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Visiting Athens

The oldest house in Athens tells a story of the life of Athenian aristocrats before the Greek revolution and paints a picture of their traditions and habits. That being said, there is another story that this old house tells: one of great humanity and faith. It is a story of a Greek woman who faced all the possible challenges but was determined to fight for what she believed in and protect the vulnerable who had no means of defending themselves.

Athens is mostly known around the world for its classical period ruins, such as the Parthenon, the Erecthion, the temple of Hephaestus in the Ancient Agora and so on and so forth. But how about the excellent specimens of neoclassical architecture it boasts, situated in the very heart of a modern city? Doesn’t ring any bells? Well, let us enlighten you then. Neoclassical is the type of architectural and artistic movement that bloomed around the 18th and 19th century in Europe and elsewhere as an effort to revive the classical forms of the Greek antiquity and the subsequent Roman Empire. In Greece as well, this type of architecture was very popular in the 19th and early 20th century, with many examples still standing today, such as the numerous neoklassika (mansions of these type) in the Plaka area, our Parliament building (previously the Royal Palace), the old Parliament House (now the National Historical Museum) the Zappeion Mansion, and of course the best examples of all: The Athenian Trilogy in Panepistimiou str., including the National Library, the University of Athens and the Academy.

Petralona is one of the most aesthetically pleasing neighbourhoods of Athens, located north of Taurus and Kallithea and extending from Piraeus Street to Philopappou Hill and from Hammos Street to Poulopoulos bridge. With its apparent urban vibe, it has arguably been established as a local’s favourite, either for drinking, eating or leisurely wandering.

Today we explore six of the most central, historic and characteristic squares of Athens: Syntagma, Monastiraki and Omonia, commonly referred to as the 'Commercial Triangle of Athens' due to their positioning on the map which forms a triangle, but also Klafthmonos Kotzia and Avissinias smaller in size but equally interesting to the keen traveller. We love all these squares for different reasons and you will see why in more detail below. What's more, it is possible to discover all of them on foot in a single day, since the walking distance between them is never more than fifteen minutes. The order of presentation below is meant to be a walking route starting from Syntagma and ending up in Avissinias, and has nothing to do with size or importance. Take your camera, your coffee and your comfy shoes and off we go!

Maybe seeing the Acropolis and enjoying the landscape is not all that you came to Greece for. Maybe, your materialistic tendencies need to be fulfilled with a little bit of Greek shopping to enrich your trip as well. Well, we are not here to judge. What we are here for, is to help you and inform you about the best places to shop in Athens, whether you're into high end or high street fashion.

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