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The little adventures of Jo! Travel with me on my overdue gap year around the world :)

A Day in Athens

GREECE | Tuesday, 2 July 2013 | Views [453]

I turned up to Athens with the lowest of expectations after hearing countless mixed reviews of Athens in the past. Most were quite negative, dismissing the city as not worth visiting. As far as I was concerned, it was just a stepping stone to get to Santorini. Sure enough, when I arrived in Monastiraki square, it didn't strike me as being beautiful. It is much more "grunge-y" than the other European cities I've been to so far. The streets are not as orderly and there is an abundance of graffiti spread over all the walls. In my opinion, even Naples looks better. Strangely enough, I embraced the grunge Athens exhibited with open arms. Maybe it is because it reminds me so much of Rio de Janeiro. 

I went on a walking tour this morning for a general overview of the city. George, our tour guide, did an amazing job showing us around, giving us adequate and interesting information about the city without overloading us. After the walking tour, I went shopping with Carmen, a Brazilian girl I met on the tour, and treated myself to some new Korres products. I believe one has to indulge in life's luxuries now and then to keep the spirit up. To be honest, the products were not as expensive as I thought it would be but are definitely heavenly!
Carmen and I ended our day watching the sun set over a great view of the city with beers and a cheap but delicious moussaka at the rooftop bar of my hostel, Athenstyle. With the sun setting on one side and the Acropolis being illuminated on the other, we really couldn't as for better. The hostel isn't the best I've been to but the fact that it is so much better than any of the hostels I had stayed at in Italy, makes me like it so much.
Although I wouldn't ever stay too long in Athens, it's left me a good first impression of Greece. The food is delicious and cheap, and the people are really friendly and down to earth. I'm off to Santorini early tomorrow for six nights. After a great time in Athens, I can only look forward even more to a real break from travelling.


Tags: cities, european adventure, friends, history, landmarks, sightseeing

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