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Athens

Will be going to Athens in September and wondered where the best place to stay in Athens. We will not have our own transportation and will be relying on public transportation.
Also would like suggestions for day trips. We will have three days.
Thank you.

Posted by
5522 posts

Three days is good for Athens but you don’t have time for day trips. We like to stay near Syntagma Square and Kolonaki. Many prefer the Plaka which we didn’t care for.

Posted by
13891 posts

In October I stayed at the Pan Hotel, just a block from Syntagma Square where the airport bus stop is. It's a very busy area, so I chose a rear room which was very quiet. There are lots of choices in the area for all budgets. It's always busy, lots of restaurant choices and you can walk to many sights. There are also multiple bus, tram and metro lines at Syntagma. On my first visit, I stayed at both the Hera and Acropolis Select Hotels, which the RS tours use. It's a quieter area, close to the Acropolis and the Acropolis Museum and the Acropolis metro.

I'd go back to any of those hotels.

Posted by
734 posts

The best areas to stay in are Monistiraki, Syntagma and Plaka areas, all close to everything one goes to Athens for.

As far as accommodations a budget will help make recommendations.

However, I always stay at the Attalos Hotel on Athinas St. It's a budget friendly accommodations, clean, safe and centrally located. Nothing fancy but it does have one of the best roof top bars/gardens in the city with spectacular views of the Acropolis and Athens.

With three days I would spend the entire time in Athens. There's more to the city than just the tourist sites.

My favorite areas are the Central Markets on Athinas St., Anafiotika on the north side of the Acropolis which looks like a village you'll see in the Cyclades Islands, Psiri District and lots more.

The best way to see the city is to walk.

Too many other areas and things to do to mention so check out this great website for Athens:

https://www.athensguide.com/

Posted by
104 posts

We liked staying at the AthensWas Hotel at 5 Dionysiou Areopagitou Street which is a lovely shaded pedestrian street and an easy walk to the Acropolis and Acropolis Museum. It is walkable to Syntagma Square without staying in the congested traffic area there. The Makrigianni area is a nice area for hotels. We took Welcome Pickups from the Athens airport to our hotel and it went smoothly. On the way back we were brave enough to take the metro from the Acropolis station to the Syntagma station and on to the airport.
We highly recommend reserving a tour of the Acropolis with Athens Walking Tours (https://www.athenswalkingtours.gr). We took the Early morning tour at 8:30 am with Kostas and it was wonderful.

Posted by
53 posts

Thank you for all your suggestions. Ill take any great restaurant ideas as well. I am unable to eat gluten so if you have any in mind that would be wonderful.
Thanks again.

Posted by
1492 posts

Hi Kristine, we love food too! The food we most enjoyed in Athens are the cheap gyro stands. Two gyros, two beers for 10e. Depending on where you stay.....we stayed at the Acropolis Select and on the same street not far, is Mani Mani, which we ate at twice. Very good. We found the food to be simple and fresh, but not gourmet.

Posted by
2414 posts

Kristin, having a gluten-free requirement is not a "by the way" request. It is something more complicated, and if you want good answers, why not google first? I just did and came up with these:

Celiac/gluten free REstaurant card -- https://www.celiactravel.com/cards/greek/ - downloadable card to show @ restaurants & groceries -- most Greeks today are quite fluent in english, but this is just handy.

https://www.legalnomads.com/gluten-free/greece/ -- not only gives a gluten-free card, but also details & a pictorial list of foods that are safe & gluten free ...

Google is your first stop for questions like these...

Posted by
2274 posts

I’ll add that gluten free is not hard in Greece. Grilled meats and fresh salads are common, and fish as well. Unlike France, flour thickened sauces are rare, and unlike Austria breaded meats are rare (two countries where GF is possible but a little harder).
Gluten awareness is medium, and foods specifically marked GF are not all that common in restaurants (unlike Italy where nearly everyone in restaurants is completely aware and GF specific offerings are plentiful). BUT many of the common Greek dishes are naturally GF. Tell the waiter, or show them a translation card if there’s a language issue, and you will have many options most anywhere.

GF specific food is available at supermarkets, if you need it.

Posted by
53 posts

Thank you for the suggestions. I have traveled in many countries and usually do take a card with my allergies on it. I just thought maybe there was someone out there that had a great experience and a favorite GF place they wanted to share.
Thanks again.

Posted by
2414 posts

Kristine, you will not find any totally gluten-free places .... just places where they may offer a fuller menu of tradtional Greek dishes that happily have always been gluten-free. The 2nd link will provide photo clues ... and any good taverna will serve those.

Posted by
4 posts

I would recommend Royal Olympic. It’s downtown, great rooms, nice pool, terrific breakfast on the rooftop, 5-minute walk to the Plaka, 10-minute was to the Acropolis, next to the National Gardens.

Posted by
427 posts

Agree with tommyk above regarding the Monistiraki, Syntagma and Plaka areas as well as the Attalos Hotel (easy walk from Monistiraki Metro Station). You can take the train from the airport to the Syntagma and Monistiraki stations without a connection. While in Athens, wander around below the Acropolis til your heart's content. The Acropolis Museum and the Greek Archeological Museum are definitely worth doing as is the Agora.

Posted by
4 posts

You don't mention a budget spread, but a couple of good, central economical options you may want to check out are The Pan, Arethusa, Home Sweet Home and Hermes Hotel... for starters :) All close to Syntagma Square which is the main central area/transport hub. I can highly recommend taxi from athens airport to syntagma square, we use them every time from airport and have always received excellent service, always on time & very efficient :)

Posted by
408 posts

Athens has some good small grocery stores. Have you considered buying fruit or other food at one of these stores? Also I remember a fruit stand outside a subway station entrance, in a busy square, and an outdoor market that had some produce, south of the archaeological museum.

Posted by
13891 posts

In Monastiraki square there were a number of fresh fruit/veg vendors with pushcarts. A lot of locals were buying on their way home from work. Spend a few minutes in the metro station (no need to buy a ticket) to see the archaeology finds - a small museum!

Posted by
7 posts

I would recommend you to stay in the Plaka or Monastiraki area. You find accommodations in all price levels.

Hotel Attalos is a popular hotel near Monastiraki metro station. Aerotel Parthenon is closer to the entrance to the Acropolis and the Acropolis museum. Search google maps and you find several more.