Our travels in Athens, Greece

March 8, 2022

“Tourists don’t know where they’ve been, travelers don’t know where they’re going.”
– Paul Theroux

We arrived in Athens, Greece on May, 7th and when we arrived at our hotel we were amazed. After spending over a week in our hotel in Beirut full of plugged toilets, plumbing problems and pubic hair, we were surprised at the exceptionally clean room in Athens. I guess this is Europe and the room cost us $50 but it could’ve been worth thousands of dollars compared to hotel Valery in Beirut.

The owner seemed confused when we asked to see the room before staying the night. He looked at us with a dumbfounded expression and I was tempted to describe to him that our last room was a blanket covered, stench box with a toilet hole under the bed, so a close inspection of this room was not an insult, just a new force of habit. The room, of course, met our standards and was far a lot more than we expected, so we took it and headed out on the town.

Flying into Greece from Lebanon
Our first day we took a walk down to Monistraki Square which is a really funky, cobble stone, hangout spot for both locals and tourists. On the way we stopped in a really lively outdoor market with fish hawkers yelling out their products in Greek and butcher shops using complimentary samples of sausage.

We need to be back in the first world, some things here are actually FREE! We were still pretty worn out from our early morning flight and travel day so we headed home just as the sun was setting. This is when we first realized that we were staying in the east Hastings of Athens. Prostitutes swarmed around every corner calling out to any passing male with loud kissing sounds. We enjoyed plenty get picked up and even a lot more get turned down.

See Also: Our massive guide To travelling in Greece

There were drunks and junkies everywhere. Dariece was a little concerned but I thought it was some of the best people enjoying of my life. That night we slept like babies, it could have been because the bed sheets were clean, it may have been that the mattress was a lot more than an inch thick, or that there was no mosque blaring prayers at dawn through distorted loud speakers, or that there was no drainage pipe under our bed, whatever the case I don’t think we’ve slept so well this entire trip.

vibrant fruit available at the market in Athens, Greece
Funky Monistraki Square, Athens, Greece
The next day we got up early (around 9:30) and went downstairs to take pleasure in the complimentary breakfast that our hotel offered. It comprised of hard boiled eggs, bread, cheese, Greek yogurt, OJ, fruit, ham and coffee. Es hat sehr gut geschmeckt. After breakfast we headed out on a walking excursion of Athens, loosely following the suggested sights in our guide book.

Because it was Sunday there was a special, changing of the guards ceremony at the parliament buildings. We missed the changing of the guards in England so it was really cool to enjoy this one. They were dressed to the nines and a whole marching band blocked of the street for about 10 minutes while groups of generally clad soldiers stomped in rows diligently showcasing their extraordinary balance.

Well their balance was extraordinary until one of the soldiers slipped on the marble ground and slammed hard on his ass. He may have seriously injured his tailbone to a chorus of gasps from the thousand or so tourists who were watching. The severity of the fall may have been why a silence befell the crowd, but that silence was swiftly broken by Dariece and I laughing. We were the only ones to find the situation humorous and as the soldier slowly made it back to his feet we gained our composure and continued filming the fantastic spectacle.

Changing Of The Guards Ceremony, Athens, Greece
Changing Of The Guards ceremony in Athens, Greece
Mid-way through the show the crowd of a thousand or so tourists were ambushed by school children. Their teachers prodding and pushing there way through the mob of tourists trying to get the kids a front row seat. A couple of other tourists yelled at them saying that they must have come earlier. Dariece and I just laughed as the drama unfolded, although I may have thrown an elbow or two for good measure. After we had seen enough of the guards we hastily left the agitated mob, giving up our much wanted front row seats to a group of aggressive tourists.

After the show we continued on our walking excursion which took us by some excellent roman ruins in downtown Athens and finally led us up to the top of The  Acropolis to its crown, and the most popular and crucial ancient site in Europe, The Parthenon. The Acropolis was beautiful and its Pentelic marble columnS Positiv leuchten in der Nachmittagssonne, jedoch nach Standorten in Ägypten und dem Nahen Osten war der Parthenon selbst etwas unterwünscht.

Vielleicht sind wir jetzt Snobs für alte Wunder. Nachdem wir unseren Weg hinunter den Hügel der Akropolis durch Parks und Kobble stoned Bahnen hinunterfahren Öl und Oregano. Es war wundervoll. Es kann mein griechisches Blut oder meine Liebe zum Lamm sein, aber ich finde das Essen in Griechenland, um einige meiner Favoriten zu sein.

Auf die Akropolis gehen, Athen, Griechenland

Alte Ruinen in Athen, Griechenland
Ziegen auf der Straße an der Parthenon, Athen, Griechenland

Fantastisches griechisches Essen: Lamm Gyro, Tzatziki Dip und Feta-Käse
Der letzte Tag in Athen tat uns nicht viel zu viel. Wir hatten ein Bündel von Besorgungen, um zu laufen, ja, JAs von Backpackern haben Besorgungen. Wir haben versucht, das Zeug zu holen und Wäsche zu mailen, aber das hat nicht trainiert. Wir haben jedoch geschafft, neue Passport-Fotos zu erhalten, Lebensmittel zu bekommen, und malerisch hat einen Haarschnitt bekommen. Es ist ein hartes Leben hier, Tonnen von Dingen, die an unseren Tagen abgerissen werden … aber wir schaffen.

Am Ende des Tages stoppten wir, um etwas Espresso zu bekommen, als wir einige Skateboarder auf dem Hauptplatz beobachteten. In der Coffee-Shop genießen wir es schnell, dass sie nicht nur normales Skater waren. Sie müssen professionell sein. Sie versuchten, Kickflip an der Nase an einer Marmorschiene etwa 10 Meter hoch zu schleifen. Und sie förten es mit Tonnen hoher Endgeräte, die rund um den Platz eingerichtet wurden. Ich habe ein fantastisches Material der Sprünge und einige gute Fotos erhalten. Wir konnten unsere Augen nicht davon nehmen und wahrscheinlich ein paar Stunden genießen. Nicht genau das, was ich erwartet hatte, in Griechenland zu tun, aber es war trotzdem cool.

Skateboarding in Athen, Griechenland

Am nächsten Tag erhielt wir die Fähre auf die Insel Santorini. Die 8-stündige Reise war felsig, regnerisch, windig und sehr kalt. Bis wir (um die letzte Stunde oder so) realisiert haben, dass ein großartiger warmes Insidebereich mit weichen Stühlen und Plug-Ins für den Laptop komplett war. Wir sahen es auf dem Weg zum Deck, aber es schien kein Zimmer zu geben, so dass wir einfach an Deck erstarrten, bis wir erkannten, dass die Menschen auf verschiedenen Inseln stiegen und leere Sitze verlassen hatten. Also gingen wir dort hinunter, steckten den Laptop ein und genossen eine moderne Familie, während wir auf unsere erste griechische Insel kreuzen. Santorini, hier kommen wir!

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