Monday, February 27, 2012

Europe 2011 day 9: Athens, Greece

Halfway through our European vacay our next stop on day 9 (Sept. 21) was Athens!  Warning: long post ahead, it was a busy day!

Good morning Athens!

Athens was Nick's favorite stop of the trip and because of all the protests going on there we were a little worried things would get out of hand and we would have to skip that stop - thank goodness things were fine there!

We took the subway into town from the cruise port and walked on the nice pedestrian walkway to the Acropolis. Apparently they really cleaned up the city and made it more pedestrian friendly before the 2004 Summer Olympics.  We were walking up the pedestrian walkway and all the sudden there was the Acropolis - it was pretty cool to all the sudden just see it right there.

our first view of the Acropolis from the pedestrian plaza - we made it!

Our first stop of the day was to the Acropolis.  We wanted to get there as soon as possible to avoid the big crowds and that was the highlight of the trip

sightseeing at the Acropolis

The Porch of the Caryatides

standing above the Odeon of Herodes Atticus

Athens is normally a pretty smoggy city but due to rain the day before we had  smog-less skies

The temple of Athena Nike

The Erechtheum

checking out the view - our ship is way, way in the background

Philopappos Monument

Looking down at the Temple Of Olympian Zeus

And of course lots of pictures of the famous Parthenon

And I of course had to take my fan picture for Rick Steves (I took one too in Paris) - like I said, I'm a big fan

our Rick Steves book - for my fan letter of course

After the acropolis we went up to stand on Mars Hill, a place were St. Paul stood and preached to the Athenians

hanging out on Mars Hill

View of the Acropolis from Mars Hill

A plaque with Apostle Paul's sermon at the base of Mars Hill

Then we walked through the ancient Agora, which was basically the hangout place in Ancient Athens and the area where people like Socrates and Plato wandered

walking around the Ancient Agora

the stomping grounds of Plato and Socrates

The Temple Of Hephaestus

The Temple Of Hephaestus

After a very busy morning of walking and sightseeing we decided it was ready for some good.  An area that was recommended to us for takeaway gyros is called "Souvlaki row."  Nick and I love gyros - we eat them a lot at home so we were both so excited to have a gyro in Athens.  They were so so yummy!

A gyro stand

delicious gyro
After refueling with some much needed food we went to the Acropolis Museum which was really nice to get inside and out of the sun and into an air-conditioned place.  It has a lot of good history and we both learned a lot about the Acropolis.  (No pictures were allowed inside).

After the museum we walked to temple of Olympian Zeus (what remains of it, just a few truly huge columns) and Hadrian's Arch.

The Temple Of Olympian Zeus

Then down the main street of the Plaka, past all the shops, to Syntagma square. This is where all the protests that we had seen on TV were taking place, but it was all quiet when we went there.  On the cab ride back to the cruise ship our cab driver told us a protest had recently been broken up about an hour before.

walking around the Plaka
Greek guards

Whew - what a busy day!  We really enjoyed Athens and it was fun seeing all the ancient sites of the city that we learned about in school.

Next stop: Mykonos (my second favorite place of the trip!)  


This is Belgium said...

wonderful reportage with great pictures !! enjoy !! sorry that Belgium does not have a sea and a warmer climate.. you might have stopped by here :)

Erikizzle said...

wow! I'm impressed you were able to squeeze all of that into one day!

Girlie Blogger said...

Wow. Bet the sights look gorgeous in person.
Seattle Beauty and Fashion Blog - Girlie Blog Seattle

Carrie {Living It Up in U.P.} said...

I love your fan picture! I should write him a fan letter too! I want to go to Greece even more after your posts!

Kristin said...

Every time I see photos of Greece, it moves high up on my travel lust list!

Caroline said...

I loved Athens. I went right before the Olympics and it was amazing!

Hitha said...

AMAZING pictures! I went to Athens about 13 years ago, and reading this post has me ready to book another trip there :)

Amy Collins {Fresh and Fancy} said...

beautiful pictures! I noticed you got married the day after me! love your blog!

Alexa said...

Gosh it just looks awe inspiring!

Stephanie said...

I am so jealous! You are traveling to beautiful places! Love these pictures :)

Kristin said...

I want to go to Greece so bad! I am a big Rick Steves fan too. I think I have mentioned we went on one of his tours of Italy and it was amazing!

ms.composure said...

stumbled onto your blog and just wanted to leave you a little blog luv! Def enjoyed reading this post!!

Meg {henninglove} said...

wow your trip just gets better and better!! i don't want these travel posts to end :-)

Jax said...

One word: Wow. Such beautiful architecture...such awesome history... And I love that the skies were clear for you guys as you were exploring. Fabulous photos, friend! I cant wait to see Mykonos!

christine donee said...

so much I need to see!

i'm a tad jealous. ok.. a lot.

Amanda @ New Adventures said...

So beautiful and it's so awesome to think about the history and see all the architecture!

Diana Mieczan said...

WOW..I am loving those photos and what a fantastic day you had! Kisses, sweetie

Emm said...

Wow. Your photos in this post are just incredible! I think this is my favourite of all of your tour posts so far and I can see why it was your husband's favourite!

Selma @ Crazy Little World Of Mine said...

I'm officially jealous...going up to the Acropolis is my dream!!! Seeing your pictures now...awww, they just make my heart melt!

Nicole-Lynn said...

How amazing.. what a sight!


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