As a part of our world-wind tour of the Mediterranean, our group flew from Split, Croatia to Athens Greece for a one night layover.
Where we stayed
Hotel Grande Bretagne: Located in the city center of Athens, directly across from the Presidential Mansion. This gorgeous hotel is a MUST! My inner hotel brat was screaming for joy. With my platinum status got us complimentary upgraded rooms with BUTLER SERVICE! They private front desk greeted us with a complimentary glass of Veuve Cliquot and warm smiles from staff.
The hotel has two rooftop areas. The first level has the pool with a beautiful view of the Parthenon. The 2nd level is their restaurant and bar. Both are worth checking out.
Things we did
Visited the Parthenon: There are no other words besides this is a sight to be seen. To actually see this in person is mind blowing. There is a fee to enter the Parthenon and you can purchase the day of for 20 euros.
Dinner in the Sky: Dine 150 feet in the air on a rotating table with your friends! Enjoy the views of Athens with a five course excellent meal! The staff is incredible and it is very safe. And yes, they will let you down should you need to use the rest room 🙂
Temple of Zeus
Where we ate
Bairaktaris Tavern: Best gyro I have ever had and I have eaten a shit ton of gyros. They gave us a combo of pork, lamb and chicken and stuffed it with french fries. I could almost cry talking about it. I am obsessed and will always think about it.
Where to go out
360 Degrees: We only had one night and wanted to make the most of it. We were told to stop by this place and visit the rooftop. And what a great suggestion it was. The bar played fun music and had a nice view of the Parthenon. Drinks were also relatively inexpensive.
- If you plan to visit the Parthenon, visit first thing in the morning. I mean the earlier the better. This is probably the most visited site in Athens, meaning lots of tours, lots of people and most importantly avoiding the heat. This is key! It gets hot, fast in Athens and there is no place for shade. Get there early and you go without a guide. They have tons of legends explaining the historical meaning. Or you can always linger over a tour guide’s shoulder and eavesdrop like we did 🙂 Pack extra water and sunscreen.
- Purchase a hop on/ hop-off pass. My favorite way of seeing a city and quickly getting around the city.
- Visit Mount Olympus
- Visit the Acropolis museum. Buy tickets in advance
- Visit the National Gardens
- Watch the changing of the guards at the President’s Mansion