Visiting the Acropolis in Athens

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Visiting the Acropolis is without doubt one of the highlights of your go to to Athens, a must-see website that epitomises Historic Greece. This rocky hill is topped by the Parthenon temple devoted to Athena, Goddess of knowledge and warfare, who planted the primary olive tree on this very spot to discovered town of Athens. I’ve visited a couple of occasions over time, so learn on to find my high recommendations on the best way to get the perfect out of your go to to the Acropolis and the close by Acropolis Museum.

Filopappou Hill Athens Photo

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When is the perfect time to go to the Acropolis?

The Acropolis website is open all 12 months spherical, other than a couple of public holidays. The cooler months in Spring and Autumn are very best occasions to go to the Acropolis, earlier than the scorching warmth and crowds of summer time descend on Athens. Winter in Greece is brief and you could discover shiny, clear days in winter too, however the usually chilly and moist days in December and January usually are not very best. Should you go to within the hottest months of July and August, it’s essential plan your go to fastidiously to permit for crowds and warmth.

It’s additionally value contemplating the perfect time of day to go to, when you’ve got a versatile schedule. Guided group excursions usually begin at 9.30am, whereas coach events begin arriving from 10am, so the hours between 10am-3pm would be the busiest time to go to. The late afternoon after 3pm is an efficient time to go to, however verify the web site so you recognize the closing time, which is round 5pm in winter and could also be later in summer time. It is best to enable a minimum of 2 hours to see the location, so issue this into your plans for those who go to later within the day.

Acropolis in Athens Photo
Acropolis in Athens
Acropolis in Athens Photo
Acropolis in Athens

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What to see on the Acropolis

Earlier than you attain the highest of the Acropolis Hill, there are some fascinating issues to see on the southern slopes of the hill, as soon as you’re previous the ticket barrier. Bear in mind that there are two entrances, one by the metro station and the opposite shut the the Odeon of Herodes Atticus. Relying on which approach you are available, you may even see a distinct a part of the location. On the high of the hill you’ll be able to’t stroll inside any of the temples, so it’s extra about taking within the views of the traditional buildings and over town of Athens and questioning on the enormous scale of this iconic website.

The Theatre of Dionysus

Should you enter the Acropolis website from the metro entrance you’ll cross the Theatre of Dionysus which is a nicely preserved amphitheatre, with stone seats within the entrance row carved with the names of nobles who reserved them. Theatres have been fashionable in historic Greece and at all times devoted to Dionysus, the God of wine who was related to having time.

The environment throughout a efficiency was rowdy with loads of chatting and laughter, so the actors needed to work onerous to carry the eye of the viewers. A handful of male actors carried out all of the characters, even the feminine ones, and performs have been usually tales in regards to the Gods and historic myths.

Theatre of Dionysus at Acropolis in Athens Photo
Theatre of Dionysus at Acropolis in Athens

The Odeon of Herodes Atticus

Additionally value a glance as you head up the trail to the highest of the Acropolis Hill, is the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, an historic theatre that was in-built 161AD by a rich Athenian in reminiscence of his spouse. From contained in the Acropolis website you’ll look down on the amphitheatre from above, with improbable views throughout town of Athens and the wooded slopes of Filopappou Hill to your proper.

The 5000 seat theatre is used for music, opera and concert events in the course of the Athens pageant that runs all through the summer time and even for those who don’t go to the Acropolis, you’ll be able to see its stone arched entrance from the skin, close to the ticket workplace.

Odeon of Herodes Atticus Athens Photo
Odeon of Herodes Atticus Athens Photo
Odeon of Herodes Atticus Athens

The Propylaea gateway to the Acropolis

After climbing up the rocky paths on the aspect of the hill, the primary glimpse of the Parthenon and different temples on the high is thru the Propylaea. This monumental entrance, with columns and porticoes was commissioned by the Athenian chief Pericles in 437 BC as one of many works to rebuild Athens after the Persian Wars.

The doorway was designed to impress and emphasise the significance of the sacred website, in addition to offering a gateway to manage who might enter the location.

Acropolis in Athens Photo
Propylaea gateway to the Acropolis in Athens
Acropolis in Athens Photo
Propylaea gateway to the Acropolis in Athens

The Temple of Athena Nike

Seen as you ascent the Acropolis Hill and near the Propylaea gateway is the small temple of Athena Nike which you’ll be able to’t usually rise up near. The goddess represented victory in warfare so can be supplied prayers by the Athenians in hope of victory in battle in opposition to their enemies. The temple as you see it has been closely renovated and rebuilt, with its authentic frieze on show within the Acropolis museum.

Temple of Athena Nike, Acropolis in Athens Photo
Temple of Athena Nike, Acropolis in Athens

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The Parthenon

As soon as up the marble steps and thru the Propylaea gateway, guests get their first shut up view of the Parthenon, the enduring temple devoted to the goddess Athena, after whom town of Athens was named.

Throughout the Parthenon temple initially stood a 12 metre excessive gold and ivory statue of Athena, though it was misplaced within the Byzantine period and solely copies stay. Across the high of the temple runs a frieze of all of the gods which now resides within the Acropolis Museum, since many of the authentic stone carvings have been changed with copies.

Acropolis in Athens Photo
Acropolis in Athens

One stunning side of the Parthenon is that a lot of it resembles a constructing website, dominated by scaffolding, with a restoration underway that may proceed for some years. Blocks of stone and components of historic columns piled up close to the temple, able to be hoisted into place. In one other space close to the doorway, among the carved stones that may change the frieze may very well be seen shut up, stacked as if in a timber yard.

Strolling round to the entrance of the Parthenon gives you a scaffolding free view of the temple, though you’ll be able to’t stroll into the central space throughout the columns.

The Erechthion and Caryatids

When you’ve considered the Parthenon from all angles, you’ll wish to discover the opposite important monument, the Erechtheion that stands on the northern aspect of the Acropolis rock. This temple was constructed on the sacred spot the place the goddess Athena is alleged to have planted the olive tree, the image of Athens that brings peace and prosperity.

Acropolis in Athens Photo
Erechtheion at Acropolis in Athens

The temple is greatest recognized for the Caryatids, the row of maidens in draped tunics that help the roof. Those listed here are copies, for the reason that originals are within the Acropolis Museum, with one within the British Museum (a part of the ‘Elgin Marbles’ assortment that Greece is campaigning to have returned.)

Acropolis in Athens Photo
Caryatids at Acropolis in Athens

Views from the Acropolis Hill

Earlier than you conclude your go to, take time to walk across the perimeter wall of the Acropolis Hill to soak up the views of Athens stretching in all instructions. On the western finish of the rock, a raised space flies the flag of Greece which you’ll be able to see raised and lowered on Sundays and different public holidays. The ceremony is carried out by the Evzones or Presidential Guard who stand guard in entrance of the Greek Parliament Constructing in Syntagma Sq..

From this viewpoint look westwards throughout to Filopappou Hill, the smaller Areopagus Hill and the dome of the Observatory of Athens. From the southern wall, look down on the Acropolis Museum and past to see the port of Piraeus, which was the principle port in historic occasions.

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Guided tour of the Acropolis Photo
Our guided tour of the Acropolis

Take a tour of the Acropolis

If in case you have restricted time in Athens, I extremely suggest taking a tour of the Acropolis and Acropolis museum like this one which we tried with Athenian Excursions. Our glorious information Alexia met us exterior the metro station and we had an interesting 4 hours visiting the Acropolis and the Acropolis Museum.

The tour included entry tickets for each sights so there have been no delays in coming into the websites and we received so many tales and fascinating info in regards to the locations we visited. We have been supplied with an audio set and our personal disposable headphones, in order that we might clearly hear every thing Alexia was explaining, with out her having to shout.

In fact you may see all of this by yourself, however listed here are some the explanation why you must take into account reserving a tour of the Acropolis;

Guided tour of the Acropolis Photo
Guided tour of the Acropolis

– An Acropolis tour is a good choice in case you are wanting time and wish to see as a lot as attainable – it takes all the trouble away so that you don’t have to spend all of your time planning.

– Taking a tour allows you to skip the road, so you haven’t any worries about queuing for tickets or needing to purchase them upfront. Your tour information may have bought tickets for the entire group upfront and can get you rapidly into the location.

– The tour guides may give you so many extra insights and entertaining tales than simply studying the indicators across the website, so that they actually deliver the expertise to life.

– I particularly suggest excursions for solo travellers, because it’s a enjoyable solution to spend a couple of hours in a bunch and join with different travellers.

– Your tour information can also be an ideal supply of ideas and suggestions for different issues to see, so you’ll be able to entry all their native information to plan the remainder of your go to to Athens. On the finish of our tour, our information gave us plenty of restaurant suggestions.

With out our information Alexia from Athenian Excursions I wouldn’t have heard about how the Parthenon was in-built solely 8 years by slaves, realized that historic Greek docs would whisper to sufferers of their sleep as a part of their remedy, or observed how essentially the most rich might have their identify carved into the stone on the theatre to order the perfect seat. All these enjoyable tales introduced the Acropolis to life for us and made us really feel part of town.

You’ll be able to e book the identical tour that we took of the Acropolis and Acropolis Museum with Athenian Excursions right here or for those who favor additionally they provide an Acropolis tour by itself.

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Greatest methods to go to the Acropolis – our high ideas

  • Across the website are info indicators telling you about every temple and naturally for those who go to as a part of a guided tour of the Acropolis, you’re going to get lots extra info. If visiting independently, you’ll be able to rent a registered information on the entrance if you want, or use your guidebook to present you an outline of the location.
  • There are bathrooms exterior each of the principle entrances in addition to on the high of the Acropolis rock. Nevertheless, as soon as inside, there may be nowhere to purchase drinks or refreshments, so you must a minimum of take some water with you. Within the hotter months it will likely be baking up right here with only some locations for shade.
  • Put on comfy, flat sneakers with grip, because the paths are fairly stony and the marble steps main as much as the highest of the hill may also be slippery, particularly when moist.
Temple of Athena Nike, Acropolis in Athens Photo
Temple of Athena Nike, Acropolis in Athens

Examine my first go to to the Acropolis and the opposite issues we loved in Athens – Athens on the menu, the perfect meals and sightseeing!

Go to the Acropolis – tickets and opening hours

  • The entry is €20 per grownup, €10 for lowered tickets (aged 65+ from EU for those who produce a passport) masking the Acropolis website and slopes. In off-season the ticket price is lowered. Should you plan to go to quite a few archaeological websites in Athens, it’s value shopping for the package deal ticket for €30.
  • In winter (1 Nov-30 March) the location opens 8am-5pm and in summer time 8am-8pm. Final entry is 30 minutes earlier than closing time, nonetheless it’s essential enable a minimum of 2 hours to see the entire Acropolis website. Verify the small print of opening occasions earlier than you go to on the official Acropolis web site.
  • We suggest that you just pre-book your ticket to the Acropolis – not solely are you able to choose up your tickets near the Acropolis after which skip the traces on the ticket desks however you’ve gotten the choice of a refund as much as 24 hrs earlier than your go to.
Odeon of Herodes Atticus Athens Photo

Ticket for the Acropolis – your choices

There are a couple of completely different choices for getting tickets for the Acropolis and pre-booking or taking a tour is certainly a good suggestion to be able to skip the road.

  • Possibility 1: Arrive at both of the 2 Acropolis website entrances and purchase tickets from the kiosk. Then cross by the safety barrier, scanning the bar code in your ticket. The drawback with that is that there’s virtually at all times a queue which could be very lengthy at weekends and in excessive season.
  • Possibility 2: Purchase tickets on-line immediately from the official web site. You are able to do this earlier than you arrive or on arrival by scanning a QR code on the ticket sales space that may take you to the web site. Select the Attica / Acropolis and slopes choice, then choose a date and time. Notice that the time is only for statistical functions and doesn’t commit you to arriving at the moment. On the subsequent stage you’ll be able to choose both a single ticket or a mixed ticket for all of the archaeological websites. One problem I discovered was that when arrived on the ticket workplace, the information sign was very weak to purchase tickets in your cell, so I’d suggest that you just achieve this earlier than you arrive. One other drawback is that upon getting chosen the day and acquired your ticket, it can’t be used on one other day or refunded.
  • Possibility 3: One other handy approach to purchase tickets is to pre-book from a trusted agent like Get your Information – use this hyperlink to pre-book your ticket to the Acropolis. Tickets might be ordered at any time in your cell and you then take the voucher you’re despatched by electronic mail and alternate it on your tickets on the Key Excursions workplace, a 3 minute stroll from the Acropolis metro entrance. You’ll be able to then skip the traces on the ticket desks and go straight by safety. The benefit of this methodology is that you’ve the choice of a full refund for those who cancel as much as 24 hrs earlier than the go to, so it has extra flexibility than shopping for immediately from the official website, though there’s a small service payment.
  • Possibility 4: Guide a guided tour of the Acropolis and your entrance ticket is included within the value, because the information may have bought it upfront. Excursions can be found for the Acropolis website or there are longer excursions that additionally embody the Acropolis Museum (and once more the museum ticket is included). We will suggest this tour of the Acropolis and Acropolis Museum from Athenian Excursions which we took and actually loved or you too can take simply the tour of the Acropolis with the identical firm.

Accessibility on the Acropolis

The Acropolis is appropriate to go to for anybody who in all fairness match, however remember that there are numerous steps and the bottom is uneven in locations. I’ve visited previously with my mother and father who have been of their 70’s and we needed to navigate fairly cautiously for the reason that rock was worn and slippery in locations. Though the location is flatter on the high there are a lot of locations the place the bottom is rocky and uneven, so guests with mobility points might want to take care.

There’s additionally a wheelchair elevate on the Acropolis entrance that’s closest to the Odeon of Herodes Atticus and the principle coach park (not the doorway closest the metro). The trail as much as the ticket workplace and entrance can also be wheelchair accessible. This elevate is designed for wheelchairs and never for buggies and pushchairs, nonetheless there’s a place the place you’ll be able to go away pushchairs close to the ticket workplace. From there you will have to stroll together with your baby or carry infants in a sling.

Watch this video about the best way to go to the Acropolis, Athens

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Go to the Acropolis Museum

After the Acropolis, the subsequent apparent locations to go to is the Acropolis Museum, a world-class setting for the treasures of the Acropolis hill that rises above it. A lot of the statues and friezes on the Parthenon have been introduced right here to protect them, being changed by trendy copies on the temple itself.

Acropolis Museum Athens Photo
Acropolis Museum Athens

On the skin, the museum reveals its clear, trendy traces with partitions of glass to shed loads of pure mild and provides views in the direction of the Acropolis hill. The museum is constructed over the stays of the traditional metropolis and you may look down into the kitchens and latrines of Historic Greece as you stroll in the direction of the doorway.

Acropolis Museum Athens Photo
Archaeological stays underneath the Acropolis Museum Athens

The open galleries on the primary ground are supported by columns and lots of the sculptures from completely different intervals of the Acropolis are on show right here. Initially many of those would have been painted in shiny colors, very completely different from the serene white marble look of immediately. I used to be shocked to see how completely different the statues would have regarded, with virtually garish blues and reds and particulars picked out in gold.

In case you are visiting the Acropolis and Acropolis museum collectively, we suggest taking this tour that features entrance tickets, so that you just skip the road and take advantage of your go to with an knowledgeable information.

Acropolis Museum Athens Photo
The owl is the image of Athens – within the Acropolis Museum Athens
Acropolis Museum Athens Photo
A duplicate of the Parthenon pediment frieze – Acropolis Museum Athens
Acropolis Museum Athens Photo
A mannequin of the Parthenon – Acropolis Museum Athens
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The Parthenon Gallery

On the third ground, the Parthenon Gallery is laid out to imitate the Parthenon itself, with metal columns rather than the marble pillars of the Parthenon, and the friezes that ran throughout the edges of the temple and shaped the pediment on the high.

Acropolis Museum Athens
Acropolis Museum Athens

The place components of the frieze have been lacking, as an illustration the components which are on show within the British Museum, a duplicate was proven in uncooked plaster subsequent to aged ivory color of the unique carving.

Acropolis Museum Athens Photo
Acropolis Museum Athens

Most well-known are the Caryatids that you just’ll have seen on the Erechtheion on high of the Acropolis; that is the place the actual ones are stored to protect them from the weather. They’re additionally a favorite spot for guests to have their {photograph} taken which is allowed on this a part of the museum though not in all of the galleries.

Acropolis Museum Athens Photo
Acropolis Museum Athens

On the second ground we watched a video in English in regards to the historical past of the Acropolis which made it fairly clear the place they stand on the Elgin assortment, now stored within the British Museum. There’s a long-standing marketing campaign to have these artefacts from the Parthenon returned to the Acropolis museum which you’ll be able to even vote on as you cross by Athens airport.

Acropolis Museum Athens Photo
Acropolis Museum Athens

We completed a really pleasurable go to to the Acropolis Museum with a drink on the sunny terrace cafe trying up on the Acropolis Hill above.

Acropolis Museum Athens Photo
Acropolis Museum Athens

In case you are visiting the Acropolis and museum collectively, we suggest taking this tour that features entrance tickets, so that you just skip the road and take advantage of your go to with an knowledgeable information.

Acropolis Museum – tickets and opening hours

  • The museum is ready on the foot of the Acropolis Hill subsequent to Acropolis Metro station.
  • Entrance cost is €5 (Nov-Mar) or €10 (Apr-Oct) with concession tickets additionally accessible.
  • In case you are visiting each the Acropolis and Acropolis Museum, we suggest pre-booking a joint ticket so that you just skip the queues. The tickets provide 24 hr cancellation and are legitimate for a month.
  • Open usually 8am-8pm April-October, 9am-5pm Nov-March (verify web site for variations some days)
  • There’s a nice cafe with waiter service and views of the Acropolis from the terrace
  • On the highest ground, watch the video in English in regards to the historical past of the Acropolis.
  • Images for private use is allowed in some however not all the galleries.

Different Historic websites in Athens

Round Athens there are many different historic websites and for those who plan to go to them, we suggest that you just pre-book this ticket that enables entry to 7 archaeological websites together with the Acropolis and is legitimate for five days. The websites included within the ticket are; Acropolis and slopes, Historic Agora, Roman Agora, Hadrian’s Library, Olympieion, Kerameikos, Aristotle’s Faculty (Lykeion).

Filopappou Hill for the perfect views of the Acropolis

When you’ve completed your go to of the Acropolis, you could wish to climb the close by Filopappou Hill, which presents among the greatest views of the Acropolis from the highest. The obvious path to climb the hill is close to the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, subsequent to the coach park and the well-known Dionysos Zonar’s restaurant. As you observe the paved street up the hill, look out for the gorgeous church of Agios Dimitrios Lounbardiaris which is value visiting if it’s open to see the frescoes.

Filopappou Hill Athens Photo
Views of the Acropolis from the highest of Filopappou Hill in Athens

Then observe the indicators to the left that take you up the hill previous the Cave of Socrates. Doorways carved into the rock face are mentioned to be the place the thinker Socrates was imprisoned earlier than his trial in 399 BC, when he was convicted of impiety and sentenced to dying by consuming a cup of poison hemlock.

Filopappou Hill Athens Photo
Cave of Socrates on Filopappou Hill Athens

Proceed the stroll up the hill underneath the shady pines to the highest the place you’ll discover the Monument of Filopappos, in-built AD 114 in honour of the distinguished Roman consul, Julius Antiochus Filopappos. From right here there are gorgeous views in all instructions, not solely trying in the direction of the Acropolis Hill but additionally in the direction of the port of Piraeus and the Saronic Gulf.

Filopappou Hill Athens Photo
Monument of Filopappos in Athens

Areopagus Hill for sundown views

Strolling alongside the trail from the Acropolis Museum main towards Monastiraki you’ll see the Areopagus Hill, a rocky outcrop which has some picket steps to let you climb to the highest. From right here you will get an ideal view of the Acropolis in addition to over the entire metropolis and it’s a favorite place to come back at sundown as town turns golden under you.

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Areopagus Hill in Athens Photo
Areopagus Hill in Athens

The place to remain when visiting the Acropolis

I extremely suggest the 5 star Electra Palace Lodge the place I stayed whereas in Athens. This elegant, luxurious resort is within the Plaka district of Athens, on the foot of the Acropolis, and is nicely located to stroll simply to many of the historic websites. The resort is basic in decor and is a haven of calm to return to on the finish of your day’s sightseeing.

Electra Palace Hotel Photo
Electra Palace Lodge

Even when not sightseeing, you’re by no means removed from these prized Acropolis views, since there’s a rooftop pool and bar to calm down within the hotter months in addition to a rooftop restaurant serving trendy Greek delicacies the place you’ll be able to dine within the night.

Electra Palace Hotel Photo
Views of the Acropolis from Electra Palace Lodge

Electra Palace Lodge,18 N. Nikodimou Str., 10557 Athens, Greece

Learn my full overview and video of Electra Palace Lodge Athens right here

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