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Vantage point: Changing of the Guard at the Tomb of the Unknown in Athens

I hope to see the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown, along with the marching band, on a Sunday morning at 11:00 a.m. in September. Would you have any suggestions as to a good vantage point to watch and how early in advance to arrive? Thank you.

Posted by
2774 posts

I watched that show the last of May or early June last month. Some folks, including me, gathered on the open space facing the guards. We got there maybe 30 before scheduled event. As the time for the performance approached, some local police along with some "rent a cops" came and pushed the crowd back off of most of that square. A lot of folks had lined up along the sidewalk facing the tomb and as the time approached, the same "authorities" made them all go across the street, farther from the event. At 6'3" I had no problem seeing over those in front of me where we were still on the side of the square. Several in the crowd, including me (applaud), made sure to get most of the younger kids up front. A medium sized group of "guards" came marching down a side street from behind of the tomb, turned and marched down the street in front and then marched up towards the tomb where the actual "changing" took place. Lots of photo ops. Good luck.

Posted by
2416 posts

If you just want to see some handsome guards in skirts changing places, it happens every day at the Tomb … only on Sunday are there the crowds, for the band, etc. One note of caution Scott -- petty crime is rare in Athens compared with other big cities in europe, almost no purse-snatching, for example. BUT there are some skilled pickpockets, and they target 3 specific places, where tourists are in crowds, and distracted; (1) the Green line Metro, coming from the ferry port of Piraeus (2) the Blue Line metro from the airport, and (3) the Changing of Guard crowds in Syntagma Square. So --- be prudent, don't have your wallets etc in pants pockets (velcro or not -- these guys are good!), or in backpacks on your back, and ladies, keep day bags zipped w. hands on closure. Better safe than sorry.