My plan for Greece was to go on an island to work for the summer there. Getting some experience after being freshly graduated from my bartending school. Things didn’t really go as planned. So the 6 months I was initially planning to spend in Kos ended up being 1 and half month before heading to Athens…
This was the view I had every day during my time in Kos. Not so bad eh? As I said above, it was meant to be my daily view for 6 months, but for some reason I’ve changed my mind and decided to shorten my stay in Kos. I applied for a Working Holiday visa for New-Zealand and needed to go to Athens to do some X-Ray scanners. So while I was there I’ve just enjoyed to go around the city.
As a child, I used to love Greek mythology. So I developped an interest for Greek culture and history quite early. I will not go through the whole history of Greece or Athens here. Not that I wouldn’t like to, but it would take waaaaaay too long to go through everything. So I am just gonna talk here about the places I’ve visited. This building for example is part of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens also known simply as University of Athens. Established in 1837, it is the oldest higher education institution of the Modern Greek state. With over 100.000 students registered, it is one of the largest universities of Europe.
If you don’t visit the Acropolis during your stay in Athens, why are you even going there? The greek word akron means “highest point, extremity.” There is archaeological proofs that people were living there 6000 years ago but it’s “only” 2500 years ago that Pericles coordinated the construction of the most important site remains like the Parthenon (picture above) or the temple of Athena Nike. It went through hard times, especially being destroyed in 1687 by the Venetians during the war against the Ottoman Empire. It has been rebuilt since then and is now under restoration as you can see.
If the Acropolis is renowned for its Parthenon, the latter is not the only masterpiece on the hill. The sanctuary of Pandion has been found quite late, during the excavation for the construction of the Old Acropolis Museum (1865-1874). It’s believed that it was the location of the heroon (hero shrine) dedicated to Pandion, (legendary King of Athens) which was known to be on the Acropolis. On the right picture, you can see the Odeon of Herodes Atticus. This Roman theater takes his name from the man who built it in 161 AD. It got destroyed in 267 AD before being renovated in 1950. Today as you guessed it, the Odeon is still being used for events such as concerts or festivals.
My time in Greece was short but overall really enjoyable. I personally think that Greece has one of the most interesting history and culture. I haven’t stayed long enough to go everywhere, but the few I’ve seen was something I always wanted to see. Greece is a beautiful country, and people are lovely, it would be a shame not to go there at least once!
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