produce some great beers, they just (like most of the products) don’t export them.
I recommend Santorini Crazy Donkey beer that is an IPA or a Volkan, that is a good classic Pilsner.
Of course, our food journey or… belly dance! would not stop here. Everything needs to be balanced in life and after a good lunch I had to have a dessert. Why had to? What do you mean? Of course I had to!
Next to the gyros place there was this dessert place called LUKUMAΔES, making traditional style greek delights called… what else… loukoumades. I just couldn’t resist it… neither should you if you happen to be there…! What type of delights are loukoumades? I will be honest here, google it! I am writing this blog in the middle of the night! Absolutely no point in torturing myself describing deliciousness.
Time to burn some calories (after all the food) and take some more time for me! I walked all the way from Monastiraki, up to Thiseio and straight to Acropolis. I love this route. I love noticing people, buildings, and life. Things haven’t changed that much since I lived in this chaotic but yet beautiful and charming city. I strolled around the paved streets in a search for what is familiar and everything was still there… The sun was shining so bright than even the buildings looked like they enjoyed it.
On my way down, and just before the sunset, I stopped by a traditional coffee place to meet my friends.
“A freddo cappucino please*”
The night is still young.
*cold espresso coffee with milk foam on the top
10 THINGS YOU MUST DO IF IT ‘S YOUR FIRST TIME IN ATHENS
1.Visit Acropolis Museum
2.Take the Teleferik to Lycabettus
3.Walk in the National Garden
4.Walk around Syntagma and visit the Greek Parliament
5.Walk around Plaka, Monastiraki and Thiseio
6.Take the metro to Gazi and grab a drink
7.Enter a bakery order a tiropita or a koulouri
8.Try ice cream with kaimaki flavor and top it with glyko vissino
9.Have a coffee or a cocktail at one of the rooftop bars with Acropolis view
10.Drink a shot of Mastiha at the bar